Oxycontin (oxycodone), a morphine-like drug, is classified as an opiate pain reliever, which is sometimes referred to as a narcotic as well. Oxycontin is used in the treatment of chronic pain; moderate or severe. It acts by changing the way the brain reacts and responds to pain.
Oxycontin and Abuse
Due to its time-release long-acting formula, Oxycontin is now a drug that is under severe criticism for its additive nature. Many individuals who suffer from chronic pain avoid using Oxycontin out of fear of becoming addicted. Moreover, many doctors and healthcare officials prefer not to prescribe this drug. Oxycontin is sometimes also present coupled with certain non-narcotic drugs, such as aspirin and acetaminophen, and provides up to 12 hours of relief from chronic pain.
Much research has been conducted with regard to Oxycontin. Significant results that confirm its addictive nature have been obtained. Some of these are as follows:
- Classified as a "pharmaceutical grade heroin".
- Regarded to be just as detrimental and addictive as heroin.
- May be addictive and even cause death despite being used as prescribed.
- Does not actually "reduce" pain; simply acts as an anesthetic and blocks the sensation of pain. Hence, it induces drug-dependence because more is taken in the pretence of reducing persisting pain.
- For an opiate-intolerant individual, a single dose of Oxycontin may result in death.
- Increased use of Oxycontin has forced many heroin dealers to increase the purity of their heroin from 20% to 80%, so that it could cause the same "highs" as Oxycontin.
- Certain unethical "drug-dealing" doctors, despite knowing these facts, will prescribe Oxycontin if given enough money.
- Withdrawal symptoms (after cessation or tapering) include agitation, palpitations, anxiety, restlessness, insomnia, blurred vision, piloerection, tremors and even psychosis.
Oxycontin as a Street Drug
The high content of oxycodone in Oxycontin is what makes it so popular on the streets. The tablet is often crushed and then swallowed or snorted. It may also be diluted in water and injected by professional drug junkies. This destroys the time-release mechanism of the drug, giving the user a heightened feeling of euphoria similar to that experienced by heroin.
Street names for Oxycontin include OC, Kicker, OxyCotton, and Hillbilly Heroin.
However, such dealing is highly unethical and hazardous, and should be avoided at all costs. It not only jeopardizes your health, but may also put your life in undue danger.
Alternatives to Oxycontin
Despite what the paid stooges of various pharmaceutical companies tell you, there are many alternates available for Oxycontin to manage chronic pain. These include the following:
- Extended-release morphine pills - these may be available under the brand names MS-Contin or Kadian.
- Fentanyl - under the brand name Duragesic. This drug is available as a transdermal patch that sticks to the skin and allows the drug to be absorbed into the body. However, this is a very potent narcotic as well, and is only prescribed when all other medications are unresponsive.
- Morphine and Hydromorphone - available as "immediate-release" pills for short-term relief of pain.
- Synthetic opiates - Meperidine (Demerol) and Propoxyphene (Darvon) may also work better than Oxycontin, but this needs to be determined by the prescribing physician.
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