- Surprising Reasons You're in Pain Slideshow
- Take the Pain Quiz
- Joint-Friendly Exercises to Reduce RA Pain Slideshow
- What is oxycodone, and how does it work (mechanism of action)?
- What are the uses for oxycodone?
- What are the side effects of oxycodone?
- What is the dosage for oxycodone?
- Which drugs or supplements interact with oxycodone?
- Is oxycodone safe to take if I'm pregnant or breastfeeding?
- What else should I know about oxycodone?
What is oxycodone, and how does it work (mechanism of action)?
- Oxycodone is a strong narcotic pain-reliever and cough suppressant similar to morphine, codeine, and hydrocodone. The precise mechanism of action (how it works) is not known, but it may involve stimulation of opioid receptors in the brain. Oxycodone does not eliminate the sensation of pain but decreases discomfort by increasing the tolerance to pain. In addition to tolerance to pain, oxycodone also causes sedation and depression of respiration.
- The FDA approved oxycodone in 1976.
What are the uses for oxycodone?
- Oxycodone is prescribed for the management of pain severe enough to require daily, around-the-clock, long-term treatment with a narcotic, and for which alternative treatment options are inadequate for the relief of moderate to severe pain.
What are the side effects of oxycodone?
The most frequent side effects of oxycodone include:
Other side effects of oxycodone include:
Oxycodone is used with caution in the elderly, debilitated patients, and in patients with serious lung disease because it can depress breathing.
Oxycodone can impair thinking and the physical abilities required for driving or operating machinery.
Oxycodone is habit forming. Mental and physical dependence can occur but are unlikely when used for short-term pain relief. If oxycodone is suddenly withdrawn after prolonged use, symptoms of withdrawal may develop. The dose of oxycodone should be gradually reduced in order to avoid withdrawal symptoms.
What is the dosage for oxycodone?
- The usual starting dose using immediate release oxycodone tablets is 5 to 30 mg every 4 to 6 hours. Patients who have never received opioids should start with 5-15 mg every 4 to 6 hours. Some patients may require 30 mg or more every 4 hours.
- The usual starting dose using extended release tablets is 10 mg every 12 hours. Extended release tablets are used when around-the-clock treatment is required for an extended period. Extended release tablets should be swallowed whole, broken, crushed, or chewed. Breaking, crushing, or chewing extended release tablets may lead to rapid absorption of the drug and dangerous levels of oxycodone.
- Patients who have been using opioids and have become tolerant to opioid therapy should only use the 60 and 80 tablets or single doses greater than 40 mg. Administration of large doses to opioid-naïve patients may lead to profound depressed breathing. The usual adult dose for the oral solution (5 mg/5 ml) is 10-30 mg every 4 hours.
Which drugs or supplements interact with oxycodone?
- Oxycodone, like other narcotic pain-relievers, increases the effects of drugs that slow brain function, such as:
- Combined use of the above drugs and oxycodone may lead to increased respiratory depression.
- Oxycodone should not be taken with any of the monoamine oxidase inhibitor (MAOI) class of antidepressants, for example, isocarboxazid (Marplan), phenelzine (Nardil), tranylcypromine (Parnate), selegiline (Eldepryl), and procarbazine (Matulane) or other drugs that inhibit monoamine oxidase, for example, linezolid (Zyvox). Such combinations may lead to confusion, high blood pressure, tremor, hyperactivity, coma, and death. Oxycodone should not be administered within 14 days of stopping an MAOI.
- Since oxycodone causes constipation, the use of antidiarrheals, for example, diphenoxylate and atropine (Lomotil) and loperamide (Imodium), in persons taking oxycodone, can lead to severe constipation.
- Drugs that stimulate and block opioid receptors for example, pentazocine, nalbuphine (Nubain), butorphanol (Stadol), and buprenorphine (Subutex) may reduce the effect of oxycodone and may precipitate withdrawal symptoms.
- Combining oxycodone with drugs that affect activity of certain liver enzymes or discontinuing such drugs may result in fatal oxycodone overdose.
- A fatty meal may increase the absorption of oxycodone by 27%.
