Opana Side Effects

Opana is an opioid pain reliever containing oxymorphone, widely prescribed to treat moderate to severe pain. According to the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency, or DEA, pharmacists filled more than a million oxymorphone prescriptions in 2007, making this drug one of the most commonly used pain relievers in the United States.

All medicine, including Opana, has the potential to cause side effects. Many people experience no, or minor, adverse reactions while using Opana. Most side effects are not serious and go away after a few days of using Opana as directed. A few side effects are serious, requiring prompt medical attention.

The side effects associated with Opana are typical of any opioids. The most serious side effect associated with opioid use is respiratory problems that could cause you to experience stopped breathing, circulation problems, severely low blood pressure and shock.

You are more likely to experience side effects after using high doses of Opana.

Whenever you take any opioid, including Opana, you are at risk for the serious breathing condition, respiratory depression. When you are suffering respiratory depression, your lungs cannot exchange oxygen for carbon dioxide and other blood gases well. Symptoms of respiratory depression include slow or shallow breathing, unusual breathing patterns, gasping or wheezing, and a bluish tint around your eyes, mouth and fingertips. Respiratory depression is a serious medical emergency that could result in death.

Most Frequently Observed

Clinical trials of Opana included 591 patients suffering from post-operative or cancer pain. At least 2 percent of those patients reported nausea, fever, drowsiness, vomiting itch, headache, dizziness, constipation and confusion. The most common side effect was nausea, affecting about 19 percent of those participants who received Opana. Less than 10 percent of respondents reported drowsiness, and another 9 percent vomited while taking Opana. About 14 percent of participants experienced a fever.

Abuse, Dependence and Withdrawal

Potential for abuse, physical dependence or addiction are possible side effects from taking this drug. The U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency, or DEA, classifies substances according to the potential for abuse. The DEA classifies Opana as a Schedule II narcotic, meaning it carries a relatively high potential for abuse and mental or physical dependence.

Anyone who uses Opana for a long time can become dependent on or addicted to opioids. A doctor will diagnose you as being opioid-dependent if you feel withdrawal symptoms when the level of opioids suddenly drops in your body. This rapid decline can be caused by a missed dose, insufficient dose or because you used a medicine that reduces opioid levels.

Withdrawal from opioids is typically associated with physical symptoms similar to the flu, but withdrawal also causes psychological symptoms whose demoralizing affects can be just as overpowering as the physical symptoms of withdrawal.

Physical Opana withdrawal symptoms include:

  • Abdominal Cramping
  • Diarrhea
  • Fever, Runny Nose or Sneezing
  • Goose Bumps and Abnormal Skin Sensations
  • Hot Sweats and Cold Sweats
  • Insomnia
  • Low Energy Level
  • Muscle Aches or Pains
  • Nausea or Vomiting
  • Pain
  • Rapid Heartbeat
  • Rigid Muscles
  • Runny Nose
  • Shivering, Tremors
  • Teary Eyes
  • Yawning

Psychological symptoms of withdrawal include:

  • Agitation
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Hallucinations
  • Irritability
  • Poor concentration
  • Restlessness
  • Social isolation

Allergic Reaction

You may suffer an allergic reaction after taking Opana or any other medication. If you suffer an allergic reaction after taking Opana, seek help immediately - an allergic reaction is a serious medical emergency. Bring your bottle of Opana along with all your medications to help the emergency department doctor understand which medication caused the reactions.

Symptoms of an allergic reaction include:

  • Difficulty Breathing
  • Hives
  • Itching
  • Rash
  • Swelling of the Mouth, Face, Lips or Tongue
  • Tightness in the Chest

Hypersensitivity

Rarely, patients have reported hypersensitivity to Opana. Hypersensitivity may lead to shock or anaphylaxis, a severe form of an allergic reaction. Anaphylaxis usually occurs within moments of exposure to Opana but may happen as long as a half an hour or longer after you take this medication. Seek help immediately if you think you or someone you know is suffering anaphylaxis.

Symptoms of anaphylaxis include hives, itching, flushed or pale skin. You might have a sensation of warmth. You might also feel like your tongue is swelling up, you have a lump in your throat, or that your throat is closing. These problems can lead to wheezing and trouble breathing. You might have a weak and rapid pulse, nausea, vomiting, dizziness or fainting. You may have a terrible feeling of impending doom.

Non-Serious Side Effects

The most common side effects associated with Opana are not serious and disappear after taking this drug for a few days. Continue taking this medication but contact your doctor if the non-serious side effects become intolerable or if they do not go away on their own.

