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Oxycodone and acetaminophen: After your visit

Oxycodone and acetaminophen

After your visit

Common brands: Percocet®

What it's used for

Oxycodone with acetaminophen is used to treat pain. Oxycodone is an opioid (narcotic), which means that it works like morphine.

What to tell the doctor or pharmacist before you take this medicine

Tell the doctor or pharmacist if you:

  • have kidney or liver disease
  • drink alcohol
  • take a blood “thinner”
  • are pregnant
  • are allergic to narcotics (such as codeine or morphine) or acetaminophen
  • have breathing problems (such as asthma, COPD, or sleep apnea)

Tell your doctor or dentist what other prescription, over-the-counter, or herbal medicines you take.

What you need to know

  • Take this product as directed. Taking more than 4000 mg of acetaminophen a day can hurt the liver.
  • Acetaminophen is found in pain, fever, cough, and cold medicine. Check with your pharmacist or read the medicine label before you take any other medicine.
  • It works best if you take it when the pain starts or before it gets too bad.
  • Drinking alcohol while taking this medicine can hurt the liver.
  • Oxycodone often causes constipation (trouble having bowel movements). Ask your pharmacist if a laxative might be right for you. Eating more fibre and drinking more fluids can help.
  • Don’t take more of this medicine than prescribed or for longer than prescribed: This medicine can cause withdrawal symptoms (such as feeling restless and sweating) if used for a long time or in high doses.
  • Don’t drive or use machinery until you know how the medicine affects you.
  • If you are taking a long-acting opioid pain reliever, make sure you know how to use it safely.

Possible side effects

Possible side effects can include:

  • constipation
  • stomach pain
  • upset stomach or throwing up
  • feeling sleepy
  • feeling dizzy or light headed

When to get help

Call 911 if you have trouble breathing or your face, tongue, or throat starts to swell.

See a doctor or call Health Link at 811 right away if you have any of the following:

  • Your urine (pee) becomes dark.
  • Your eyes or skin turn yellow.
  • You feel very dizzy or very tired.
  • You have trouble emptying your bladder.
  • You feel sick to your stomach or are throwing up.
  • You get sores in your mouth, nose, throat, or eyes.
  • You have very bad pain in your stomach.
  • You have a red, itchy rash, or swelling.

See your doctor if your symptoms or health conditions don’t get better or get worse.

If you have any questions or concerns about this medicine, speak with your doctor or pharmacist.

If you think you may have taken too much of this medicine, call the Poison and Drug Information Service (PADIS) 24/7 at 1-800-332-1414 or go to an emergency department.

To see this information online and learn more, visit


For 24/7 nurse advice and general health information call Health Link at 811.

Current as of: August 10, 2023

Author: Poison and Drug Information Service (PADIS)

This material is not a substitute for the advice of a qualified health professional. This material is intended for general information only and is provided on an "as is", "where is" basis. Although reasonable efforts were made to confirm the accuracy of the information, Alberta Health Services does not make any representation or warranty, express, implied or statutory, as to the accuracy, reliability, completeness, applicability or fitness for a particular purpose of such information. Alberta Health Services expressly disclaims all liability for the use of these materials, and for any claims, actions, demands or suits arising from such use.