prescribing for the syringe driver

Last reviewed 01/2018

  • the dose of each drug to be given by infusion over a specified period of time (usually 24 hours) should be clearly written
  • if required, a range of drug dose to be administered over a specified time period may be indicated. Variable rates of infusion length (mm/time) should not be prescribed
  • bolus doses of drugs should be prescribed separately in anticipation of breakthrough pain

Do not

  • change the rate setting
  • add medication to an existing syringe
  • use the boost button


  1. West Midlands Palliative Care Physicians (2003). Palliative care - guidelines for the use of drugs in symptoms control.