Quick GuideChronic Pain Syndrome: Treatment and Management for CPS
Is oxycodone safe to take if I'm pregnant or breastfeeding?
What else should I know about oxycodone?
- Oxycodone is available as:
- Tablets (Immediate Release): 5, 7.5, 10, 15, 20, and 30 mg.
- Capsules (Immediate Release): 5 mg.
- Tablets (Extended Release): 10, 15, 20, 30, 40, 60, and 80.
- Oral Concentrate: 20 mg/ml.
- Oral Solution: 5 mg/5 ml
- Oxycodone should be stored between 15 C and 30 C (59 F and 86 F). Open bottles of oral solution should be destroyed after 90 days.
- Brand names available in the US for oxycodone are OxyContin, Roxicodone, Oxecta, Oxaydo, Xtampza ER, and Roxybond.
- Oxycodone is available in generic form.
- Oxocodone is a controlled narcotic in the US, and can only be obtained by a visit to your doctor.
Oxycodone (brand names OxyContin, Roxicodone, Oxecta, Oxaydo, Xtampza ER, Roxybond) is a narcotic pain-reliever prescribed for moderate to moderately severe pain. Some side effects include lightheadedness, dizziness, sedation, nausea, vomiting, drowsiness, and constipation. Drug interactions, dosing, and pregnancy and breastfeeding information should be reviewed prior to taking this medication.
Multimedia: Slideshows, Images & Quizzes
Back Pain Quiz: Test Your Back Pain IQ
There are numerous causes of chronic lower back pain and only one ailment gets more complaints. What is it? Quiz your knowledge...
Pain Quiz: Test Your IQ of Pain
Is pain all in the brain? Take the Pain Quiz to learn everything you've ever wanted to know about the unpleasant sensation we...
Picture of Sciatica
Pain that results from irritation of the sciatic nerve and typically radiates from the buttock to the back of the thigh. Although...
Pain Management: 15 Easy Ways to Reduce Chronic Pain
Chronic pain can be a symptom of many conditions, including arthritis, headaches, and others. Comprehensive pain management...
Pain Management: Surprising Causes of Pain
What’s causing your pain? Learn the common causes of lower back pain, as well as pain in the knee, stomach, kidney, shoulder,...
Common Causes of Foot Pain
Learn about common causes of foot pain such as bunions, corns, athlete's foot, plantar warts and more. Get the latest information...
Low Back Pain: Symptoms, Causes, Treatment, Relief
Do you suffer from low back pain? Watch this slideshow to see common triggers of lower back pain and what kind of treatments you...
Exercises for Knee Osteoarthritis and Joint Pain
Learn about osteoarthritis and exercises that relieve knee osteoarthritis pain, stiffness and strengthen the knee joint and...
Sciatica Symptoms, Causes, Treatments
Sciatica pain radiates from the lower back toward the feet. Sciatica may feel like a cramp in the leg, burning, tingling, pins...
Back Pain: Find Relief, Treat Your Back Pain
Back pain conditions are very common. Learn the truth and get the facts behind myths, remedies, causes and treatment for back...
Chronic Pain Syndrome: Treatment and Management for CPS
What is chronic pain syndrome (CPS)? See causes, symptoms and treatment options including medications. Learn about pain...
Prescription Drug Abuse: Know The Warning Signs
Learn about prescription drug abuse facts and statistics about the dangers and misconceptions of abusing common prescription...
11 Exercises for Lower Back Pain Relief
One of the best low back pain treatments is exercise. Learn more about low back pain exercises--what works, and what doesn't....
Neck Pain: Causes and Treatment for Relief
What causes chronic neck pain? If you have poor posture, bad sleep habits, or spine problems, these issues can lead to a stiff...
Addicted to Pills: The Health Risks of Drug Abuse
What is drug abuse? Learn about prescription drug abuse and over-the-counter (OTC) drugs, including depressants, pain relievers,...
Back Pain: Tips for Traveling When You Have Back Pain
Don't let back or other pain keep you from your travel adventures. Try these tips to minimize discomfort during your next flight...
