Pills Embossed With M365, M366 or M367
- They are opioid-based analgesic pain relievers.
- All three contain hydrocodone bitartrate and acetaminophen.
- Acetaminophen is combined with hydrocodone because it significantly increases its analgesic effects.
- Mallinckrodt Pharmaceuticals manufacture each.
Other brand names for acetaminophen hydrocodone combination drugs include;
On the other side is a groove down the middle for splitting them in half. Each pill contains 325 mg of acetaminophen. The amount of hydrocodone varies;
- M365 contains 5 mg hydrocodone
- M366 contains 7.5 mg of hydrocodone
- M367 contains 10 mg hydrocodone
All are categorized as Schedule II controlled substances by the Federal Drug Enforcement Agency because of their high risk for abuse and addiction.
- The International Narcotics Control Board reported that in 2015, Americans represented about 99.7% of the world’s hydrocodone consumption.
- Between 2007 and 2016, the most widely prescribed opioid was hydrocodone (brand name Vicodin).
- In 2016, 6.2 billion hydrocodone pills nationwide. The second most prevalent opioid was oxycodone (Percocet).
- In 2016, 5 billion oxycodone tablets in the United States.
Hydrocodone targets the opioid receptors in the brain.
- The duration of the effects of the pill is approximately four to eight hours.
- It takes only about 15 to 20 minutes to reach its peak effect.
As tolerance builds, users will experience longer times to feel its effects and “come down” from hydrocodone high faster.
According to the US Department Of Justice:
- “Hydrocodone is the most frequently prescribed opiate in the United States with more than 136 million prescriptions for hydrocodone-containing products dispensed in 2013 and with nearly 65.5 million dispensed in the first six months of 2014.”
People with acute or chronic pain conditions get these medications. They are for back pain, rheumatoid arthritis, post-operative pain, discomfort after intensive dental procedures, severe migraines, and osteoarthritis.
The combination of hydrocodone and acetaminophen can cause the following side effects:
- Extreme drowsiness
- Abdominal cramps
In some cases, more severe side effects may occur, especially when too many pills are taking in 24 hours. These effects include:
- Difficulty breathing
- Allergic reactions (swelling of the tongue, lips, and face)
- Hives and itchy rash
- Feeling fearful, depressed, and or anxious
- Sudden mood swings
- Inability to urinate
- Muscle tremors
Acetaminophen is considered a non-addicting pain reliever.
Hydrocodone is a narcotic structure similar to codeine.
Both opiates convert to morphine in the liver.
When hydrocodone stimulates opioid receptors, it causes a “rush” of neurotransmitters such as dopamine and serotonin to flood the brain. These neurotransmitters activate the “feel good” areas of the brain that give us the euphoric, pleasant sensations indicative of an opioid drug. If someone abuses or takes this drug for an extended period, the brain grows accustomed to having an excess of dopamine and serotonin, activating its reward centers. When levels of these neurotransmitters decrease, the brain initiates severe cravings for more.
It is easy to overdose on them because it interferes with the perception of time. In most cases, overdoses happen when the user forgets how many they have taken in what amount of time.
- According to the CDC, from 1999 to 2016, more than 200,000 people died in the United States from overdoses related to prescription opioids.
- Overdose deaths involving prescription opioids were five times higher in 2016 than in 1999.
As tolerance builds to the drug, the pain returns faster than it should, making the user think it is time to take another pill. Signs of a possible overdose include:
- Inability to stay awake
- Excessive perspiration
- Slowed pulse rate or irregular heartbeat
- Shallow breathing
- Blood in the urine
- Chest pain
- Clammy skin
If an overdose is suspected, the victim needs immediate emergency treatment to provide supportive care.
Treating hydrocodone addiction requires medical detoxification, psychological counseling, and medications to help prevent cravings. People addicted to hydrocodone should never attempt to go “cold turkey” due to serious health issues arising from abrupt withdrawal.