Oxycodone

 
What is Oxycodone and why is it prescribed?
Oxycodone is a narcotic painkiller. It is prescribed for moderate to severe pain when continuous, around-the-clock relief is needed for an extended period of time. Be sure to swallow Oxycodone tablets whole. If broken, crushed, or chewed, the tablets quickly release a potentially fatal overdose of Oxycodone. Abusing Oxycodone by chewing the tablets, snorting crushed tablets, or dissolving and injecting their contents can slow down or stop breathing and lead to death. Injecting Oxycodone can also kill the tissue around the injection site and trigger heart and lung problems.

How should you take Oxycodone?
Follow your doctors directions for taking Oxycodone. It is important to take Oxycodone on a regular basis, every 12 hours, in exactly the dose prescribed. This drug is not intended for occasional "as needed" use, and should never be taken more often than directed. If you suffer episodes of increased pain, check with your doctor; do not change the dosage on your own. If you miss a dose take it as soon as you remember. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the one you missed and return to your regular schedule. Do not take two doses at once. Store Oxycodone at room temperature in a secure place out of reach of children. Protect from light. Dispose of unused tablets by flushing them down the toilet.

Are there any Oxycodone side effects?
Oxycodone side effects cannot be anticipated. If any develop or change in intensity, inform your doctor as soon as possible. More common Oxycodone side effects may include constipation, dizziness, drowsiness, dry mouth, headache, itching, nausea, sweating, vomiting, and weakness. Less common Oxycodone side effects may include abdominal pain, abnormal dreams, abnormal thoughts, anxiety, chills, confusion, diarrhea, dizziness upon first standing up, excessively high spirits, fever, hiccups, indigestion, insomnia, loss of appetite, nervousness, rash, stomach pain, shortness of breath, and twitching. Rare Oxycodone side effects may include abnormal gait, accidental injury, agitation, amnesia, burping, chest pain, cough, decreased sexual drive, dehydration, depression, difficulty swallowing, diminished muscle tone, diminished sensitivity, dry or inflamed skin, emotional instability, fainting, gas, generally ill feeling, hallucinations, hives, impotence, increased appetite, intestinal obstruction, lack of menstruation, loss of identity, migraine, neck pain, overactivity, pain, ringing in the ears, seizures, sore throat, speech disorder, stomach problems, stupor, swollen arms and legs, swollen face or mouth, swollen lymph nodes, taste changes, thirst, tingling, tremor, urinary problems, vertigo, vision changes, voice changes, and vomiting.

What are the possible food and drug interactions when taking Oxycodone?
If Oxycodone is taken with certain other drugs, the effects of either could be increased, decreased, or altered. Be sure to inform your doctor of all the prescription and over the counter medications you are taking. While using Oxycodone, check with your doctor before taking any other drugs that slow the nervous system. The combined effect can impair breathing, reduce blood pressure, and lead to coma. Drugs in this category include the following: Antipsychotic drugs (such as Compazine, Mellaril, Stelazine, and Thorazine), Muscle relaxants (such as Flexeril, Robaxin, and Skelaxin), Narcotic painkillers (such as Demerol, Percodan, and Vicodin), Sleep aids (such as Ambien, Halcion, and Sonata), Sleep-inducing antihistamines (such as Benadryl and Phenergan), Tranquilizers (such as Ativan, Librium, Valium, and Xanax), and Alcoholic beverages. If you are already taking such drugs, your starting dose of Oxycodone will be reduced by at least half. Certain other painkillers can reduce Oxycodone's effect, or even cause withdrawal symptoms. Caution is necessary when combining Oxycodone with drugs such as the following: Butorphanol (Stadol), Nalbuphine (Nubain), or Pentazocine (Talacen, Talwin NX).

Are there any special warnings about Oxycodone?
The two highest-strength Oxycodone tablets, 80 and 160 milligrams, are dangerous for anyone who has not already developed a tolerance for narcotics. If you have been prescribed one of these strengths, do not give the tablets to anyone else; they could impair respiration and lead to death. Follow your doctor's dosage instructions carefully. Misuse of Oxycodone promotes physical dependence, abuse, and addiction. When Oxycodone therapy is no longer necessary, the doctor will taper your dosage gradually in order to prevent withdrawal symptoms. Abruptly discontinuing the drug can cause such symptoms as restlessness, enlarged pupils, watery eyes, runny nose, yawning, sweating, chills, and muscle aches. More severe symptoms may include irritability, anxiety, joint pain, weakness, cramps, insomnia, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, rapid breathing, and a fast pulse. Oxycodone should be used cautiously by anyone with a respiratory condition. Oxycodone is especially prone to cause breathing problems in older adults, people in poor health, and those with disorders such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Doctors generally try to use non-narcotic painkillers for patients such as these. Oxycodone should be used with caution by people with head injuries, brain tumors, and other conditions that increase pressure on the brain. Caution is also warranted for people who are semi-conscious or in a coma, and those who suffer from acute alcoholism, adrenal or thyroid problems, spinal deformities that impair breathing, an enlarged prostate, difficulty urinating, drug-induced psychosis, pancreatitis and related disorders, or severe kidney or liver disease. Oxycodone has been known to trigger seizures or make them worse. Use it with caution if you have a seizure disorder. Like other narcotic painkillers, Oxycodone can slow your reactions and make you drowsy. Oxycodone can cause a severe drop in blood pressure, leading to dizziness and light-headedness, especially when you first stand up. The empty shell of the Oxycodone tablet sometimes appears in the stool. This is not a reason for concern. Oxycodone is not for use in children.
 

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