Leg Pain: Causes and Treatment for Leg, Calf, and Thigh Pain
Leg, calf and thigh pain are symptoms of conditions that may involve the muscles, nerves, and more. Sensations like tingling,...
Back Pain: Bad Habits for Your Back
You’re more likely to have back pain as you get older. Here’s how to avoid making things worse with bad habits....
Related Disease Conditions
Kidney Pain (Location, Symptoms, Relief)
Kidney pain has a variety of causes and symptoms. Infection, injury, trauma, bleeding disorders, kidney stones, and less common...
Second Source article from Government...
Coccydynia (Tailbone Pain)
Coccydynia is an inflammation of the bony area (tailbone or coccyx) located between the buttocks. Coccydynia is associated with...
Shoulder and Neck Pain
Shoulder and neck pain may be caused by bursitis, a pinched nerve, whiplash, tendinitis, a herniated disc, or a rotator cuff...
Broken Toe Symptoms, Signs, Treatment, and Healing Time
A broken toe is one of the most common fractures among individuals. There are many causes of a broken toe, whether it is the big...
Foot pain may be caused by injuries (sprains, strains, bruises, and fractures), diseases (diabetes, Hansen disease, and gout),...
A broken foot is a common injury. There are 26 bones in the foot, and these bones can be broken (fractured) in a variety of...
Sciatica pain, caused by irritation of the sciatic nerve, typically radiates from the low back to behind the thigh to below the...
Lower Back Pain
There are many causes of back pain. Pain in the low back can relate to the bony lumbar spine, discs between the vertebrae,...
Cancer is a disease caused by an abnormal growth of cells, also called malignancy. It is a group of 100 different diseases, and...
Sacroiliac Joint Dysfunction (SI Joint Pain)
Sacroiliac joint (SI) dysfunction is a general term to reflect pain in the SI joints. Causes of SI joint pain include...
Neck Pain (Cervical Pain)
Neck pain (cervical pain) may be caused by any number of disorders and diseases. Tenderness is another symptom of neck pain....
Arthritis, bursitis, IT band syndrome, fracture, and strain are just some of the causes of hip pain. Associated symptoms and...
Acute injuries, medical conditions, and chronic use conditions are causes of knee pain. Symptoms and signs that accompany knee...
The most common causes of broken fingers are a traumatic injury to the finger or fingers such as playing sports, injury in the...
Ankle pain is commonly due to a sprain or tendinitis. The severity of ankle sprains ranges from mild (which can resolve within...
Bone cancer is a rare type of cancer that occurs in cells that make up the bones. Primary bone cancer that arises in bone cells...
Torn ACL (Anterior Cruciate Ligament Tear)
The anterior cruciate ligament helps to prevent the top and bottom of the knee from sliding back and forth. Symptoms and signs of...
Degenerative Disc Disease & Sciatica
Degenerative disc disease makes the disc more susceptible to herniation (rupture) which can lead to localized or radiating pain....
Postherpetic neuralgia (PHN) is a painful complication of shingles. Symptoms include severe pain, itchy skin, and possible...
Elbow pain is most often the result of tendinitis, which can affect the inner or outer elbow. Treatment includes ice, rest, and...
Pain management and treatment can be simple or complex, according to its cause. There are two basic types of pain, nociceptive...
Broken Bone (Types of Bone Fractures)
A broken bone is a fracture. There are different types of fractures, such as: compressed, open, stress, greenstick,...
Drug addiction is a chronic disease that causes drug-seeking behavior and drug use despite negative consequences to the user and...
Chronic pain is pain (an unpleasant sense of discomfort) that persists or progresses over a long period of time. In contrast to...
Teen Drug Abuse
Drugs commonly abused by teens include tobacco products, marijuana, cold medications, inhalants, depressants, stimulants,...
Pain Management: Musculoskeletal Pain
Natural menopause is the permanent ending of menstruation that is not brought on by any type of medical treatment. For women...
Cancer pain results from the tumor pressing on nerves or invading bones or organs. Cancer treatments like chemotherapy,...
