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Darvocet binds to the pain receptors in the brain so that the sensation of pain is reduced.
Darvocet is habit forming and should only be used under close supervision if you have an alcohol or drug addiction.
The medical journal Clinical Pharmacology even argued that darvocet's "most prominent effect...may be its addictive quality."
The usual dosage of Darvocet is 100 mg propoxyphene napsylate and 650 mg acetaminophen every 4 hours as needed for pain.
Darvocet's active ingredients
are propoxyphene, a narcotic (opiate) pain medication (analgesic), and acetaminophen
(a non-narcotic pain medication), which relieves pain better than either medication
taken alone. Propoxyphene is a centrally acting narcotic analgesic agent. It
works by changing the way your body feels pain. It effects the smooth muscle
tissue, slowing the central nervous system. The usual dosage of Darvocet is
100 mg propoxyphene napsylate and 650 mg acetaminophen every 4 hours and is
taken oraly. Darvocet is only available by prescription. The tablets are capsule
shaped, dark orange, with "Darvocet-N" printed in black. Either "50"
or "100" will be printed below, depending on the capsule's dosage
of propoxyphene napsylate.
Darvocet is manufactured
in the following dosages (propoxyphene / acetaminophen):
- Darvocet-N 50 mg/ 325
- Darvocet-N 100 mg/ 650
Darvocet has few side effects
when taken as recommended by your doctor, but some cautions should be observed.
Interactions may occur with certain medications that could alter or increase
the effect of either Darvocet, or the other medication. Do not mix Darvocet
with over the counter pain medication; acetaminophen can cause liver damage
when mixed with certain pain medications. Check any cold or flu medication you
may need to take to be sure it does not contain additional pain medication.
While Darvocet is a highly effective pain reliever, it has been associated with
an increased risk of addiction when used improperly, or for too long. Never
take Darvocet in greater doses, or for a longer period of time, than recommended
by your doctor.
If prescribed Darvocet and
you miss a dose, take it as soon as you remember. If you are more than halfway
through your dose interval, skip the missed dose of Darvocet and go back to
your schedule. Taking double doses of Darvocet is not recommended, as it may
lead to a Darvocet overdose or Darvocet addiction. Also, do not crush Darvocet
tablets before taking, as this could release the drug into the bloodstream too
fast, possibly resulting in an overdose as well.
It is important to know
that babies born to mothers taking opiates such as Darvocet can experience withdrawal
symptoms after birth. The Darvocet withdrawal symptoms in the baby may include:
irritability, hyperactivity, tremors, faster breathing, increased stools, fever,
vomiting, sneezing, and yawning. The severity of the symptoms is not always
tied to how much, or how long the mother used Darvocet.
Darvocet has many drug interactions.
Darvocet works by slowing the central nervous system. It should be used with
caution with other drugs that have similar effects. Darvocet can change or increase
the effects of certain drugs, and your physician should be advised if you are
taking any of the following.
Darvocet drug interactions
include but are not limited to:
- Street drugs of any
type must never be mixed with Darvocet as this could result in a fatal overdose.
- Alcohol - Propoxyphene
and alcohol can accelerate central nervous system depression. Avoid mixing
the two, as this could result in a fatal overdose. Alcohol use combined with
acetaminophen can accelerate or increase the risk of liver damage or stomach
medication may interact with your treatment. Be especially cautious if you
use Tegretol (carbamazepine), as serious neurological disorders may result.
Only your doctor can advise if this combination is safe.
- Antihistamines like Tavist
- Aspirin (or any salicylate,
such as salicylamide, or salicylic acid) can cause kidney or liver damage
when taken in high doses, and over long periods of time, in combination with
acetaminophen. When taken in the recommended doses, for a short time, it has
not been seen to produce this effect.
- Benzodiazepines (a class
of antidepressants, anti-panic agents, and muscle relaxants) such as Ativan
(lorazepam), Valium (diazepam), Halcion (triazolam), Restoril (temazepam),
Librium(chlordiazepoxide), Xanax (alprazolam), Tranxene-SD (clorazepate),
Paxipam (halazepam), ProSom (estazolam), Klonopin (clonazepam), and others,
should be used cautiously with Darvocet.
- Coumadin (warfarin) -
Increased risk of bleeding.
- Desyrel (trazodone) -
Risk of additive CNS depression.
- MAO inhibitors - Propoxyphene
must not be mixed with MAO (monoamine oxidase) inhibitors such as the antidepressants
Nardil, Marplan, or Parnate. It should not be used within 2 weeks of stopping
- Narcotic pain medication
of any other kind, like Codeine, Demerol (meperidine), Buprenex (buprenorphine),
Darvon (propoxyphene hcl), Dilaudid (hydromorphone), MS Contin or Kadian (morphine),
nalbuphine, OxyContin (propoxyphene), Stadol (butorphanol), Talwin compound
(pentazocine), Vicodin (hydrocodone, acetaminophen), or Vicoprofen (hydrocodone,
ibuprofen) should not be mixed with Darvocet.
- Norflex (orphenadrine)
- Risk of oversedation.
- Oral contraceptives -
These may interact with acetaminophen
- Sedatives like Fioricet
(butalbital, acetaminophen, and caffeine), Fiorinal, Phenobarbitol, Seconal,
or other barbiturates.
- Sleep medication like
Ambien (zolpidem), Sonata (zaleplon), or over the counter sleeping pills should
be used with propoxyphene only as, and if, advised by your doctor.
- Skeletal muscle relaxants
- such as Flexeril (cyclobenzaprine), Skelaxin (metaxalone), Soma (carisoprodol),
or Robaxin (methocarbamol) may increase respiratory depression when mixed
- Tranquilizers such as
Haldol (haloperidol), Mellaril (thioridazine), or Thorazine (chlorpromazine)
may cause oversedation.
- Trexan (naltrexone) -
Causes narcotic pain medication to be ineffective.
- Tricyclic antidepressants
such as Elavil (amitriptyline), Asendin (amoxapine), Anafranil (clomipramine),
Pertofrane or Norpramin (desipramine), Sinequan (doxepin), Tofranil (imipramine),
Aventyl or Pamelor (nortriptyline), Vivactil (protriptyline), and Surmontil
(trimipramine), may increase the central nervous system suppressant effects
from either the antidepressant, or the propoxyphene.
- Ultram (tramadol)
- Zidovudine (AZT, Retrovir)
- Narcotic pain medication increases blood levels of this drug, potentially
making side effects more severe.