Preferred Sample Type


Suitable Specimen Types

  • Serum
  • EDTA Plasma
  • Li Hep Plasma
A minimum of 500 µl of plasma/serum is required.

Specimen Transport

First class post

Sample Processing in Laboratory

Place sample in toxicology rack.

Sample Preparation

None required

Turnaround Time

3 days.

Sample Stability

Keep refrigerated. 4 degrees.


General Information

Oxycodone is a semisynthetic narcotic analgesic used since 1939 for relief of moderate to severe pain. Given subcutaneously, the drug is approximately equipotent with morphine, but it has a higher oral/parenteral efficacy ratio. The usual adult dose is 2.5 - 5 mg every 4 - 6 hours for the normal release forms and 10 - 80 mg every 12 hours for the extended release forms.

The adverse effects of oxycodone therapy include nausea, somnolence, dizziness, asthenia, diaphoresis, constipation and urinary retention. Oxycodone in overdosage is capable of producing stupor, coma, muscle flaccidity, severe respiratory depression, depression, hypotension and cardiac arrest. Naloxone is a specific antidote.

Patient Preparation

No patient preperation required.


Oxycodone measured by HPLC-DAD.

Reference Range

Toxicity associated with oxycodone levels > 0.2 mg/L. (Schulz et al. Critical Care 2012, 16:R136).

Please contact the laboratory if oxycodone measurement is required for therapeutic monitoring purposes.


  • EQA Scheme?: Yes

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HTA licence number is 12366

Protection of Personal Information – Laboratory Medicine comply with the Trust Data Protection Policy and have procedures in place to allow the Directorate and it’s employees to comply with the Data Protection Act 1998 and associated best practice and guidance.

The Trust Laboratories at Heartlands Hospital, Good Hope Hospital and Solihull Hospital were awarded UKAS (United Kingdom Accreditation Service) accreditation to the internationally recognised ISO 15189 standard in May 2015. For a list of accredited tests and other information please visit the test database
Tests not appearing on this scope are either under consideration or in the process of accreditation and so currently remain outside of our scope of accreditation. However, these tests have been validated to the same high standard as accredited tests and are performed by the same trained and competent staff.

For further information contact Louise Fallon, Quality Manager, 0121 424 1235

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