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Difference between Codeine and Hydrocodone

Difference between Codeine and Hydrocodone

Both codeine and hydrocodone are opioid analgesics, meaning they are used to relieve pain. However, there are some key differences between the two drugs. Codeine is a less powerful opioid than hydrocodone, and it is also less likely to cause respiratory depression, which is why it is sometimes prescribed for people who are older or who have a chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Hydrocodone, on the other hand, is a more potent opioid, and it can cause respiratory depression in high doses. In general, codeine is considered a weaker alternative to hydrocodone.

What is Codeine?

Codeine is a prescription medication used to treat moderate to severe pain. Codeine is classified as an opioid pain reliever and works by changing the way the brain responds to pain. Codeine is available as a tablet, capsule, liquid, or injection and is usually taken every four to six hours as needed for pain relief. Codeine may also be used in combination with other medications to treat certain types of coughs.

Codeine should not be used for more than five days for the treatment of pain or three days for the treatment of cough. Codeine may cause side effects including nausea, vomiting, constipation, drowsiness, and dizziness. Codeine should not be used in children younger than 18 years of age. Codeine can be habit forming and should be used only by the person it was prescribed for. Codeine can interact with other medications, herbs, or vitamins you may be taking and should not be used without first talking to your healthcare provider.

What is Hydrocodone?

Hydrocodone is a synthetic opioid pain medication. It is classified as a Schedule II drug, meaning that it has a high potential for abuse and addiction. Hydrocodone is most commonly used to treat moderate to severe pain. It is usually only prescribed for short-term use due to the risk of addiction and other side effects. Hydrocodone works by binding to opioid receptors in the brain, which reduces the perception of pain. Common side effects of hydrocodone include drowsiness, constipation, and nausea. Hydrocodone can also interact with other medications, so it is important to tell your doctor about all of the medications you are taking before starting hydrocodone. If you have a history of substance abuse or addiction, you should not take hydrocodone.

Difference between Codeine and Hydrocodone

Codeine and Hydrocodone are two of the most commonly prescribed opioids. Codeine is typically used to treat mild pain, while Hydrocodone is reserved for more severe pain. Codeine is also used as a cough suppressant. Both Codeine and Hydrocodone are derived from the poppy plant, but they have different effects on the body. Codeine is a less potent opioid than Hydrocodone, and it also has a lower risk of addiction. However, Codeine can cause drowsiness and constipation, while Hydrocodone can cause dizziness and nausea. Ultimately, the decision of which drug to prescribe is up to the doctor based on the individual patient’s needs.


Codeine and hydrocodone are both opioids that are used to treat pain. However, they have different chemical structures and work in the body differently. Hydrocodone is a Schedule II drug, which means it has a high potential for abuse. Codeine is a Schedule III drug, which means it has less of a risk for abuse. Both drugs can be addictive if not taken as prescribed, so it’s important to talk to your doctor before taking either medication.

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