Dealing with Side Effects of Percocet

Medically Reviewed by Jennifer Casarella, MD on August 02, 2020

Percocet is a mix of acetaminophen (a pain and fever medicine) and oxycodone (a pain medicine). It’s part of a family of drugs called opioids. Doctors prescribe them to treat moderate to severe pain.

Other brand names include:

Possible Side Effects

If you take Percocet, you may:

How to Manage

Constipation, or trouble pooping, is common. Follow these tips to ease discomfort:

  • Drink eight to 10 glasses of water a day.
  • Exercise if possible.
  • Try to go to the bathroom at the same time each day.
  • Eat lots of fruits and vegetables.
  • Drink 4 ounces of prune juice or eat three to four dried prunes/plums to help trigger bowel movements.

Stay away from high-fiber foods and fiber supplements. They can make constipation caused by pain medication worse. Laxatives may be OK. Ask your doctor to be sure.

Avoid driving and other potentially dangerous tasks if Percocet makes you sleepy. You should also avoid alcohol and other sedatives, unless your doctor says they’re OK to take.

Taking it with or without food may help with nausea or vomiting. Try both to see what works for you. Your doctor might also prescribe drugs to ease nausea.

How to Stop

Tell your doctor if you want to quit taking Percocet. Stopping suddenly could cause withdrawal symptoms. These include:

The doctor will slowly wean you off. They may be able to prescribe another drug with fewer side effects.

When to Call 911

Call 911 or go to the emergency room right away if you have signs of a possible overdose. They include:

  • Bluish lips or skin
  • Loss of consciousness
  • Cold, clammy skin
  • Feeling really sleepy
  • General feeling of discomfort or illness
  • Low blood pressure or pulse
  • Slow breathing
WebMD Medical Reference



Mayo Clinic: “Oxycodone And Acetaminophen (Oral Route),” “Tapering off opioids: When and how.”

OncoLink: “Oxycodone/Acetaminophen (Percocet).”                                                 

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