Oxycodone is a narcotic pain reliever. OxyContin is the brand name of a time-release version of oxycodone. So, you're correct in that the active ingredient of both products are the same. However, plain oxycodone is not a time-release product.
The purpose of prescribing the time-release version of a narcotic pain reliever is to allow for longer-lasting pain relief. OxyContin (for which there currently is no generic equivalent in the U.S.) delivers oxycodone slowly over a period of time. This is why the dosing instructions are very different between OxyContin and regular oxycodone. If you've been prescribed OxyContin, you should follow the instructions on the label very carefully. OxyContin is not taken as frequently as plain oxycodone.
And, obviously, do not take both regular oxycodone AND OxyContin at the same time, as this could lead to an overdose.
If you have any questions about any of your prescription medications, you can always call your pharmacist. He or she can clarify what a medication is for and how to take it.
Best to you!
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