Oxycodone hydrochloride (ox-i-KOE-done hye-droe-KLOR-ide), or oxycodone HCl, is a powerful prescription pain reliever. This medication is part of the group of medicines called opioid analgesics. It is commonly sold under the brand name OxyContin. This narcotic drug is used to treat moderate to severe pain in people who need continuous relief for a long period of time. It is not for occasional use. This medication is most often prescribed to relieve chronic pain when other medications have not been effective.
As with other narcotic drugs, oxycodone carries some risks, including a risk for drug dependence, so it is important to follow your doctor's instructions for taking it carefully. OxyContin comes in long-acting, extended-release tablets. They are designed to release small amounts of medicine over a period of time. You should never bite, chew, crush or break them or too much medicine can release into your bloodstream at once—this can be deadly. You also shouldn't take more than one dose per 12-hour period.
You shouldn't take oxycodone if you have had an allergic reaction to a narcotic medication in the past. Tell your doctor about any side effects you've experienced from pain medications. Oxycodone can also affect breathing, so it may not be a good choice for those who have breathing disorders such as COPD. It is important to talk with your doctor about any conditions you may have, and you should not take it if you are pregnant or breast-feeding.
Many people have side effects from taking oxycodone. Some common ones include:
- Nausea or vomiting
- Loss of appetite
- Feeling drowsy or light-headed
- Mood changes
- Dry mouth
- Flushing or sweating
Some side effects are more serious than others. These may be signs of an allergic reaction or overdose. Seek medical help right away for:
- Trouble breathing or swallowing
- Hives or a rash
- Chest tightness
- Swelling or tingling in your face, mouth, hands or throat
- Extreme weakness
- Seizures, fainting or loss of consciousness
- Irregular heartbeat
- Blue lips, fingernails or skin
- Severe confusion
Oxycodone is habit-forming, so your doctor should carefully monitor your dosage. He or she may start you on a small amount and adjust it as needed. Talk with your doctor about the signs of drug dependence. Many people experience withdrawal symptoms when they stop taking oxycodone, so it is important to not stop it abruptly without your doctor's OK. You may need to gradually be weaned from it.
Oxycodone HCl has been shown to be effective at treating moderate to severe chronic pain. Your doctor may prescribe this drug to you if other pain relief medications have not proven to be effective. Visit our Oxycodone HCl page to get more information about the drug and to get free Oxycodone HCl / OxyContin coupons to save off the retail prices of each medication.