FRENY MENEZES
By Freny Menezes

Pharm. D

30 August 2022
Medically reviewed by
Kajal Jain
M. Pharm
tapentadol-withdrawal
Table of Contents

Opioids are substance that blocks pain signals between the brain and body. This helps relieve pain and slows your heart rate and breathing.

Prescription painkillers like opioids find use in some patients, but they come with risks and should be used cautiously. Opioids can cause dependence, potentially fatal respiratory issues, and even heightened pain sensitivity.

In the US, opiate addiction is one of the most significant concerns. In comparison to 1999, there were more than four times as many unintentional overdose deaths with prescription painkillers in the United States in 2014.

Tapentadol is an opioid analgesic that reduces pain by altering how the brain and body process and respond to pain. Compared to more prevalent opioids like oxycodone, tapentadol has weak to moderate activity, making it considerably safer and probably less addictive. Even yet, those who misuse or take tapentadol as directed may experience withdrawal.

Withdrawal symptoms can be a challenging barrier to kicking an opiate addiction. Although it's not easy, withdrawal is something you can get through. Let us learn about the withdrawal process and how to tackle it.

What Is Tapentadol (Aspadol)?

Tapentadol is an opioid medication that received USFDA approval in 2011 for treating moderate to severe pain in those ≥ 18 years. It has unique mechanisms of action that inhibit norepinephrine reuptake and target the μ-opioid receptor.

Tapentadol’s indications have been expanded in the United States to include diabetic neuropathy, broad use as an analgesic for osteoarthritis, chronic pancreatitis, low back pain, and cancer pain supported by clinical trials.

Research has considered its role as a versatile player in pain management, and its abuse potential has been reported as low. However, given increased scrutiny of more well-known opiates and Tapentadol’s withdrawal profile and online accessibility, the medical community should know its prevalence and characteristics, particularly in patients buying Tapentadol online.

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Mechanism Of Tapentadol

Tapentadol drug binds and activates an opioid receptor in the central nervous system to change how your body interprets pain. Tapentadol is meant to relieve short-term moderate to severe pain, and its effects can be felt within 30 minutes of administration.

Many factors affect how long Tapentadol will stay in your system after administering the last dose. These factors include age, body mass, metabolic rate, activity, overall health, dosage, tolerance, and how long you’ve been taking Tapentadol.

Your doctor can help you determine the approximate time frame Tapentadol will stay in your system based on your unique factors. 

Tapentadol will stay in urine for nearly 3-4 days and in hair for considerably longer. Drug tests on your hair can show traces of Tapentadol for up to 90 days after the last dose. Tapentadol will stay in the blood for not more than a day.

Tapentadol Withdrawal Symptoms 

Withdrawal symptoms can be seen in people who discontinue NUCYNTA® abruptly. During the initial stage of drug withdrawal, symptoms begin within six to 30 hours after you stop taking the drug. 

Symptoms typically get worse or more severe after 72 hours of stopping the medication. These symptoms may include

  • insomnia
  • pain, Anxiety
  • sweating
  • rigors
  • nausea
  • upper respiratory symptoms
  • tremors, piloerection
  • diarrhea
  • rarely hallucinations

Withdrawal symptoms of Tapentadol can be reduced by tapering the amount gradually. 

Tapentadol Withdrawal Timeline

The withdrawal timeline symptom duration of this drug varies with every individual. 

While some people might be relieved of withdrawal symptoms within a few days, others may take a little longer. The factors affecting how your body will respond to the drug include metabolism, age, length of taking Tapentadol, organ function, and dosage levels.

Managing Withdrawal Symptoms of Tapentadol

When any person experiences Tapentadol withdrawal symptoms, they should be immediately identified and managed with the help of a healthcare practitioner.

If you feel trouble managing its withdrawal symptoms, you may enter a medically assisted detoxification program. Here, patients will access medical professionals while Tapentadol is safely cleansed from their bodies. It should always be noted that not everyone responds to Tapentadol withdrawal similarly. 

Tapentadol not only increases the risk of physical dependence but also the risk of addiction. The cravings and overwhelming need to use the substance are the roots of Tapentadol addiction.
How long does Tapentadol stay in the urine? Tapentadol will stay in urine for 3 to 4 days and blood for no more than a day, but it will remain in your hair for considerably longer.
In patients with depression and mild depressive symptoms, the reduction of pain symptoms was correlated with a decline in anxiety and depression ratings.

