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Pethidine or meperidine (often called Demerol in the United States) is a fully synthetic opioid. It is an analgesic. It is used for the relief of moderate to severe pain. Pethidine can also interact with a number of other medications, including muscle relaxants, some antidepressants, benzodiazepines, and alcohol.
Pethidine is also relatively bad for use when a patient is suffering from liver, or kidney disease, has a history of seizures or epilepsy, has an enlarged prostate or urinary retention problems, or suffers from hyperthyroidism, asthma, or Addison's disease.