Treatment & Diagnosis
- Back Pain FAQs
- Pain FAQs
- Drugs: The Most Common Medication Errors
- Medication Disposal
- Dangers of Mixing Medications
- How To Reduce Your Medication Costs
- Pharmacy Visit, How To Get The Most Out of Your Visit
- Indications for Drugs: Approved vs. Non-approved
- Drugs: Buying Prescription Drugs Online Safely
- Prescription Drug Abuse
- Generic Drugs, Are They as Good as Brand-Names?
Medications & Supplements
- Oxycodone vs. Tramadol for Pain
- Oxycodone vs. Codeine
- Drug Interactions
- Oxycodone vs. Hydrocodone
- Drugs: Questions to Ask Your Doctor or Pharmacist about Your Drugs
- Oxycodone vs. Vicodin (hydrocodone/acetaminophen) for Pain
- Tramadol vs. Hydrocodone
- Dilaudid vs. Percocet for Pain
- Percocet vs. Hydrocodone
- montelukast, Singulair
- Dilaudid vs. Oxycodone
- hydrocodone/acetaminophen (Vicodin, Norco)
- Percocet vs. Lortab for Pain
- Percocet (oxycodone and acetaminophen, Roxicet, Tylox, Oxycet)
- fentanyl patch (Duragesic)
- Benzodiazepines vs. Narcotics (Opioids)
- fentanyl tablet - buccal, Fentora
- hydrocodone and ibuprofen, Vicoprofen
- hydrocodone (Zohydro ER)
Prevention & Wellness
- Kratom Use in Pregnancy Spurs Withdrawal Symptoms in Newborns
- Workers' Comp Often a Gateway to Opioid Abuse: Study
- Don't Blame Obamacare for the Opioid Crisis: Study
- Oxycontin's Maker Now Selling Drug to Curb Opioid Addiction
- Surgeons Recommend Fewer Opioid Pills After Nose Jobs
- Opioids Before Joint Replacement Tied to Worse Recovery
- Anti-seizure Meds Won't Ease Low Back Pain
- Trump Carried Counties With High Opioid Use: Study
- Have Insurers Played a Role in Opioid Crisis?
- Doctors Curbing First-Time Prescriptions for Opioids
- ER Docs Prescribe More Opioids Than They Realize
- Post-Op Opioids: How Much Is Enough?
- ERs Prescribing Opioids at Lower Doses, Shorter Durations
- CDC Launches Opioid Campaign in Hard-Hit States
- Opioid ODs Have Cut Into U.S. Life Expectancy: CDC
- Surgery Can Be Trigger for Teen Opioid Abuse
- Many Migraine Sufferers Given Unecessary Opioids, Study Finds
- Longer Prescriptions Make Opioid Abuse More Likely: Study
- Many Prescribed Opioids Even After Overdose
- Hospitals Not to Blame for Most Opioid Addiction: Study
- Study Finds Options to Opioid Use After Knee Surgery
- Opioid Overdoses and Deaths Flooding U.S. Hospitals
- 7-Fold Spike Seen in Opioid-Linked Fatal Car Crashes
- Opioid Abuse Down in Younger Americans, But Up Among Older Adults
- Easing Opioid Dose May Improve Pain and Quality of Life
- Ending U.S. Opioid Abuse Epidemic Will Take Years: Report
- Painkiller Misuse Remains a Pressing Problem Across U.S.
- Painkiller Prescriptions More Prone to Errors If Handwritten
- Reaching Beyond the Prescription Pad to Treat Pain
- 3 Simple Steps Might Reduce Opioid OD Deaths
- When Is an Opioid Safe to Take?
- Opioid-Linked Hospitalizations Rising Fastest for Women: Study
- Opioid Abuse Jumps 6-Fold for U.S. Youth, Too Few Get Treated: Study
- Addicts Try to Avoid Deadly Fentanyl, But Many Tragically Fail
- Nearly 10 Million U.S. Adults Suffer From Mental Illness
- Opioids Over-Prescribed After C-Sections: Studies
- FDA Asks Maker of Opioid Painkiller Opana ER to Pull Drug From Market
- 1 in 5 Weight-Loss Surgery Patients Using Opioids Years Later
- Did a 1980 Letter Help Spark the U.S. Opioid Crisis?
