Can You Cut The Fentanyl Patch In Half

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I asked my doctor the same question yesterday, she said "no", because once it hits the air, the strength starts to dissipate, or weaken. So she put me on the lowest dose, as I hope to get off them and all meds eventually.

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Verwon Says:
No, you can't cut it in half and the reason for it is because it is time released and cutting the patch could cause you to get too much of the medication at once, which may result in a dangerous overdose.

Learn more Fentanyl details here.

Are there any other questions or comments?

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mcmac74 Says:
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What about the new style without the gel. You know like the nicotine patches
Can you cut those ones half?
and just cut your dose.. thanks.. Dave

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Latelisa Says:
I have been using the Mylan matrix (non-gel) patches for some time now and have had no problems with cutting them. I remove 1/6 to 1/5 of a patch before I put it on if my pain level has been reasonable for the preceding few days. I will use this method to detox if I ever get to the point where my pain level allows it. FYI what makes the patches "time release" is that only a certain amount of fentanyl passes thru the layer at a time and the amount is regulated by the area, so 1/2 of a 100mcg patch will release at exactly the same rate as a 50mcg patch. Hope this helps. All this information comes off the packaging insert and the manufacturers' website.

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Tom Dempsey Says:
Yes you can cut the Mylan brand patches into smaller pieces. I know as I have just successfully weaned myself off of Fentanyl by doing just that. 100 to 75 to 50 to 25 then finally to 12.5.....then I just left the very last 12.5 on and never put another on after it petered out! I am already feeling so much better! I huge chunk of the fog and gloom has lifted! My fifth day since the patch died and things already look and feel better. I'm in pain once but at least I FEEL again. I still take Dilaudid 4mg 4 or 5 times a day but that's an improvement over the Fentanyl. I feel like I got my life back...never again shall a patch be attached to this 52 year old guys back. Hope this help just even one person to quit. Reading all the many related anti-Fentanyl post right here in this Fent-Forum is what got me thinking....then reading...and then weaning and now clean of Fentanyl. I do not even crave it at all. I thank the people of this forum and give credit to the many who barred all so as to help others. Thank you people so much for your honesty. Reading your stories got my brain in gear knowing others have had success. Tom in Idaho.

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Granny Says:
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Tom I too want to get off these crazy patches. I'm 48 year old female and I'm scared to death . I've been on them at least 6 years. I'm on a 100 and a 25. How long were you on the patch ? What all can you tell me that will help me. I also take nurontin metynx morphin and I don't take all prescribed of the morphin . Also take other meds too and have phenagren for nausea. Plaqunil and zanaflex blood thinner etc. But I have COPD and afraid I'll stop breathing if I go I to bad dt's. I smoke too. Should I stop before or after stopping fentanyl? Anything you can tell me will help please. Thanks so much

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Mac Says:
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I had one fall off in the shower didn't even know. Well anvhour later I was so sick I mean SICK...want to grab the anchor and jump overboard thought I was going to need a trip to hospital. Was on them about three years so happy to be off them......

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Tom Dempsey Says:
Hello Granny, I'll try and answer your questions to me.
1) I'm on a 100 and a 25. How long were you on the patch ? I started on the 25 mcg, after one month I started on a 50mcg. After a year I needed more to get the same relief. Another year I asked for and received the big daddy the 100mcg fentanyl patch. Unlike a lot of patch wearers I actually liked the Mylan Brand. With a swipe of alcohol (I know they tell you not to) to remove any skin oil it stuck very well and in 5 plus years of patch wearing I can think of only maybe three times it came off but other circumstances were at play (swimming pool). I did wear the 100mcg patch nearly three years. Throughout this time I noticed that I no longer wanted to do much. Didn't feel like exercising, movies? I think I'll stay home, you go on without me. Wife's work Xmas party? Aahhh, I'm not feeling real good honey, go on without me. Barely made it to my daughters college graduation. Pushed myself just to mow the lawn then swallowed four 4mg Dilaliud for my breakthrough pain. After years on this drug I slowly began to realize I no longer had interest in friends, work, pleasure ect. I did though always remember to change my 100 mcg fent patch every 48 hours right on schedule. I had become physically dependent on the drug. I even thought about ending it all but that would be so cruel to my wife and daughters.

