benzonatate, Tessalon Perles; Zonatuss

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GENERIC NAME: benzonatate

BRAND NAME: Tessalon Perles; Zonatuss

DRUG CLASS AND MECHANISM: Benzonatate is a medication taken orally to suppress coughs. It has an anesthetic (numbing) action similar to that of benzocaine and numbs the stretch sensors in the lungs. It is the stretching of these sensors with breathing that causes the cough. Benzonatate begins to work within 15 to 20 minutes, and its effects last for approximately 3 to 8 hours. Benzonatate is unrelated to narcotics such as codeine which are frequently used to suppress coughs. (Another frequently used cough suppressant, dextromethorphan, which is found in many over-the-counter cough and cold preparations, is a derivative of the narcotics.)



PREPARATIONS: Capsules: 100, 150, and 200 mg. Capsules should be stored at room temperature, between 15 C to 30 C (59 F to 86 F).

PRESCRIBED FOR: Benzonatate is used for relieving cough.

DOSING: The usual dose of benzonatate is 100 - 200 mg three times daily as needed for cough. A maximum dose of 600mg (3-6 capsules depending on the strength of the capsule) per day is recommended by the manufacturer. Capsules should be swallowed whole and they should not be broken or chewed.

DRUG INTERACTIONS: There are no known drug interactions with benzonatate.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 1/31/2014

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