Non-serious side effects associated with Opana include:

  • Anxiety
  • Constipation
  • Dizziness
  • Drowsiness
  • Dry Mouth
  • Gas
  • Headache
  • Lightheadedness
  • Nausea
  • Sweating
  • Vomiting

Non-serious side effects associated with Opana ER Extended-Release Tablets include:

  • Constipation
  • Decreased Appetite
  • Diarrhea
  • Dizziness
  • Drowsiness
  • Dry Mouth
  • Headache
  • Mild Stomach Pain
  • Nausea
  • Sweating
  • Tiredness
  • Trouble Sleeping
  • Vomiting

Serious Side Effects

Some side effects are serious, requiring immediate medical attention. Stop taking Opana immediately and contact a doctor if you experience serious side effects.

Serious side effects associated with Opana include:

  • Confusion
  • Fainting
  • Fast, Slow or Irregular Heartbeat
  • Fever
  • Hallucinations
  • Mental or Mood Changes
  • Seizure
  • Severe or Persistent Dizziness or Drowsiness
  • Severe or Persistent Headache or Vomiting
  • Shallow, Slowed, or Difficult Breathing
  • Trouble Urinating
  • Unusual Swelling
  • Vision Changes

Serious side effects associated with Opana ER Extended-Release Tablets include:

  • Chest Pain
  • Confusion
  • Fainting
  • Fast, Slow or Irregular Heartbeat
  • Fever
  • Hallucinations
  • Mental or Mood Changes
  • Seizure
  • Severe or Persistent Constipation
  • Stomach Pain or Vomiting
  • Severe or Persistent Dizziness, Drowsiness or Headache
  • Shallow, Slowed, or Difficult Breathing
  • Shortness of Breath
  • Trouble Urinating
  • Unusual Swelling
  • Vision Changes, especially Blurred Vision

By body system

Nervous system

The hydromorphone in Opana works directly on the central nervous system, or CNS, to relieve pain and cause euphoria. This direct affect also results in adverse reactions affecting the nervous system. After taking Opana, you may experience drowsiness, sedation and unusual tiredness. Opana may also stimulate the central nervous system and cause nervousness, restlessness, trouble sleeping.

You may also feel lightheaded, weak and dizzy. Opana can cause headache, blurred vision, double vision or pinpoint pupils.

Opioids, including the hydromorphone in Opana, can cause cognitive and emotional side effects. Opana may cause confusion, mental impairment and mental clouding. It may also cause hallucinations, mental depression, euphoria and its emotional opposite, dysphoria.

Gastrointestinal

Constipation is one of the most commonly reported side effects associated with opioids such as Opana. To soften stools, drink six to eight full glasses of water each day you take Opana. Talk with your doctor or nutritionist about increasing your dietary fiber intake, known to regulate the digestive system and ease constipation. Do not take stool softeners while using Opana unless directed to do so by the prescribing physician.

Gastrointestinal side effects associated with Opana include nausea, vomiting and dry mouth. Opana may also cause abdominal cramps and pain, or loss of appetite.

Dangerous gastrointestinal side effects include conditions known as paralytic ileus and toxic megacolon, more common in patients with inflammatory bowel disease. Paralytic ileus is an obstruction in your intestine, and toxic megacolon is a widening or dilation of the large intestine. Both paralytic ileus and toxic megacolon are life threatening and require immediate medical attention.

Cardiovascular

Opana may affect your heart and lungs. Adverse cardiovascular reactions include low blood pressure, blood pressure that changes when you stand up, fast heartbeat, irregular heartbeat, palpitations and flushing.

Respiratory

Respiratory side effects have included respiratory depression, collapsed lung, bronchospasms like those experienced by asthmatics, spasm or swelling of the throat near the vocal cords and stopped breathing.

Dermatologic

Opana may make you sweat excessively.

Hypersensitivity

Some people are hypersensitive to Opana. Hypersensitivity side effects include allergic dermatitis, hives, skin rash, itching and swelling of the face.

Other

You may become dependent on Opana and experience withdrawal symptoms if you take this medication for a long time and suddenly stop. Physical withdrawal symptoms can last five or more days; psychological symptoms can last much longer, especially if left untreated or poorly treated.

Ocular

Opana may cause vision disturbances, including pinpoint pupils, double vision and blurry vision.

General

General side effects include fatigue and general weakness.

Hepatic

Opana may cause pain in your biliary tract, which includes your liver, gall bladder and the ducts between the two organs.

Renal

Opana may cause kidney and urinary problems, including spasm of the ureter, urinary hesitation, urinary retention and low urine output.

Facts

Programs

Risks