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Nucynta ER

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Nucynta ER

(tapentadol) Extended Release Oral Tablets



Addiction, Abuse, and Misuse

NUCYNTA® ER exposes patients and other users to the risks of opioid addiction, abuse, and misuse, which can lead to overdose and death. Assess each patient's risk prior to prescribing NUCYNTA® ER, and monitor all patients regularly for the development of these behaviors or conditions [see WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS].

Life-threatening Respiratory Depression

Serious, life-threatening, or fatal respiratory depression may occur with use of NUCYNTA® ER. Monitor for respiratory depression, especially during initiation of NUCYNTA® ER or following a dose increase. Instruct patients to swallow NUCYNTA® ER tablets whole; crushing, chewing, or dissolving NUCYNTA® ER tablets can cause rapid release and absorption of a potentially fatal dose of tapentadol [see WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS].

Accidental Ingestion

Accidental ingestion of even one dose of NUCYNTA® ER, especially by children, can result in a fatal overdose of tapentadol [see WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS].

Neonatal Opioid Withdrawal Syndrome

Prolonged use of NUCYNTA® ER during pregnancy can result in neonatal opioid withdrawal syndrome, which may be life-threatening if not recognized and treated, and requires management according to protocols developed by neonatology experts. If opioid use is required for a prolonged period in a pregnant woman, advise the patient of the risk of neonatal opioid withdrawal syndrome and ensure that appropriate treatment will be available [see WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS].

Interaction with Alcohol

Instruct patients not to consume alcoholic beverages or use prescription or non-prescription products that contain alcohol while taking NUCYNTA® ER. The co-ingestion of alcohol with NUCYNTA® ER may result in increased plasma tapentadol levels and a potentially fatal overdose of tapentadol [see WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS].


NUCYNTA® ER (tapentadol) is a mu-opioid receptor agonist, supplied in extendedrelease film-coated tablets for oral administration, containing 58.24, 116.48, 174.72, 232.96, and 291.20 mg of tapentadol hydrochloride in each tablet strength, corresponding to 50, 100, 150, 200, and 250 mg of tapentadol free-base, respectively. The chemical name is 3-[(1R,2R)-3-(dimethylamino)-1-ethyl-2-methylpropyl]phenol monohydrochloride. The structural formula is:

NUCYNTA® ER (tapentadol) Structural Formula Illustration

The molecular weight of tapentadol HCl is 257.80, and the molecular formula is C14H23NO•HCl. The n-octanol: water partition coefficient log P value is 2.89. The pKa values are 9.36 and 10.45. In addition to the active ingredient tapentadol HCl, tablets also contain the following inactive ingredients: alpha-tocopherol (vitamin E), hypromellose, polyethylene glycol, and polyethylene oxide. The film coating is comprised of polyvinyl alcohol, polyethylene glycol, talc, titanium dioxide, and the colorant FD&C Blue #2 aluminum lake is used for 100, 150, 200, and 250 mg strengths; and additionally, yellow iron oxide is used in 150 mg tablets. Printing inks contain shellac glaze and propylene glycol for all strengths, and black iron oxide (50, 100, 150 and 200 mg tablets) or titanium dioxide (250 mg tablets).

What are the possible side effects of tapentadol (Nucynta, Nucynta ER)?

Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Call your doctor at once if you have a serious side effect such as:

  • weak or shallow breathing, weak pulse, slow heartbeat;
  • seizure (convulsions);
  • severe drowsiness or dizziness;
  • confusion, problems with speech or balance; or
  • agitation, hallucinations, fever, fast heart rate, overactive reflexes, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, loss of coordination,...

Read All Potential Side Effects and See Pictures of Nucynta ER »

Last reviewed on RxList: 12/2/2014
This monograph has been modified to include the generic and brand name in many instances.

Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration


You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

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