Can You Shoot Up Percocet?

Shooting Percocet is a dangerous practice that many who struggle with opioid abuse disorders engage in. Knowing the signs and symptoms of shooting Percocet is an important step in identifying substance use disorder and addiction.

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Shooting Percocet: Dangers and Side Effects

Percocet is an orally ingested medication that is used to relieve severe pain. The two main ingredients in this medication are oxycodone and acetaminophen. Acetaminophen is not addictive if taken for long periods of time but taken in large doses can cause liver damage. Oxycodone is an opiate (narcotic) and when used for extended periods of time can cause addiction and dependence.

Can you inject Percocet? Percocet is intended for oral administration. Therefore, crushing and dissolving the tablets in water for intravenous use can result in considerable harm to people who regularly inject drugs. One of the main ingredients in Percocet is oxycodone. Oxycodone can be injected directly into the muscles, injected into the bloodstream, and injected under the skin.

There are many dangers associated with injecting drugs including contracting bloodborne diseases such as Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV), Hepatitis B Virus (HBV), and Hepatitis C Virus (HCV) from needle sharing. There is an increased risk of dying from injecting drugs because according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, in 2016, 4,929 people who injected drugs and were diagnosed with HIV died in the United State. Also, injecting drugs can also result in collapsed or inflamed veins, scarring, venous ulcer, skin infections such as abscesses, and overdose.

Possible side effects of Percocet include allergic reactions such as hives, difficulty breathing, hallucinations, and swelling, skin reactions, slow or stop breathing, liver problems, confusion, light-headedness, shallow breathing,cold clammy skin, nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, dizziness, and feeling fatigued.

A recent article posted in Military Medicine found that foreign body granulomatous which is small areas of inflammation caused by injected particles is a rare complication of crushed and injected oral prescription tablets. The article mentioned that foreign body granulomatous can be caused by crushing and intravenously injecting Percocet or other medications that are meant for oral ingestion. When the crushed medication is injected it becomes trapped in the lungs and produces inflammation. This is because Percocet is filled with fillers that can not be dissolved such as talc, microcrystalline cellulose, and crospovidone (PVP) which bulk up the tablet. People who inject Percocet and have foreign body granulomatous, usually experience dry cough and progressive difficulty breathing. There is no cure for this disease and usually results in a progressive decline in lung functioning.

How to shoot Percocet? The best way to take Percocet is orally and as prescribed by your doctor. Using the medication as prescribed is the best way to prevent any life-threatening consequences. However, the National Drug and Alcohol Research Center mentioned that among people who regularly inject drugs in 2005, 17 percent of them injected oxycodone and in 2013, 31 percent of them injected oxycodone. These numbers indicate among people who regularly inject drugs, injecting Percocet is on the rise.

Therefore, if you are going to be shooting up Percocet, harm reduction strategies can be used to prevent vein and tissue damage as well as more serious consequences. In order to reduce the negative consequences of injecting Percocet, there are a number of harm reducing practices that can be taken. These include using filters and using heat when preparing the substances for injection. Heat is used to reduce the microorganisms such as bacteria and fungi that can lead to infection. Heat is also used to separate the active and inactive ingredients form the tablet and ensure maximum drug extraction. If a person fails to use a filter it can result in a number of particles getting into the bloodstream leading to cardiac and vascular damage as well as foreign body granulomatous.

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Percocet Abuse

Can you shoot Percocet? Taking Percocet any way other than it is intended by a physician is abusing the medication including shooting or snorting. If a person decides to inject Percocet it can lead to potentially disastrous effects including addiction, overdose, or death. Shooting up Percocet can lead to addiction because it results in rapid effects and is a misuse of the medication.

According to the Food and Drug Administration, the main ingredient in Percocet, oxycodone, can result in addiction if the medication is abused. Addiction causes a person’s body to become dependent on the drug. When a person tries to stop or reduce their use of the drug it can result in painful withdrawal symptoms. Withdrawing from Percocet can include intense cravings for the medication, experiencing mood swings ranging from depressed to agitated to anxious, hallucinating, inability to concentrate as well as physical symptoms such as anxiety, increased heart rate, and blood pressure, nervousness, tremors, irritability, dilated pupils, diarrhea and abdominal cramps.

When determining if someone is abusing Percocet it is important to look at both the physical and behavioral signs that indicate a person is abusing this medication. Physical signs that a person is abusing Percocet through injecting the medication include vein damage, skin abscesses, tissue death, swollen lymph glands, dark pigmentation of the skin, scarring, and skin ulcers.

Behavioral signs of prescription medication abuse include lying, stealing money, or the medication from family members or other people, withdrawal from family and friends, and changes in a person’s behaviors. Other signs that a person is addicted to Percocet is that “doctor shop” which is visiting different doctors in order to find one who will give them more of the prescription. Also, a person might, repeatedly “lose” their prescriptions.

Why People Start Shooting Percocet

People might start shooting Percocet because they are already addicted to the medication and have developed tolerance. Tolerance means it takes more dose of the drug to get the same original high. Intravenous drug use results in a person experiencing the effects of the drug faster than taking it the oral route. This is because the drug is able to be absorbed into the body much quicker. When injecting Percocet, it only takes 20 to 40 seconds for the drug to reach a person’s brain enabling them to experience the drug’s effects. Compared to the oral route which can take much longer.

Getting Help

If you or someone you love is injecting Percocet and is addicted to it, finding a high-quality rehab clinic can mean the difference between life and death. Rehab clinics provide all the support and treatment necessary to help you overcome your addiction. Through the combination of medications and behavioral therapies, you will be given all the tools you need to recover. Medications will be provided to ease the withdrawal process, eliminate cravings, and prevent relapse. Behavioral therapy will be provided to challenge your thoughts towards drugs, alter any maladaptive thought processes, and learn coping techniques to prevent drug use in stressful situations. Group therapy is also provided to help you learn from other people’s experiences and know that you are not alone on this recovery journey.

A person can receive treatment at either an inpatient rehab clinic or an outpatient clinic. At an inpatient clinic, a person will be given round the clock care to help with the detoxification process and provide them with medications and behavior therapy to get them back on their feet. At an outpatient clinic, a person will go there during the day for therapy and work with medical and mental health professionals to help them kick their drug addiction to the curb.


Medical disclaimer:

Sunshine Behavioral Health strives to help people who are facing substance abuse, addiction, mental health disorders, or a combination of these conditions. It does this by providing compassionate care and evidence-based content that addresses health, treatment, and recovery.

Licensed medical professionals review material we publish on our site. The material is not a substitute for qualified medical diagnoses, treatment, or advice. It should not be used to replace the suggestions of your personal physician or other health care professionals.

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