In the US, oxycodone is sold under a variety of different brand names as listed below:
Oxycodone is one of a large family of drugs called narcotic analgesics. It is a semisynthetic drug derived from 'thebaine', an opioid alkaloid that is found in Persian poppies. The medication works by acting on the body's central nervous system with the effect of relieving pain.
You should not use oxycodone tablets or extended-release capsules if you only need short-term pain relief, for example during recovery from surgery. This medication is not suitable for use in cases when the pain experienced by the patient is only mild, or where non-narcotic medicines are effective. Oxycodone is not suitable for use in situations when pain is short-lived or only ' as necessary'.
Patients should be aware that long-term use of oxycodone can be habit-forming, resulting in physical or mental dependence on the drug. However, if you do suffer from chronic pain, you should not be put off from using narcotics for analgesia, and you should note that mental dependence does not generally happen when you use narcotics for this reason.
People who become physically dependent on oxycodone may suffer from withdrawal symptoms and side effects when they stop using the medicine. These effects may be avoided through the gradual reduction of the dose over an extended period prior to ceasing use of the drug altogether.
Oxycodone is a prescription-only medication that comes as capsules, tablets, and solution.
Type of medicine
As well as its desired effects, oxycodone can cause some unwanted side effects. You may not notice all or any of these effects, but if they do happen, you should check with your GP as you may need further medical treatment.
You should speak with your GP right away if you notice any of the effects that are set out below:
The following list shows the symptoms of an oxycodone overdose. If you experience any of these symptoms, summon emergency assistance right away:
Oxycodone can cause some effects that do not generally need further medical attention. These side effects usually resolve themselves as your body gets used to the new drug. Also, your GP may be able to offer suggestions on how you could prevent or manage the effects. Speak to your GP if any of the effects mentioned below prove to be persistent or if they are especially troublesome:
The side effects included in this guide are not necessarily the only ones that may be experienced by patients using oxycodone. If you notice any other effects, you should check with your GP.
You must use oxycodone only as you have been told to by your GP. Do not use more of it, take it more frequently, or use it for a longer period of time that you have been told to. This is particularly important for geriatric patients, as they may have a higher sensitivity to the effects of analgesic drugs. If you use this drug for an extended period of time, it can cause mental or physical dependence to develop.
When you are given your prescription of oxycodone, you will also be issued with a medication guide and information pamphlet. Be sure to read all the information that these documents contain and ask your GP if there is anything that you do not understand.
Oxycodone extended-release tablets or capsules must only be taken by people who have already been using narcotic analgesics. These patients are classed as being opioid-tolerant. If you are unsure if you fall into this category, check with your GP before using oxycodone.
If you are prescribed the solution form of oxycodone, you will need to measure the dose with the calibrated dropper provided. Your GP may suggest that you mix the drug with a small quantity of food or liquid. Be sure to keep to the instructions you have been given and take the drug straight away.
When using the oral liquid form of oxycodone, you should measure your dose with a measuring cup or an oral syringe. Do not use a household teaspoon, as this may not be accurate.
If you are using OxyContin® or Oxaydoâ„¢ tablets, you must take them with water, whole. Do not crush, chew, cut, or dissolve the tablets. Do not wet, lick, or pre-soak the tablet before you put it into your mouth. You should only take one tablet at a time. Note that this medicine should not be given via feeding or nasogastric tubes.
If you are using the extended-release capsule form of oxycodone, observe the following guidelines:
Patients should note that the extended-release tablet and capsule form of oxycodone work in a different way from the regular oral solution or tablets, even if the dose is the same. You should not change from one to the other or change brands unless you are told to by your doctor.
The dose of oxycodone prescribed will vary between patients. The information contained in this guide is based solely on the average for this drug. Do not change your dose unless you are instructed to do so by your GP.
How much oxycodone you take will depend on how strong the medication is. In addition, the amount of daily doses that you take, the time that you leave between them, and the total length of your course of treatment will be reliant on the medication condition for which you are being treated.
Extended-release capsules for treating severe pain in patients who not opioid-tolerant and who are not already taking narcotic drugs:
Extended-release tablets for treating moderate to severe pain in patients who are changing from regular forms of oxycodone:
For people changing from other narcotic drugs:
For people who are not using other narcotic drugs:
For severe to moderate pain in patients not using narcotic drugs - tablets:
For people changing from other narcotic drugs:
To treat severe to moderate pain, liquid solution, concentrate, or tablets:
If you forget to take your dose of oxycodone, you must take it right away, unless your next dose is almost due. In this case, leave out the dose you forgot and revert to your usual regimen.
Do not take double the prescribed dose.
This drug can cause serious side effects. Do not share your prescription with anyone else.
Some drugs must never be used together, as to do so could cause an interaction to occur between them. In other cases, it may be the best option for your treatment to use two or more medications at the same time. Under these circumstances, your GP will probably change the dose or frequency of use of one or more of your medicines.
While you are using oxycodone, you must tell your GP if you are taking any form of prescription or over the counter medicines. Be sure to mention any herbal remedies, vitamin supplements, or diet pills too.
It is not recommended that you use oxycodone with any of the medicines listed below. Your GP may decide to use an alternative to oxycodone or may change some of the drugs you are already using:
The use of oxycodone is not generally recommended if you are already taking any of the drugs listed below. However, if both medicines are necessary for your treatment, your GP may adjust the dose or frequency of use of one or both of the drugs that you take:
There are some medicines that you should not use while you are eating particular foodstuffs, as interactions can be caused. Similarly, the use of tobacco or alcohol can cause unwanted interactions with some drugs. The interactions mentioned in this guide are based on their importance and the list is not to be considered exhaustive.
It is not recommended that you use ethanol while you are taking oxycodone.
