Numorphan Side Effects Center

Last updated on RxList: 6/24/2008
Numorphan Side Effects Center

Last reviewed on RxList 4/12/2016

Numorphan (oxymorphone hydrochloride) is a narcotic pain reliever used to treat moderate to severe pain. Numorphan is available in generic form. Common side effects of Numorphan include:

The dosage of Numorphan is determined by the patient's age, condition, type and severity of the pain, and other factors. Numorphan may interact with other narcotic pain medications, sedatives, tranquilizers, muscle relaxers, or other medications that can make you sleepy or slow your breathing. Tell your doctor all medications and supplements you take. If you are pregnant, only take Numorphan if the potential benefit outweighs the potential risk to the fetus. It is not known whether Numorphan passes into breast milk. Consult your doctor before breastfeeding. Stopping this medication abruptly may cause withdrawal symptoms.

Our Numorphan (oxymorphone hydrochloride) Side Effects Drug Center provides a comprehensive view of available drug information on the potential side effects when taking this medication.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.


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

Opioid medicine can slow or stop your breathing, and death may occur. A person caring for you should give naloxone and/or seek emergency medical attention if you have slow breathing with long pauses, blue colored lips, or if you are hard to wake up.

Call your doctor at once if you have:

  • weak or shallow breathing, breathing that stops;
  • a light-headed feeling, like you might pass out;
  • seizure (convulsions);
  • chest pain, wheezing, cough with yellow or green mucus;
  • severe vomiting;
  • high levels of serotonin in the body--agitation, hallucinations, fever, sweating, shivering, fast heart rate, muscle stiffness, twitching, loss of coordination, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea; or
  • low cortisol levels--nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, dizziness, worsening tiredness or weakness.

Serious breathing problems may be more likely in older adults and people who are debilitated or have wasting syndrome or chronic breathing disorders.

Common side effects may include:

  • dizziness, drowsiness;
  • headache, tiredness; or
  • stomach pain, nausea, vomiting, constipation.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

Read the entire detailed patient monograph for Numorphan (Oxymorphone)


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As with all potent opioid analgesics, possible side effects when using NUMORPHAN (oxymorphone) include:

Central Nervous System

Drowsiness, sedation, lightheadedness, unusual tiredness or weakness, headache, dysphoria, euphoria, miosis, diplopia, blurred vision, nervousness, restlessness, confusion, mental clouding, trouble sleeping, paradoxical CNS stimulation, hallucinations, mental depression.

Gastrointestinal System

Nausea, vomiting, dry mouth, constipation, biliary tract spasm, cramps or pain, loss of appetite, paralytic ileus or toxic megacolon in patients with inflammatory bowel disease.

Cardiovascular System

Hypotension, orthostatic hypotension particularly in ambulatory patients, tachycardia, bradycardia, palpitations, flushing.

Respiratory System

Respiratory depression, atelectasis, allergic bronchospastic reaction, allergic laryngeal edema, allergic laryngospasm.

Genitourinary System

Ureteral spasm, urinary hesitancy or retention, antidiuretic effect.


Itching, sweating, injection site reaction, allergic reaction (such as skin rash, hives, and/or itching, swelling of the face).

Drug Abuse And Dependence

NUMORPHAN (oxymorphone) is a Schedule II opioid and is subject to the Federal Controlled Substances Act.

NUMORPHAN (oxymorphone) , as with other opioid drugs, can produce tolerance, psychological dependence, and physical dependence and has the potential for being abused. The addiction potential of the drug appears to be about the same as for morphine.

Withdrawal symptoms may occur when opioids are abruptly discontinued after prolonged use. Withdrawal symptoms may be characterized by some or all of the following: restlessness, lacrimation, rhinorrhea, yawning, perspiration, gooseflesh, restless sleep, and mydriasis during the first 24 hours. These symptoms often increase in severity and over the next 72 hours may be accompanied by increasing irritability, anxiety, weakness, twitching, and spasms of muscles; kicking movements; severe backaches; abdominal and leg pains; abdominal and muscle cramps; hot and cold flashes; insomnia; nausea, anorexia, vomiting, intestinal spasm, diarrhea, coryza, and repetitive sneezing; increase in body temperature, blood pressure, respiratory rate and heart rate. Because of excessive loss of fluids through sweating, vomiting and diarrhea, there is usually marked weight loss, dehydration, ketosis, and disturbances in acid-base balance. Cardiovascular collapse can occur. Without treatment most observable symptoms disappear in 5-14 days; however, there appears to be a phase of secondary or chronic abstinence which may last for 2-6 months characterized by decreasing insomnia, irritability, and muscular aches. In addition, the patient may have miosis and a slight lowering of blood pressure, pulse rate, and body temperature;respiratory centers exhibit a decreased response to the stimulatory effects of carbon dioxide.

The dose of NUMORPHAN (oxymorphone) should be gradually reduced before discontinuation in those patients who require treatment for physical dependence.

Infants born to mothers physically dependent on opioids will also be physically dependent and may exhibit respiratory difficulties and withdrawal symptoms (see PRECAUTIONS; Usage in Pregnancy).

Read the entire FDA prescribing information for Numorphan (Oxymorphone)

© Numorphan Patient Information is supplied by Cerner Multum, Inc. and Numorphan Consumer information is supplied by First Databank, Inc., used under license and subject to their respective copyrights.

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