Morphine is a non-synthetic narcotic with a high potential for abuse and is derived from opium. It is used for the treatment of pain.



In the United States, a small percentage of the morphine obtained from opium is used directly for pharmaceutical products. The remaining morphine is processed into codeine and other derivatives.


What are common street names?

Common street names include:


• Dreamer, Emsel, First Line, God’s Drug, Hows, M.S., Mister Blue, Morf, Morpho, and Unkie


What does it look like?

Morphine is marketed under generic and brand name products, including:

     • MS-Contin, Oramorph SR, MSIR, Roxanol, Kadian, and



How is it abused?

Traditionally, morphine was almost exclusively used by injection, but the variety of pharmaceutical forms that it is marketed as today support its use by oral and other routes of administration.


Forms include:


     • Oral solutions, immediate-and extended-release

       tablets and capsules, and injectable preparations


Those dependent on morphine prefer injection because the drug enters the bloodstream more quickly.

What is its effect on the mind?

Morphine’s effects include euphoria and relief of pain. Chronic use of morphine results in tolerance and physical and psychological dependence.

What is its effect on the body?

Morphine use results in relief from physical pain, decrease in hunger, and inhibition of the cough reflex.


What are its overdose effects?

Overdose effects include:


     • Cold and clammy skin, lowered blood pressure,

       sleepiness, slowed breathing, slow pulse rate, coma,

       and possible death


Which drugs cause similar effects?

Drugs causing similar effects as morphine include:


     • Opium, codeine, heroin, methadone, hydrocodone,

       fentanyl, and oxycodone


What is its legal status in the United States?

Morphine is a Schedule II narcotic under the Controlled Substances Act.