What is acetaminophen and oxycodone?
Oxycodone is an opioid pain medication. Opioids are also called narcotics. They bind to opioid receptors in the brain, spinal cord, and other areas of the body. They reduce sending of pain messages to the brain and reduce feelings of pain.
Acetaminophen is a less potent pain reliever that increases the effects of oxycodone. Also known as paracetamol, it is used to treat mild to moderate pain and fever.
A combination of acetaminophen and oxycodone is used to relieve moderate to severe pain. This medicine is white and oval or elliptical shaped and belongs to the drug class narcotic analgesic combinations. Narcotic analgesic or opioid medications attach to receptors on nerves in the brain that increase the threshold to pain (i.e., the amount of stimulation it takes to feel pain), and reduce the perception of pain (the perceived importance of the pain).
What are the side effects of acetaminophen and oxycodone?
Common side effects include feeling dizzy or drowsy; mild nausea, vomiting, upset stomach, constipation; blurred vision; or dry mouth. Adverse/serious side effects include shallow breathing, slow heartbeat; feeling light-headed, fainting; confusion, unusual thoughts or behavior; seizure (convulsions); problems with urination; or nausea, upper stomach pain, itching, loss of appetite, dark urine, clay-colored stools, jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes).
In rare cases, acetaminophen may cause a severe skin reaction (skin redness or a rash that spreads and causes blistering and peeling). This can be fatal even if you have not taken acetaminophen before or had no reaction.
Signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.
Stop taking the medicine and immediately call your doctor with serious side effects/reactions. Some symptoms are not listed above so it is best to report to your doctor any side effects that do not go away after a period of time, or are unusual, or are bothersome. Discuss with your doctor how to minimize side effects and what needs to be done in case these occurs.
How is this medicine taken?
Follow doctor’s advice and prescription label. Oxycodone can slow or stop your breathing. This medicine is more likely to cause breathing problems in children, older adults and people who are severely ill, malnourished, or otherwise debilitated.
Tell the doctor if the medicine doesn’t seem to work. Never use in large amounts or abruptly stop taking the medicine without telling the doctor. This may cause fatal side effects and overdose can damage the liver or cause death.
This should only be used by the person to whom it was prescribed for. Misuse can cause addiction, overdose, and death. Distribution is also against the law.
Measure the liquid form, do not crush, break, or open an extended-release pill.
Inform the doctor or the dentist if you must take other medicines (vitamins, herbal medicines, prescription/non-prescription drugs) or if you need to undergo surgery.
This medicine is less likely to be missed since this is medicine for pain. Do not double dose in case of a missed dose. Skip the missed schedule if it is almost time for your next medicine.
Overdose can be fatal, signs include slow breathing and heart rate, severe drowsiness, muscle weakness, cold and clammy skin, pinpoint pupils, and fainting. Immediately seek emergency help.
What other important information should I know before taking this medication?
Avoid driving or operating machinery until you know how acetaminophen and oxycodone will affect you.
Do not take alcoholic beverages. This increases the risk for liver damage and may cause fatal side effects.
Taking this medicine can cause serious side effects to the unborn child and the nursing infant. Do not take acetaminophen and oxycodone if you are pregnant, planning to get pregnant or breastfeeding.
Discuss with your doctor allergies to this drug and other medications as well other types of allergies you have.
Inform your doctor of your medical history (past and present illnesses/diseases) that may interact with this medicine.
Storage and Disposal
Store at room temperature away from moisture and heat.
Keep in a secure place away from others.
Do not keep leftover acetaminophen and oxycodone pills or liquid. If there is no take-back program, flush any unused pills or liquid medicine down the toilet.
Properly discard unused or expired medicines.
This material is provided for educational purposes only and is not intended for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.