This is interesting since we have one panel at the FDA wanting more regulation on Vicodin, the brand name for the combination drug that has been on the prescription market for years. the drug belongs to a class of drugs called opiates or opioids because they are chemically similar to opium. Morphine, heroin, oxycodone, codeine and methadone are in the same family of drugs.
Some drug companies such as Purdue have created tamper resistant versions of the hydrocodone which is a combination drug adding aspirin or acetaminophen. The FDA is also discussing moving the drug from a class 3 to a class 2 for the combination drug; however Zohydro will be a class 2 drug which carries a restriction that it cannot be refilled. Presently the combination drugs can be refilled 5 times and can also be prescribed by nurses. Zogenix in San Diego is the drug company that has produced the single ingredient drug and it also carries the extended use classification. I might guess we could be hearing more from the DEA on this topic in the future as well with the addictive nature of hydrocodone as it is one of the most widely abused drugs in the US. BD
The Food and Drug Administration has approved a stronger, single-ingredient version hydrocodone, the widely-abused prescription painkiller.
The agency said Friday it approved the extended-release pill Zohydro ER for patients with pain that requires "daily, around-the-clock, long-term treatment" that cannot be treated with other drugs.
Hydrocodone is currently sold in combination pills like Vicodin to treat pain from injuries, surgery, arthritis and migraines. The new drug from Zogenix is the first pure hydrocodone drug approved in the U.S.