Hydrocodone, Ibuprofen

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


Doctors prescribe hydrocodone and ibuprofen for short-term relief from moderate to severe pain. Pharmacologists combine hydrocodone and ibuprofen into one single medication, known as a polydrug, because these two drugs together provide a more complete pain relief. You may use this product to relieve short-term pain from surgery, dental procedures or an injury. Learn More About Hydrocodone, Ibuprofen Uses

Other, off label uses for this medicine

A physician may prescribe hydrocodone and ibuprofen polydrugs to relieve chronic pain, like that from migraines or other types of long-term conditions.

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Hydrocodone and ibuprofen polydrugs are available in pill form. Hydrocodone and ibuprofen name formulas include Ibudone, Reprexain and Vicoprofen. This medication is available in the United States by prescription only.

The typical hydrocodone and ibuprofen prescription calls for one tablet every 4 to 6 hours as needed to reduce pain. Do not exceed five tablets in a 24-hour period. A physician should prescribe the lowest possible dose at the longest possible interval; frequency and dose should be adjusted according to patient response.

Drink six to eight full glasses of water each day to reduce constipation. Speak with your doctor or dietician about increasing your dietary fiber intake, known to promote digestive health. Do not use a stool softener or laxative unless directed to do so by a physician.

Doctors should exercise extreme caution when prescribing hydrocodone and ibuprofen to children under the age of 16 years. Medical scientists have not yet confirmed the safety and effectiveness of giving hydrocodone and ibuprofen to children.

Physicians normally suggest you take hydrocodone and ibuprofen polydrugs only as you need them to relieve pain rather than on a schedule. If the prescribing doctor advised you to take this medication on a regular schedule and you miss a dose, take the missed dose as soon as you can. Skip the missed dose if it is nearly time to take your regularly scheduled dose and you can tolerate the pain. Talk with your healthcare provider if you repeatedly miss doses.

Tell the prescriber if your medicine stops working to relieve your pain - this could be a sign of developing tolerance to opioids. Do not take extra medication in an effort to relieve your pain; this could result in dangerous or deadly overdose. Your physician may adjust the strength of your medication or order a new painkiller.

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When trauma or illness injures cells of your body, hormones known as prostaglandins accumulate at the injury site. Prostaglandins cause inflammation, which includes swelling, heat or redness, loss of function, fever and pain. Ibuprofen works by disrupting the manufacture of prostaglandins in your system. Hydrocodone is a semi-synthetic narcotic that relieves pain by binding to pain receptors to change the way your brain perceives pain. Together, hydrocodone and ibuprofen provide more complete pain relief than either drug could deliver alone. More About How Hydrocodone, Ibuprofen Works


Do not take hydrocodone and ibuprofen polydrugs if you are allergic to any active or inactive ingredient in the medication. Do not use this drug if you are allergic to other opioids, such as morphine or codeine. Do not take hydrocodone and ibuprofen if you are allergic to aspirin or non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug, such as celecoxib.

An allergic reaction is a serious condition that can deteriorate rapidly into a medical emergency. Stop taking hydrocodone and ibuprofen and seek professional medical assistance immediately if you notice any symptom of an allergic reaction after taking this drug. Symptoms of an allergic reaction include rash, hives or itching. You may have difficulty breathing or tightness in your chest. Other symptoms of an allergic reaction include swelling of your mouth, face, lips or tongue.

You may not be able to take hydrocodone and ibuprofen polydrugs if you have a history of or are currently experiencing certain medical conditions. Discuss your medical history with the prescribing physician.

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

  • A History of Head Injury or Brain Tumor.
  • Asthma or Other Breathing Disorders.
  • Congestive Heart Failure.
  • Curvature of the Spine.
  • Enlarged Prostate.
  • Heart Disease.
  • High Blood Pressure.
  • History of Drug or Alcohol Addiction.
  • History of Heart Attack, Stroke or Blood Clot.
  • History of Stomach Ulcer or Bleeding.
  • Liver or Kidney Disease.
  • Mental Illness.
  • Problems Urinating.
  • Stomach or Intestinal Disorder.
  • Underactive Thyroid, Addison's Disease or Other Adrenal Gland Disorder.

