Is Tramadol a Controlled Substance?
Many people are unsure if tramadol hydrochloride (Ultram®) is considered a controlled substance -- and for good reason. Tramadol was originally marketed as a medication with weak narcotic effects and little potential for abuse. However, since the introduction of the drug, tramadol has been shown to work mainly through morphine-like activity.
Due to the large number of reported cases of abuse and dependence, the prescribing information for this opioid medication now contains several different warnings about the potential for abuse.
Tramadol is not classified as a controlled substance at the federal level. However, states may individually classify it as such. As of December 2008, Kentucky has classified tramadol as a controlled substance. It is possible (even likely) that other states may also do so. It is even possible that tramadol will be reclassified as a controlled substance on the federal level as well.
(To learn more, click Is Tramadol a Narcotic?. This article takes a closer look at how narcotics are defined and talks in detail about the Controlled Substances Act.)