Hydromorphone (Dilaudid)


  • Analgesic


  • Semisynthetic opiate agonist analgesic


  • Moderate to severe pain

  • Cough suppressant


  • Patients with impaired respiratory function.


  • Pregnancy Category C

  • Patients will experience CNS effects of drowsiness and dizziness, therefore use caution with motor vehicle operation or other hazardous tasks.

  • Avoid prolonged, sustained usage to decrease addiction potential.

  • Use with caution with other CNS depressive medications.  

  • Like any narcotic, may be addictive when used for prolonged periods of time (weeks to months).

  • Pregnancy Category

Adverse Reactions (Side Effects):

  • Sedation

  • Dizziness  


Administered in smallest effective dose and as infrequently as possible

Administered orally, rectally, SQ, IM or slow IV push


  • Normal: 2mg q4-6h as needed

  • Severe pain/terminally-ill: 4mg (oral), 2mg (IM) or 3-4mg (IV) q3-6h as needed or tolerated

  • Rectally: 3mg q6-8h as needed

Cough suppressant:

  • Adults and children greater than 12 years old 1mg (oral) q3-4h

  • Children 6-12 years old: 0.5 mg (oral) q3-4h

The information contained here is an abbreviated summary. For more detailed and complete information, consult the manufacturer's product information sheets or standard textbooks.

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