OxyContin Side Effects
OxyContin side effects are numerous and pose a great risk to users. Respiratory depression is the primary hazard of using this medication. This occurs most frequently in those who take too large of a dose or take the drug in conjunction with other substances that depress respiration. Common side effects of OxyContin also include constipation, nausea, sedation, dizziness, vomiting, headache, dry mouth, sweating, and weakness. Physical addiction is another one of the OxyContin side effects that many users experience. This develops when an individual is exposed to OxyContin at a high enough dose for an extended period of time. The user's body adapts and develops a tolerance for the drug. This means that higher doses are needed to achieve the drug's original effects.
OxyContin is classified as an opiate agonist. Opiate agonists provide pain relief by acting on opioid receptors in the spinal cord, brain, and possibly in the body tissues. Opioids, both natural and synthetic, are a class of drugs that act like morphine. These types of medications are known to be the most effective pain relievers available by prescription. However, OxyContin should be used with extreme caution. Users who are in poor physical health must take great care when using this drug. Those who abuse OxyContin and suffer from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, decreased respiratory reserve, hypoxia (a pathological condition in which the body as a whole or region of the body is deprived of adequate oxygen supply), hypercapnia (a condition where there is too much carbon dioxide in the blood), or preexisting respiratory depression may decrease their respiratory drive to the point of apnea (suspension of external breathing).
OxyContin side effects also include miosis, even in total darkness. Miosis is constriction of the pupil in the eye. This is a normal response to an increase in light but can also be associated with certain pathological conditions, microwave radiation exposure, drugs, and especially opiates drugs such as OxyContin.
Other OxyContin Side Effects:
OxyContin Side Effects on Concentration--Efficacy Relationships (Pharmacodynamics)
Studies in normal volunteers and patients reveal predictable relationships between oxycodone dosage and plasma oxycodone concentrations, as well as between concentration and certain expected opioid effects. In normal volunteers these include pupillary constriction, sedation and overall "drug effect" and in patients, analgesia and feelings of "relaxation." In non-tolerant patients, analgesia is not usually seen at a plasma oxycodone concentration of less than 5&10 ng/mL.
OxyContin Side Effects on the Gastrointestinal Tract and Other Smooth Muscle
Oxycodone causes a reduction in motility associated with an increase in smooth muscle tone in the antrum of the stomach and duodenum. Digestion of food in the small intestine is delayed and propulsive contractions are decreased. Propulsive peristaltic waves in the colon are decreased, while tone may be increased to the point of spasm resulting in constipation. Other opioid-induced effects may include a reduction in gastric, biliary and pancreatic secretions, spasm of sphincter of Oddi, and transient elevations in serum amylase.
OxyContin Side Effects on the Cardiovascular System
Oxycodone may produce release of histamine with or without associated peripheral vasodilation. Manifestations of histamine release and/or peripheral vasodilation may include pruritus, flushing, red eyes, sweating, and/or orthostatic hypotension.