Hydrocodone, Aspirin

Drug Class: Hydrocodone, Aspirin > Hydrocodone > Semi Synthetic Opioid > Opioids > Opioid Agonist > Analgesic.

Uses

Doctors prescribe hydrocodone and aspirin products, known as polydrugs, to relieve moderate to severe pain. Hydrocodone and aspirin are used to treat acute, short-term pain. Hydrocodone and aspirin are not intended to treat chronic, long-term pain. Learn More About Hydrocodone, Aspirin Uses

Other, off label uses for this medicine

Hydrocodone and aspirin may relieve cough and fever. Hydrocodone suppresses cough by acting directly on the medulla, the portion of your brain responsible for the cough reflex. Aspirin affects the hypothalamus, the part of the brain that regulates body temperature.

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Administration/Dosage

Brand name preparations of hydrocodone and aspirin include Damason-P, Azdone, Alor 5/500, Panasal 5/500, Lortab ASA.

Take hydrocodone and aspirin preparations with or without food. Take this drug with food to reduce potential stomach upset.

Hydrocodone and aspirin may cause nervousness and excitability in children. Never administer aspirin products to a child or teenager with a fever, especially if the child has symptoms of chicken pox or the flu. Giving aspirin to a child or teenager under these conditions may result in a serious, sometimes fatal condition known as Reye's syndrome.

Doctors normally recommend taking hydrocodone and aspirin as needed to relieve pain rather than on a dosing schedule, so missed doses are not normally an issue. If your doctor suggested you take this medication on a regular schedule and you miss a dose, take the missed dose as soon as possible and adjust your schedule accordingly. If it is nearly time to take another dose of hydrocodone and aspirin, skip the missed dose and resume your normal schedule. Tell your doctor if you have any trouble maintaining the dosing schedule.

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Action

When illness or injury traumatizes the cells of your body, they produce an enzyme called cylooxygenase-2. This enzyme, in turn, produces a chemical known as prostaglandin. Prostaglandin binds to pain receptors in nerve endings to send messages of pain to your brain. Prostaglandins also cause injured cells in the area to release fluid, resulting in inflammation. Aspirin works by binding to cylooxygenase-2 so that it cannot make prostaglandin. As a result, there is less prostaglandin to bind to pain receptors or cause inflammation. Hydrocodone binds to pain receptors in your nervous system to change the way your brain perceives pain. Hydrocodone replaces signals of pain with messages of pleasure and euphoria.

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Precautions

An allergic reaction is a serious condition that can spiral quickly into a life-and-death medical emergency. Common symptoms of a mild allergic reaction include hives, especially over the face and neck, nasal congestion, itching, rashes and watery, red eyes.

Your prescribing physician may alter the dosage or recommend a different medication if you have a history of certain medical conditions. Hydrocodone and aspirin polydrugs may worsen your illness or interfere with treatment. Your ailment may change the way hydrocodone and aspirin work in your body.

Tell your physician about any significant illnesses or conditions, including:

  • A Stomach or Intestinal Disorder.
  • An Enlarged Prostate.
  • Asthma, Other Breathing Disorders.
  • Congestive Heart Failure.
  • Diarrhea Caused By Taking Antibiotics.
  • Heart Disease.
  • High Blood Pressure.
  • History of Drug or Alcohol Addiction.
  • History of Head Injury or Brain Tumor.
  • History of Stomach Ulcer or Bleeding.
  • Liver or Kidney Disease.
  • Mental Illness.
  • Problems With Urination.
  • Seizures or Epilepsy.

Hydrocodone and aspirin may cause you to feel dizzy or drowsy. For safety, do not drive a motor vehicle or operate heavy machinery until you know how this medication affects you. Using alcohol or other medications may enhance this effect.

Avoid consuming alcohol while taking hydrocodone and aspirin. Alcohol increases your risk for drowsiness or stomach bleeding associated with hydrocodone and aspirin use.

Hydrocodone may be habit forming. Aspirin is not habit forming. To avoid developing a hydrocodone habit, stop using this medication when suggested by your doctor. Take this medication exactly as prescribed.