- 1 in 4 Americans Knows Someone Hooked on Opioids: Poll
- ERs May Need to Rethink Opioid Prescription Practices
- Babies Born Addicted to Opioids Often Struggle With Learning
- Opioid-Related Deaths Might Be Underestimated: CDC
- Cherokee Nation Sues Drug Distributors, Retailers Over Opioid Crisis
- Rehab Services Lacking in States Hit Hard by Opioids
- Painkiller Maker Settles With U.S. Government
- Fewer U.S. Kids Overdosing on Opioids
- Spring-Clean Your Medicine Cabinet to Safeguard Your Kids
- Opioid Dependence Can Start in Just a Few Days
- 7 in 10 U.S. Workplaces Hit by Opioid Abuse: Survey
- Many Opioid Addicts in Treatment Take Narcotics on the Side
- Drug OD Deaths Have Nearly Tripled Since 1999: CDC
- Kids' OD Risk Rises When Opioids Left Out at Home
- Some Docs May Help Fuel Opioid Abuse Epidemic
- Opioids and Alcohol a Dangerous Cocktail
- Amnesia Affecting Some Opioid Abusers
- Steep Rise in Births to U.S. Women Using Opioids
- Kids Born to Opioid-Addicted Moms Seem to Fare Poorly in School
- Innovative Programs Help Addicts Get Off Opioids
- Drug Overdose Deaths Climb Dramatically in U.S.
- Fentanyl Overdose Deaths Double in a Year
- Opioid Overdoses Burden U.S. Hospitals: Report
- Opioids No Better Than Ibuprofen for Pain After Car Crash: Study
- Self-Harm a Cause of Death During Pregnancy and for New Moms
- DEA Puts Quota on Production of Opioid Painkillers
- Codeine Not Safe for Kids, Pediatricians Warn
- Do States With Medical Marijuana Have Less Opioid Abuse?
- FDA: Opioids Plus Sedatives Pose Fatal OD Risk
- Non-addictive Painkiller Shows Promise in Animal Trials
- Opioid Abusers Missing Out on Addiction-Fighting Drug
- Common Surgeries Raise Risk for Opioid Dependence: Study
- Does Medical Marijuana Reduce Need for Other Meds?
- Programs to Spot Painkiller Abuse Work, But Are Underused
- Prince Died From Potent Prescription Painkiller: Autopsy
- Parents Often Don't Get Rid of Leftover Prescription Opioids
- What a Change in DEA's Pot Rules Might Mean for Medical Research
- Vivitrol Cuts Relapse Risk in Opioid Addicts
- Nearly All U.S. Doctors 'Overprescribe' Addictive Narcotic Painkillers: Survey
- FDA Wants Generic Narcotic Painkillers to Be Abuse-Deterrent
- Did Painkiller Crackdown Cause Heroin Epidemic?
- Opioids: What Patients -- and Doctors -- Think
- Prescriptions Continue for Most Who Survive Painkiller ODs: Study
- Florida 'Pill Mill' Crackdown May Have Curbed Painkiller ODs
- Drug Overdoses Hit Record High: CDC
- Primary Care Docs the Leading Prescribers of Narcotic Painkillers: Study
- Prescription Naproxen as Good as Narcotic Painkillers for Low Back Pain: Study
- Americans Concerned About Prescription Painkiller Addiction
- Kids' ER Visits for Medicine Overdoses Dropping: Report
- Dentists Drill Patients for Drug Abuse Information
- Florida Laws May Help Lower Abuse of Prescription Painkillers
- 25 Million U.S. Adults Struggle With Daily Pain
- FDA OKs OxyContin for Some Children
- Back Pain and Depression Combo Lessens Pain Relief from Narcotic Painkillers
- Painkiller Overdoses Often Involve 'Pharmacy Shopping'
- Who's Most Likely to Get Addicted to Their Narcotic Painkiller?
