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What is Fioricet?

Fioricet contains a combination of acetaminophen, butalbital, and caffeine. Acetaminophen is a pain reliever and fever reducer. Butalbital is in a group of drugs called barbiturates. It relaxes muscle contractions involved in a tension headache. Caffeine is a central nervous system stimulant. It relaxes muscle contractions in blood vessels to improve blood flow.

Fioricet is used to treat tension headaches that are caused by muscle contractions.

Fioricet may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.

Important information

You should not use Fioricet if you have porphyria, or if you have recently used alcohol, sedatives, tranquilizers, or other narcotic medications.

Do not use Fioricet if you have taken an MAO inhibitor in the past 14 days. A dangerous drug interaction could occur. MAO inhibitors include isocarboxazid, linezolid, phenelzine, rasagiline, selegiline, and tranylcypromine.

Do not take more Fioricet than is recommended. An overdose of acetaminophen can damage your liver or cause death. Call your doctor at once if you have nausea, pain in your upper stomach, itching, loss of appetite, dark urine, clay-colored stools, or jaundice (yellowing of your skin or eyes).

In rare cases, acetaminophen may cause a severe skin reaction. Stop taking this medicine and call your doctor right away if you have skin redness or a rash that spreads and causes blistering and peeling.

Before taking this medicine

Do not use Fioricet if you have taken an MAO inhibitor in the past 14 days. A dangerous drug interaction could occur. MAO inhibitors include isocarboxazid, linezolid, phenelzine, rasagiline, selegiline, and tranylcypromine.

You should not use Fioricet if you are allergic to acetaminophen, butalbital, or caffeine, if you have porphyria, or if you have recently used alcohol, sedatives, tranquilizers, or other narcotic medications.

To make sure Fioricet is safe for you, tell your doctor if you have:

  • liver disease, cirrhosis, a history of alcoholism or drug addiction, or if you drink more than 3 alcoholic beverages per day;
  • kidney disease;
  • asthma, sleep apnea, or other breathing disorder;
  • stomach ulcer or bleeding;
  • a history of skin rash caused by any medication;
  • a history of mental illness or suicidal thoughts; or
  • if you use medicine to prevent blood clots.

Butalbital may be habit forming. Never share this medicine with another person, especially someone with a history of drug abuse or addiction. Keep the medication in a place where others cannot get to it.

FDA pregnancy category C. It is not known whether Fioricet will harm an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant while using this medication.

How should I take Fioricet?

Take Fioricet exactly as prescribed. Follow all directions on your prescription label. Do not take more of this medication than recommended. An overdose can damage your liver or cause death. Tell your doctor if the medicine seems to stop working as well in relieving your pain.

Take the medicine with food or milk if it upsets your stomach.

Store Fioricet at room temperature away from moisture and heat.

Keep track of the amount of medicine used from each new bottle. Butalbital is a drug of abuse and you should be aware if anyone is using your medicine improperly or without a prescription.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Since this medicine is used when needed, you may not be on a dosing schedule. If you are on a schedule, use the missed dose as soon as you remember. Skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next scheduled dose. Do not use extra medicine to make up the missed dose.

What happens if I overdose?

Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222. An overdose of Fioricet can be fatal.

The first signs of an acetaminophen overdose include loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, stomach pain, sweating, and confusion or weakness. Later symptoms may include pain in your upper stomach, dark urine, and yellowing of your skin or the whites of your eyes.

Overdose symptoms may also include insomnia, restlessness, tremor, diarrhea, increased shallow breathing, uneven heartbeats, seizure (convulsions), or fainting.

What should I avoid?

Fioricet can cause side effects that may impair your thinking or reactions. Be careful if you drive or do anything that requires you to be awake and alert.

Avoid drinking alcohol. It may increase your risk of liver damage while taking acetaminophen.

Ask a doctor or pharmacist before using any other cold, allergy, pain, or sleep medication. Acetaminophen (sometimes abbreviated as APAP) is contained in many combination medicines. Taking certain products together can cause you to get too much acetaminophen which can lead to a fatal overdose. Check the label to see if a medicine contains acetaminophen or APAP.

While you are taking Fioricet, avoid taking diet pills, caffeine pills, or other stimulants (such as ADHD medications) without your doctor’s advice.

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Fioricet contains a combination of acetaminophen, butalbital, and caffeine. Acetaminophen is a pain reliever and fever reducer.

Butalbital is in a group of drugs called barbiturates. It relaxes muscle contractions involved in a tension headache. Caffeine is a central nervous system stimulant. It relaxes muscle contractions in blood vessels to improve blood flow.

Fioricet is used to treat tension headaches that are caused by muscle contractions.

Fioricet® (Butalbital, Acetaminophen, and Caffeine Tablets USP) is supplied in tablet form for oral administration.

Each tablet contains the following active ingredients:
butalbital USP . . . . . . . . . . . .50 mg
acetaminophen USP . . . . . . 325 mg
caffeine USP . . . . . . . . . . . . .40 mg

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We do not suggest you to take Fioricet or Gabapentin for a long time, you need go to your local health professional to treat your pain without prescription. We think exercising is the best way to relieve your pain. Exercising is a very good methods. Exercising can enhance your immune system and increase your muscle strength and make your nerve strong.

