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Respiratory depression is the chief hazard from all opioid agonist preparations. Respiratory depression occurs most frequently in elderly or debilitated patients, usually following large initial doses in non-tolerant patients, or when opioids are given in conjunction with other agents that depress respiration.
ROXICODONE (oxycodone hydrochloride) ® should be used with extreme caution in patients with significant chronic obstructive pulmonary disease or cor pulmonale, and in patients having substantially decreased respiratory reserve, hypoxia, hypercapnia, or pre-existing respiratory depression. In such patients, even usual therapeutic doses of ROXICODONE (oxycodone hydrochloride) ® may decrease respiratory drive to the point of apnea. In these patients alternative non-opioid analgesics should be considered, and opioids should be employed only under careful medical supervision at the lowest effective dose.
ROXICODONE (oxycodone hydrochloride) ®, like all opioid analgesics, may cause severe hypotension in an individual whose ability to maintain blood pressure has been compromised by a depleted blood volume, or after concurrent administration with drugs such as phenothiazines or other agents which compromise vasomotor tone. ROXICODONE (oxycodone hydrochloride) ® may produce orthostatic hypotension in ambulatory patients. ROXICODONE (oxycodone hydrochloride) ®, like all opioid analgesics, should be administered with caution to patients in circulatory shock, since vasodilatation produced by the drug may further reduce cardiac output and blood pressure.
Head Injury and Increased Intracranial Pressure
The respiratory depressant effects of narcotics and their capacity to elevate cerebrospinal fluid pressure may be markedly exaggerated in the presence of head injury, other intracranial lesions or a pre-existing increase in intracranial pressure. Furthermore, narcotics produce adverse reactions which may obscure the clinical course of patients with head injuries.
ROXICODONE (oxycodone hydrochloride) ® tablets are intended for use in patients who require oral pain therapy with an opioid agonist. As with any opioid analgesic, it is critical to adjust the dosing regimen individually for each patient (see DOSAGE AND ADMINISTRATION).
Selection of patients for treatment with ROXICODONE (oxycodone hydrochloride) ® should be governed by the same principles that apply to the use of other potent opioid analgesics. Opioid analgesics given on a fixed-dosage schedule have a narrow therapeutic index in certain patient populations, especially when combined with other drugs, and should be reserved for cases where the benefits of opioid analgesia outweigh the known risks of respiratory depression, altered mental state, and postural hypotension. Physicians should individualize treatment in every case, using nonopioid analgesics, prn opioids and /or combination products, and chronic opioid therapy with drugs such as ROXICODONE® (oxycodone hydrochloride) in a progressive plan of pain management such as outlined by the World Health Organization, the Agency for Health Care Policy and Research, and the American Pain Society.
Use of ROXICODONE (oxycodone hydrochloride) ® is associated with increased potential risks and should be used only with caution in the following conditions: acute alcoholism; adrenocortical insufficiency (e.g., Addison's disease); convulsive disorders; CNS depression or coma; delirium tremens; debilitated patients; kyphoscoliosis associated with respiratory depression; myxedema or hypothyroidism; prostatic hypertrophy or urethral stricture; severe impairment of hepatic, pulmonary or renal function; and toxic psychosis.
The administration of ROXICODONE (oxycodone hydrochloride) ®, like all opioid analgesics, may obscure the diagnosis or clinical course in patients with acute abdominal conditions. Oxycodone may aggravate convulsions in patients with convulsive disorders, and all opioids may induce or aggravate seizures in some clinical settings.
Tolerance and Physical Dependence
Physical dependence and tolerance are not unusual during chronic opioid therapy. Significant tolerance should not occur in most patients treated with the lowest doses of oxycodone. It should be expected, however, that a fraction of patients will develop some degree of tolerance and require progressively higher dosages of ROXICODONE (oxycodone hydrochloride) ® to maintain pain control during chronic treatment. The dosage should be selected according to the patient's individual analgesic response and ability to tolerate side effects. Tolerance to the analgesic effects of opioids is usually paralleled by tolerance to side effects except for constipation.
