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Duragesic Patches

Dangers of Duragesic Patches

Duragesic patches are pain patches which contain the powerful narcotic drug Fentanyl. They work as a topical treatment for chronic pain by delivering Fentanyl slowly through the skin for up to three days.


In 2008, several manufacturers of Duragesic patches recalled their products due to defects which caused the patches to leak and expose patients and caregivers to Fentanyl gel. Direct exposure to Fentanyl gel can cause respiratory problems, overdose, and death.

  • Johnson & Johnson– In February 2008, Johnson & Johnson recalled two lots of Duragesic patches manufactured by Sandoz, Inc. due to a manufacturing defect which caused the patches to leak.
  • Watson Pharmaceuticals– In August 2008, Watson recalled a lot of Duragesic patches due to possible leaks of Fentanyl gel.
  • Actavis Inc.– In March 2008, Actavis expanded an earlier recall on Duragesic patches due to a “fold-over defect” which could cause the patches to leak and expose handlers to Fentanyl gel.


  • 2005– The FDA revised the safety labeling on Duragesic patches to include information about risks of life-threatening hyperventilation and Fentanyl addiction.
  • 2007– The FDA issued a second warning stating that they had received numerous reports of overdose and death in patients using Duragesic patches.


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