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Can You Overdose On Fioricet?

A Fioricet overdose is not only possible but also very dangerous: perhaps even fatal.

Barbiturates are common drugs of misuse. People who have experienced a “Fioricet high” describe it as feeling “goofy” or “loopy.” Misuse of barbiturates, including Fioricet, is incredibly dangerous. Barbiturates are considered sedative-hypnotics that rapidly induce tolerance, meaning that higher doses of the drug are required to achieve the same effect. Tolerance is quickly followed by dependency and addiction. When Fioricet is co-used with other drugs or alcohol, the sedative-hypnotic effect increases and can quickly lead to respiratory depression, coma and even death.

The most dangerous component of Fioricet is the barbiturate butalbital. Fioricet pills contain 50 mg butalbital, and 1 g (20 pills) is considered a toxic dose for adults. In addition, each pill contains 325 mg acetaminophen and 40 mg caffeine. Toxic doses for these drugs are 30 tablets (10 g) and 25 tablets (1 g), respectively. The half-life of Fioricet is 35 hours, so multiple doses over the course of a few days can lead to a toxic buildup of these compounds.

Most Fioricet overdoses are associated with co-use of other drugs or alcohol, but it can be easy to overdose on Fioricet alone. Tension headaches are often treated with a prescription of six tablets per day, which is over 25% of the toxic dose. People who are struggling with severe tension headache pain may be predisposed to overdose in an attempt to ease their pain. People who take Fioricet for headaches may experience medication overuse headaches, or “rebound headaches.” Rebound headaches are as painful as a tension headache but do not respond to additional medication.

Fioricet should be used rarely, as directed and with extreme caution. Never use Fioricet if you have not been prescribed the medication, and do not share your prescription.

A Fioricet overdose can be complicated to treat because all three medicines it contains are dangerous when used in excess.

Fioricet Overdose Amount

Age, gender, overall health, genetics, and many other factors influence what amount of medication is dangerous. Therefore, a fatal dose for one person could be dangerous, but not deadly, for another. Because of this, pharmaceutical companies create guidelines for the maximum dose of a medication that anyone can safely take.

For Fioricet, the maximum daily dose is six tablets, spaced four hours apart. While taking more than this is considered an overdose, some people may not experience negative or dangerous effects when they exceed the maximum dosage.

Fioricet Overdose Signs and Symptoms

Fioricet overdose symptoms include:

  • Dizziness
  • Drowsiness
  • Lethargy
  • Confusion
  • Hypothermia
  • Hypotension
  • Respiratory depression, which can lead to coma and death
  • Potentially lethal hypovolemic shock (loss of blood flow), in extreme cases

Because Fioricet also has acetaminophen and caffeine, it is possible to overdose on these drugs as well. Acetaminophen overdose can cause liver failure, which causes symptoms of nausea, vomiting, lethargy and excessive sweating. Caffeine overdose can lead to insomnia, tremor, delirium and heart palpitations.

What Happens if You Overdose on Fioricet?

If Fioricet was the only drug consumed and the user is awake and alert, vomiting should be induced. However, many Fioricet overdoses are associated with other drugs or alcohol. Polysubstance overdoses are very dangerous, and treatment is dependent on the combination of drugs used.

Fioricet overdose is a potentially deadly medical emergency that must be treated by medical professionals. If you suspect an overdose, call 911 immediately.

Fioricet Overdose Deaths

Barbiturates were commonly prescribed in the 1960s and 1970s. Now, benzodiazepines have mostly replaced barbiturate prescriptions because they are much safer. Because of the reduction in prescription frequency, barbiturate overdose deaths are relatively rare today.

Statistics specific to barbiturate deaths are not readily available. According to the American Association of Poison Control Centers, however, the sedative/hypnotic/antipsychotic drug class (which includes barbiturates) was the fourth leading cause of poisoning in 2017. This drug class was responsible for 5.7% of poisonings, with nearly 150,000 exposures being reported. Some barbiturate deaths are purposeful, including suicide and capital punishment by lethal injection.

Fioricet Overdose Treatment

Fioricet overdose is a medical emergency that must be addressed by medical professionals. Because Fioricet overdose is often associated with respiratory depression, the first thing EMTs or doctors will do is ensure that the patient is able to breathe. Oxygen may be administered, and extreme cases may call for assisted or controlled ventilation. Intravenous fluids will typically be administered to prevent hypovolemic shock. In some cases, activated charcoal will be given to prevent acetaminophen-induced hepatotoxicity (liver failure).

If other drugs (particularly opioids) were also used, emergency protocols must take them into account. Barbiturate overdose treatment must be done by medical professionals.

Fioricet Overdose Prevention

The best way to prevent Fioricet overdose is to not use the drug. If you are prescribed Fioricet by your doctor, take it as prescribed. It should be used rarely and with caution. As with all barbiturates, Fioricet should never be taken daily.

Common side effects of Fioricet include dizziness and mild lethargy. If you (or someone else) have taken Fioricet as prescribed and are concerned with how you feel, call 911.

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