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Opioid / NSAID Combinations: Uses, Common Brands, and Safety Info

Opioid/NSAID combinations provide effective pain relief by targeting different pain mechanisms. They are used for moderate to severe pain and come in common brands like Ultracet and Vicoprofen. However, caution is necessary due to side effects and potential risks associated with opioids and NSAIDs.

Opioid / NSAID Combinations

Opioid/NSAID combinations are a class of medications that contain both an opioid and a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID). This combination provides dual action pain relief by targeting different mechanisms of pain transmission and inflammation. Opioids work by binding to opioid receptors in the brain and spinal cord, while NSAIDs reduce pain and inflammation by blocking the production of certain chemicals in the body.


Opioid/NSAID combinations are commonly used to manage moderate to severe pain, such as that caused by post-surgical procedures, injuries, or chronic conditions like arthritis. These medications can provide effective relief when other pain medications alone may not be sufficient. The combination of opioids and NSAIDs allows for a lower dose of each individual drug, potentially minimizing side effects while maintaining analgesic efficacy.

Common Brands

There are several common brands of opioid/NSAID combinations available on the market. Some examples include:

  • Ultracet - a combination of tramadol (an opioid) and acetaminophen (an NSAID)

  • Vicoprofen - a combination of hydrocodone (an opioid) and ibuprofen (an NSAID)

  • Talwin NX - a combination of pentazocine (a mixed opioid agonist-antagonist) and naloxone (which helps prevent misuse of the medication)

These are just a few examples, and there are other opioid/NSAID combinations available with different opioid and NSAID components.


While opioid/NSAID combinations can effectively relieve pain, it is important to use them with caution due to the potential risks associated with opioids and NSAIDs. These medications should only be used as directed by a healthcare professional, and it is essential to follow the prescribed dosage and duration of use.

Both opioids and NSAIDs can have side effects, such as drowsiness, constipation, nausea, and dizziness. Opioids, in particular, carry a risk of tolerance, dependence, and addiction if not used properly. NSAIDs may cause stomach irritation, ulcers, and increased risk of bleeding, especially when used for long periods or at higher doses.

It is crucial to discuss any existing medical conditions, allergies, or medications with a healthcare provider before using opioid/NSAID combinations to ensure safe and appropriate use. Individuals with a history of substance abuse, liver or kidney disease, gastrointestinal disorders, or respiratory conditions should be cautious when using these medications.

In summary, opioid/NSAID combinations are a class of medications used to manage moderate to severe pain. However, due to the potential risks associated with opioids and NSAIDs, they should be used cautiously and under the supervision of a healthcare professional.

List of Opioid / NSAID Combinations