Percocet

Generic Name: Acetaminophen and oxycodone hydrochloride

  • What is Percocet?

    Percocet, a narcotic analgesic, is used to treat moderate to moderately severe pain. It contains two drugs—acetaminophen and oxycodone. Acetaminophen is used to reduce both pain and fever. Oxycodone, a narcotic analgesic, is used for its calming effect and for pain.
  • What is the most important information I should know about Percocet?

    Percocet contains a narcotic and, even if taken in prescribed amounts, can cause physical and psychological dependence when taken for a long time. Because Percocet may be habit-forming, it should be used only by the person it was prescribed for. Percocet should never be given to another person, especially someone who has a history of drug abuse or addiction.

    Keep the medication in a secure place. Keep track of how many pills have been used from each new bottle of this medicine. Percocet is a drug of abuse and you should be aware if any person in the household is using this medicine improperly or without a prescription.

    Avoid alcohol or other mental depressant medicines (tranquilizers or sleeping pills) while taking Percocet. Alcohol use combined with acetaminophen (an ingredient of Percocet) may increase your risk for liver damage (symptoms include yellowing of skin or eyes, stomach pain, dark urine).

    You should take Percocet cautiously and according to your doctor's instructions as you would take any medication containing a narcotic. If you have ever had a problem with alcohol addiction, make sure your doctor is aware of it.

    Do not drive, operate machinery, or do anything else that could be dangerous until you know how you react to Percocet. Percocet may cause dizziness, lightheadedness, blurred vision, or drowsiness; these effects may be made worse if you take Percocet with other medicines or with alcohol. To minimize dizziness or lightheadedness, get up slowly when rising from a seated or lying position.

    Before you have any medical or dental treatments, emergency care, or surgery, tell the doctor or dentist that you are using Percocet.

    To prevent constipation, maintain a diet adequate in fiber, drink plenty of water, and exercise. If you become constipated while using Percocet, talk with your doctor or pharmacist; a stool softener or bulk laxative may help.

    Percocet contains acetaminophen. Adults should not take more than a total of 4 grams (4,000 mg) of acetaminophen in a 24 hour period (3 grams [3,000 mg] per day if you have liver disease). Check with your doctor before taking other pain relievers, cough-and-cold medicines, or allergy medicines as they may also contain acetaminophen. Acetaminophen may cause liver damage.

    You may have withdrawal symptoms when you stop using this medication after using it over a long period of time. Do not stop using Percocet suddenly without first talking to your doctor. You may need to use less and less before you stop the medication completely.

  • Who should not take Percocet?

    You should not use Percocet if you are sensitive to acetaminophen, oxycodone, or any other component of this product. Percocet should not be used in any situation where opiods are not to be used. This includes patients with significant respiratory depression (inadequate ventilation), hypercarbia (excess amount of carbon dioxide in the blood), or severe asthma. Also, Percocet should not be used in patients with suspected or known disruption of normal intestinal movement (when intestinal contents including drugs and food cannot move forward).
  • What should I tell my doctor before I take the first dose of Percocet?

    Tell your doctor about all prescription, over-the-counter, and herbal medication you are taking before beginning treatment with Percocet. Also, talk to your doctor about your complete medical history, especially if you have ever had liver, kidney, thyroid gland, or Addison's disease (a disease of the adrenal glands), heart disease, seizures, gallbladder problems, sever diarrhea, inflammatory bowel disease, difficulty urinating; an enlarged prostate; stomach problems such as an ulcer; a history of substance abuse or dependence, psychiatric problems, suicidal ideations, or if you have experienced a head injury.
  • What is the usual dosage?

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

    Adults: The usual dose is 1 to 2 tablets of the lowest strength (2.5 milligrams [mg] oxycodone/325 mg acetaminophen) every 6 hours. Doctors sometimes prescribe a higher dose if necessary. The total daily dose of acetaminophen should not exceed 4 grams. The maximum daily dose recommended for each strength of Percocet (oxycodone/acetaminophen) is as follows: 2.5 mg/325 mg: 12 tablets; 5 mg/325 mg: 12 tablets 7.5 mg/500 mg: 8 tablets; 10 mg/650 mg: 6 tablets.

    Elderly people or those in a weakened condition should take Percocet cautiously.

    When discontinuing therapy, doses should be decreased gradually to prevent signs and symptoms of withdrawal in a physically dependent patient. (This usually occurs after at least a few weeks of treatment with Percocet.)

    Children: The safety and effectiveness of Percocet have not been established in children.

  • How should I take Percocet?

    Take Percocet with meals or with milk. Taking Percocet with food may reduce stomach upset but will also decrease the effectiveness of the medication.
  • What should I avoid while taking Percocet?

    Do not drink alcohol or take other mental depressant medications while you are taking Percocet.

    This drug may impair your ability to drive a car or operate potentially dangerous machinery. Do not participate in any activities that require full alertness if you are unsure about the drug's effect on you.

    Do not abruptly discontinue treatment with Percocet or change your dose without first talking to your doctor.

    Adults should not take more than a total of 4 grams (4,000 mg) of acetaminophen in a 24 hour period (3 grams [3,000 mg] per day if you have liver disease). Check with your doctor before taking other pain relievers, cough-and-cold medicines, or allergy medicines as they may also contain acetaminophen.

  • What are possible food and drug interactions associated with Percocet?

    If Percocet is taken with certain other drugs, the effects of either could be increased, decreased, or altered. It is especially important to check with your doctor before combining Percocet with the following: alcohol anticoagulants such as warfarin antispasmodic drugs such as benztropine and dicyclomine; barbiturate anesthetics such as thiopental; beta-blockers such as propranolol; cimetidine; isoniazid; major tranquilizers such as chlorpromazine and thioridazine; oral contraceptives; other narcotic painkillers such as propoxyphene and meperidine; sedatives such as phenobarbital and secobarbital; sodium oxybate (GHB); sulfinpyrazone; and tranquilizers such as alprazolam and diazepam.
  • What are the possible side effects of Percocet?

    Side effects cannot be anticipated. If any develop or change in intensity, tell your doctor as soon as possible. Only your doctor can determine if it is safe for you to continue taking this drug.

    Side effects may include: constipation, dizziness, exaggerated feelings of well-being or sadness, light-headedness, nausea, sedation, skin rash or itching, vomiting

  • Can I receive Percocet if I am pregnant or breastfeeding?

    The effects of Percocet during pregnancy and breastfeeding are unknown. Tell your doctor immediately if you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or are breastfeeding.
  • What should I do if I miss a dose of Percocet?

    Since Percocet is sometimes used as needed, you may not be on a dosing schedule. If you are taking the medication regularly, take the missed dose as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and wait until your next regularly scheduled dose. Do not use extra medicine to make up for a missed dose.
  • How should I store Percocet?

    Store Percocet at room temperature between 59 and 86 degrees F (15 and 30 degrees C) in a tightly closed container away from heat, moisture, and light. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep Percocet out of the reach of children .