Generic Name: Dexchlorpheniramine Brand Name(s): Dexchlorpheniramine.

Uses

What is Dexchlorpheniramine used for?

Dexchlorpheniramine is an antihistamine. It blocks the effects of the naturally occurring chemical histamine in your body.

Dexchlorpheniramine is used to treat sneezing; runny nose; itching, watery eyes; hives; rashes; itching; and other symptoms of allergies and the common cold.

Dexchlorpheniramine may also be used for purposes other than those listed in this medication guide.

How should I take Dexchlorpheniramine?

Take dexchlorpheniramine exactly as directed by your doctor. If you do not understand these directions, ask your pharmacist, nurse, or doctor to explain them to you.

Take each dose with a full glass of water.

Dexchlorpheniramine can be taken with or without food.

Do not crush, chew, or break any timed-release forms of dexchlorpheniramine. Swallow them whole. They are specially formulated to release slowly into your body.

To ensure that you get a correct dose, measure the syrup form of dexchlorpheniramine with a special dose-measuring spoon or cup, not with a regular tablespoon. If you do not have a dose-measuring device, ask your pharmacist where you can get one.

Never take more of this medication than is prescribed for you. The regular-release tablets and the syrup are usually taken every 4 to 6 hours as needed (four to six times a day). The timed-release tablets and capsules are usually taken every 8 to 10 hours as needed (two or three times a day).

How do I store Dexchlorpheniramine?

Dexchlorpheniramine is best stored at room temperature away from direct light and moisture. To prevent drug damage, you should not store Dexchlorpheniramine in the bathroom or the freezer. There may be different brands of Dexchlorpheniramine that may have different storage needs. It is important to always check the product package for instructions on storage, or ask your pharmacist. For safety, you should keep all medicines away from children and pets.

You should not flush Dexchlorpheniramine down the toilet or pour them into a drain unless instructed to do so. It is important to properly discard this product when it is expired or no longer needed. Consult your pharmacist for more details about how to safely discard your product.

Precautions & warnings

What should I know before using Dexchlorpheniramine?

Before using this drug, tell your doctor if:

  • You are pregnant or breastfeeding. This is because, while you are expecting or feeding a baby, you should only take medicines on the recommendation of a doctor.
  • You are taking any other medicines. This includes any medicines you are taking which are available to buy without a prescription, such as herbal and complementary medicines.
  • You have allergy with any of active or inactive ingredients of Dexchlorpheniramine or other medications.
  • You have any other illnesses, disorders, or medical conditions.

Use caution when driving, operating machinery, or performing other hazardous activities. Dexchlorpheniramine may cause dizziness or drowsiness. If you experience dizziness or drowsiness, avoid these activities.

Use alcohol cautiously. Alcohol may increase drowsiness and dizziness while you are taking dexchlorpheniramine.

Do not crush, chew, or break any timed-release forms of dexchlorpheniramine. Swallow them whole. They are specially formulated to release slowly into your body.

Do not take dexchlorpheniramine if you have taken a monoamine oxidase inhibitor (MAOI) such as isocarboxazid (Marplan), phenelzine (Nardil), or tranylcypromine (Parnate) in the last 14 days. A very dangerous drug interaction could occur, leading to serious side effects.

Infants are especially sensitive to the effects of antihistamines, and serious side effects could occur in a nursing baby. Dexchlorpheniramine is not recommended if you are breast-feeding a baby. Do not take dexchlorpheniramine without first talking to your doctor if you are nursing a baby.

If you are over 60 years of age, you may be more likely to experience side effects from dexchlorpheniramine. You may require a lower dose of this medication.

Is it safe during pregnancy or breastfeeding?

There are no adequate studies in women for determining risk when using Dexchlorpheniramine during pregnancy or while breastfeeding. Please always consult with your doctor to weigh the potential benefits and risks before taking Dexchlorpheniramine. Dexchlorpheniramine is pregnancy risk category B, according to the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

FDA pregnancy risk category reference below:

  • A=No risk
  • B=No risk in some studies
  • C=There may be some risk
  • D=Positive evidence of risk
  • X=Contraindicated
  • N=Unknown

Side effects

What side effects can occur from Dexchlorpheniramine?

