OxyContin warnings. There are serious health risks associated with using OxyContin, including severe or life-threatening breathing problems, particularly in the first 72 hours of treatment and any time the dose is increased. Tell your doctor if you have or have ever had slowed breathing or asthma; lung disease such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD); a head injury or any condition that increases the pressure in your brain; or kyphoscoliosis (curving of the spine that may cause breathing problems). Taking other medications with OxyContin may increase your risk of breathing problems.