Fentanyl nasal spray is a narcotic opioid used for relieving intense flares of pain in people with cancer (who already take around-the-clock pain medication). The nasal spray is used every two hours as needed, but not to exceed four doses a day. This drug has a high risk for abuse and overdose, so make sure you know how to use it properly.
What Is Fentanyl Nasal Spray?
Fentanyl nasal spray (Lazanda®) is a prescription narcotic pain medication approved for the treatment of breakthrough cancer pain. Breakthrough pain is defined as intense flares of pain that "break through" regular, around-the-clock pain medication. Fentanyl nasal spray should only be used by people who have already been taking, and are tolerant to, regularly scheduled narcotic medication for their underlying cancer pain.
Fentanyl nasal spray contains fentanyl, a potent opioid pain medication. Like other medications that contain fentanyl, this nasal spray is a Schedule II controlled substance. This means there are strict laws and regulations controlling the use of the medication. Schedule II controlled substances are considered to have the highest abuse potential of all prescription medications.
Because of the potential for abuse and possible overdose, this medication is only available through a restricted program called the fentanyl nasal spray Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategy (REMS) program. You, your healthcare provider, and your pharmacy must be enrolled in this program.
Your healthcare provider will discuss the program with you, give you an opportunity to ask questions, and ask you to sign a "Patient-Prescriber Agreement." The pharmacy will enroll you in the program the first time you fill your fentanyl nasal spray prescription.
Food and Drug Administration, Center for Drug Evaluation and Research. Electronic orange book: approved drug products with therapeutic equivalence evaluations. FDA Web site. Available at: http://www.fda.gov/cder/ob/. Accessed July 19, 2011.
National Library of Medicine (US). Drugs and Lactation Database (LactMED). NLM Web site. Available at: http://toxnet.nlm.nih.gov/cgi-bin/sis/htmlgen?LACT. Accessed July 19, 2011.
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