Bans on Tramadol

A Review of Bans on Tramadol

Even though Tramadol has become a popular prescription medication for treating moderate to moderately severe pain associated with multiple injuries and illnesses, there have been and continue to be certain bans. Any doctor that prescribes this medication should help educate the patient. However, it is also the patient's responsibility and right to conduct independent research to fully understand all the pros and cons of any medication prior to taking it.

Keep in mind that not all bans on Tramadol are necessarily bad. Sometimes, the issue has to do with new or changing laws and manufacturing processes, among other things not the drug itself. On the other hand, Tramadol bans can be directly linked to specific formula components. Because this is an important topic, we wanted to take the opportunity to offer insight into current bans but also any potential concerns and risks.

Overseas Bans

There are actually several countries that have now banned Tramadol for one reason or another. For example, both Dubai and Abu Dhabi enforce multiple bans on prescription medication as well as certain natural substances. In the UAE, poppy seeds cannot be consumed, especially in Yemen. As far as prescription drugs, Valium, Xanax, Ritalin, Methadone, Robitussin, Codeine, and Amphetamines are prohibited, to include Tramadol. In fact, Viagra, hormone replacement therapy drugs, and antidepressants are also banned in this part of the world.

The only way to be treated with Tramadol in Dubai and Abu Dhabi is if a licensed doctor associated with a government health institute prescribes it. While this particular Tramadol ban might seem harsh, country officials with the Health Ministry claim it was necessary because school aged children were gaining access and abusing it for the narcotic-like effects. Obviously, the sentiments are not the same in every country due to strict methods of control.

Potential Bans Specific to Formula Components

As stated, there are different reasons for Tramadol bans, which sometimes have to do with components of the formula. Remember, while this particular medication is not a narcotic, it does produce effects similar to hydrocodone, codeine, and morphine, which are highly addictive drugs. Even though Tramadol is a non-narcotic medication, some people abuse it because of euphoric effects.

In the world of professional sports, the World Anti-Doping Agency or WADA has officially banned Tramadol. Annually, this organization updates the list of substances that have been banned based on specific criteria to include scientific principles, evolving social habits, and a better understanding of what ergogenic substances and/or processes are. This list consists of both substances and methods banned in a variety of professional sports such as cycling, running, and triathlon.

For instance, testing according to the WADA guidelines is administered by the United States Triathlon (USAT), International Olympic Committee (IOC), and World Triathlon Corporation (WTC). Based on testing, if the results come back as positive or non-analytical positive, an athlete is not allowed to compete for a specific period of time that would coordinate with the organization's rules.

For the 2012 season, these organizations banned a number of prescription medications and processes with examples to include the following. For each, there were specific markers at which point an individual would be considered in violation and thereby banned from competition.


As far as bans on Tramadol, there are many dynamics involved, meaning the decision is not always straightforward. As shown, restrictions are often more severe in foreign countries but even in North America, officials typically take a close look at Tramadol among other prescription medications. Because there are so many things involved when it comes to bans on Tramadol, an individual should ask question of the prescribing doctor and take time to conduct research.

The primary issue in relation to formula components is the narcotic-like effects of this drug. However, we cannot stress enough that if Tramadol is prescribed by a reputable doctor and the patient follows dosage instructions as given, there is very little risk associated, especially in comparison with other pain relievers on the market. In simple terms, when used for the right reasons, this particular medication works great but unfortunately, all drugs can be abused.

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