OPANA ER (Page 2 of 11)


The absolute oral bioavailability of oxymorphone is approximately 10%.

Steady-state levels are achieved after three days of multiple dose administration. Under both single-dose and steady-state conditions, dose proportionality has been established for the 5 mg, 10 mg, 20 mg, and 40 mg tablet strengths for both peak plasma levels (Cmax ) and extent of absorption (AUC) (Table 1).

Table 1: Mean (±SD) OPANA ER Pharmacokinetic Parameters

NA = not applicablea Results after 5 days of every 12 hours dosing.

Regimen Dosage Cmax (ng/mL) AUC(ng·hr/mL) T ½ (hr)
Single Dose

5 mg10 mg20 mg40 mg




Multiple Dosea

5 mg10 mg20 mg40 mg




Food Effect

Two studies examined the effect of food on the bioavailability of single doses of 20 and 40 mg of OPANA ER in healthy volunteers. In both studies, after the administration of OPANA ER, the Cmax was increased by approximately 50% in fed subjects compared to fasted subjects. A similar increase in Cmax was also observed with oxymorphone solution.

The AUC was unchanged in one study and increased by approximately 18% in the other study in fed subjects following the administration of OPANA ER. Examination of the AUC suggests that most of the difference between fed and fasting conditions occurs in the first four hours after dose administration. After oral dosing with a single dose of 40 mg, a peak oxymorphone plasma level of 2.8 ng/ml is achieved at 1 hour in fasted subjects and a peak of 4.25 ng/ml is achieved at 2 hours in fed subjects and that beyond the 12 hour time point, there is very little difference in the curves. As a result, OPANA ER should be dosed at least one hour prior to or two hours after eating (see DOSAGE AND ADMINISTRATION).

Ethanol Effect

In Vivo OPANA ER Formulation-Alcohol Interaction

Although in vitro studies have demonstrated that OPANA ER does not release oxymorphone more rapidly in 500 mL of 0.1N HCl solutions containing ethanol (4%, 20%, and 40%), there is an in vivo interaction with alcohol. An in vivo study examined the effect of alcohol (40%, 20%, 4% and 0%) on the bioavailability of a single dose of 40 mg of OPANA ER in healthy, fasted volunteers. The results showed that the oxymorphone mean AUC was 13% higher (not statistically significant) after co-administration of 240 mL of 40% alcohol. The AUC was essentially unaffected in subjects following the co-administration of OPANA ER and ethanol (240 mL of 20% or 4% ethanol).

There was a highly variable effect on Cmax with concomitant administration of alcohol and OPANA ER. The change in Cmax ranged from a decrease of 50% to an increase of 270% across all conditions studied. Following concomitant administration of 240 mL of 40% ethanol the Cmax increased on average by 70% and up to 270% in individual subjects. Following the concomitant administration of 240 mL of 20% ethanol, the Cmax increased on average by 31% and up to 260% in individual subjects. Following the concomitant administration of 240 mL of 4 % ethanol, the Cmax increased 7% on average and by as much as 110% for individual subjects. After oral dosing with a single dose of 40 mg in fasted subjects, the mean peak oxymorphone plasma level is 2.4 ng/mL and the median Tmax is 2 hours. Following co-administration of OPANA ER and alcohol (240 mL of 40% ethanol) in fasted subjects, the mean peak oxymorphone level is 3.9 ng/mL and the median Tmax is 1.5 hours (range 0.75 – 6 hours).

Co-administration of oxymorphone and ethanol must be avoided.

Oxymorphone may be expected to have additive effects when used in conjunction with alcohol, other opioids, or illicit drugs that cause central nervous system depression because respiratory depression, hypotension, and profound sedation, coma, or death may result.


Formal studies on the distribution of oxymorphone in various tissues have not been conducted. Oxymorphone is not extensively bound to human plasma proteins; binding is in the range of 10% to 12%.


Oxymorphone is highly metabolized principally in the liver and undergoes reduction or conjugation with glucuronic acid to form both active and inactive metabolites. The two major metabolites of oxymorphone are oxymorphone-3-glucuronide and 6-OH-oxymorphone. The mean plasma AUC for oxymorphone-3-glucuronide is approximately 90-fold higher than the parent compound. The pharmacologic activity of the glucuronide metabolite has not been evaluated. 6-OH-oxymorphone has been shown in animal studies to have analgesic bioactivity. The mean plasma 6-OH-oymorphone AUC is approximately 70% of the oxymorphone AUC following single oral doses, but is essentially equivalent to the parent compound at steady-state.


Because oxymorphone is extensively metabolized, <1% of the administered dose is excreted unchanged in the urine. On average, 33% to 38% of the administered dose is excreted in the urine as oxymorphone-3-glucuronide and 0.25% to 0.62% excreted as 6-OH-oxymorphone in subjects with normal hepatic and renal function. In animals given radiolabeled oxymorphone, approximately 90% of the administered radioactivity was recovered within 5 days of dosing. The majority of oxymorphone-derived radioactivity was found in the urine and feces.

Special Populations


The steady-state plasma concentrations of oxymorphone, 6-OH-oxymorphone, and oxymorphone-3-glucuronide are approximately 40% higher in elderly subjects (≥ 65 years of age) than in young subjects (18 to 40 years of age). On average, age greater than 65 years was associated with a 1.4-fold increase in oxymorphone AUC and a 1.5-fold increase in Cmax . This observation does not appear related to a difference in body weight, metabolism, or excretion of oxymorphone (see PRECAUTIONS: Geriatric Use).


The effect of gender was evaluated following single- and multiple-doses of OPANA ER in male and female adult volunteers. There was a consistent tendency for female subjects to have slightly higher AUCss and Cmax values than male subjects; however, gender differences were not observed when AUCss and Cmax were adjusted by body weight.

Hepatic Impairment

The liver plays an important role in the pre-systemic clearance of orally administered oxymorphone. Accordingly, the bioavailability of orally administered oxymorphone may be markedly increased in patients with moderate to severe liver disease. The disposition of oxymorphone was compared in 6 patients with mild, 5 patients with moderate, and one patient with severe hepatic impairment and 12 subjects with normal hepatic function. The bioavailability of oxymorphone was increased by 1.6-fold in patients with mild hepatic impairment and by 3.7-fold in patients with moderate hepatic impairment. In one patient with severe hepatic impairment, the bioavailability was increased by 12.2-fold. The half-life of oxymorphone was not significantly affected by hepatic impairment (see DOSAGE AND ADMINISTRATION: Patients with Hepatic Impairment).

All MedLibrary.org resources are included in as near-original form as possible, meaning that the information from the original provider has been rendered here with only typographical or stylistic modifications and not with any substantive alterations of content, meaning or intent.

This site is provided for educational and informational purposes only, in accordance with our Terms of Use, and is not intended as a substitute for the advice of a medical doctor, nurse, nurse practitioner or other qualified health professional.

Privacy Policy | Copyright © 2021. All Rights Reserved.