Oxycontin vs Oxycodone

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See also Oxycodone and crime and Oxycontin Addiction

A number of people wonder if there is a difference between oxycontin and oxycodone. Are they the same medicines? Is oxycodone just a generic name for oxycontin? We’ll address these questions and other differences between the two:

Oxycodone hydrochloride is an opioid painkiller. It can be found in a number of prescription medications. When it is available by itself, it is available in the form of oxycontin. Oxycodone is also found in combination with other ingredients on a number of prescription medications e.g. Percocet.

The main difference between the two relates to the onset of action. Oxycontin is a time released drug. This means that it acts over a period of time. Usually, oxycodone medications need to be taken every four to six hours. However, Oxycontin continues acting for at least 12 hours. That is why it needs to be taken only twice a day.

You may come across certain articles that categorize oxycodone as a generic name for oxycontin because it is the active substance in the medication. However, it would be incorrect to say that because oxycodone is an active ingredient in other medications also. Most experts prefer calling oxycontin ‘oxycodone extended release’.

The two medications are prepared in a different manner. Though oxycontin contains more of oxycodone, it is also prepared in a manner that releases the medication gradually into the blood. So, even though the dosage is large, it is released slowly into the blood stream. Oxycodone is often used together with other chemicals in other medications like Percocet.

The dangers of over dosage in oxycontin are more pronounced. Since the amount of oxycodone is large, lack of a sustained release may have severe effects on the patient. This is especially true for first time users. The danger becomes more apparent in the case of addicts who break open the capsule and snort it in.

A common problem with quick acting painkillers is that they become nearly ineffective within a few hours. The action peaks within a few minutes, but falls within a few hours. Oxycontin aims at doing away with this problem by going for a sustained release.

Summary:
1. Oxycontin is time released oxycodone. It is pure oxycodone, without anything added.
2. Oxycodone may remain effective for around 6 hours. However, oxycontin remains effective for around twelve hours also. This is because the medication is slowly released into the body.
3. Oxycodone may contain other chemicals like Tylenol, which may induce vomiting in a person if taken in large amounts. However, since oxycontin does not contain this chemical, it becomes more of a danger if taken in large amounts.
4. Oxycontin should never be broken up and taken in. It may cause severe and fatal after effects if taken in this manner.
5. There is no reduction in the efficacy of oxycontin during the entire time.

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