An Overview of Fentanyl Uses
) is a prescription narcotic medication used to treat pain. Some fentanyl products are used around-the-clock to treat persistent, chronic pain, while others are used on an as-needed basis for breakthrough pain. This drug is also available in an injectable form that is approved for use as an anesthetic (a medication given to reduce or prevent pain during surgery or other medical procedures).
Using Fentanyl for Chronic Pain
Chronic pain is defined as pain that is expected to occur for a long period. It is often thought of as the opposite of acute pain (short-term pain). The fentanyl patch
(Duragesic) is approved to treat persistent, moderate-to-severe chronic pain that has not been adequately controlled with other pain medications
Fentanyl patches provide long-lasting pain relief over a three-day period. They are not intended for "as-needed" use, nor should they be used to treat acute pain. Instead, they should only be used to treat pain that requires continuous, around-the-clock treatment.