What is Dilaudid?

What is DilaudidAt between 6-9 times the strength of morphine, Dilaudid (Hydromorphone) is one of the strongest prescription painkillers in use today– so strong that some people have started to refer to it as “hospital heroin.” While it’s intended to treat severe pain from medical operations, accidents, and serious diseases, Dilaudid is extremely addictive– and many patients who began taking the drug for medical reasons quickly find themselves dependent on it.

What are the Side Effects and Symptoms of Dilaudid Abuse?

Like other strong opiates, Dilaudid has a variety of potentially debilitating symptoms and side effects.

Dilaudid’s potential symptoms and side effects may often include:

  • Constipation
  • Nausea, vomiting, stomach pain
  • Dizziness, drowsiness
  • Headaches and fatigue
  • Emotional instability; feelings of euphoria or intense sadness
  • Itching, dry mouth
  • Excessive sweating
  • Flushing sensations
  • Sleeping problems, strange dreams
  • Blurred or double vision

Medical Use of Dilaudid May Lead to the Abuse of Other Opiates

Dilaudid is so addictive that even patients who are prescribed the drug in a hospital setting for as little as a few days may already be dependent it. Often, these patients need to be slowly weaned off the medication to avoid significant withdrawal effects.

In many cases, for patients who are prescribed dilaudid, the real danger begins when they leave the hospital. No longer supervised by doctors, nurses, and medical technicians, a patient may begin to abuse other prescription opiates in order to reduce lingering withdrawal symptoms.

After running out of medication post hospital visit, a patient may initially begin to go “doctor shopping”; visiting as many physicians as possible to obtain more prescription opiates to use, sell, or trade for other drugs. Finally, an addiction to “hospital heroin” may lead to a patient to seek out and abuse the real thing– beginning a tragic cycle of abuse, dependence, withdrawal, and, all-too-often, serious overdoses and death.

Why Medical Detox from Opiates is an Essential First Step in Substance Abuse Recovery

If you or someone you care about is addicted to dilaudid or other prescription opiates, undergoing a medical detox from opiates the best way to begin the process of addiction rehabilitation and recovery. While many individuals attempt to detox from opiates at home, doing so may be unsafe and may be more likely to lead to dangerous and potentially deadly relapse.

A reduced potential for patient relapse is just one of the reasons why it’s so important to undergo a medically-supervised detox. Other benefits include the fact that medical staff can continuously monitor a patient’s vital signs, as well as provide patients essential medications that may be able to reduce some of the side effects of opiate withdrawal.

Find a Drug Addiction Rehab Center That Cares!

Finding the right substance abuse recovery center can be tough. Whether you’re looking for yourself, a family member, or a loved one, you’ll want to make sure that the facility you choose  is professionally accredited, offers individualized treatment solutions, and, perhaps most importantly,   truly cares about helping patients overcome their addictions.

At Get Treatment, we’re committed to helping you in every way we can– and that’s why we offer treatment solutions for every step in the addiction recovery process. With medically-supervised detox solutions, inpatient and outpatient treatment programs and sober living, Get Treatment’s comprehensive, integrated care options have you and your loved ones covered.

To learn more, call 855-638-9268 and speak to one of our dedicated admissions specialists.


Erica Loret de Mola


Erica Loret de Mola is a communications major who has been writing about addiction treatment for approximately three years. As content manager and editor in chief of Get Treatment, she strives to provide the most accurate and current information available to our clients.


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