> Western Medicines > Pethidine


Used for: Surgical anaesthesia, Moderate to Severe Pain, Acute pain
Chinese name:

What is Pethidine for?

Pethidine belongs to a class of medications called opioid analgesics. It works by inhibiting nerve signal transmission of pain in the brain and nervous system. It is used for pain relief in acute pain, in labour and delivery of a child, and in surgeries.

How to use it?

Pethidine is injected through a needle into a vein as directed by your doctor. Your doctor will advise you on the dosage and frequency depending on your conditions.


For acute pain
25-100 mg, then 25-100 mg after 4 hours.

Initially 25 mg, then 25-100 mg after 4 hours.


Surgical anaesthesia
50-100 mg administered 30-90 minutes before surgery.

50-100 mg administered 30-90 minutes before surgery. Use the lower end of the dosing range.

1-2 mg/kg body weight administered 30-90 minutes before surgery.


Obstetric analgesia (labour and delivery)
50-100 mg, then 50-100 mg after 1-3 hours if required. Maximum dosage is 400 mg per day.

Child 12-17 years
1 mg/kg body weight, maximum 100 mg per dose. Then 1 mg/kg after 1-3 hours if required. Maximum dosage is 400 mg per day.

What are the side effects of Pethidine?

Common side effects of Pethidine include constipation, dizziness and drowsiness, dry mouth, euphoric mood, flushing, hallucinations, nausea and vomiting (more common on initiation), respiration depression (with high dose). Like all opioid medications, people can become tolerant or addicted to Pethidine, which can result in withdrawal symptoms when you try to stop the medicine.

Who should not take Pethidine?

  • People allergic to Pethidine or any component of the formulation.
  • Patients with respiratory depression, serious bronchial asthma or gastrointestinal obstruction.

Pharmacist Tips:

  • Note that opioids have the potential to be addictive and you can become tolerant over time.
  • Tell your doctor if you experience severe side effects, such as difficulty breathing.
  • Eat more high-fibre foods, drink more water and do more exercise to reduce the side effects of constipation.
  • It is best to avoid alcohol while taking Pethidine.

Common dosing schedule:
Pethidine is administered as needed to treat acute pain, or 30-90 minutes before surgery.


This schedule is for reference only, adjustments may be made according to individual needs.


Some common medications Pethidine may interact with:

Please notify your doctor or pharmacist if you are taking the above medication, dosage adjustments might be needed.

Where to buy Pethidine in Hong Kong?

In Hong Kong, Pethidine is a prescription only medicine, and requires a prescription from a doctor to be purchased in a pharmacy. It can also be obtained from doctors. To find a pharmacy near you, refer to the list of pharmacies (“Authorized Sellers of Poisons”) from the Hong Kong Department of Health.


For more information about drug names and ingredients, you can visit Hong Kong’s Drug Office at https://www.drugoffice.gov.hk

Need more information?

For detailed information about the use of Pethidine in children, pregnancy and breastfeeding, and for questions about drug interactions, please check with your pharmacist or doctor.

Disclaimer: our goal is to provide you with the most relevant drug information and common dosage for Hong Kong. This information does not constitute medical advice. For specific treatment recommendations and advice, always discuss with your doctor or pharmacist, and follow the instructions included with your specific medicine.

Available dosage
  • 50mg/ml / 100mg/2ml (Injections)
Drug class
Sub class
Opioid Analgesics
Alternative Names
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