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Fentanyl Patch Information

What is a fentanyl patch?

The fentanyl patch is a thin, adhesive, rectangular patch that is applied to your pet’s skin by the veterinarian. It delivers a strong pain-relieving medication called “fentanyl” through the skin and into the bloodstream. It should only be used to relieve severe pain that will last several days, such as that following orthopedic surgery, for example. Since this is a very strong medication, you and your household members need to be aware of some important information. Please call our office if you have any questions or concerns about your pet or possible side effects.

Precautions & Warning Signs

  • The normal reaction to a fentanyl patch is relaxation. Please call our office if you believe your pet is not responding to you or if your pet is having any difficulty breathing.
  • Only give your pet the medications prescribed by one of our veterinarians, and inform our office of any medication that your pet is regularly taking.
  • Direct sources of heat may increase the amount of medication absorbed through the skin. Do not use electric blankets, heating pads, sun lamps, heated waterbeds, or other sources of direct heat on the patch.
  • If you feel your pet is running a fever, please call our office because the increased body temperature could cause an increased absorption of the medication.
  • In the event that the patch falls off, discard it by folding it in half so that the sticky side sticks to itself and flush it down the toilet immediately. Even used patches contain enough fentanyl to poison infants, children, and pets!
  • Do not cut or damage the patch. Call our office if you feel that the patch is damaged in any way or starting to peel off. The patch will not work properly or may not be safe to use if it is cut, damaged, or not contacting the skin. A veterinarian is on call, even after our regular office hours, to address any concerns or questions.
  • Keep the fentanyl patch out of reach of children and pets. Do not allow the pet wearing the patch to lick or bite at it.

Your pet should return as directed by our office staff to have the patch removed and properly disposed.

Your pet’s recovery and well-being are our primary concerns, so please do not hesitate to call and speak with a veterinary technician or surgeon if there are any questions regarding your pet’s recovery.

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