Hydrocodone and ibuprofen polydrugs may cause dizziness or drowsiness. Do not drive a motor vehicle or operate heavy machinery until you know how this medication affects you. Alcohol and other medications may enhance this effect.

Avoid consuming alcohol while taking hydrocodone and ibuprofen preparations. Alcohol may increase your risk for stomach bleeding while taking this pain reliever. Additionally, alcohol may increase dizziness or drowsiness associated with hydrocodone and ibuprofen.

Hydrocodone is habit forming. Take this medication exactly as prescribed. Stop taking this medication when advised by your doctor.

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Do not take hydrocodone and ibuprofen if you have severe kidney problems. Do not use this medication if you have severe diarrhea or other bowel problems caused by antibiotic use or food poisoning. Do not use hydrocodone if you have recently had or are about to have bypass heart surgery.

Hydrocodone and ibuprofen polydrugs may cause harm to a fetus. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant while using hydrocodone and ibuprofen. Contact your doctor immediately if you become pregnant while taking hydrocodone and ibuprofen to discuss the benefits versus the risks of taking this medication during pregnancy. Do not use hydrocodone and ibuprofen in the last three months of pregnancy. Do not use this medication while breastfeeding, as it is not know if hydrocodone and ibuprofen can pass into breast milk.

Do not stop taking hydrocodone and ibuprofen abruptly unless directed to do so by a physician. Sudden cessation may cause unpleasant withdrawal symptoms, especially if you had taken large doses or used this medication for a long time. When it is nearly time to stop using hydrocodone and ibuprofen, wean yourself from this opioid by taking successively smaller doses further apart. Speak with your healthcare provider or rehabilitation specialist if overpowering withdrawal symptoms prevent you from successfully quitting hydrocodone and ibuprofen.

More Warnings About Using Hydrocodone, Ibuprofen

Drug Interactions

Certain medications may interact with hydrocodone and ibuprofen in unfavorable or dangerous ways. Give the prescribing physician and the pharmacist filling the order a list of all your medications, including prescriptions, over-the-counter drugs, vitamin supplements and herbal remedies. Do not start, stop or alter the way you take any medication while you are using hydrocodone and ibuprofen without first consulting with a doctor.

Do not consume hydrocodone and ibuprofen if you have taken an MAO inhibitor in the past 14 days. Taking hydrocodone and ibuprofen polydrugs while an MAOI is still in your system can cause serious, possibly fatal, side effects. Generic names for MAO inhibitors include isocarboxazid, phenelzine, selegiline and tranylcypromine. Some brand names include Marplan, Nardil Eldepryl, Emsam and Parnate. Review a list of your medications with a physician or pharmacist if you are unsure if you take an MAO inhibitor.

Anticoagulants, corticosteroids, heparin, SSRIs and salicylates such as aspirin may increase the risk for bleeding, including stomach bleeding. Antihistamines, barbiturates, cimetidine, opioid pain medicines and sodium oxybate, commonly known as GHB, can increase the risk for excessive drowsiness and breathing problems associated with hydrocodone and ibuprofen. Anticholinergics, MAO inhibitors, probenecid and certain types of antidepressants may increase the risk for side effects associated with hydrocodone and ibuprofen. Naltrexone and rifampin may decrease the effectiveness of hydrocodone and ibuprofen polydrugs. Hydrocodone and ibuprofen combination drugs may increase side effects associated with cyclosporine, lithium, methotrexate or quinolones, especially ciprofloxacin. Hydrocodone and ibuprofen may decrease the effectiveness of ACE inhibitors or diuretics.

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Side effects

Patients have reported side effects while using hydrocodone and ibuprofen polydrugs. The most common side effects are not serious. Continue taking hydrocodone and ibuprofen if you experience these non-serious side effects but contact the prescribing physician if your side effects become worse or if they do not disappear.

Common side effects include:

  • Abdominal Pain.
  • Anxiety or Nervousness.
  • Constipation.
  • Diarrhea.
  • Dizziness.
  • Dry Mouth.
  • Gas.
  • Headache.
  • Heartburn.
  • Increased Sweating.
  • Loss of Appetite.
  • Nausea or Vomiting.
  • Stomach Upset.
  • Trouble Sleeping.
  • Weakness.

