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Doctors' Answers to "Frequently Asked Questions" - Hydrocodone
Answer: Not much usually. It can lower your blood pressure by vasodilating your venous system, but usually nothing very marked.
Answer: No legal way without a physician.
Answer: Any of the narcotics can cause edema, some more than others. As to the hydrocodone, the 7.5 refers to the milligrams of hydrocodone. The 650 the acetaminophen it is combined with. Ultram is a relatively new synthetic drug that is similar to narcotics. As to what is best, I am not convinced that any one is superior to another. They require you to take them and see for yourself. They actually have similar effects and side effects. First criteria is to find one that works-then with the least bothersome side effects for you. This is an individual issue. That is, some are more bothered by mental suppression with the narcotics, others less so.
Hydrocodone interaction with Birth
Control [posted 1/12/99]
Answer: Shouldn't be a problem.
Hydrocodone and Pregnancy
Answer: Should have minimal effects unless taken regularly and close to the end of pregnancy. However, less medications are better than more during pregnancy.
Hydrocodone and Liver damage [posted
Answer: Not usually any effect on the liver or weight gain. Does cause constipation and decreased appetite, this could potentially cause weight loss.
Allergic reaction to Hydrocodone
Answer: The nausea is an effect of any narcotic. Food prior to taking it can help. The blotching and itching is a histamine response. It wouldn't hurt to take Benadryl, but it may not help. This is not an allergic response per se, but a fairly common response to narcotics.
Hydrocodone Concerns [posted
Answer: Increase the narcotics and hold the acetaminophen at 8 or so.Hydrocodone Concerns [posted 12/04/98]
Question: I am currently taking approx 10 hydrocodone /apap 10/500 for severe chronic pain. According to the info in the bottle the Max should be 6. I am sure the 6 max is just for their protection. Am I really taking to much? If I am still functioning and only taking it at time of pain can I still get addicted? What can I do about the constipation?....What will the long term effects be on this dosage over the the next 10 to 20 years. Are there stronger medications that could be used? Am I really taking to much? A reply would be appreciated very much. I am very concerned.........
Answer: The limit per day is the acetaminophen part of the drug. This would be 6 in most people ;but, could be stretched to 8 or 10 depending on your weight and liver function. The constipation usually responds to a drug called Senekot-S and/or milk of magnesia. There are many stronger narcotics available, but, you can't take much more acetaminophen. But, there are pure narcotics that you could increase easily. Long term side effects of narcotics are addiction/physical dependence. The acetaminophen if used regularly over a long period will decrease renal and liver function(usually in excess of 8-10 years depending on baseline functional levels).
Vicoden/Hydrocodone for Pain [posted 12/1/98]
Question: I was diagnosed with a UPJ obstruction which causes severe pain in my kidney. My doctor gave me Vicoden ES for the pain as needed. I usually take 1 pill and within a half hour the pain is gone. About a week ago I was put on prozac for depression which seems to be helping. Yesterday I had a episode of kidney pain and took the Vicoden. After 2 hours and no relief I called my doctor and he said I could take another vicoden. This helped but did not totally get rid of the pain, which really surprised me considering that was a total of 1500 mg of Vicoden [hydrocodone]. I was wondering if the prozac could have counteracted the vicoden?
Answer: Probably not, just more severe pain, what are they doing to relieve the obstruction?
Hydrocodone with Pancreatitis
Weaning Yourself Off Hydrocodone
Answer: You are following an acceptable method of weaning. However, if you do not resolve the cause of the pain, you will need to be on something. Have you seen a pain specialist, injections of steroids in your spine? TENS unit,Etc. The narcotics still work by the way, you are developing tolerance and need to increase the dosage to get pain control. If there is no surgical or injectable way to alleviate the pain, I'd stay with the narcotics.
Hydrocodone [posted 10/1/98]
Answer:You won't develop an immunity. If you take it long enough at sufficiently high levels, you will develop some tolerance. However, you have not been taking it long enough for tolerance to develop. You are not taking sufficient narcotics to eliminate the pain. The side effects you are experiencing are probably due to the narcotics-and would increase with higher doses. However, it seems pointless to not take enough of the drug to accomplish its goal.
Hydrocodone and Addiction [posted
Answer: These drugs are classed on the potential for abuse as well as for addiction. This does not mean that some individuals do not become addicted. It does mean that smaller percentages of the population will and that fewer individuals are interested in the drug for recreational purposes.
Hydrocodone Cessation [posted
Answer: It depends on the dosage and the time you have been on the drug. In general, cut the dosage about 20% every week. Once you get to 20% cut 5% a week until it is gone.
Reaction to Hydrocodone
Answer: No, just a usual histamine release phenomenon associated with narcotics in some patients.
Answer: With the length of time you have been on vicodine, you should have some dependence.
Answer: Long term use of regular hydrocodone is addicting. This probably means on the order of 6 or more a day. Use of alcohol with narcotics will enhance the mental changes seen with alcohol and reduce ones ability to react appropriately. One to two beers would have the probable effect of 4 to 5. However, long term use of alcohol or narcotics increases the doses necessary to affect mental decisions. Avoid driving or using machinery and you'll probably be all right.
Answer: It depends on your liver and kidneys since they are the major metabolizers of narcotics. For hydrocodone, it usually takes 4 to 8 hours.
Hydrocodone and Pregnancy
Answer: There doesn't seem to be any particular problem with either codeine or acetaminophen ingestion at any stage of pregnancy if the doses are moderate. Parents will always be concerned with any ingestion of "foreign" substances, infections, etc. This risk is almost non-existent.
Answer: Hydrocodone is a semi-synthetic narcotic. It is generally used in treating cough, occasionally for minor pain. It has the same addiction profile as any narcotic. Side effects will be nausea, constipation, inability to focus or concentrate.
Answer: Hydrocodone is included in the class of opioid analgesics. These include
morphine and heroin and are narcotics. These are extremely effective for pain control;
but, produce all of the side effects of narcotics. These are nausea, constipation and
difficulty mentating. Long term use can be addicting. I would get in the habit of
inquiring of your physician about a drug prior to leaving his/her office. Remember, they
work for you.
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