What is Nubain®?

Ken Black
Ken Black
Doctor taking notes
Doctor taking notes

Nubain® is an injectable, narcotic pain reliever that is often used in conjunction with surgery, and may also be used during childbirth. While the drug is typically used in a professional medical setting, it may sometimes be prescribed as a injectable treatment for use at home under certain circumstances. Nubain® is the brand name for the generic drug nalbuphine, or nalbuphine hydrochloride. The medication is typically used for pain considered to be moderate to severe.

The drug is part of a family of drugs known as opioids. These drugs have effects that are similar to opium. Nubain® and other drugs in the family typically are used for pain relief. The drug accomplishes this pain relief mainly by preventing the signals responsible for sending the message of pain from communicating.

As an inhibitor, Nubain® starts with blocking the signals between the pain receptors and the brain. This temporary blockage in the nervous system does not allow the brain to perceive pain. Like other pain medications, it may not completely block all pain and could still allow some feeling in the area being treated. The length of time it remains effective is dependent upon the dosage and patient factors, such as weight.

Nubain® has many different side effects, some of which could potentially be very serious, depending on the situation. Common side effects include drowsiness, blurred vision, nausea, headache, and light-headedness. If these symptoms persist or become worse, the patient should contact his or her doctor immediately. Likewise, Nubain® should not be used when taking a number of other medications or drugs, including alcohol and MOA inhibitors. If certain antihistamines cause the patient drowsiness, that should also be disclosed.

Nubain® has the potential for abuse and is highly suspected to be a drug of choice in some sports, especially bodybuilding. The drug is preferred because it does not show up on a typical opiate screening, and is otherwise very hard to detect because it is used in such small doses. In addition to the potential for abuse in the sports field, some evidence also suggests that the drug may be habit forming for individuals who may be taking the drug for legitimate medical reasons.

Those taking Nubain® should follow all directions, especially if taking it in a home setting. The drug is typically injected in a vein, in a muscle, or just under the skin. The drug should be kept out of the reach of children and teenagers because it does have a potential for abuse. Overdose of this drug can be very serious and possibly be fatal. If a drug overdose is suspected, contact a poison control center immediately.

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