Pain relievers are used extensively for managing pain caused to one of many reasons. Surveys on the use, abuse of pain killers have revealed that 25% of users of OTC pain relievers, typically take more than the recommended dose. Resultantly, a significant percentage of individuals with chronic pain issues, end up with adverse effects attributed to abuse of pain killers. The most commonly used or preferred pain relievers are opioids and this unintended excessive use of pain killers is responsible for undesirable effects. Here is a good look at the side effects of Percocet and measures to prevent and mitigate possible adverse effects.
Commonly reported side effects of Percocet
Before we look at the commonly reported side effects of Percocet, it is necessary to learn all about visible symptoms that indicate the onset of side effects. For instance, certain discernible changes or effects clearly indicate adverse effects of the medication. Opioids are known to have an impact on breathing, by slowing down breathing., This can turn dangerous in individuals who experience these effects. Care givers and attendants of patients on opioid based pain relievers are advised to look for tell tale signs. Discoloration of the lips and lengthy pauses between breathing are clear indications of a possible impact on breathing. Similarly, if an individual on opioid pain killers is asleep and it is difficult to wake up the individual, this could also be a cause for concern, as it indicates an impact on breathing.
Tell-tale signs of side effects of Percocet
The following symptoms are possible indicators of side effects of Percocet. Patients on the medication who experience some kind of light headed feeling, are at risk of passing out due to the impact of the medication on breathing. Symptoms include noisy breathing, breathing with pauses while at sleep and shallow breathing in patients. Similarly, individuals are known to sigh while at sleep, and this could indicate a possible effect on normal breathing. Patients who experience weird thoughts or who exhibit behaviour that is inconsistent with normal behaviour are also to be monitored carefully, as this indicates possible side effects.
Other manifestations or symptoms of side effects of Percocet include difficulty while urinating, and confusion that is not attributed to other reasons. Patients are known to be weak and tired without any physical exertion. Similarly, patients are also known to develop fever without any specific reason, while others are known to experience abnormal bleeding and bruising. Indications of certain serious side effects include nausea, and drastic appetite loss, which could indicate a reduction in cortisol levels. Patients with low cortisol levels as a result of the medication are known to vomit, and experience dizziness while on the medication. Other serious side effects such as liver complications can be diagnosed when the patient passes urine that is discolored or stools that have clay like color. Other indications include pain in the upper portion of the stomach, a change in color of the skin to yellowish complexion, or yellowish color in the eyes.
Among side effects of Percocet, certain adverse effects require urgent attention. This is necessary to mitigate the serious nature of the side effects. For instance, one of the adverse effects of the medication is serotonin syndrome. Indications or symptoms of the side effects include a rapid increase in heart rate, twitching of the muscles and possible diarrhea. Individuals are likely to experience stiffness in the muscles, fever and possible sweating. Other indications include hallucinations in the individuals, and agitation, apart from shivering not attributed to other reasons. A clear loss of coordination is another possible symptom of serotonin syndrome and caretakes are advised to look for these symptoms or indications and take appropriate remedial measures.
Compilation of side effects of Percocet
Now that we have a clear idea of the possible symptoms that indicate side effects of Percocet, it is time to look at the adverse effects. Frequently reported side effects include an upset stomach, while many report vomiting and possible nausea when on the medication. Many individuals end up with constipation, while others find it difficult to remain awake, as drowsiness takes over the individual. A dizzy feeling is a possibility, and similarly, individuals are also likely to experience a light hearted feeling. One of the desired outcomes of pain relievers is to reduce pain sensations, however, this could also reduce the ability of individuals to sense pain stimuli, in areas other than the targeted or desired areas, and this could cause unwanted complications. For instance, an individual who does not experience pain while lifting a heavy object, may push himself or herself to apply more force and this could result in possible damage to the muscles or joints.
Other side effects of Percocet include blurred vision that is not attributed to any other condition, profuse sweating and possible headaches. Itching and an usually dry mouth are other possible adverse effects of the medication. The above side effects are a possibility and it is not necessary that all individuals on the medication to experience side effects. Certain individuals may experience mild or moderate effects, while a small section of individuals may experience serious side effects. A significant percentage of individuals who stick to the right dosage are unlikely to experience any side effects, when the medication is taken as per the directions and recommendations of a specialist.
Serious side effects of Percocet that need to be reported to healthcare/emergency
As mentioned above, a small section of individuals are likely to end up with serious side effects of Percocet. It is important to ensure that timely medical intervention is made available to the patients in the event of certain conditions. This will prevent the condition from progressing to a serious level or end up as life threatening. For instance, if caregivers observe lengthy pauses in breathing, it is necessary to seek emergency assistance. Know as apnea, this could result in a serious condition if the patient is not triaged on time. Respiratory depression, respiratory arrest are other conditions that demand immediate intervention in a healthcare facility. Patients experiencing low blood pressure as a result of the medication are also advised to seek medical attention. Hypotension can lead to serious complications if left unattended, and it is vital for patients to seek treatment. Patients are cautioned to observe and report any symptoms of circulatory depression, as this could result in oxygen deprivationto the tissues, limbs and organs. These conditions can be serious in nature if treatment is not administered on time.
Recommended dosages to prevent side effects of Percocet
As mentioned in the introduction, most of the reported incidents of side effects of Percocet are attributed to wrong dosages. Individuals tend to use and abuse pain killers, and the easy availability of OTC formulations lulls users into taking the medication without recommendations. The non-medical use of medications and incorrect dosage is attributed to most of the adverse side effects.
Available in combinations of 2.5/325 to 10/650, it is necessary to check the formulation and combination. This refers to the mix of acetaminophen and oxycodone in Percocet and it is necessary to maintain the right dosage limits to prevent side effects of Percocet. Patients are advised to ensure that the total dose of the medication is not to exceed 4 grams of acetaminophen per day, while the total strength of oxycodone is not to exceed 60 mg per day. Instructions for taking the medication include swallowing the medication fully and avoid breaking or chewing the tablet. The right dosage and right method of taking the medications will help prevent liver damage that is associated with opioids. The logic behind taking the tablets whole, is to prevent quick release of the active ingredients in the body. The mechanism of action of the medication is effective when the ingredients are released slowly. When the tablets are broken or chewed, the ingredients are released quickly and this results in faster absorption of the medication. Consequently, the mechanism of action of the medication changes and this results in higher concentration levels that could cause considerable harm to the patient.
Medications and formulations that interact with Percocet
Some of the side effects of Percocet are attributed to the drug interactions of the medications with other drugs and formulations. This could include medications and supplements or herbal formulations. The main interaction is with medications and sedatives or tranquilizers that contain narcotics. Opioids are a primary constituent in various medications, including sleeping tablets and muscle relaxants. Medications with opioids are known to cause drowsiness in individuals. When patients take two types of medications that contain opioids, there is every possibility of the combination resulting in adverse effects.
The safety of the medication has not been assessed or evaluated in children, and it is therefore necessary to seek specific medical advice regarding the same. Similarly, women who are either pregnant or planning a pregnancy are advised to exercise extreme caution while taking the medication. This is necessary to avoid adverse effects including damage to the liver. This damage is primarily due o the presence of the acetaminophen in the combination. Allergies are a possible outcome of drug combinations or side effects of Percocet. Patients with other existing conditions or on other medications are advised to seek specific medical advice. This will help identify medications that could cause drug interactions, and help in taking suitable measures to either prevent or mitigate the side effects. The side effects of the medication can be serious in nature and turn fatal in rare instances. It is therefore extremely important to be on the lookout for symptoms and indications of side effects that could turn life threatening in nature.