OxyContin abuse started in rural Maine, Kentucky, Virginia, and West Virginia. OxyContin is a legal prescription pain killer used for the treatment of moderate to severe pain. Street names for OxyContin include Hillbill Heroin, Oxy, and Oxycotton.
The abusers of OxyContin typically participate in doctor shopping, faking an injury, and prescription fraud in order to keep their supply. There is a black market for OxyContin in which the drug is brought illegally into the country.
Oxycontin is available in tablet form. The abusers of OxyContin break down the tablets in order to cause a faster release of the drug.
The tablets are chewed, liquefied and injected, and crushed and smoked. Like many other painkillers, the body quickly builds up a tolerance to OxyContin. Causing the user to take more and more of the drug in order to achieve the desired effect, this leads to drug addiction and the risk of drug overdose. An overdose will cause severe respiratory depression that can lead to death.
Stopping OxyContin use will cause withdrawal symptoms within the individual. It is suggested that the use of OxyContin should be stepped down or an individual weaned off of the drug. Withdrawal symptoms include agitation, pain, diarrhea, vomiting, cold flashes, and leg muscle twitching.