Nucynta is a branded drug. The generic name is Tapentadol. It is an analgesic drug. Simply stated, it is the medicine that has opioid in it. Tapentadol ER as the name suggests is an extended-release tablet for oral administration. It is basically used for pain relief therapy.
This opioid (narcotic) helps in managing the pain especially one caused by an injury or even after surgery. It is also used to control the pain caused by diabetic neuropathy. This drug Nucynta directly affects the brain in the sense that it changes the way the brain and the body responds or feels the pain. Therefore, it is used to treat severe or chronic pain which cannot be controlled by other medicines. However, this medicine cannot be used as-needed basis or if the pain is mild, and which might go away after a few days. If the pain intensity is more than Nucynta 100 mg may be prescribed.
This medicine’s strengths lie between weak to moderate opioid. That is why it was approved by the US FDA and other countries such as UK, Australia, etc. Even though it comes in the category of an opioid, it still is less potent than morphine. The effect begins in about a few minutes after taking it orally and it lasts for about 4-6 hours. Usually, it is given at a frequency of two doses daily that is every 12 hours. The treatment normally starts with 50 mg tablet taken orally two times a day.
The dosage of the drug should be as per what is prescribed by the Doctor and also dependent upon the medical condition of the patient. The suggestion given is that since this medicine Nucynta is prescribed for pain, the maximum benefit will be obtained when it is taken immediately or as soon as the pain starts. If the patient waits until the pain has increased, then the doctor might prescribe a higher dose or advice the medicine to be taken for a longer time.
As with all medicines, Nucynta too has some side effects. Some side effects of Nucynta medication are mental/ mood changes, runny nose, nausea, diarrhea, etc. Another point to be mentioned is that if this medication is taken for a long time it gradually reduces its effectiveness. So in such cases, it is better to inform the Doctor. In addition, this drug has a risk of becoming a habit. So misuse of the same can cause addiction or even overdose. Later on, once the pain subsides and the doctor feels to discontinue the medicine, then it will be a slow and gradual decrease in the dose so that the withdrawal symptoms can be reduced.
One important thing that needs to be mentioned on this page is that the Tapentadol ER rate was lower than the other schedule tablets which fall in the category of Schedule II opioid. This could be because of Tapentadol’s mechanism. It is hypothesized to give maximum pain relief and at the same time reduce its potential for abuse.