Be sure to discuss your use of tobacco, food, and alcohol with your GP before you begin using oxycodone.
Some historical or pre-existing medical conditions can affect how this medicine works and how it can be used. Be sure to discuss your medical history with your GP, especially if you have ever had any of the health conditions mentioned below.
Patients should be aware that taking oxycodone if you suffer from any of the following conditions can cause a risk of more severe side effects:
Oxycodone can cause the following conditions to become worse and should be used with caution in these patients:
Patients who suffer from kidney or liver disease should note that the effects of oxycodone may be increased, due to the slower excretion of the drug from the body.
When you decide to use any form of medication, you should weigh the risks of doing so against the benefits. This decision should be arrived at following discussions with your GP. In the case of oxycodone, you should consider the information contained in this section of the guide.
Be sure to alert your GP to any allergies or unusual reactions that you have noticed when using oxycodone or any other medication, including over the counter drugs, vitamin and herbal supplements. You should also mention allergies that you have had to food preservatives, food colors, particular food groups, and animal derivatives.
There have been no specific studies into the effects of Roxicodone®, Oxaydoâ„¢, and Xtampzaâ„¢ ER in children. In addition, studies into the effect of Oxycontin® in children have not shown any specific problems. However, it is not known if it is safe to use this drug in children aged under 11 years. Any concerns that you have in this regard should be discussed with your child's treating physician.
There is no research to suggest that using oxycodone in geriatric patients could present any form of risk. However, old people are more prone to kidney, liver or lung diseases so caution should be taken when calculating the correct dose for these patients to avoid side effects.
Oxycodone is known to cause harm to nursing infants. If you are breastfeeding, you should either find an alternative feeding solution for your child, or ask your GP to prescribe an alternative to this drug.
You must see your GP on a regular basis while you are being treated with oxycodone. These visits are necessary to check that the medication is working properly and to keep an eye on any side effects that you may be experiencing.
Some patients using oxycodone have experienced a potentially fatal allergic reaction to the drug. Anaphylaxis presents with the following symptoms. In the event that you experience an anaphylactic attack, summon emergency medical attention right away:
Never use too much of your prescribed medicine or take it more often than you have been told to by your treating physician. Taking too much oxycodone can cause overdose, which can be life-threatening. Symptoms of an overdose should be treated as an emergency and include the following:
Oxycodone can add to the effects that are caused by other CNS depressants and alcohol, making you feel less alert and drowsy. Avoid using antihistamines, cough and cold medications, sedatives, sleeping pills, tranquilizers, medicine for seizures, narcotics, prescription analgesics, barbiturates, muscle relaxant drugs, or anesthetic, including dental anesthetic. Tell your GP if you are already using any of these medicines, before you begin taking oxycodone.
Oxycodone can be habit-forming. If you do not think that the drug is working as effectively as it was, do not take more. Instead, speak to your GP for assistance.
You may feel lightheaded or dizzy when rising from a seated or prone position. You may also feel faint. Prevent this problem by getting up more slowly and lying down to relieve dizzy spells.
Some patients who are taking oxycodone report feeling dizzy or drowsy. Do not drive, operate machinery, or take part in any potentially dangerous activities if you are affected in this way.
If you take oxycodone or any other narcotic drug for a long period of time, you may suffer from severe constipation. This can be prevented or relieved by the use of laxatives and keeping up your intake of fluids. You may also find that increasing the levels of fiber in your diet is beneficial. It is important that you address this problem, as continued or recurrent constipation can cause serious health problems.
If you have been taking oxycodone for over three weeks, you must not alter your dose or suddenly stop using the medicine unless your doctor has advised you to. It will be necessary to gradually reduce the dose you take before you stop altogether. This is necessary to prevent withdrawal effects, including stomach or abdominal cramps, fever, sweating, anxiety, runny nose, tremors, or sleeping problems.
It should be noted that taking oxycodone is not recommended in pregnant women. This drug can cause serious harm to the fetus in all three trimesters. You must tell your GP if you think you may be expecting a baby or if you plan to try for one during the course of your treatment with oxycodone.
Tell your dentist or GP that you are taking oxycodone. This drug can affect certain diagnostic test results.
You should not take other medications while you are using oxycodone, unless you have discussed their use with your GP first. Note that this also includes any over the counter drugs, vitamin and herbal supplements.
This drug can cause serious side effects when used incorrectly or by someone who has not been prescribed it. Keep your medication in a sealed container in a safe location where children and pets cannot reach it. If a pet does consume any of your oxycodone, contact your vet immediately.
Store oxycodone away from heat sources and direct sunlight. Do not freeze it. Keep the medication at room temperature.
Do not retain oxycodone that has gone out-of-date or that you are no longer taking. Speak to your GP or pharmacist about the correct method of disposal of any unwanted medicine.
Oxycodone is a pain-killer that is one of a number of medicines called narcotic analgesics. The prescription-only medication acts on the body's central nervous system.
Patients should note that oxycodone is not intended to be used for the treatment of short-lived problems such as headaches or muscular sprains or where pain is minor. The drug is intended for use in treating moderate to severe pain caused by chronic health conditions.
This drug is potentially addictive. It can also cause a number of potentially serious side effects. There is a long list of medicines that will cause interactions when used with oxycodone. There are also a number of existing or historical medical problems that can be exacerbated by oxycodone. For this reason, you will need to discuss your medical history fully with your GP before you begin treatment with oxycodone. While you are taking this medication, you must attend your GP for regular check-ups to ensure that the drug is working properly and that it is not causing side effects. Your GP may alter your dose from time-to-time.
Oxycodone can cause serious harm to the unborn baby and to nursing infants. Pregnant women and those who are breastfeeding should not use this drug.