Stop taking dexchlorpheniramine and seek emergency medical attention if you experience an allergic reaction (difficulty breathing; closing of your throat; swelling of your lips, tongue, or face; or hives).

Other, less serious side effects may be more likely to occur. Continue to take dexchlorpheniramine and talk to your doctor if you experience

  • Sleepiness, fatigue, or dizziness
  • Headache
  • Dry mouth
  • Difficulty urinating or an enlarged prostate

Not everyone experiences these side effects. There may be some side effects not listed above. If you have any concerns about a side-effect, please consult your doctor or pharmacist.

Interactions

What drugs may interact with Dexchlorpheniramine?

Dexchlorpheniramine may interact with other drugs that you are currently taking, which can change how your drug works or increase your risk for serious side effects. To avoid any potential drug interactions, you should keep a list of all the drugs you are using (including prescription drugs, nonprescription drugs, and herbal products) and share it with your doctor and pharmacist. For your safety, do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any drugs without your doctor’s approval.

Products that may interact with this drug are:

  • Anxiety or sleep medicines such as alprazolam (Xanax), diazepam (Valium), chlordiazepoxide (Librium), temazepam (Restoril), or triazolam (Halcion)
  • Medications for depression such as amitriptyline (Elavil), doxepin (Sinequan), nortriptyline (Pamelor), fluoxetine (Prozac), sertraline (Zoloft), or paroxetine (Paxil)
  • Any other medications that make you feel drowsy, sleepy, or relaxed

Does food or alcohol interact with Dexchlorpheniramine?

Dexchlorpheniramine may interact with food or alcohol by altering the way the drug works or increase the risk for serious side effects. Please discuss with your doctor or pharmacist any potential food or alcohol interactions before using this drug.

What health conditions may interact with Dexchlorpheniramine?

Dexchlorpheniramine may interact with your health condition. This interaction may worsen your health condition or alter the way the drug works. It is important to always let your doctor and pharmacist know all the health conditions you currently have.

Health conditions that may interact with this drug are:

  • Glaucoma or increased pressure in the eye
  • A stomach ulcer
  • An enlarged prostate, bladder problems, or difficulty urinating
  • An overactive thyroid (hyperthyroidism)
  • Hypertension or any type of heart problems
  • Asthma

Dosage

The information provided is not a substitute for any medical advice. You should ALWAYS consult with your doctor or pharmacist before using Dexchlorpheniramine.

What is the dose of Dexchlorpheniramine for an adult?

Usual Adult Dose for Allergic Reaction:

Initial dose: 2 mg (1 teaspoonful) orally every 4 to 6 hours, or 4 to 6 mg of the timed-release preparation at bedtime or every 8 to 10 hours

Usual Adult Dose for Allergic Rhinitis:

Initial dose: 2 mg (1 teaspoonful) orally every 4 to 6 hours, or 4 to 6 mg of the timed-release preparation at bedtime or every 8 to 10 hours

What is the dose of Dexchlorpheniramine for a child?

Usual Pediatric Dose for Allergic Reaction:

2 years to 5 years: 0.5 mg (1/4 teaspoonful) every 4 to 6 hours for children 2 to 5 years old (do not use timed release)

6 years to 11 years: 1 mg (1/2 teaspoonful) every 4 to 6 hours, or 4 mg of the timed-release preparation at bedtime

Usual Pediatric Dose for Allergic Rhinitis:

2 years to 5 years: 0.5 mg (1/4 teaspoonful) every 4 to 6 hours for children 2 to 5 years old (do not use timed release)

6 years to 11 years: 1 mg (1/2 teaspoonful) every 4 to 6 hours, or 4 mg of the timed-release preparation at bedtime

How is Dexchlorpheniramine available?

Dexchlorpheniramine is available in the following dosage forms and strengths:

  • Liquid

What should I do in case of an emergency or overdose?

In case of an emergency or an overdose, call your local emergency services or go to your nearest emergency room.

What should I do if I miss a dose?

If you miss a dose of Dexchlorpheniramine, take it as soon as possible. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and take your regular dose as scheduled. Do not take a double dose.

Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

Sources

Review Date: November 17, 2017 | Last Modified: November 17, 2017

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