Oxycodone is a semi-synthetic narcotic analgesic and historically has been a popular drug of abuse among the narcotic abusing population. Oxycodone is synthesized from a constituent of the poppy plant. Street names Hillbilly Heroin, Kicker, OC, Ox, Oxy, Perc, and Roxy. Oxycodone is marketed alone as OxyContin® in 10, 20, 40 and 80 mg controlled-release tablets and other immediate-release capsules like 5 mg OxyIR®. It is also marketed in combination products with aspirin such as Percodan® or acetaminophen such as Roxicet®.

Oxycodone is abused orally or intravenously. The tablets are crushed and sniffed or dissolved in water and injected. Others heat a tablet that has been placed on a piece of foil then inhale the vapors. Euphoria and feelings of relaxation are the most common effects of oxycodone on the brain, which explains its high potential for abuse. Physiological effects of oxycodone include pain relief, sedation, respiratory depression, constipation, papillary constriction, and cough suppression.

Extended or chronic use of oxycodone containing acetaminophen may cause severe liver damage. Drugs that cause similar effects to oxycodone include opium, codeine, heroin, methadone, hydrocodone, fentanyl, and morphine. Overdose effects include extreme drowsiness, muscle weakness, confusion, cold and clammy skin, pinpoint pupils, shallow breathing, slow heart rate, fainting, coma, and possible death.

Oxycodone products are in Schedule II of the federal Controlled Substances Act of 1970.

(SOURCE: DEA www.getsmartaboutdrugs.com)