Although morphine has been regarded for over a hundred years as the most effective and reliable compound for the relief of the more severe grades of pain, the drug has many undesirable properties. It produces respiratory depression; it increases the activity and tone of the smooth muscle of the gastrointestinal, biliary, and urinary tracts, causing constipation, spasm of the gall-bladder and bile ducts, and urinary retention; it frequently causes nausea and vomiting; and it may induce itching of the skin. If morphine has to be administered over a long period of time, tolerance to the analgesic effect develops so that
ISBELL H. THE NEWER ANALGESIC DRUGS; THEIR USE AND ABUSE1. Ann Intern Med. ;29:1003–1013. doi: 10.7326/0003-4819-29-6-1003
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Published: Ann Intern Med. 1948;29(6):1003-1013.
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