Painkillers/opioids

How do they work?

Opioids are drugs that contain or are derived from opium. They are prescribed for pain relief and are only available by prescription. Most opioid or painkilling drugs are non-refillable and are safe and effective when used properly under a medical doctor’s supervision. Morphine derivatives (narcotics) come from opioids and are used to therapeutically treat pain, suppress coughing, alleviate diarrhea, and induce anesthesia. When using these narcotics, abusers experience a general sense of well-being through reduced tension, anxiety, and aggression. These drugs affect the brain regions that mediate pleasure.

Effects might include

  • Severe drowsiness, apathy, lack of energy
  • Inability to concentrate, confusion
  • Pinpoint pupils
  • Flushing of the face and neck, cold and clammy skin
  • Constipation, nausea, vomiting
  • Convulsions
  • Respiratory depression
  • Long term: addiction, increased tolerance, overdose
Common opioids
Drug Uses Commercial
and street names
Hydrocodone

Photo courtesy of http://www.addictionsearch.com

Often combined with acetaminophen for use as a painkiller
Vicodin, Lortab, Lorcet, Dilaudid; Vike, Watson-387
juice, smack, D, footballs, dillies
Oxycodone


Photo courtesy of octaviusdale.gozaru.jp
A narcotic painkiller
Tylox, OxyContin, Percodan, Percocet; Oxy, O.C., oxycotton, oxycet, hillbilly heroin, percs
Morphine


Photo courtesy of nesseler-medical.blogspot.com
The powerful, active ingredient in opium, used as a painkiller and sedative
MSContin, OramorphSR, Roxanol, Kadian, Roxanol, Duramorph; M, Miss Emma, monkey, white stuff
Codeine


Photo courtesy of thegooddrugsguide.com
Weaker in action than morphine, but also used as a painkiller
Empirin with Codeine, Fiorinal with Codeine, Robitussin A-C, Tylenol with Codeine; Captain Cody, Cody, schoolboy; (with glutethimide: doors & fours, loads, pancakes and syrup)
Fentanyl and Analogs


Photo courtesy of pi.watson.com
A man-made opioid painkiller similar to morphine that is adminsitered as a skin patch or injected
Actiq, Duragesic, Sublimaze; Apache, China girl, China white, dance fever, friend, goodfella, jackpot, murder 8, TNT, Tango and Cash
Methadone

Photo courtesy of prescriptiondrug-info.com

A long-acting opioid that is often given to maintain and treat drug withdrawal symptoms
Methadose, Dolophine; fizzies, amidone, (with MDMA: chocolate chip cookies)