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Can I use OxyContin if I am taking a CYP3A4 inhibitor?

You may be able to use the prescription pain reliever OxyContin (oxycodone) if you're taking other medications that inhibit -- that is, shut down or slow down -- the activity of an enzyme called CYP3A4. However, be sure to tell your doctor about all medications you're using before you take OxyContin.

CYP3A4 is the name of an enzyme that your body needs to break down, or metabolize, OxyContin. Some drugs and other substances inhibit CYP3A4, preventing it from doing its job. That can allow your blood level of OxyContin to rise. A few examples of drugs that can act as CYP3A4 inhibitors include:
  • erythromycin, an antibiotic
  • ketoconazole, an antifungal medication 
  • ritonavir, a protease inhibitor (a type of anti-HIV drug)
Using these or other CYP3A4 inhibitors doesn't mean you can't take OxyContin. However, your doctor will monitor you closely and may need to adjust your dose of OxyContin.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.