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Warnings

Do not take hydrocodone and aspirin polydrugs if you have a recent history of stomach or intestinal bleeding. Do not use this medication if you have a bleeding or clot disorder such as hemophilia.

Tell the prescribing physician if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant while taking hydrocodone and aspirin preparations. Consult with your doctor if you become pregnant while taking this drug to discuss the risks and benefits of taking this medication during pregnancy. A newborn may experience withdrawal symptoms or breathing problems after delivery if the mother takes hydrocodone during pregnancy. Aspirin may be harmful to an unborn baby's heart, reduce birth weight and other dangerous effects. Hydrocodone and aspirin may pass into breast milk and onto a nursing child. Do not take this medication while breastfeeding.

Do not stop taking hydrocodone and aspirin polydrugs abruptly unless directed to do so by a physician. Quitting suddenly may cause unpleasant withdrawal symptoms. To avoid this discomfort, wean yourself from hydrocodone by taking successively smaller doses further apart.

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Drug Interactions

Hydrocodone and aspirin products may interact with other medications in unsafe or undesirable ways. Some drugs may reduce effectiveness of hydrocodone while others increase the risk for side effects associated with this pain reliever. Conversely, hydrocodone and aspirin products may reduce efficacy or increase the likelihood of experiencing side effects associated with other medications. Give the prescribing doctor and pharmacist filling the order a list of all your medications, including prescriptions, over-the-counter drugs, herbal remedies and vitamin supplements. Do not start, stop or change the way you take any medication without first consulting with a doctor or druggist.

It is especially important that your doctor or pharmacist know if you are taking:

  • A Blood Thinner such as Warfarin.
  • Aspirin or Other Salicylates.
  • Gout Medications
  • MAO Inhibitors.
  • Medication to Decrease the Acidity of Urine.
  • Medication Used to Prevent Blood Clots.
  • Methotrexate.
  • Naltrexone.
  • Oral Diabetes Medications
  • Plicamycin.
  • Valproic Acid.
  • Vancomycin .
  • Zidovudine.

Avoid taking a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory, otherwise known as an NSAID, or acetaminophen while you are taking hydrocodone and aspirin polydrugs unless a doctor instructs you to do so. Tylenol is a brand name example of acetaminophen while Advil is a brand name NSAID.

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Side effects

Some consumers have reported side effects associated with hydrocodone and aspirin use. Most of the commonly reported side effects are not serious. If you experience any of the non-serious side effects, continue using this medication but call your doctor if your side effects are intolerable or do not disappear.

Common side effects include:

  • Depression.
  • Dizziness or Drowsiness.
  • Dry Mouth.
  • Feeling Restless or Excited.
  • Headache.
  • Heartburn.
  • Mild Constipation.
  • Mild Nausea or Vomiting.
  • Upset Stomach.

Some side effects can be serious. Discontinue hydrocodone and aspirin and seek medical help immediately if you experience any serious side effects, such as:

  • Abdominal Pain.
  • Black, Bloody or Tarry Stools.
  • Clay-Colored Stools.
  • Confusion or Hallucinations.
  • Coughing Up Blood or Vomit That Looks Like Coffee Grounds.
  • Dark Urine.
  • Feeling like You Might Pass Out.
  • Hearing Problems.
  • Itching.
  • Loss of Appetite.
  • Nausea.
  • Ringing in the Ears.
  • Seizure.
  • Weak or Shallow Breathing.
  • Yellowing of the Skin or Eyes.

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Overdose

Drug overdose has reached an all-time high in the United States, with more than 14,800 people dying from drug overdose in 2008 alone. Most of these people died from prescription overdose, with more people dying from prescription drug overdose than from cocaine and heroin overdose combined. The number of deaths from drug overdoses has more than tripled in the years between 1990 and 2008. This explosion of deaths from prescription drug overdoses has paralleled the 300 percent increase in the sales of prescription pain killers.