2) What all can you tell me that will help me? Well here's what helped me. First off you REALLY have to want to be done with the drug. I never told my PM doc that I wanted off. Afraid he'd try and talk me out of it or suggest another drug to replace goes. Right after seeing my PM doc and filling my Rx of three 5 packs of 100 mcg patches rather than apply one whole patch I cut that sucker in HALF! Stuck the 50 on and waited....well the step down to 50 was not really bad at all. I stayed there for 5 patches or ten days. Then I started cutting the 100's into quarters. I went with 25 mcg for another ten days then dropped down to 1/8th ot 12.5mcg then after 10 days I just left that last patch on and left it on for about a week as it just started coming off. Why? Because in the deepest reaches of my mind I could still say to myself that "I have my patch on". Yes,I got sick to my stomach, my back, shoulders, elbows, knees and neck all hurt BUT I stii had my breakthrough pain meds Dilaliud to help me through, plus regular old Tylenol but what really helped me through and I don't believe I could have done it otherwise was the little yellow 5mg Valium pills the doc Rx'ed for chronic anxiety. I am here to tell you I do not believe I could have come off Fentanly without Valium. I started taking them more and more toward the last because it's impossible to SLEEP when you are kicking the fent habit.

I had to come clean. 30 days later I attended my regular scheduled appointment with my PM doctor...and I told him " I quit the patch". He was PISSED! He wanted to know why I didn't tell him. All I could say in my defense was the truth. I explained that if I went it alone and failed I would not have to report back that I failed. But should I succeed I could come to him with good news to report! I think he was surprised as as he explained most patients want more drugs not less. Then he told me that my body was still reacting to not having the fent. I explained that indeed I was consuming more Valium and breakthrough pain meds than ever before. He told me he'd rather see me take a few more Hydromorphone and Valium while staying off the fentanyl. I am lucky to have a caring PM. He rx'ed double the Valium and kept me at the same Dilaudid.

I feel very lucky and I'm much happier now that I'm off the fent for good. It's been 15 days now since I have removed the patch. I'm a greatful man. Granny I have never been a smoker but from all I've heard throughout my life smoking rates harder to quit than most opioids. Plus as you mentioned you have several issues to work out. If I were in your shoes I would have a very candid conversation with a sympathetic pain mgt doctor.

I hope things take a turn for the better,

My heart and hope go out to you,


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Sara Says:
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Hi there...I have a quick question...I hope you'll see it even though you posted a few months ago. When you went from 75 to 50 to 25, etc. did you have withdrawls symptoms? Thanks for your help!

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Allizon Says:
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Exalgo is an Extended release form of dilaudid. it's a fairly new drug, 7 yrs old or so. They just began selling the generic for it so it has to be at least 7 yr old.... I used fentanyl (have an allergy to adhesive so didn't help me) but, the exalgo helps me along side of short acting dilaudid 4 to 6 times a day....

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Allizon Says:
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Anyone who has been on any type of long termed pain management will have symptoms of some kind.... The easiest way to "detox" is to keep cutting the non gel patch down ( for example 12mcg patch) can be cut in 1/2 at first (6mcg each=2 pieces), then into 1/4 (3 mcg each=4pieces) and then into 1/6 (2mcg each = 6 pieces, and 1/8 (1.5mcg each=8 pieces) and if you are desperate to avoid harsh DT's you can cut the 12mcg patch 1/12 (1mcg each =12 pieces and last but not least 1/24 (.5mcg {1/2mcg} each=24 pieces... They will be very small pieces but you can use medical tape to keep them attached or in place.. How ever once you are done with the last patch you may still get I'll, but if that should if at all happen you can use break threw meds, also one of the symptoms when your detoxing (or at least for me it did) is these tedious muscle aches & cramps it didn't hurt but it didn't help me while I was detoxing, to I used a mat for your car seat that you can plug into the cig lighter that heats up or gives your back a massage ( you can't get hem at walgreens or walmart) I would lay on top of that to ease the muscle aches which helped me... But you can tell your pain Dr you want off, they will give you scripts of various dosages lowest being 12mcg, that's what my Dr did.... I ended up on exalgo ( extended release dilaudid) and I don't feel drugged, but it wasn't like I felt drugged on fentanyl either...i got off it cause I was constantly forgetting how long I had the patch on & was suffering in massive amounts of pain because of my lack of focus on my patches and when they needed to be replaced along side of and allergy I had to the adhesive on the patches as well...

