Hydrocodone is a narcotic analgesic (drug that relieves pain) and antitussive (drug that relieves cough). It can be taken orally, and is commonly available in the form of tablets, capsules, and syrup. Many a time, it is combined with pain killers like ibuprofen and paracetamol. The drug is often prescribed with a comparatively less potent pain reliever called acetaminophen, which increases the effect of hydrocodone. It is available in the drug stores under the brand names such as Lortab and Vicodin.
It is never advisable to take hydrocodone without the prescription of a registered medical practitioner. This is because, the drug is habit-forming, and its overdose can lead to various serious medical conditions.
Following are the side effects of hydrocodone:
- The drug may give you a feeling of calmness and delight, but may develop addiction for it.
- It may produce headache, dry mouth, anxiousness, dizziness, and drowsiness. These side effects may be followed by mild to severe nausea, loose motions, or emesis.
- Overdose or long-term consumption of the drug may result in constipation, blurred vision, and ringing in the ears.
- The drug users generally go through a stage of general physical weakness or fatigue. This stage is also marked by a decrease in sex drive.
- The severe acetaminophen-hydrocodone side effects may involve breathing difficulties, bradycardia, and convulsions.
- You may develop symptoms like tightness in chest, stomach cramps, and excessive sweating.
- Some other side effects can be lightheadedness, sudden mood change, unusual behavior, and fainting.
- An overdose of the drug may also cause stomach ache, loss of appetite, itching on arms and legs, and yellowing of the skin or eyes, or jaundice.
- The drug may disturb the excretory system as well. You may develop complications with urination such as difficult micturition or release of dark urine.
- Problems related with defecation may involve discharge of clay-colored stools and constipation accompanied with severe pain. Your stool may have blood in it.
- Side effects may also involve swelling of your lips, tongue, or face. It may cause occurrence of bruises, cold and clammy skin.
- History of drug or alcohol addiction
- Suffering from any sort of mental illnesses, sleep apnea, asthma, hepatic, or renal disorders
- Medical history of intestinal disorders, head injury, hypotension, and under or over-active thyroid gland
In case you drive or do anything that requires mental alertness, you should inform your doctor about it if he/she is prescribing hydrocodone to you under any kind of treatment. This is because, the drug directly affects your thinking and response. Keep hydrocodone tablets or capsules away from the reach of children, and never ever give it to someone who has not been prescribed for it by a doctor.
Always remember that hydrocodone finds its medicinal use in treatments for pain and cough, but its improper intake can lead to side effects. If you experience any of the aforementioned side effects, consult a doctor as soon as possible to avoid any further complications.
Disclaimer: This HealthHearty article is for informative purposes only, and should not be used as a replacement for expert medical advice.