List of Opioids Prescription Painkillers: Uses, Abuse

List of opioid prescription painkillers, their uses, and how people who take opioids pills go from legitimate use to abuse. Details on HealthyPlace.

Opioids prescription painkillers, while highly addictive with a dangerous potential for overdose, do have a legitimate purpose. Opioid drugs are used for pain management. Opioids prescription medication is widely and effectively used for a variety of medical situations: opioids for chronic pain are used to treat and manage conditions that cause long-term suffering, while opioids for pain from surgery, acute injury, or other temporary conditions are prescribed for short-term pain relief.

Opioid painkillers (also referred to as opiate painkillers or opioids narcotics) are widely prescribed (Opioids vs. Opiates: What’s the Difference?). Two hundred million prescriptions were written for opioids pills in 2009, and that number has been steadily rising since then (Foreman, 2014).

List of Opioid Painkillers

Many types of opioid painkillers are available for treating pain. Some are stronger than others, but all reduce pain and produce a euphoric high. This list contains the names of opioid painkillers. Generic names are listed first, followed by brand names in parentheses.

  • Buprenorphine (Buprenex, Butrans transdermal patch)
  • Butorphanol (Stadol)
  • Codeine [Available in generic form only]
  • Hydrocodone (Hysingla ER, Zohydro ER)
  • Hydrocodone and acetaminophen (Lorcet, Lortab, Norco, Vicodin, Allay, Anexsia, Dolacet, Dolagesic, Duocet, Hydrocet, Hydrocet, HY-PHEN, Panacet, Panlor, Stagesic, T-Gesic, Ugesic, Zydone)
  • Hydromorphone (Dilaudid, Exalgo, Hydrostat)
  • Levorphanol (Levo-Dromoran)
  • Meperidine (Demerol)
  • Methadone (Dolophine, Methadose)
  • Morphine (Astramorph, Avinza, Duramorph, Kadian, MS Contin, Ora-Morph SR, Rescudose, Roxanol)
  • Morphine and Naltrexone (Embeda)
  • Nalbuphine (Nubain)
  • Oxycodone (OxyContin, Roxicodone, Oxecta)
  • Oxycodone and acetaminophen (Percocet, Endocet, Roxicet, Roxilox, Tylox, Xartemis XR)
  • Oxycodone and Naltrexone (Troxyca ER)
  • Oxycodone and naloxone (Targiniq ER)
  • Oxymorphone (Numorphan)
  • Pentazocine (Talwin)
  • Propoxyphene (Cotanal-65, Darvon)
  • Tapentadol (Nucynta)
  • Tramadol (Ultram)
  • Tramadol and Acetaminophen (Ultracet)

Additionally, opioids can be blended with aspirin or ibuprofen in a single pill. Whether opioids are on their own, combined with another opioid, or combined with over-the-counter medicine, they provide much-needed pain relief to millions of people. Some people use these opioid prescription narcotics without a problem. Others progress from use to abuse.

Opioids Use and Abuse

Opioids use, which is taking medications as prescribed for the purpose of pain relief, isn’t a problem. Problems begin as use intensifies, is done more than directed, and turns into opioids abuse.

In opioids abuse, someone takes his own opioids prescription painkillers more often than prescribed or in higher doses than prescribed. When she can no longer get a prescription from a doctor, she turns to other sources. To obtain prescription opioids for the purpose of abuse, people turn to diverted sources, or any source other than a legitimate prescription. Diverted opioid sources include

  • Getting them for free from a friend or relative
  • Buying them from a friend or relative
  • Stealing them from a friend or relative
  • Obtaining multiple new prescriptions through “doctor shopping”
  • Buying them from a dealer or stranger
  • Purchasing them on the internet
  • Writing a fake prescription
  • Stealing from a doctor, pharmacy, or hospital

When taken correctly—for pain and under a doctor’s supervision—opioids prescription painkillers can be beneficial. There are many different types of opioids prescriptions in varying potencies to treat your unique pain. Because the potential for abuse, opioid dependence and addiction is high, being vigilant about what you’re taking and how it’s affecting you will help you reduce pain while maintaining a life free from opioid abuse and addiction.

article references

APA Reference
Peterson, T. (2021, December 16). List of Opioids Prescription Painkillers: Uses, Abuse, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2024, July 25 from

Last Updated: December 30, 2021

Medically reviewed by Harry Croft, MD

More Info