Patient Information Resources

Centre for Orthopaedics
Suite 10-33/34/35 Mount Elizabeth Novena Specialist Centre
38 Irrawaddy Road
Singapore, 329563, Singapore
Ph: (65) 6684 5828
Fax: (65) 6684 5829

Child Orthopedics
Pain Management
Spine - Cervical
Spine - General
Spine - Lumbar
Spine - Thoracic

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I'm taking a drug called oxycodone. The doctor and pharmacist have warned me about becoming addicted to this medication. How can I tell if I'm at risk for this type of drug dependence?

Oxycodone is an opioid (narcotic) drug with potential for addiction and dependence. The fact that you are even concerned about drug dependence is a good sign. But concern doesn't always translate into prevention. So, asking the question is a good place to start. There are some known risk factors for opioid misuse. The first is a personal or family history of alcohol or other drug abuse. Young age and a history of criminal activity or legal problems is another. Any episodes of driving under the influence (DUI) is a yellow warning flag. People who engage in risk-taking behaviors and thrill-seeking activities are at risk for drug misuse and abuse. Heavy tobacco use, psychologic stressors, and severe depression or anxiety also lend themselves to opioid misuse. Taking meds in ways other than it was prescribed can be a problem. Talk to your doctor if you find yourself taking double or triple doses or taking the next dose before the recommended time. You may need a change in the overall pain management program. There are screening tools that can help assess patients for drug problems. Questions are asked related to mood swings and family problems (or friends) with alcohol or other drugs. The use of illegal drugs such as marijuana or cocaine in the recent past (last five years) puts you at increased risk for drug misuse. Your physician or a drug addiction counselor can help you identify your personal risk level.


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