- Many Doctors Underestimate Risks of Prescription Painkillers: Survey
- 'Friends and Family' OD-Reversal Kits Are Saving Addicts' Lives
- It May Soon Be Possible to Easily 'Brew' Narcotics
- ER Doctors Cautious When Prescribing Narcotic Painkillers: Study
- More U.S. Newborns Enduring Drug Withdrawal: Study
- Narcotic Painkillers in Pregnancy Common, Harmful to Baby: Study
- One-Quarter of Narcotic Painkillers Misused, Study Shows
- Painkiller-Addicted Babies a Growing U.S. Concern, Especially in Fla.
- Many Women of Childbearing Age Take Narcotic Painkillers: CDC
- Drug Interactions Common Among Hospitalized Kids, Study Says
- Painkiller Tramadol Linked to Low Blood Sugar
- Number of Pregnant Women on Narcotic Painkillers, Heroin Doubles, Study Finds
- Almost 1 in 5 Americans Plagued by Constant Pain, Survey Suggests
- Heroin Overdose Deaths Doubled in Much of U.S.: CDC Study
- Doctors' Group Issues Painkiller Guidelines
- Deaths From Narcotic Painkillers Quadrupled in Past Decade: CDC
- Small Number of Drugs Behind Kids' Accidental Poisonings: CDC
- U.S. Hospitals See Big Rise in Drug-Related Suicide Attempts
- Tough-to-Abuse Formulation of Oxycodone Approved
- FDA Approves Hard-to-Abuse Narcotic Painkiller
- Prescriptions for Powerful Painkillers Vary Widely Among States: CDC
- Injuries, Violence Are Leading Causes of Death for Young Americans
- Today's Heroin Abusers Often Middle-Class Suburbanites: Study
- Sharp Rise in ER Visits Tied to Abuse of Sedative, Study Finds
- Saturday Is National Drug Take-Back Day
- Too Much Codeine Still Prescribed to U.S. Kids: Study
- More ERs Treating Headaches With Narcotics, Study Finds
- Longer Detox Might Work Better for Prescription Pain Med Addiction
- Stress Leads Some Doctors to Abuse Prescription Drugs, Study Says
- FDA Announces New Safety Measures for Narcotic Painkillers
- Some Painkillers Tied to Certain Birth Defects in Study
- Most Medications OK During Breast-Feeding, Report Says
- Most Docs OK With Medical Marijuana: Survey
- Erectile Dysfunction Tied to Long-Term Narcotic Use in Men
- Vaccine to Fight Heroin Addiction Shows Promise in Rats
- FDA Approves 'Abuse-Deterrent' Label for New Oxycontin
- Medical Marijuana: Voodoo or Legitimate Therapeutic Choice?
- Program to Spot Painkiller ODs Saves Lives: Study
- FDA Panel Weighs Tougher Restrictions on Some Prescription Painkillers
- Painkiller Abuse by Kids Way Up, Study Finds
- 'Abuse-Resistant' Oxycontin May Be Driving Addicts to Heroin
- Teach Prescribers About Dangers of Long-Acting Pain Meds: FDA
- Methadone for Pain Relief Leading Cause of Fatal Overdoses: CDC
- Chronic Abuse of Prescription Drugs Skyrocketing
- Genes May Influence Reactions to Painkillers
- More Mental Health Woes in College Kids Who Abuse Prescription Drugs
- Mental Health Woes Raise Odds for Prescription Painkiller Abuse
- Kids Most Likely to Start Abusing Painkillers at 16: Study
- Health Highlights: April 5, 2012
- Seniors' Long-Term Use of Strong Painkillers a Concern
- More Newborns Suffering Drug Withdrawal at Birth
- Bufferin, Excedrin, NoDoz, Gas-X Recalled
- Deaths From Drug Poisoning in the U.S Jump by Sixfold
- 40 U.S. Deaths a Day from Prescription Painkillers
- Surge in Number of Americans Treated for Prescription Painkiller Abuse
- FDA Launches Painkiller Abuse Strategy
- Drug-Related Poisonings Land Many in ER
- FDA Warns of Acetaminophen in Prescription Pain Drugs
- New Pain Drug May Be Alternative to Oxycodone
- Survey Reveals Rx Drug Abuse by Teens
- Drug Tests Often Trigger False Positives
Daily Health News
Health Solutions From Our Sponsors
Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration
You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.