Hycodan is the brand name of a prescription drug used to treat coughing and relieve its associated pain. It is made up of hydrocodone, a form of codeine, and homatropine, an anticholinergic drug that works on the nervous system. The homatropine in this drug is included primarily to help prevent overdose of Hycodan. This drug is in the drug class of upper respiratory combinations and is an opioid. It is a Schedule 3 opioid drug, meaning it has a lowered abuse potential than Schedules 1 or 2 drugs do. It can be prescribed medically and has a lessened potential for addiction than Classes 1 or 2 substances.
Hycodan is a narcotic cough suppressant. It sends the brain a message to decrease the urge to cough. As a narcotic drug, Hycodan can be habit-forming and addictive when taken for lengthy periods of time.
This drug comes in both tablet and syrup formulations. Each tablet or teaspoon dosage contains 5 mg of hydrocodone bitartrate and 1.5 mg of homatropine methylbromide. Hycodan is an acceptable medicine for use with restrictions, as it may lead to severe addiction. Hycodan is in the same class as opioids such as oxycodone.
Side Effects Possible with Hycodan
There are some common undesirable side effects that may accompany the use of Hycodan, even when used short-term for a cough. These side effects can include nausea, dizziness, sleepiness, vision changes, constipation and vomiting. The most common side effect of nausea often disappears after the first few initial doses.
Those who take high doses of this drug may experience heightened feelings of extreme happiness and pleasure. More and higher doses of the drug are needed, however, to continue these same sustained feelings of wellbeing. This drug is prescribed as a cough suppressant. It is also used illegally as a recreational drug in order to duplicate the feelings of pleasure it can induce. The hydrocodone ingredient in Hycodan is related to codeine and heroin. Once someone becomes dependent upon the feelings they experience from taking the drug, they may go “doctor shopping” for it, getting prescriptions from a variety of doctors they will see and filling them at different pharmacies so they can increase their doses and experience better ‘highs.’
Because hydrocodone is an element of Hycodan, many users take it recreationally to get high. The effects that are sought out when taking this drug include the absence of any pain that the person may have been feeling. The user will also feel abnormally happy within 60 minutes of taking the drug; this happy feeling may last for four to six hours.
After Hycodan begins to wear off, the user begins to come down from their high, and these feelings can vary from person to person. It can depend upon someone’s body chemistry and/or their body weight. The most common effects of coming down from a Hycodan high include feelings of anxiety and perfuse sweating. The person may also find that they cannot concentrate very well or focus on tasks. A more dangerous and severe reaction of coming off Hycodan can include vomiting, cramps in the abdomen, heart palpitations, the shakes, or breathing difficulties.
The long-term effects of taking Hycodan in an abusive manner, in regards to its hydrocodone element, require seeking professional treatment, as addiction to this substance can cause hearing loss, damage to the liver and ever-increasing tolerance to the drug.
Someone who uses Hycodan for an extended period of time can become psychologically and physically dependent upon it. It should be prescribed and taken with caution. Physical addiction to Hycodan may occur after ingesting it regularly over a period of several weeks. This drug can also cause a drug dependence of the morphine kind and therefore has the potential for abuse.
When Hycodan has been used for a long period of time, the withdrawal symptoms upon stopping it can be severe, especially if it has been taken in high dosages. The withdrawal symptoms associated with a sudden stopping of Hycodan ingestion include:
- Runny nose
- Watery eyes
- Abdominal pain that is severe
- Severe muscular pains
- Rapid breathing
- Rapid heartbeat
Withdrawal from a Hycodan addiction can begin within six or ten hours after its last dosing administration. The withdrawal symptoms can be alleviated if the person who is addicted tapers off the drug slowly, taking a smaller dose gradually each day, rather than stopping the drug immediately. After withdrawal, the body can experience sweating, excessive yawning, muscular pains and a loss of appetite. Irritability and insomnia may also exist. Other less common effects include flu-like achiness symptoms and diarrhea.
In order to detox from Hycodan, it is best to seek professional help, as the psychological withdrawal symptoms alone can last for up to six months after stopping the drug. Psychological counseling is advised.