Tramadol is a pain medication from the opioid class of drugs. It is an analgesic and for this reason is very effective in treating moderate to severe pain. Tramadol is prescribed for anything from restless leg syndrome to migraines. It is not as strong as other opioids making it less addictive. For this reason it is often the first sort of pain medication prescribed before moving on to stronger medications which poser a higher risk of addiction and abuse. Though tramadol does not pose as must risk as other opioids it should still be treated with caution. Those prescribed tramadol should pay particular attention to avoid certain combinations while taking tramadol. One such combination is tramadol and alcohol.
Effects of combining tramadol with alcohol
Alcohol is well known for its ability to increase the strength of a wide variety of medications and other substances and is therefore advised to be avoided. Particularly, it is always recommended to avoid combining alcohol with other downer medications. This is because combining multiple downers increases the risk of respiratory depression and the chances of the user falling into a coma and even dying. As tramadol is a downer it should avoid being taken along with alcohol. In addition to increasing the risk of coma and death when combining alcohol and tramadol this combination can also result in other very unpleasant side effects.
Tramadol lowers the seizure threshold making it more likely that a seizure will occur. Since alcohol increases the potency of tramadol it results in an even greater lowering of the seizure threshold. The larger the amounts of tramadol and alcohol consumed the more likely a seizure is to occur. Combining tramadol with Alcohol will also increase various other side effects such as the blurring of vision, nausea, and balance issues. This combination may also result in shakiness, general anxiety, and other symptoms that are typical of an overdose of tramadol. In the case that even a small amount of alcohol is consumed while under the influence of tramadol care should be taken not to drive or operate any sort of heavy machinery.
Tramadol and alcohol's effects on the liver
In large and frequent quantities alcohol is known to cause liver damage and in some cases hepatitis. Long term tramadol use has also been linked to an increased risk in liver damage. When these two drugs are combined the risk and possibility of liver damage is significantly increased. The reason for the increased risk of liver damage, is combining tramadol and alcohol increases the amount of processing and work that the liver has to do. If the doses of tramadol and alcohol are large enough the liver will not be able to effectively filter out all the substances. The remaining substances will become toxic to the liver and cause damage. If this happens enough the liver will eventually shut down or develop a disease such as hepatitis. Cirrhosis of the liver may also occur if this combo is repeated often. Liver damage may eventually lead to death and is very painful.