Are Fentanyl and Oxycodone the Same?

When people want to have an understanding of what opioid drugs are they will often compare one to another. For example, people commonly ask are fentanyl and oxycodone the same?

The technical answer is no, they are not the same, but the two drugs do have some similarities and differences, which will be highlighted below.

Are Fentanyl and Oxycodone the Same?
The primary similarity between fentanyl and oxycodone is the fact that they’re both classified as opioids. Opioids are a type of drug that’s gained a lot of national attention in recent years because of how often these drugs are abused, both on purpose through the use of illicit street opioids, and also inadvertently by people who are prescribed these drugs for pain and ultimately become dependent and addicted to them.

Opioids include not just fentanyl and oxycodone, but also hydrocodone, which includes brand names like Vicodin, heroin, codeine, morphine and quite a few others.

These drugs get their name because they have a similar chemical makeup, so in that sense when asking are fentanyl and oxycodone the same, the answer is structurally yes, they do have similarities. They interact with opioid receptors found throughout the body and the brain, and while prescription opioids including fentanyl and oxycodone are designed to treat pain, they can also create a euphoric high, particularly when taken in larger doses, which is why they have a high potential for abuse.

Another way fentanyl and oxycodone are the same is in the fact that they are both synthetic opiates, meaning they are made in a laboratory, rather than being naturally occurring.

When evaluating are fentanyl and oxycodone the same, they are in terms of both being opioids, but there are many differences a well.

To begin, Oxycodone is a prescription drug that can be given for moderate to severe pain, and there are dozens of different variations of the drug. It is a very potent opiate, and a person will quickly build a tolerance to it, even when they take it exactly as prescribed by their doctor.

Oxycodone is often prescribed even in situations where it shouldn’t necessarily be, such as following dental procedures where a less potent and addictive pain medication should be used instead, but in the face of the opioid epidemic plaguing the U.S., many doctors are being advised to rethink how and to who they prescribe these medications.

Fentanyl is a highly powerful opioid painkiller that is estimated to be up to 100 times stronger than morphine.

It, like oxycodone, acts on the opioid receptors of the user, but in a much more potent and swift way.

There are some differences that highlight why fentanyl and oxycodone are not the same, despite the fact they’re both opioids.

The first is the strength of fentanyl. While oxycodone is also strong, fentanyl is one of the strongest opioids available, and even a tiny amount can lead to an overdose in people who are not opioid resistant. There is a lot more restriction surrounding who should be prescribed fentanyl, and it’s not intended for managing short-term pain.

Instead, it’s most often intended for people experiencing severe breakthrough pain on a chronic basis, such as with cancer. It’s for people who already receive around-the-clock opioid pain medication and for pain that’s long-term.

When considering are fentanyl and oxycodone the same, they can both lead to overdose in the same way, however, it would take significantly less fentanyl for a person to overdose than with oxycodone in many cases.

The reason these drugs lead to so many overdoses, including many that are fatal, is because they depress the respiratory system. They slow down essential functions including breathing, which is what causes an overdose. The key difference is the potency of fentanyl.

To conclude, are fentanyl and oxycodone the same?

They are the same in that they are both opioids that can be prescribed for pain, they both have the potential for abuse, and they both can lead to serious consequences like respiratory depression. Fentanyl and oxycodone are different in their potency, and also in who they’re intended to be used for in a medical setting. For example, fentanyl is not meant for the treatment of short-term pain.

Are Fentanyl and Oxycodone the Same?
3 (60%) 2 votes