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Tramadol Addiction

Is Tramadol Really Addictive?

Originally, tramadol was marketed as a medication with weak narcotic effects and little potential for abuse. As a result, many healthcare providers came to view tramadol as a relatively safe medication for people who were at risk for drug abuse, such as people with previous problems with drug or alcohol abuse. However, research has since demonstrated that tramadol works primarily through morphine-like activity, and numerous cases of abuse and dependence have been reported. Now, the prescribing information for this medication contains several different warnings about the potential for addiction to tramadol.
From 1995 to 2004, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) received reports of 766 cases of tramadol abuse. The actual number is probably much higher, because not every case of addition is discovered or reported. Interestingly, statistics indicate that tramadol is most likely to be abused by people with chronic pain, narcotics abusers, and healthcare professionals.
Currently, it is thought that tramadol is probably less addictive than morphine or other similar drugs. However, tramadol addiction is still possible and is a real problem for many people.
In addition, in July 2014, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration reclassified tramadol as a Schedule IV controlled substance (prior to that date, tramadol was not classified as a controlled substance), further acknowledging the significant potential for abuse for this drug.

Final Thoughts

If you suspect that you might have a problem with addiction to tramadol, please seek help. Your healthcare provider is a great place to start when searching for help. He or she will be able to help you deal with such problems (hopefully in a nonjudgmental way) or may suggest other resources for you. In any case, do not stop taking the medication abruptly, as tramadol withdrawal could occur.
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