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Oxycodone-OxyContin Statistics

The illegal use of the various marketed versions of oxycodone – OxyContin®, OxyIR®, OxyFast®, Oxydose®, Roxicodone Intensol®, Roxicodone®, Endodan®, Percodan®, Endocet®, Percocet®, Roxicet®, Roxilox®, and Tylox® – has been rising. In the 1990s, the abuse of opioid pain killers was lower than other drugs. U.S. Poison Control Centers reported 36,848 toxic exposures in 1998, with 1227 of those being “major” and 161 resulting in death.

This picture has changed, however. Each year from 2002 to 2004, there were significant increases in the lifetime use of 18 to 25 year olds.

 

Oxycodone variety

2002

2003

2004

Increase

Percodan®, Percocet®, or Tylox® (Oxycodone combined with aspirin or acetaminophen)

7.4%

7.8%

8.7%

1.3%

OxyContin® (extended release)

2.6%

3.6%

4.3%

1.7%

Oxycodone (immediate release)

8.2%

8.9%

10.1%

1.9%

The 2004 National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH) revealed that 3,000,000 people over the age of 11 had tried OxyContin® for a nonmedical purpose, and 615,000 people tried OxyContin® for nonmedical use for the first time in 2004. But oxycodone is well in the public eye because it has widespread legal use, with 38,100,000 prescriptions in 2005, of which over 19% were for OxyContin®.

The 2006 Monitoring the Future Study revealed these figures for 2005 nonmedical use of OxyContin® by teens:

Nonmedical Use of OxyContin® by Students for the Year 2005

 

Grade

Percentage of Students

8th grade

1.8%

10th grade

3.2%

12th grade

5.5%

The use of oxycodones depends to a certain extent on the particular drug in question. Oxycodone is available in the U.S. as an oral solution, as tablets, and as extended release tablets. Combined with acetaminophen, it is available as an oral solution, as capsules, and as tablets. Combined with aspirin, it is available as a tablet.

OxyContin®, available as a time-release tablet, may be used intact, or crushed and chewed, snorted, or dissolved in water and then injected. The products that combine oxycodone with acetaminophen or aspirin are also abused orally.

Opioids, including Oxycodone, carry the risk of addiction, which is why they are “scheduled” drugs. They are abused both in overdoses when prescribed and used outside of prescriptions to get high, often accompanied with alcohol.

As early as the 1920s, oxycodone sold as Eukodal, was reported to create a “striking euphoria,” and its euphoric effects have been sought since. Other desired effects include:

  • euphoria
  • pain-killing properties
  • reduced anxiety
  • relaxation

Unsought effects include:

  • addiction
  • overdose

How is Oxycodone Used, Stats and Effects Sources:

  • emedicine.com
  • whitehousedrugpolicy.gov
  • drugabusestatistics.samhsa.gov
  • nlm.nih.gov
  • deadiversion.usdoj.gov
  • prescription-drug-rehab.com

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