Codeine is an opioid pain medication. An opioid is sometimes called a narcotic. Acetaminophen is a less potent pain reliever that increases the effects of codeine.

Butalbital is in a group of drugs called barbiturates. It relaxes muscle contractions involved in a tension headache.

Caffeine is a central nervous system stimulant. It relaxes muscle contractions in blood vessels to improve blood flow.

Acetaminophen, butalbital, caffeine, and codeine is a combination medicine used to treat tension headaches.

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  • Fioricet with Codeine, Phrenilin with Caffeine and Codeine
  • Less common
    Confusion (mild)
    mental depression
    unusual excitement (mild)
    Rare
    Bleeding or crusting sores on the lips
    chest pain
    convulsions
    fever with or without chills
    hallucinations (seeing, hearing, or feeling things that are not there)
    hive-like swellings on the eyelids, face, lips, or tongue
    hives
    itching
    muscle cramps or pain
    red, thickened, or scaly skin
    skin rash
    sores, ulcers, or white spots in the mouth
    sore throat
    swollen or painful glands
    tightness in the chest
    troubled breathing
    If any of the following symptoms of overdose occur while taking acetaminophen / butalbital / caffeine / codeine, get emergency help immediately:

    Symptoms of overdose
    Anxiety (severe)
    cold and clammy skin
    confusion (severe)
    convulsions (seizures)
    dizziness, lightheadedness, drowsiness, or weakness (severe)
    excitement (severe)
    increased sleepiness in babies (more than usual)
    increased sweating
    irritability (severe)
    limpness (in babies)
    nausea or vomiting
    restlessness (severe)
    shortness of breath or unusually slow or troubled breathing
    slow, fast, or irregular heartbeat
    slurred speech
    stomach cramps or pain
    swelling, pain, or tenderness in the upper abdomen or stomach area
    trembling or shaking of the hands or feet
    trouble sleeping (severe)
    Severity: Minor
    Some of the side effects that can occur with acetaminophen / butalbital / caffeine / codeine may not need medical attention. As your body adjusts to the medicine during treatment these side effects may go away. Your health care professional may also be able to tell you about ways to reduce or prevent some of these side effects. If any of the following side effects continue, are bothersome or if you have any questions about them, check with your health care professional:

    More common
    Bloated or "gassy" feeling
    dizziness or lightheadedness (mild)
    drowsiness (mild)
    nausea
    stomach pain (mild)
    vomiting
  • (oral capsule)