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Systematic (IUPAC) name
CAS number 302-41-0
ATC code N02AC03
PubChem 9331
Chemical data
Formula C 27H34N4O 
Mol. mass 430.585 g/mol
Pharmacokinetic data
Bioavailability  ?
Metabolism  ?
Half life  ?
Excretion  ?
Therapeutic considerations
Pregnancy cat.  ?
Legal status
Routes Oral, IM, IV

Piritramide (trade names Dipidolor, Piridolan, Pirium and others) is a synthetic opioid analgesic with a potency 0.65 to 0.75 times that of morphine. A common starting dose is 15 mg IV, equivalent to 10 mg of morphine hydrochloride. Piritramide is commonly used for the treatment of postoperative pain. Piritramide was discovered at Janssen Pharmaceutica in 1960 and is currently manufactured and distributed within continental Europe and some other places by Janssen-Cilag.

Piritramide is available in tablets and ampoules of sterile solution for injection by all routes, and is used in Patient Controlled Analgesia units. In addition to PCA, piritramide is most often used in post-operative situations and emergency departments; some of its properties would seem to lend it well to chronic pain control as well. It is one of the longer-lasting opioids and has a plasma half-life of 3 to 12 hours. Piritramide tends to cause less respiratory depression and can take a while to have full effect especially if taken by mouth.

Piritramide is also known as pirinitramide. Its closest chemical relatives amongst well-known drugs are diphenoxylate (Lomotil) and bezitramide (Burgodin).

Piritramide's most common trade name is Dipidolor and it is used most heavily in the Netherlands, Denmark, and Germany.

Piritramide is a strong opioid and therefore is regulated much the same as morphine in all known jurisdictions. It was never introduced in the United States and is therefore a Schedule I/Narcotic controlled substance. It is listed under international treaties and other laws such as the German Betäubungsmittelgesetz, the Austrian Suchtgiftmittelgesetz, the Opium Laws of various other European countries, Canadian controlled substances act, UK Misuse of Drugs Act of 1971, and equivalents elsewhere. Strangely enough, bezitramide, which is not currently marketed in the United States is a Schedule II/Narcotic controlled substance.

Piritramide has a small but dedicated community of recreational users and it has the street names P, Dip (rhymes with "pipe") and Pierrette.


  • Janssen PA, Pirinitramide (R 3365), a potent analgesic with unusual chemical structure, J Pharm Pharmacol. 1961 Sep;13:513-30.
  • Kay B, A clinical investigation of piritramide in the treatment of postoperative pain, Br J Anaesth. 1971 Dec;43(12):1167-71.
  • German Wikipedia article on Piritramide

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