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Contin preparations such as Hydromorph Contin are long-acting pain formulae which are effective over a 12-hour period because of the gradual release of its active ingredient. These capsules should be swallowed whole to prevent overdose. Before you start using the pills, ask yourself: Do I have lung problems or asthma? Am I an alcoholic? Have I suffered head injury that has not healed? Am I prone to seizures? Do I have bowel problems such as constipation? Do I need to operate machinery that requires full alertness? Am I currently using medications such as MAOIs, sedatives, hypnotics, phenothiazines, antidepressants, beta-blockers, blood thinners, antihistamines, St John’s wort, OTC narcotic pain-killers? Hydromorph Contin comes in 3, 6, 12, 18, 24, & 30 mg strengths. One is not to jump strength from one level to 2 steps higher. If one has been on the drug for more than a few days, abrupt discontinuation is not recommended.