It is possible to overdose on both components of this polydrug: hydrocodone and aspirin. Aspirin is a common ingredient in many prescription and over-the-counter medications. Read the labels of all your medications to learn if they contain aspirin and calculate how much aspirin you are taking each day. Never take more than 4,000 mg of aspirin, sometimes called acetylsalicylic acid or ASA, in a 24-hour period.

If you believe you or someone you know has taken too much hydrocodone and aspirin or any other drug, immediately contact poison control center at 1-800-222-1222 or go to the emergency room. Overdose symptoms include:

  • Abdominal Cramps.
  • Blue Lips or Fingernails.
  • Cold, Clammy Skin.
  • Confusion.
  • Dizziness.
  • Extreme Drowsiness.
  • Fainting.
  • Nausea or Vomiting.
  • Pinpoint Pupils.
  • Ringing in Your Ears.
  • Seizure.
  • Slow or Rapid Heart Rate.
  • Sweating.
  • Weak or Shallow Breathing or Breathing That Stops.

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Abuse

Prescription drug abuse is an evolving problem in the United States. Americans are now abusing more prescription medications than illegal drugs. A person abuses prescription drugs by using them to get high or to relieve symptoms without a prescription. The number of patients treated in emergency departments for the abuse and misuse of prescription pain killers skyrocketed to more than 475,000 in 2009, almost twice the number of cases seen in EDs just five years earlier. Hydrocodone is the most commonly prescribed narcotic in the United States and is one of the most widely abused opioids today, according to the Drug Enforcement Agency, or DEA. Drug abusers get hydrocodone through diversion, which means they divert a drug from its intended, prescribed use as a therapeutic pain reliever to use as a recreational drug. Three out of four people who misuse drugs abuse a medication prescribed to someone else. About 55 percent of drug abusers get their drugs free from relatives or friends. Continuous drug abuse, or using very strong doses of opioids, increases your risk for becoming physically and mentally dependent on that drug.

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Withdrawal

Medical professionals recognize withdrawal symptoms as a normal, predictable result of using high doses of opioids or using narcotics for a long time. Withdrawal symptoms are not necessarily an indication of criminal drug abuse, nor are withdrawal symptoms a sign of weak moral character. Withdrawal symptoms are typically potent and last for several days to weeks. Overpowering withdrawal symptoms prevent many people from quitting drug use.

Withdrawal symptoms include:

  • Agitation.
  • Anxiety or Irritability.
  • Confusion.
  • Dizziness.
  • Headache.
  • Mood Swings.
  • Nausea.
  • Sweating.
  • Trouble Sleeping.
  • Unhappiness.
  • Unusual Skin Sensations.

Detox

Dependence on drugs containing opioids, such as hydrocodone and aspirin, is a complex medical condition that requires an equally faceted rehabilitative approach. The first phase of drug rehabilitation focuses on easing withdrawal symptoms and detoxifying the body from the effects of opioid use. Doctors and nurses administer medication to reduce intense withdrawal symptoms and speed detoxification. Withdrawal symptoms are extremely unpleasant and frequently prevent people from overcoming their dependence to drugs. Once a person is past this uncomfortable withdrawal and detoxification phase, they may choose to enter the "talk" step, in which they participate in counseling and other social services to resolve any issues resulting from or attributing to the drug problem.

Rapid detox gives you the opportunity to skip the worst part of rehabilitation - experiencing withdrawal symptoms. During rapid detox, specially trained physicians administer anesthesia and sedatives along with the standard anti-withdrawal and detoxification drugs. You sleep through the most objectionable withdrawal symptoms and awaken refreshed, unaware of any physical discomfort associated with drug cessation. Learn More About Hydrocodone, Aspirin Detoxification Programs

Storage

Keep hydrocodone and aspirin at room temperature, away from excessive heat and moisture. Store this medication out of the reach of children and pets. Hydrocodone is a popular substance among recreational users; to reduce the risk for theft or inappropriate use of your medication, do not tell anyone other than your professional healthcare providers that you have hydrocodone in your home.

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