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Talwin Nx Uses

Adults and children as young as 12 years old may use Talwin Nx to help relieve moderate-to-severe pain. This prescription drug works by binding to certain receptors in the body and mimicking the action of naturally occurring chemicals that block pain. As a combination medicine, Talwin Nx also contains a medicine that can help prevent it from being misused.

What Is Talwin Nx Used For?

Talwin® Nx (pentazocine/naloxone) is an oral (taken by mouth) prescription medication approved for the treatment of moderate-to-severe pain. It contains a combination of two active ingredients: pentazocine (Talwin®) and naloxone (Narcan®).
Pentazocine is the pain-relieving component of Talwin Nx. It is classified as an opioid (narcotic) pain medication. When given as an injection, it is about one-sixth to one-third as potent as morphine.
According to the manufacturer, when taken by mouth, 50 mg of pentazocine provides similar pain-relieving effects as 60 mg of codeine. Talwin Nx contains an oral form of pentazocine.
Like other narcotic medications, pentazocine has the potential for abuse, particularly abuse via injection. Therefore, Talwin Nx contains naloxone, which is added to prevent the drug from being abused. Naloxone has no effect when taken as directed by mouth. However, if Talwin Nx is crushed and injected, the naloxone component cancels out the action of pentazocine, potentially causing withdrawal symptoms.

How Does This Medicine Work?

As previously mentioned, Talwin Nx contains pentazocine and naloxone. Pentazocine is the pain-relieving portion of Talwin Nx. It works by binding to opioid receptors and mimicking the action of naturally occurring chemicals that block pain. Once taken, pentazocine usually starts to relieve pain in 15 to 30 minutes and can continue to control pain for 3 hours or longer.
The main effects of pentazocine occur when it binds to receptors in the central nervous system (the brain and spinal cord). However, the drug can produce effects anywhere opioid receptors are found in the body.
There are several types of opioid receptors located throughout the body. Talwin Nx is classified as an opioid agonist-antagonist, which means it binds to and activates certain opioid receptors (kappa receptors), but also blocks certain other opioid receptors (called mu receptors).
As an antagonist at mu opioid receptors, Talwin Nx partially blocks the action of opioid medications that bind to mu receptors, such as morphine. In addition, Talwin Nx is only a partial agonist at kappa receptors, which means it only partially activates them.
Compared to full agonists, such as morphine, partial agonists-antagonists like Talwin Nx usually have a limited effective dosing range. This means there is a maximum dose above which the drug will no longer have any further effects. This may help make Talwin Nx a less-desirable drug for abuse, and make it less dangerous than full agonist drugs, particularly in the case of an overdose.
The naloxone portion of Talwin Nx helps prevent the medication from being misused. When taken by mouth as directed, naloxone has no effects in the body. However, if the drug is crushed and injected, naloxone blocks the actions of pentazocine (as well as other narcotic medications), preventing it from working and potentially causing severe withdrawal symptoms. 
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Talwin Nx Drug Information

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