Drug and Alcohol - Opioid Addiction

Darvocet: Understanding Its Potential for Abuse, Overdose, and Addiction

What was Darvocet?

Darvocet, an opioid painkiller, was canceled because it's dangerous to use. Learn more about this dangerous and addictive opioid in our blog.

Written by

brian-mooreBrian Moore

Content Writer

Reviewed by

jeremy-arztJeremy Arzt

Chief Clinical Officer

Drug and Alcohol

Opioid Addiction

June 1, 2024

Darvocet, once prescribed for pain relief, has significant potential for abuse, which can lead to overdose and addiction. Recognizing the risks associated with its opioid properties is crucial if you or someone you know has encountered this medication.

This article aims to provide you with essential knowledge about Darvocet’s dangers, helping you make informed decisions regarding its use. By staying informed, you can better manage risks and support those who may be dealing with Darvocet’s challenging effects. Together, let's tackle this topic to ensure you feel supported every step of the way.

What Is Darvocet?

Darvocet was a prescription medication that combined propoxyphene, an opioid pain reliever, and acetaminophen, a non-opioid pain reliever commonly found in over-the-counter products like Tylenol. It was primarily prescribed to manage mild to moderate pain. The propoxyphene component worked by changing the way the brain and nervous system respond to pain, while acetaminophen helped to reduce the formation of chemicals in the brain that cause pain and inflammation.

Why Was Darvocet Recalled?

Despite its effectiveness in pain management, Darvocet's safety was questioned due to the risks associated with propoxyphene, including serious cardiovascular side effects and the potential for dependency and abuse. These concerns led to the withdrawal of Darvocet from the market.

Today, it is important for patients and healthcare providers to consider alternative pain management options that carry fewer risks.

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Uses of Darvocet

On the uses of Darvocet. Here are some key points to keep in mind:

Pain Relief

Darvocet is commonly prescribed to help manage mild to moderate pain. Whether you're dealing with post-surgery discomfort or chronic pain issues, Darvocet can offer relief.

Cough Suppressant

If you have a cough that's keeping you up at night or interfering with your daily activities, Darvocet can help suppress it, allowing you to rest and recover.

Fever Reduction

When you're running a fever, you want fast relief. Darvocet can help bring down your body temperature, making you feel more comfortable while your body fights off whatever's making you sick.

Follow your healthcare provider's instructions when using Darvocet. Follow the prescribed dosage and report any unexpected symptoms to your doctor promptly.

Side Effects of Darvocet

Here are the side effects of Darvocet:


Darvocet can make you feel very sleepy, affecting your ability to concentrate or operate machinery.


You might experience a feeling of lightheadedness or vertigo, especially when getting up from a sitting or lying position.

Nausea and Vomiting

Some people may feel nauseous or even vomit after taking Darvocet. Taking it with food can help reduce this side effect.


Darvocet can cause constipation, so make sure you're drinking plenty of water and eating high-fiber foods.

Difficulty Breathing

In rare cases, Darvocet can slow down your breathing, especially if taken in high doses or combined with other medications.

Allergic Reactions

You may experience itching, rash, or swelling, particularly if you're allergic to any of the ingredients in Darvocet.

Dependency and Addiction

Long-term use of Darvocet can lead to physical dependence and addiction, so it's important to take it only as prescribed and for the shortest duration possible.

Liver Damage

Taking too much Darvocet can harm your liver, especially if you already have liver problems or drink alcohol regularly.

Always consult your healthcare provider if you experience any concerning side effects while taking Darvocet.

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Factors That Contribute to Darvocet Abuse and Overdose

Darvocet abuse and overdose can happen for several reasons. Here's a rundown of some of them:

Pain Management

When you're dealing with chronic pain, it's easy to rely too much on Darvocet to alleviate discomfort.


If you're not following the prescribed dosage or frequency, you're putting yourself at risk for abuse and potential overdose.

Tolerance Build-Up

Over time, your body can develop a tolerance to Darvocet, leading you to take higher doses to achieve the same effects.


Relying on Darvocet to feel "normal" can quickly spiral into addiction, where you feel like you can't function without it.

Mixing with Other Substances

Combining Darvocet with alcohol or other drugs can intensify its effects, increasing the likelihood of overdose.

Lack of Awareness

Sometimes, people aren't fully aware of the potential dangers of Darvocet, leading to careless use and accidental overdose.

If you are struggling with Darvocet use, it is crucial to seek professional help. Prioritizing your health and well-being is essential, and you don't have to face this challenge alone.

Symptoms of Darvocet Addiction

Symptoms of Darvocet addiction are definitely something you should keep an eye on, so as to address the matter as early as possible. Below are some of the signs you may notice:

Increased Tolerance

You find that you need higher doses of Darvocet to achieve the same effects as before.

Withdrawal Symptoms

When you stop taking Darvocet, you experience unpleasant physical and psychological symptoms like nausea, sweating, anxiety, and agitation.

Preoccupation with Darvocet

You spend a lot of time thinking about getting more Darvocet, planning when to take it, and worrying about running out.

Neglecting Responsibilities

You prioritize obtaining and using Darvocet over your responsibilities at work, school, or home.

Continued Use Despite Consequences

Even when Darvocet use causes problems in your relationships, finances, or health, you keep using it.

Social Isolation

You withdraw from social activities or situations, where Darvocet use isn't possible or accepted.

Failed Attempts to Quit or Cut Down

You've tried to stop using Darvocet or reduce your intake but haven't been successful.

Seeking Darvocet Illegally

You obtain Darvocet through illegal means, such as buying it off the street or forging prescriptions.

These signs are crucial for treating Darvocet addiction and seeking appropriate help and support.

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Darvocet Interactions with Other Substances

Here's a quick rundown of interactions you should be aware of when taking Darvocet alongside other substances:


Mixing Darvocet with alcohol can enhance drowsiness and dizziness, increasing the risk of accidents or overdose. It's best to avoid alcohol altogether when using Darvocet.

Other CNS Depressants

Combining Darvocet with other central nervous system depressants like benzodiazepines or muscle relaxants can intensify sedation and respiratory depression, which can be dangerous. Always consult your doctor before mixing medications.


Monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs) can interact with Darvocet, leading to potentially life-threatening serotonin syndrome. Avoid taking Darvocet if you're on MAOIs or have taken them within the past two weeks.

Anticholinergic Drugs

Darvocet can have additive anticholinergic effects when taken with other drugs with similar properties, potentially causing constipation, urinary retention, and confusion.

CYP3A4 Inhibitors

Certain medications that inhibit the CYP3A4 enzyme can increase Darvocet levels in the bloodstream, leading to stronger effects and potential toxicity. Inform your doctor of all medications you're taking to avoid interactions.

Always communicate openly with your healthcare provider about any substances you're using alongside Darvocet to ensure your safety and well-being.

Understanding Darvocet's potential for abuse, overdose, and addiction is crucial for your safety and well-being. Remember, while it might seem like a solution, its misuse can lead you down a dangerous path, affecting not just your health but also your life and the ones you cherish.

If you or your loved ones are navigating these challenging waters, it's okay to seek help. The Edge Treatment Center is here, offering personalized care plans tailored to your unique journey with Darvocet aiming towards recovery. You don't have to face this alone; reach out to us today for the support you deserve.

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