MME Calculator

By Łucja Zaborowska, PhD candidate
Last updated: Oct 27, 2020

Our MME calculator allows you to evaluate the morphine milligram equivalents (morphine equivalent dose) for the 11 most popular opioid drugs.

Are you keen on finding out more about the MME calculations and the opioids use and dosing? Don't hesitate and follow the article below! 💊

What are opioids and MME?

Opioids are a strong type of pain-killing drugs. They're extremely addicting, so they should be used with caution, only in selected cases.

We often use opioids to treat patients with severe, chronic pain, connected, e.g., to an ongoing cancer process. Doctors may also use these drugs for the short-time treatment of acute pain linked to surgery or trauma. In all enumerated cases, the use of co-analgesia is essential.

💡 Co-analgesia means using different kinds of drugs that are not opioids, to lower the dose of the opioid itself. The main purpose of this strategy is to achieve perfect pain management, while eliminating the possible side effects of opioids.

MME is the way to compare different opioid drugs with different strengths or administration routes. In this system, we consider morphine to be the basic opioid, and we translate the amount of every other drug to its equivalent in the amount of morphine.

A few rules of opioid dosing:

  1. Always start your pain treatment with non-opiod drugs, such as paracetamol or ibuprofen.

  2. Use the lowest effective dose.

  3. If successful pain management is possible with lower doses - always decrease the period and the dose of the opioid.

  4. Use co-analgesia in all kinds of pain intensity.

  5. Always trust your own clinical judgment - the response to opioids might be utterly different in individual patients.

Look up more details on the WHO cancer pain ladder system page. 🌎

How to use the MME calculator?

Our morphine equivalent calculator has a straightforward structure - follow the two steps enumerated below.

  1. Choose the type of opioid drug.

    The only transdermal treatment enumerated in this list is the fentanyl patch.

  2. Input the dose of the chosen opioid.

    • Most drugs are given in milligrams (mg) - except for fentanyl tablets and patches, given in micrograms (mcg, μg).

    • Be cautious, especially with fentanyl patches - their dose is given in mcg/h and describes the drug release rate.

🎉 Enjoy your results! You will receive both the morphine milligram equivalents (MME) and its meaning, considering the number of MME taken daily.

Remember - Do not use this tool as a single decision-maker for switching your patients to other opioid drugs!

It was easy, wasn't it? Consider looking up our other conversion calculators:

Opioid equivalency chart

Our morphine equivalent dose calculator uses the following morphine conversion factors:

Buprenorphine (mg)10
Codeine (mg)0.15
Fentanyl tablets (buccal or sublingual) (mcg)0.13
Fentanyl patch (mcg)2.4
Hydrocodone (mg)1
Hydromorphone (mg)4
1-20 mg/day4
21-40 mg/day8
41-60 mg/day10
>60 mg/day12
Morphine (mg)1
Oxycodone (mg)1.5
Oxymorphone (mg)3
Tapentadol (mg)0.4
Tramadol (mg)0.1

MME for morphine is equal to 1!

How to calculate MME?

You can easily replicate results obtained with our MED calculator; use the short formulas enumerated below.

  1. Buprenorphine MME = 10 * Dose (in mg)

  2. Codeine MME = 0.15 * Dose (in mg)

  3. Fentanyl tablets (buccal/sublingual) MME = 0.13 * Dose (in mcg)

  4. Fentanyl transdermal patch MME = 2.4 * Dose (in mcg/h)

  5. Hydrocodone MME = 1 * Dose (in mg)

  6. Hydromorphone MME = 4 * Dose (in mg)

  7. Methadone MME = Conversion factor dependent on dose * Dose (in mg)

    Methadone dosing is dependent on many variables; check the morphine conversion factors listed above.

  8. Oxycodone MME = 1.5 * Dose (in mg)

  9. Oxymorphone MME = 3 * Dose (in mg)

  10. Tapentadol MME = 0.4 * Dose (in mg)

  11. Tramadol MME = 0.1 * Dose (in mg)

Łucja Zaborowska, PhD candidate
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