Physical dependence results in withdrawal symptoms in patients who abruptly discontinue the drug or may be precipitated through the administration of drugs with opioid antagonist activity. If ROXICODONE (oxycodone hydrochloride) ® is abruptly discontinued in a physically dependent patient, an abstinence syndrome may occur (See Drug Abuse And Dependence). If signs and symptoms of withdrawal occur, patients should be treated by reinstitution of opioid therapy followed by gradual tapered dose reduction of ROXICODONE® combined with symptomatic support (see DOSAGE AND ADMINISTRATION: Cessation of Therapy).
Use In Pancreatic/Biliary Tract Disease
ROXICODONE (oxycodone hydrochloride) ® may cause spasm of the sphincter of Oddi and should be used with caution in patients with biliary tract disease, including acute pancreatitis. Opioids like ROXICODONE (oxycodone hydrochloride) ® may cause increases in the serum amylase level.
Carcinogenesis, Mutagenesis, Impairment of Fertility
Long-term studies have not been performed in animals to evaluate the carcinogenic potential of ROXICODONE (oxycodone hydrochloride) ® or oxycodone. The possible effects on male or female fertility have not been studied in animals.
Oxycodone hydrochloride was genotoxic in an in vitro mouse lymphoma assay in the presence of metabolic activation. There was no evidence of genotoxic potential in an in vitro bacterial reverse mutation assay (Salmonella typhimurium and Escherichia coli) or in an assay for chromosomal aberrations (in vivo mouse bone marrow micronucleus assay).
Teratogenic Effects - Category B
Reproduction studies in Sprague-Dawley rats and New Zealand rabbits revealed that when oxycodone was administered orally at doses up to 16 mg/kg (approximately 2 times the daily oral dose of 90 mg for adults on a mg/m² basis) and 25 mg/kg (approximately 5 times the daily oral dose of 90 mg on a mg/m² basis), respectively was not teratogenic or embryo-fetal toxic. There are no adequate and well controlled studies of oxycodone in pregnant women. Because animal reproductive studies are not always predictive of human responses, ROXICODONE (oxycodone hydrochloride) ® should be used during pregnancy only if potential benefit justifies the potential risk to the fetus.
Neonates whose mothers have taken oxycodone chronically may exhibit respiratory depression and/or withdrawal symptoms, either at birth and/or in the nursery.
Labor and Delivery
ROXICODONE (oxycodone hydrochloride) ® is not recommended for use in women during or immediately prior to labor. Occasionally, opioid analgesics may prolong labor through actions which temporarily reduce the strength, duration and frequency of uterine contractions. Neonates, whose mothers received opioid analgesics during labor, should be observed closely for signs of respiratory depression. A specific narcotic antagonist, naloxone, should be available for reversal of narcotic-induced respiratory depression in the neonate.
Oxycodone has been detected in breast milk. Withdrawal symptoms can occur in breast-feeding infants when maternal administration of an opioid analgesic is stopped. Ordinarily, nursing should not be undertaken while a patient is receiving ROXICODONE (oxycodone hydrochloride) ® since oxycodone may be excreted in milk.
The safety and efficacy of oxycodone in pediatric patients have not been evaluated.
Of the total number of subjects in clinical studies of ROXICODONE (oxycodone hydrochloride) ®, 20.8% (112/538) were 65 and over, while 7.2% (39/538) were 75 and over. No overall differences in safety or effectiveness were observed between these subjects and younger subjects, and other reported clinical experience has not identified differences in responses between the elderly and younger patients, but greater sensitivity of some older individuals cannot be ruled out.
Since oxycodone is extensively metabolized, its clearance may decrease in hepatic failure patients. Dose initiation in patients with hepatic impairment should follow a conservative approach. Dosages should be adjusted according to the clinical situation.
Published data reported that elimination of oxycodone was impaired in end-stage renal failure. Mean elimination half-life was prolonged in uremic patients due to increased volume of distribution and reduced clearance. Dose initiation should follow a conservative approach. Dosages should be adjusted according to the clinical situation.
ROXICODONE (oxycodone hydrochloride) ® may impair the mental and/or physical abilities required for the performance of potentially hazardous tasks such as driving a car or operating machinery. The patient using this drug should be cautioned accordingly.
Last reviewed on RxList: 12/3/2010
This monograph has been modified to include the generic and brand name in many instances.
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