Tapentadol vs Oxycodone: What’s the Difference?

Tapentadol vs Oxycodone

Tapentadol and Oxycodone both are analgesic prescription medicines that are used for moderate to severe pain. They both work the same as blocking pain in the body, but the chemical formation of the drugs is different in how they affect the body. In this blog, we will be discussing Tapentadol vs Oxycodone, by focusing on all its aspects.
You can’t use these drugs without a doctor’s prescription because it is not good for your health. Doctors prescribe this medicine depending on the patient’s condition. If you are using opioids then make sure that you follow the guideline which is provided by your doctor.

What is Tapentadol?

Tapentadol medicine is used to treat moderate to severe acute pain. It is also known as Nucynta. Tapentadol is available in brand-name as both an immediate-release and extended-release tablet. To treat moderate to severe acute pain, tapentadol pills are used. People with diabetes who experience severe neuropathic pain (pain brought on by damaged nerves) can be treated with tablets that include tapentadol extended-release. Only people who are expected and require medication 24 hours a day to address pain are given Tapentadol extended-release tablets.

What is Oxycodone?

Oxycodone is a medicine that is used to relieve severe pain. Also known as an oral router. It is a combination of narcotic analgesics and Oxydone that directly works on your nervous system to relieve pain. Oxycodone works by altering how the nervous system and brain react to pain. It binds the opioid receptor and blocks the feeling of severe pain and provides patients to experience pain relief. We can generally take 3 to 5 hours for immediate release with food. It is typically found in tablet form in IR and ER versions.

It’s important to note that tapentadol and oxycodone both are used for pain relief but they are chemically different, So their side effects are also different.

The Key difference between Tapentadol and Oxycodone:

Because of potency, both medicines are often utilized in circumstances where a milder pain relief medicine, like Acetaminophen or Ibuprofen, would not be effective or tolerated. Although these medications have many similarities and are used to treat similar kinds of pain, they also differ significantly in many important ways.

Both immediate-release (IR) and extended-release (ER) tablets of Oxycodone and Nucynta are readily available. The recommended starting dose of IR Nucynta is 50–100 mg every 4-6 hours as needed for pain, however, a healthcare professional may adjust this amount up to a maximum of 600 mg daily and up to 700 mg on the first day of treatment. The usual dosage for the ER tablet is 50–250 mg every 12 hours as needed for pain, with a daily maximum of 500 mg. It is typically used to treat acute pain, but depending on the condition being treated (such as chronic pain) and the patient’s reaction, it may be used for extended periods.

The main difference between tapentadol and oxycodone are:-

  • Drug class: The name of both classes of drugs is Opioid (narcotic) analgesic.
  • Brand and generic Name: Tapentadol’s name is Nucynta or Tapentadol and Oxycodone is OxyIR (immediate-release), and Oxycontin (long-acting).
  • Form of the Drugs: Tapentadol comes in Immediate-release tablets and Extended-release tablets, and oxycodone comes in Immediate-release tablets, Immediate-release capsules, Extended-release tablets, and Oral solutions.
  • Standard doses: Tapentadol comes with 50 to 100 mg and the maximum mg comes with 600 to 700 the other hand Oxycodone is an Immediate-release tablet of 5 to 15 mg and an Extended-release tablet of 20 mg.
  • How long is the treatment: Both are used for the short term but it also depends on the patient’s condition.

Medical Applications of Tapentadol and Oxycodone:

Tapentadol and Oxycodone both are used to treat acute and chronic moderate to severe pain depending on the variety of conditions.

Applications of Tapentadol are:

  • Chronic low back pain is a common illness that can be difficult to treat with various drugs.
  • Neuropathic pain occurs by malfunction or injury to the central nervous system.
  • Fibromyalgia-related pain is a chronic illness characterized by all-over soreness and pain.

Applications of Oxycodone are:

  • In patients with cancer that is advanced or other grave diseases, relief from dyspnea (difficulty breathing).
  • Powerful cough medicine for chronic cough.
  • Injuries, cancer, and surgery-related pain.
  • On rare occasions, Oxycodone is used as the general anesthetic used during operations.

Side Effects of Tapentadol and Oxycodone:

When it comes to Tapentadol compared to Oxycodone, it is important to consider the side effect of each drug. Both Tapentadol and Oxycodone can cause side effects such as nausea, Constipation, Sleepiness, and Dizziness.

Tapentadol is less harmful than Oxycodone. So it may be a better option for those who are concerned about side effects.

Overdose Signs & Symptoms:

Oxycodone and Nucynta misuse can result in overdose and severe respiratory depression. Misuse includes combining these medications with illegal drugs or alcohol or using them in ways other than those prescribed by a doctor. An opioid overdose is a serious medical emergency that has to be treated right away to save lives and improve long-term consequences. Make a 911 call right away if you think you or someone else may be overdosing.

  • Vomiting, which can lead to asphyxiation.
  • Pinpoint pupils.
  • Lips and nails are blue
  • Loss of consciousness or responsiveness.
  • Cold and clammy skin.
  • Respiratory depression is marked by slow, shallow, or stopped breathing.
  • softness in the body, especially the arms and legs.


In this article, we have covered all the aspects of Tapentadol Vs Oxycodone including what their side effects are, what are the main differences, and also how long you can use them in the human body.  It’s crucial to discuss your medical history and any other medications you’re taking with your doctor before choosing between Tapentadol and Oxycodone to ensure that the medications are suitable for you. 

Read More:

How Long Does Oxycodone Stay In Your System?

Can you take Ibuprofen with Oxycodone?

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