Vicodin is the brand name for a common pain reliever that contains hydrocodone and acetaminophen, which is typically prescribed to patients by doctors to help with pain after surgery.
Vicodin is also an opioid pain medication and can be addictive. Some patients will form a tolerance to Vicodin, meaning that they must take a larger dose for it to be effective. Being physically dependent on Vicodin means that withdrawal symptoms will occur once an individual stops taking the drug.
It is common for people to have allergic reactions and/or liver damage when taking large doses of acetaminophen, and those who consistently take more than 325 mg of acetaminophen often end up in the emergency room due to overdose. In 2011, the FDA changed the guidelines on products containing acetaminophen, particularly the amount that can be used in painkillers like Vicodin (hydrocodone) and Percocet (oxycodone) to contain only 325 mg. Individuals taking these painkillers should be aware of acetaminophen in other cold and flu medications to prevent possible overdose.