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A comparison of the efficacy and safety of morphine and pethidine as analgesia for suspected renal colic in the emergency setting
  1. Alan O'Connor1,
  2. Stephan A Schug2,
  3. Hester Cardwell2
  1. 1Department of Emergency Medicine, Auckland Hospital, Auckland, New Zealand
  2. 2Department of Anaesthetiology, Auckland Hospital
  1. Correspondence to: Dr O'Connor, PMB 12, PO Box 11, Woden, ACT 2606, Australia (Alan.O'Connor{at}


Objectives—The aim of this study was to compare morphine and pethidine in patients with clinically suspected renal colic with regard to analgesic efficacy, patient satisfaction and side effects.

Methods—Double blinded, randomised controlled trial.

Results—There was no significant difference between morphine and pethidine with respect to any of the parameters measured.

Conclusion—Because of the well known adverse effects that may be associated with pethidine use, the authors recommend that morphine should be the preferred agent in suspected renal colic, when an opioid analgesic is to be used.

  • renal colic
  • pethidine
  • morphine
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  • Funding: Research Support Fund, Section of Anaesthetics, University of Auckland.

  • Conflicts of interest: none.

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