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

  • Allergic Reactions.
  • Bloody, Black or Tarry Stools.
  • Blurred Vision.
  • Change in the Amount of Urine Produced.
  • Chest Pain.
  • Dark Urine.
  • Fast or Irregular Heartbeat.
  • Fever, Chills or Persistent Sore Throat.
  • Mental or Mood Changes, Depression, Confusion.
  • Numbness of an Arm or Leg.
  • One-Sided Weakness.
  • Red, Swollen, Blistered or Peeling Skin.
  • Ringing in the Ears.
  • Seizures.
  • Severe Headache, Dizziness or Fainting.
  • Severe or Persistent Abdominal Pain or Nausea.
  • Severe Vomiting.
  • Shortness of Breath, Slow or Shallow Breathing.
  • Stiff Neck.
  • Sudden or Unexplained Weight Gain.
  • Swelling of Hands, Legs or Feet.
  • Unusual Bruising or Bleeding.
  • Unusual Joint or Muscle Pain.
  • Unusual Fatigue.
  • Unusual Weakness.
  • Vision or Speech Changes.
  • Vomit That Looks Like Coffee Grounds.
  • Yellowing of the Skin or Eyes.

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Prescription drug overdose may cause death. Overdose from prescription drugs is a growing problem in the United States. In 2008, more than 14,800 people died from drug overdose; this is three times as many drug overdoses than were reported in 1990. If you suspect that you or someone you know has taken too much hydrocodone and ibuprofen or any other drug, immediately contact poison control center at 1-800-222-1222 or go to the emergency room. Overdose symptoms include:

  • Blurred Vision.
  • Cold, Clammy Skin.
  • Coma.
  • Confusion.
  • Decreased Urination.
  • Loss of Consciousness.
  • Ringing in the Ears.
  • Severe Dizziness or Drowsiness.
  • Severe Muscle Weakness.
  • Severe Nausea or Abdominal Pain.
  • Slow or Difficulty Breathing.
  • Unusual Bleeding or Bruising.
  • Vomit that Looks Like Coffee Grounds.

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To abuse a drug means to use it without a prescription to treat symptoms or as a way to get high. Prescription drug abuse has now reached epidemic proportions and continues to grow. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention states that in 2010, 12 million Americans reported using prescription drugs without a prescription to cure symptoms or for recreational purposes. About 55 percent of abusers get the drug free from friends or family. The Drug Enforcement Agency calls this practice "diversion." Hydrocodone is one of the most widely diverted and abused drugs because, at least in part, it is the most widely prescribed painkiller in the United States.

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Medical specialists view withdrawal symptoms as a normal, predictable outcome of using large doses of opioids or using them for a long time. Withdrawal symptoms are not necessarily an indicator of criminal drug abuse; a person can experience withdrawal symptoms after using a prescription painkiller exactly as prescribed by his doctor.


Rehabilitation starts with detoxification and overcoming withdrawal symptoms. During standard rehabilitation, medical staff administers drugs that reduce withdrawal symptoms and detoxifies the body from the effects of using opioids. Overpowering withdrawal symptoms may prevent some people from successfully finishing rehab. Withdrawal symptoms may last for five or more days. After detoxification, you may choose to participate in counseling or other advanced social services to address any family, work or legal issues that may have contributed to or have been a result of your dependence on opioid products, such as hydrocodone and ibuprofen.

Rapid detox is a new, humane way of dealing with potent withdrawal symptoms during the detoxification phase. During rapid detox, physicians administer anesthesia and sedatives alongside the standard anti-withdrawal and detoxification medications so that you sleep through the uncomfortable withdrawal and cleansing process. Rapid detox reduces the withdrawal period to a few hours. When you awaken, you feel refreshed and have no memory of the unpleasant withdrawal process.

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Keep hydrocodone and ibuprofen polydrugs at 77 degrees Fahrenheit, away from excessive heat, moisture and light. Do not store this medication in your bathroom. Keep hydrocodone and ibuprofen out of reach of children and away from pets. Do not allow adults to consume this product mistakenly or purposefully, even if they complain of symptoms similar to your own. Sharing prescription drugs with others is illegal. Monitor hydrocodone and ibuprofen and account for all missing doses.

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