Oxycodone vs. OxyContin

Oxycodone vs. Oxycontin comparisonOxycodone and OxyContin are both opioid pain relievers used to treat moderate to high levels of pain associated with injuries, bursitis, dislocations, fractures, neuralgia, arthritis, lower back pain, and pain associated with cancer. However, oxycodone hydrochloride is a common ingredient in many prescription medications, including OxyContin. Oxycodone is short-acting by itself, but when packaged in a time-release tablet, such as in OxyContin, it becomes long-acting.

Most oxycodone products are taken every four to six hours as needed for pain. However, long-acting versions of oxycodone, including OxyContin, are also available. These versions are designed to be taken just twice per day. OxyContin and its’ generic versions release medication slowly over a 12-hour period.

Oxycodone and OxyContin Use

OxyContin is needed only for extended, around-the-clock pain control. For a pain reliever to be taken “as needed,” a short-acting oxycodone product is a much better match.

It is helpful to start an individual with a short-acting oxycodone product to measure just how much oxycodone the person needs to control pain before making the switch to the equivalent dosage of OxyContin.

It is useful for an individual wanting to treat “breakthrough pain” to take a short-acting oxycodone product, not OxyContin, if they are already taking a long-acting narcotic medication.

Oxycodone and OxyContin Short-term Effects

Pharmacological effects include:

  • Analgesia (pain relief)
  • Sedation
  • Euphoria
  • Feelings of relaxation
  • Respiratory depression
  • Constipation
  • Papillary constriction
  • Cough suppression

These effects may last up to five hours with short-acting oxycodone products and between eight and 12 hours in OxyContin.

Common side effects of oxycodone and OxyContin include:

  • Constipation
  • Nausea
  • Dizziness
  • Dry mouth
  • Sweating
  • Vomiting
  • Headache
  • Weakness

Oxycodone and OxyContin Long-term Effects

Oxycodone and OxyContin abuse may lead to a high tolerance for the medication and addiction.

Acute overdose of oxycodone or OxyContin can produce:

  • Severe respiratory depression
  • Skeletal muscle flaccidity (weakened skeletal muscle)
  • Cold, clammy skin
  • Reduction in blood pressure
  • Lower heart rate
  • Coma
  • Respiratory arrest
  • Death

Chronic Use of Oxycodone or OxyContin can cause:

  • A heightened tolerance for the drug(s): The person may need to ingest more of the medication to achieve the same initial effects. Consuming a larger quantity than prescribed of oxycodone or OxyContin can be very dangerous and possibly fatal.
  • Addiction: The person’s body becomes accustomed to the presence of the drug, causing the person to experience withdrawal symptoms if they suddenly stop or greatly reduce consumption of the drug. Given that oxycodone may be habit-forming it should never be shared with another person especially if that person has a history of drug abuse.

Oxycodone Addiction Treatment

If you are someone you know is suffering from an addiction to oxycodone or any other prescription drugs, please call our toll free number at (888) 371-5715. We are available 24 hours a day to answer any questions you might have about drug addiction treatment and treatment centers.