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Butler Says:
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You can cut them. Kind of pointless. Just don't peel the cut half from its backing. And it will begin to lose strength. Butler

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Grndado11 Says:
I'm going to try to get my life back too, I'm a retired Army Airborne Infantryman and was injured in Iraq. I had a total of them operations on my right shoulder ending in a replacement. I have had surgery on my back also due to damage to the lumbar from a parachute jump in high winds.

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Lisa Says:
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I'm doing the exact same process. I'm cutting my 12's to make '10' '8' '6' '4' '2' off! Started at 75! I can't tell you how much better I feel either! It's amazing! I take no other narcotics!

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Lisa Says:
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Tom- great job! I've tappersd down from 100 since jan. 31st. 2015 I'm now at 4mcg july 2015 I cut the Mylan brand it to halves & quarters. It's a mind game. Especially being on it for 9+ years. I get the leg kicks at night and random hot and cold flashes . Totally fell like a different person coming off this med! I take one norco at night for withdrawls. That's it. Keep up the hard work!

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Kitty Says:
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Thank you for your service to our great country, sir! I'm sincerely sorry you were injured, but oh-so-grateful for all you did. Blessings!

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Kelsey Says:
I have been on 150mcg mylan patches with a 48hr. change rate for over 9 years now.
I tried to get off it 3 years ago and made it to 25mcg after 4 months and was so hopeful but then had a terrible flare in my neuropothy (I developed Complex Regional Pain Syndrome after an ankle surgery). I had to titrate back up to the 150mcg in order to just exsist! I'm now ready to tackle getting off this stuff once and for all. My condition is not better but I cannot continue to pay the price of these patches. They are going to break me!!! I have a Medicare advantage insurance plan and am now in what they call the "GAP". It is costing almost $500 a month now! It's one thing to be in pain and have to use this aweful drug, but to be dependant on it and not to be able to afford it makes it even worse! On top of everything else, I feel guilty that so much of our monthly income has to be used for my drugs. Im also tierd of not remembering things! I am using the Mylan brand patches and was wondering if I could cut them to reduce my doseage more slowly than last time. Im so happy to have found this thread. Please advise how long you have found to be the 'sweet spot' for the timing between reductions and what amount seems to be the best % to drop by each time. I dropped from 150 to 100 in the past 5 days and am noticing some WD's but not too bad. Should I wait another 5 days? The withdrawls I had last time were body jerks/restless legs, headaches, nausea, lack of hunger, diahrrea, itching, insomnia at nite, extreme fatigue during the day and of course irritablilty. Sounds like all those are normal from what I have read. I plan to tell my doc when I see him in 3 weeks that I have started the titration...I just want to be able to show him that I really am serious about getting off this lousy drug!

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NotBuyingIt Says:
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I call bulls***. There is no way you got sick from a patch falling off in only 1 hour. This is a very slow acting medicine that is absorbed into the fatty layers of your skin. It takes at least 6 to 12 hours to take effect and about the same time and usually longer to begin feeling withdrawal when a patch falls off. It's happened to me several times and it took well over 12 hours to notice the patch was gone. The withdrawal effects come on very slow after that starting with a migraine. There is no way you were that sick in 1 hour from a patch falling off.

