Oxycodone is a pain-relieving drug that is prescribed frequently to address moderate to severe pain. The substance is found alone and in combination with other pain relievers in a tablet form under several brand names including:
- OxyContin – oxycodone; both immediate and controlled release formulations.
- OxyIR and OxyFast – oxycodone immediate release.
- Percodan – oxycodone and aspirin.
- Percocet – oxycodone and acetaminophen.
Oxycodone is synthesized, in part, by chemical modification of opioid precursor molecules which are obtained from the opium poppy. Despite being manufactured in a lab, oxycodone impacts the user in ways similar to other legal and illegal opioids. Also, like other opiate and opioid drugs, oxycodone is capable of delivering a powerful high—rendering it a potential drug of abuse for an alarming number of individuals.
Additionally, oxycodone use will put someone at risk for developing tolerance and dependence. People are at risk of these phenomena even when the medication is taken as prescribed and, over time, addiction may be the end result. Those addicted to prescription opiates like oxycodone are 40 times more likely to develop a heroin abuse problem.