Generic Name: Oxycodone

  • What is this medication and its most common uses?

    Oxycontin is a medicine used to treat moderate to severe, around-the-clock pain.

    Oxycontin is a federally controlled substance because it has abuse potential.

  • What should I know when beginning and continuing on this medication?

    How does this medication work?

    Oxycontin works in your central nervous system (the brain and spinal cord) and affects the way your body responds to pain.

    Oxycontin is not used to treat pain that you only have now and then ("as needed") or after surgery if the pain is mild or not expected to last for a long period.

    What are the beneficial effects of this medication and when should I begin to have results?

    What: Oxycontin has been shown to help relieve pain.

    When: Everyone responds differently to treatment, so try to be patient and follow your healthcare provider's directions. It is important that you take Oxycontin exactly as your healthcare provider has prescribed.

    How do I know it is working?

    You may feel an improvement in your pain. This is a good indicator that the medicine is working. Your healthcare provider may also ask you questions from time to time to assess how well your symptoms are controlled with treatment.

  • What are the possible side effects of this medication?

    The following is not a full list of side effects. Side effects cannot be anticipated. If any develop or change in intensity, tell your healthcare provider as soon as possible. Only your healthcare provider can determine if it is safe for you to continue taking this medication.

    Oxycontin has abuse potential. This chance is higher if you are or have ever been addicted to or abused other medicines, street drugs, or alcohol, or if you have a history of mental health problems. If you have concerns, talk to your healthcare provider for more information about abuse and addiction. Do not share Oxycontin with others and take steps to protect Oxycontin from theft or misuse.

    Serious, life-threatening breathing problems may occur when taking Oxycontin, even when Oxycontin has been taken as recommended and not misused or abused. Tell your healthcare provider right away if you are breathing more slowly than usual, are experiencing shallow breathing (little chest movement while breathing), or if you feel faint, dizzy, confused, or have any other unusual symptoms.

    Keep Oxycontin in a safe place away from children. Accidental use may result in serious harm and may be life-threatening.

    More common side effects may include: constipation, nausea, sleepiness, dizziness, vomiting, itching, headache, dry mouth, weakness, sweating.

    Less common side effects may include:

    Sudden fall in your blood pressure with symptoms such as dizziness, lightheadedness, or fainting when rising too quickly from a sitting or lying position.

  • Who should not take this medication?

    Do not take Oxycontin if you are allergic to it or any of its ingredients.

    Do not take Oxycontin if you are having an asthma attack, or if you have severe asthma, trouble breathing, or other lung problems.

    Do not take Oxycontin if you have a bowel blockage or narrowing of your stomach or intestines.

  • What should I tell my healthcare provider before I take the first dose of this medication?

    Tell your healthcare provider about all prescription, over-the-counter, and herbal medications you are taking before beginning treatment with Oxycontin. Also, talk to your healthcare provider about your complete medical history, especially if you have a head injury; liver, kidney, or thyroid problems; pancreas or gallbladder problems; seizures; problems urinating; mental health problems; a history of drug or alcohol addiction or a family history of these problems; or if you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or are breastfeeding.

  • What is the usual dosage?

    The information below is based on the dosage guidelines your healthcare provider uses. Depending on your condition and medical history, your healthcare provider may prescribe a different regimen. Do not change the dosage or stop taking your medication without your healthcare provider's approval.

    Adults: Your healthcare provider will prescribe the appropriate dose for you based on your previous pain medication and the type and severity of your pain.

    If you are elderly or have liver impairment, your healthcare provider may adjust your dose appropriately.

    It is important that you do not stop taking this medication abruptly. If you need to change or stop taking this medication, it is important that you only do this with the guidance of your healthcare provider.

  • How should I take this medication?

    Take Oxycontin exactly as prescribed by your healthcare provider. Do not change your dose or stop taking Oxycontin without first talking to your healthcare provider.

    Take Oxycontin one tablet at a time, with enough water to ensure complete swallowing immediately after placing a tablet in your mouth. Take each dose every 12 hours at the same time every day.

    Swallow Oxycontin tablets whole. Do not cut, break, chew, crush, dissolve, or inject them. If you do not take Oxycontin whole, the medicine will be released into your body too fast, causing you to have trouble breathing and life-threatening effects.

    Do not pre-soak, lick, or wet the Oxycontin tablet before placing it in your mouth.

    After you stop taking Oxycontin, flush any unused tablets down the toilet.

  • What should I avoid while taking this medication?

    Do not drink alcohol or take prescription or over-the-counter medicines that contain alcohol while you are taking Oxycontin.

    Do not drive a car, operate machinery, or engage in other dangerous activities until you know how Oxycontin affects you.

  • What are the possible food and drug interactions associated with this medication?

    If Oxycontin is taken with certain other drugs, the effects of either could be increased, decreased, or altered. Oxycontin may interact with numerous medications. Therefore, it is very important that you tell your healthcare provider about any other medications you are taking.

  • May I receive this medication if I am pregnant or breastfeeding?

    The effects of Oxycontin during pregnancy are unknown. Oxycontin can be found in your breast milk if you take it while breastfeeding. Do not breastfeed while you are taking Oxycontin. Tell your healthcare provider immediately if you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or are breastfeeding.

  • What should I do if I miss a dose of this medication?

    If you miss a dose of Oxycontin, take it as soon as you remember and then take your next dose 12 hours later. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the one you missed and return to your regular dosing schedule. Do not take more than one dose in 12 hours.

  • How should I store this medication?

    Store at room temperature.

Meet the Pharmacists

I'm Shereen A. Gharbia, PharmD. Welcome to PDR Health!

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