OxyContin is a medication used to help relieve severe ongoing pain (such as due to cancer). It is taken by mouth, and is available as a single-ingredient medication in immediate release and controlled release formulations. Oxycodone is an opioid analgesic medication synthesized from thebaine. It was developed in 1916 in Germany, as one of several new semi-synthetic opioids with several benefits over the older traditional opiates and opioids; morphine, diacetylmorphine(heroin) and codeine. It was introduced to the pharmaceutical market as Eukodal or Eucodal and Dinarkon. Its chemical name is derived from codeine - the chemical structures are very similar, differing only in that the hydroxyl group of codeine has been oxidized to a carbonyl group (as in ketones), hence the -one suffix, the 7,8-dihydro-feature (codeine has a double-bond between those two carbons), and the hydroxyl group at carbon-14 (codeine has just a hydrogen in its place), hence oxycodone. Oxycodone is commercially made from thebaine, an opiate alkaloid and minor component of opium.