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This was in our paper today. NOTE THIS IS A HUMAN SIDE EFFECT, and a rare one at that, though it seems to me it could be something that could occur in dogs, as well. Tramadol, in general, is touted as a safe pain reliever, but we have seen several dogs here on GT who have had issues with it. Just something to consider, especially for our senior dogs.
THE PEOPLE’S PHARMACY
Hallucinations from pain meds a concern
By Joe and Teresa Graedon

Q: I was recently prescribed tramadol for pain from a bad hip. I ended up with hallucinations; ghostlike people were floating along next to my shoulder. I thought I was going crazy, and I think my doctor agreed. He said tramadol is a very safe pain medication. Have you heard of anyone else experiencing hallucinations on this drug?

A: Hallucinations are not mentioned in the official prescribing information for tramadol, though they have been reported when people stop taking tramadol suddenly. More than 10 years ago, auditory hallucinations were traced to tramadol in a case report (BMJ, Dec. 23-30, 2000).

We also are concerned about a rare but serious side effect of tramadol. A review of medical records in the U.K. revealed that people taking tramadol were almost three times more likely than others to end up in the hospital with dangerously low blood sugar (JAMA Internal Medicine online, Dec. 8, 2014). The risk is low, but it is one that both doctors and patients should be aware of. Symptoms may include confusion, dizziness, headache, sweating, weaknessand poor coordination.

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Thank you for sharing this.

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We experienced some unfortunate dog side effects with Tramadol. Lessened a good deal by dividing the full dose and giving it over a couple hours rather than all at once.

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And there was one side effect of it that I noticed in my last dog, Angel.

A case of severe heart arryhthmia (going like a motor with occasional big bumps).

I read up the human literature on it and it would seem it was an 'overdose' effect caused in poor Angel by her kidney failure and consequent inability to excrete it from the body fast enough. It took nearly 36 hours for it to clear.

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I'm fairly certain Princess had hallucinations when she was given (against my wishes) Tramadol after her dental last year. She paced and whined and would run from room to room like she was following something or hearing something -- all night long. It was horrible. Never again.

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Guest chickenpotpie

Lucky has never had bad side effects from tramadol, which I'm thankful for because she's already crazy enough.

Edited by chickenpotpie
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It is listed as a side effect. I've taken it myself, and got aural hallucinations (quite pleasant, actually, they consisted of someone singing in my right ear). Quite a number of meds have hallucinations as a side effect. My DH has seen bats, beetles coming out of his watch, and has actually tripped over a yellow snake he hallucinated in our kitchen (I was there at the time, and there was definitely no snake) while he was on something entirely different.

 

I've posted before on Tramadol threads on Greytalk suggesting that our dogs could suffer from aural hallucinations when taking Tramadol, which could explain the paranoid symptoms they sometimes display. Aural hallucinations are by far the most common, but visual ones are not unknown, I think.

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When my boy, Dexter, had arthritis, the vet was going to prescribe tramadol and told me that it sometimes can have a psychological effect. I chose not to put him on it cuz he had enough issues.

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I was most interested in the effects mentioned after the hallucinations in the above article - many opioid drugs can cause this, afterall. But the low blood sugar issue probably isn't one most vets will check, and it seems we sometimes have a rash of dogs having confusion, weakness, dizziness, etc. I just wonder if it's not low blood sugar caused by tramadol, at least sometimes.

Chris - Mom to: Lilly, Felicity (DeLand), and Andi (Braska Pandora)

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Angels: Libby (Everlast), Dorie (Dog Gone Holly), Dude (TNJ VooDoo), Copper (Kid's Copper), Cash (GSI Payncash), Toni (LPH Cry Baby), Whiskey (KT's Phys Ed), Atom

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I'm fairly certain Princess had hallucinations when she was given (against my wishes) Tramadol after her dental last year. She paced and whined and would run from room to room like she was following something or hearing something -- all night long. It was horrible. Never again.

 

This is exactly what Sid was like on Vetergesic, a different opiate painkiller. He ran out into the garden and seemed panicked, but when anyone went out to fetch him in, he ran away from us as if we were dangerous monsters. Funnily enough, he is fine on Tramadol!

I think the lesson is that we should all be aware of possible side-effects from whatever we, or our dogs, are prescribed. If anything major shows up, we need to get back to our doctors or vets and let them know ASAP, in case it is one of these rare but potentially side-effects. Low blood sugar could be very serious indeed, depending on how low, and the individual's state of health.

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I've been on Tramadol for years.

 

Even the article quoted said that hallucinations are NOT one of the side effects, and has been reported only by patients who stop taking it suddenly. Giving your dog Tramadol for a week or so and then discontinuing it is not the same sort of deal as, for example, ME who takes it daily, and has for years.

 

 


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I've been on Tramadol for years.

 

Even the article quoted said that hallucinations are NOT one of the side effects, and has been reported only by patients who stop taking it suddenly. Giving your dog Tramadol for a week or so and then discontinuing it is not the same sort of deal as, for example, ME who takes it daily, and has for years.

 

 

 

... on the other hand, I was prescribed it after shoulder surgery and had been taking it continuously (without any stopping, or even late doses)for about ten days when i began getting the hallucinations. And Sid had had one single dose. I can't prove he was having hallucinations, but it sure looked like it to us.

 

I think there are sensitive people (and animals) who suffer side effects to certain drugs more quickly or more severely than others.

Edited by silverfish

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This is a government health advice site which states quite clearly that hallucinations are indeed a possible side effect of Tramadol.

And this is a quick photo of the relevant part of my own Tramadol information leaflet.

 

TramadolLeaflet_Part_zps7a6f7883.jpg


It's listed as a 'rare' side effect, it's true, but that doesn't mean it never happens. Clearly it does!

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Guest Celestrina

 

... on the other hand, I was prescribed it after shoulder surgery and had been taking it continuously (without any stopping, or even late doses)for about ten days when i began getting the hallucinations. And Sid had had one single dose. I can't prove he was having hallucinations, but it sure looked like it to us.

 

I think there are sensitive people (and animals) who suffer side effects to certain drugs more quickly or more severely than others.

No question. DM was given Percocet (oxycodone/acetomeniphen) after her surgery. It gave her horrible nightmares and panic attacks. Her nightmares were so realistic she came into my room crying and asking why I left her alone all day. I had never left the house; not even to walk Angie. She only took one dose before bed two nights in a row.

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Everybody's reactions to meds are different. Bu is on it right now and except for being a little extra sleepy, he's doing great. He's also on a couple others meds, so the sleepiness could be due to any of them. I'm also in it and it knocks me out.

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