How Does OxyContin Work?

OxyContin® (oxycodone ER) is a prescription medication approved to treat moderate to severe pain. It is a strong narcotic painkiller that should not be used to treat mild or short-term pain. Some people may wonder, "How does it work?"
 
OxyContin tablets are specially designed to release the medication continuously over a 12-hour period. It contains oxycodone, a narcotic, opioid pain reliever. It binds to opioid receptors throughout the body and produces numerous different effects. These effects include (but are not limited to):
 
  • Pain relief
  • Cough suppression
  • Decreased breathing (slow or shallow breathing)
  • Certain changes in the circulatory system
  • Slowing of the digestive tract
  • Release of histamine (which often causes itching)
  • Physical dependence.
     
(Click OxyContin Uses for more information on how the drug works, to learn about possible off-label uses, and to find out if it is approved for use in children.)
 
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