How to Detox From Tapentadol Withdrawal?

A person may go through different withdrawal stages, called detox. The total time taken to get through detox depends on factors such as:

  • your overall health
  • the type of opiate you used
  • how severe is your addiction is
  • how often do you use the opiate

If you would like to discontinue or stop Tapentadol treatment, speak with your doctor regarding discontinuing and its after-effects. In most cases, doctors lower the patient’s Tapentadol dose gradually to allow the patient’s body enough time to adjust to the decreased amounts. This is called a “tapering off” approach. Always remember that you should not stop taking Tapentadol abruptly, as this can produce unwanted withdrawal symptoms.

Always keep an updated list of medications you are taking, including herbal supplements or over-the-counter drugs, and share this with your doctor.

Tapentadol Drug Interactions

Some substances may interact with Tapentadol, so your doctor needs to have the complete list.

  • The serotonin syndrome or toxicity risk will increase if the patient takes additional substances that also increase serotonin. 
  • These substances include duloxetine, St. John’s wort, fluoxetine, venlafaxine, paroxetine, and more.
  • Using products that cause drowsiness or breathing issues can also result in Tapentadol side effects. 
  • Avoid concomitant use of NUCYNTA®  with monoamine oxidase inhibitors due to the possibility of unfavorable cardiovascular events.
  • Patients taking NUCYNTA® and other mu-opioid agonist analgesics, general anesthetics, phenothiazines, other tranquilizers, sedatives, hypnotics, alcohol, or other CNS depressants concurrently may have additive CNS depression. 
  • Notify your doctor if you take alcohol, codeine, hydrocodone, sedatives, cannabis, Anxiety medications, antihistamines, or muscle relaxants 

Precautions

Tapentadol is recommended only for short-term use since prolonged use increases the risk of withdrawal symptoms, misuse, and addiction.

Before you take Tapentadol-
Tell your doctor about all of your medical conditions, including any of the following: 

  1. difficulty breathing, 
  2. lung issues, 
  3. head trauma, 
  4. liver or kidney issues, 
  5. Convulsions or seizures, 
  6. alcohol dependence, 
  7. pancreatic or gallbladder issues.
  8. drug addiction or substance misuse; 
  • Inform your doctor if you are pregnant or intending to become pregnant; or if you are breastfeeding.
  • Discuss all your medications with your doctor before starting Tapentadol.
  • Take Tapentadol as prescribed by your physician.
  • To decrease withdrawal symptoms, gradually discontinue using Tapentadol as directed by your doctor.
  • You can take Tapentadol with or without food.
  • Avoid driving, operating machinery, and engaging in potentially risky activities until you know how this medication affects you.
  •  Avoid alcohol while on Tapentadol, as drinking alcohol raises your risk of experiencing side effects.

Bottom Line From Practical Anxiety Solutions

Tapentadol is an opioid medication for treating moderate to severe pain in those ≥ 18 years. Research has considered its role as a versatile player in pain management, and its Abuse potential has been reported as low. However, given the increased scrutiny of Tapentadol's withdrawal profile, the medical community should know its prevalence and characteristics.

Withdrawal symptoms can occur in people who discontinue Tapentadol abruptly, and this drug's withdrawal symptoms vary with every individual. A person may go through different withdrawal stages during the detox process with the help of concerned healthcare professional. 

 An individual-focused program is the best option for medical detox. You can detox from NucyntaTapentadol and beat an addiction to this potent opioid by following a proven medical approach to recovery.

  • Terlinden, R., et al. "In vitro and in vivo characterization of tapentadol metabolites." Methods and findings in experimental and clinical pharmacology 32.1 (2010): 31-38. From https://doi.org/10.1358/mf.2010.32.1.1434165 Obtain on 29/08/2022
  • Upmalis, D., et al. "(214) Symptoms of opioid withdrawal after discontinuation of tapentadol immediate release, an analgesic with mu-opioid receptor agonism." The Journal of Pain 9.4 (2008): 29. From https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jpain.2008.01.135 Obtain on 29/08/2022
  • Bienek, Natalia, et al. "Intensity of withdrawal symptoms during opioid taper in patients with chronic pain—individualized or fixed starting dosage?." Pain Medicine 20.12 (2019): 2438-2449. From https://doi.org/10.1093/pm/pny320  Obtain on 29/08/2022
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