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HarleyGurl Says:
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Omgggg Mac. pls help me do the same. I'm on 100mg teva-fent every 36 hrs. Never thot withdrawal was possible if ur not abusing them. my Dr has been over prescribing me for 5 yrs. gives me 24 every 28 day's. Too many people dieing in my small town with not even 1 stop light. None due to my last wk all at once he cut me back 6 patches. I'm hurting bad. Crying as I type! Now next appt he said he's only giving me 9 total. I'm terrified the withdrawal will kill me. Bcuz 10 yrs ago. It almost did. I was hospitalized 6 times in 3 month's. In ICU unconscious. Almost died. My family is petrified he's going to kill me. Also my pharmacist Is afraid 4 me too. They are both good buddies and their always in cahoots. Anyway their accusing me of filling my Rx early. I got Rx every 28 days for 24 altho he'd write 36 hrs on it.. he wrote Rx every 28 days. Pharm filled it 28 days. Seems to me that I'm the ONLY 1 who followed protocol. Will tell you this much tho. We're not planning on going down alone that's for f'n sure. Yes I'd love to be weened. But he's going about this all wrong. Making a really bad career decision. I'm in Canada. I'm a 50 yr old woman. Horrific diabetes..both legs clogged arteries. Have best vascular surgeon in Canada Apparently and he can't fix me. I'm too thin. 104lbs. Anyway too much to type but there's no help for my legs. Havta sell my Harley soon. already tried it out. already got fwd controls. Now new hand controls is to just make it an automatic bcuz I havta literally stand up when changing gears cuz hurts too much.but what good is Making it automatic if I don't have legs! Crying my eye's out right now bcuz my Dr got me to this place and now that he's panicking it's ME who's made to suffer! ! Can u pls get back to me should u see this. In fact anyone who has been where I am. I would love your hear from anyone who can help. What can I do about him over prescribing me in the first place?

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HarleyGurl Says:
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Hi kelsey. We are pretty much in the same boat. I'm only on 100mg every 36 hrs. But my Dr has been giving me 24 every 28 day's 4 over 5 yrs. Now last wk he took 6 away. And next appt said he's only giving me 8 or 9.I'm terrified he's going to kill me. It's almost happened 10 yrs ago on a much less powerful drug. Landed in hospital ICU 6 times in just under 4 months. Unconscious. Anyway I'm petrified. I'm crying my eyes out as I type to you. I notice your post was very recent. I'd love love love love love love to be able to email you. I'm in Canada. I could call you if I knew ur numb. Maybe if u didn't mind giving me ur email. Even if u just wanted to open a new email just to post here. Then we could go from there. With our real reg email. Seems to me that we could be a really awsome support for eachother. I believe u said u r 48.I'm 50.did I mention I'm in Canada? Lol.I Also suffer HORRIFIC neuropathy as well. And clogged arteries both legs.which are unfixable bcuz I am DISGUSTINGLY skinny nowadays 104lbs. My vascular surgeon said my veins are too tiny to act as an artery and said I'm too skinny to survive the 9 hr surgery. He's known as the best in Canada and told me in 40 yrs I'm the very first that he has no idea how to help me. My arteries arnt from my diabetes tho.its from smoking 3 packs a day. I quit cold turkey on Aug 20/14.well with the Evape. It's been a life saver. If ur wanting to quit hon. Have u considered the Evape. U can get nicotine diff strengths. Or 0 nicotine. I'm telling you that ud be amazed. My husband quit cold turkey on day 1 as well and soo many other's that I've introduced it's too.100% of them quit smoking the very first day too. Plssssssssssss get back to me. .bye for now. Ur new friend in Canada. Cheers!

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HarleyGurl Says:
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Hi about the smoking I'm on 100mg patch every 36 hrs for past I lost track of the yrs. I've quit smoking Aug 20/14.blocked arteries from smoking 3 packs a day. Anyway I used the Evape. Quit cold turkey on day 1 of the Evape. U can get either 0-32mg nicotine. I started with 12 my. Then 6mg then 3. Still on 3 but use 0% sometimes as well. Not sure if ur still smoking or not. U cannot get cancer from nicotine. The tar is where the cancer comes from. Blocked arteries r from nicotine. So obviously 0 nicotine is best for me since I've already got blocked arteries.I'm at risk of losing both but especially my right (driving) leg. Already my Harley is now a trike. Now switched to forward controls. Now hand controls and now looks like we're converting it to an automatic this winter for next spring. Thank gawd hubby is very extremely smart with these things. Saved us 10s of thousands so far already. Hope this helps abit with the smoking

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