It is not safe to combine oxycodone and alcohol. Patients should never drink alcohol while taking this drug, as serious side effects or death can occur when a narcotic pain medicine is combined with alcohol. The combination causes central nervous system (CNS) depression. Experts advise those taking oxycodone to read all medicine and food labels to be sure that the products do not contain alcohol.
Patients should tell their doctor or pharmacist about any allergies they have before taking oxycodone, as the drug may contain inactive ingredients that can cause allergic reactions. Those with liver disease or diabetes are advised to use caution when taking oxycodone. This medication is known as a semi-synthetic opiate pain-killer, as are Percocet® and Oxycontin®.
Oxycodone provides relief of moderate to severe pain. It belongs to a class of drugs known as narcotic analgesics and works in the brain to alter how the body responds to and feels pain. This drug is commonly used for palliative care. In addition to easing pain, oxycodone relieves shortness of breath and helps patients to sleep better.
The side effects of this narcotic pain medication are drowsiness, nausea, vomiting and dizziness. Some patients taking oxycodone report experiencing mouth dryness and itching as well. Mixing oxycodone and alcohol together can increase the risks of drowsiness and nausea. Patients also experience memory loss and difficulty breathing from this mixture.
CNS depression is another harmful result of combining oxycodone and alcohol together. The central nervous system becomes physiologically depressed, resulting in decreased heart rate and loss of consciousness. CNS depression of this magnitude could lead to coma or death and can only be treated in a hospital setting where circulation and breathing can be maintained.
Other dangerous combinations besides oxycodone and alcohol should also be avoided. Medications such as antidepressants, antihistamines, and antipsychotic drugs can have potentially harmful interactions with oxycodone. Severe side effects include difficulty breathing and extreme drowsiness. Taking antihistamines with oxycodone also increases the risk of constipation and can result in difficulty passing urine.
Oxycodone can be as addictive as illicit drugs like heroin, which behaves similarly in the body. Only those prescribed oxycodone should take the medicine, and they should not share it with others. Patients should not take this medication any longer than recommended by their physician. In addition, extended-release oxycodone tablets must not be crushed or chewed because it will slowly disperse throughout the body.