Compare Dilaudid vs. Norco

Head-to-head comparisons of medication uses, side effects, ratings, and more.

Treats moderate to severe pain.

Dilaudid (Hydromorphone) is a fast-acting, potent medication that treats problems needing strong pain relief.

4.1/ 5 average rating with 51 reviewsforDilaudid
Treats moderate to moderately severe pain.

Norco (hydrocodone / acetaminophen) is a good option to treat pain when over-the-counter medicines haven't worked, but it can lead to dependence and tolerance if taken for a long time.

3.7/ 5 average rating with 1194 reviewsforNorco
Upsides
  • Works well to relieve moderate to severe pain.
  • Dilaudid (Hydromorphone) is stronger than morphine and works quicker than other pain medications.
  • It doesn't cause as many side effects, like nausea and rashes, as morphine does.
  • It's available as fast-acting tablets, extended-release tablets, and as a liquid.
  • Norco (hydrocodone / acetaminophen) has two medicines to treat moderate to moderately severe pain. The combination is more effective than either drug alone.
  • Norco (hydrocodone / acetaminophen) is more potent than many over-the-counter options.
  • You can take this with or without food.
  • This medicine also comes as a liquid if you have trouble swallowing.
  • Norco (hydrocodone / acetaminophen) is available as a generic.
Downsides
  • People with breathing problems like asthma and COPD need to be monitored very closely if taking Dilaudid (Hydromorphone).
  • Dilaudid (Hydromorphone) isn't usually used for elderly or frail patients.
  • Dizziness and drowsiness are common when taking Dilaudid (Hydromorphone), but your body may adjust over time.
  • Everyone tends to get constipation while on this, so you'll need to stay hydrated and may need to take a stool softener medication.
  • Long-term use will likely cause physical dependence.
  • Must be weaned slowly off the medicine after using it longer than 2 weeks.
  • Constipation, dizziness, drowsiness, and nausea can commonly occur.
  • Since Norco (hydrocodone / acetaminophen) is a controlled medication, it cannot be refilled or transferred to another pharmacy.
  • Long-term use can cause dependence and tolerance.
  • Too much Norco (hydrocodone / acetaminophen) can damage the liver.
  • Not effective in treating all kinds of pain.
Used for
Dosage forms
  • Pill
  • Extended release
  • Oral solution
  • Suppository
  • Pill
  • Liquid
Price
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Reviews
51 reviews so far
78%
saidit'sworth it
65%
saiditworked well
10%
saidit'sa big hassle

Have you used Dilaudid (Hydromorphone)?

Leave a review
1194 reviews so far
67%
saidit'sworth it
44%
saiditworked well
13%
saidit'sa big hassle

Have you used Norco (hydrocodone / acetaminophen)?

Leave a review
Side effects
28possible side effects
  • Constipation
    31%
  • Nausea
    28%
  • Headache
    15%
  • Somnolence
    14%
  • Asthenia/fatigue
    12%
  • Dizziness
    11%
  • Diarrhea
    11%
  • Pruritus
    8%
  • Insomnia
    8%
  • Hyperhydrosis
    7%
  • Edema peripheral
    6%
  • Dry mouth
    6%
  • Anorexia/decreased appetite
    5%
  • Abdominal pain
    5%
  • Anxiety
    5%
  • Back pain
    4%
  • Dyspepsia
    4%
  • Depression
    3%
  • Dyspnea
    3%
  • Muscle spasms
    3%
  • Arthralgia
    3%
  • Rash
    3%
  • Pain in extremity
    3%
  • Pain
    2%
  • Drug withdrawal syndrome
    2%
  • Pyrexia
    2%
  • Fall
    2%
  • Chest pain
    2%
See more detailed side effects
The Norco (hydrocodone / acetaminophen) FDA package insert doesn’t have numbers about how common side effects are.
Risks and risk factors
  • Death from lack of oxygen to the body (respiratory depression)
    • Current use of medicine that affects liver enzyme CYP 3A4
    • Age 65 or greater
    • Higher dose
    • People with not enough thyroid hormones
    • History of lung problems
  • Death from overdose
    • Children age 18 and younger
  • Death in newborn babies from opioid withdrawal (Neonatal opioid withdrawal syndrome)
    • Long-term use during pregnancy
  • Tolerance, dependence, and addiction
    • Taking more than the prescribed dose
    • Long-term use
    • History of drug abuse
  • Driving impairment
    • Taking with alcohol
    • Taking other medicines that make you less alert
    • Age 65 or greater
  • Low blood pressure
    • Age 65 years or older
See more detailed risks and warnings
  • Liver failure
    • Current liver disease
    • Taking Norco (hydrocodone / acetaminophen) with alcohol
    • Taking other medicines containing acetaminophen
  • Slowed breathing
    • Age 65 or greater
    • High dosages
    • History of lung problems
    • Taking other painkillers or sedatives
  • Severe allergic reactions
    • Taking more than the prescribed dose
    • Long-term use
    • History of substance abuse
    • Younger age
  • Tolerance, dependence, and addiction
    • Taking more than the prescribed dose
    • Long-term use
    • History of drug abuse
    • Younger age
  • Constipation
    • Age 65 or greater
    • Long-term use of opioids
    • Taking drugs that cause constipation
  • Confusion and drowsiness
    • Drinking alcohol
    • Age 65 years or older
See more detailed risks and warnings