NHS Greater Glasgow & Clyde Area Drug and Therapeutics Committee
Greater Glasgow and Clyde Medicines
Medicines Update

Oxycodone Brand Prescribing

Increasing numbers of patient safety incidents involving oral oxycodone medicines have been reported to the Board CD Accountable Officer Teams across Scotland. One of the common errors is administration or prescribing of modified release instead of immediate release or vice versa. There are significant risks of overdose when an immediate release product of short duration is used in error for the modified release, longer duration products.


The NHSGGC Adult formulary now notes that “Oxycodone should be prescribed by brand name”. This was previously the case for modified release oxycodone but now encompasses all oxycodone tablet and capsule preparations.


  • Shortec capsules are the brand of choice for immediate release oxycodone. Shortec is identical to the Oxynorm brand, so no loss of pain control is expected.
  • Longtec tablets are the brand of choice for modified release oxycodone.


Separate pages in Controlled Drug registers will be required for different brands.