- Side Effects
- Drug Interactions
- Pregnancy & Breastfeeding
- What Else to Know
Generic Name: oxymetazoline intranasal
Drug Class: Decongestants, Intranasal
What is oxymetazoline intranasal, and what is it used for?
Oxymetazoline intranasal is a nasal spray medication used for the temporary relief of nasal congestion caused by common cold, hay fever, upper respiratory allergies, and sinus congestion and pressure.
Oxymetazoline intranasal is a solution available over the counter (OTC), and is sprayed as a fine mist into the nostrils. Oxymetazoline intranasal is also used off-label topically in the nostrils to reduce blood flow during nasal procedures.
Oxymetazoline intranasal relieves nasal and sinus congestion by constricting the blood vessels in the mucous membrane (mucosa) of the nasal passage. Oxymetazoline is an alpha agonist drug that works by stimulating the alpha-adrenergic receptors in the nasal mucosa. Alpha-adrenergic receptors are protein particles that make the smooth muscles around blood vessels contract when stimulated by norepinephrine. Oxymetazoline intranasal contracts the small blood vessels (arterioles), reducing blood flow in the nasal mucosa and relieving congestion.
- Do not use it if you are hypersensitive to any of the components in oxymetazoline intranasal solution.
- Prolonged and frequent use of oxymetazoline may cause rebound nasal congestion or worsen the condition.
- Oxymetazoline may cause temporary discomfort, including burning, sneezing, stinging, or increased nasal discharge.
- Use with caution in patients with the following conditions:
- Some formulations may contain benzyl alcohol which has been associated with fatal toxicity in newborn infants. Avoid using such formulations in young children.
- Some formulations contain polysorbate 80, avoid use if you are hypersensitive to it.
- Some formulations may contain propylene glycol, large amounts of which can be potentially toxic. Use with caution.
What are the side effects of oxymetazoline intranasal?
Common side effects of oxymetazoline intranasal include:
- Nasal dryness
- Nasal irritation
- Rebound nasal congestion
- Increased nasal discharge
Serious side effects of oxymetazoline intranasal include:
- Rapid heart rate (tachycardia)
- Slow heart rate (bradycardia)
Call your doctor immediately if you experience any of the following symptoms or serious side effects while using this drug:
- Serious heart symptoms include fast or pounding heartbeats, fluttering in your chest, shortness of breath, and sudden dizziness;
- Severe headache, confusion, slurred speech, severe weakness, vomiting, loss of coordination, feeling unsteady;
- Severe nervous system reaction with very stiff muscles, high fever, sweating, confusion, fast or uneven heartbeats, tremors, and feeling like you might pass out; or
- Serious eye symptoms include blurred vision, tunnel vision, eye pain or swelling, or seeing halos around lights.
This is not a complete list of all side effects or adverse reactions that may occur from the use of this drug. Call your doctor for medical advice about serious side effects or adverse reactions. You may also report side effects or health problems to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
What are the dosages of oxymetazoline intranasal?
- Indicated for temporary relief of nasal congestion
- 2-3 drops/sprays per nostril every 12 hours
- Not to exceed 2 doses/24 hours for 3-5 days
- 0.05% (Afrin No Drip Extra Moisturizing Stuffy Nose Pump Mist; Mucinex Sinus-Max Clear & Cool; Mucinex Childrens Stuffy Nose)
- 0.025% (Afrin Extra Moisturizing Stuffy Nose Pump Mist)
Indicated for temporary relief of nasal congestion
Children below 2 years
- Safety and efficacy not established
Children 2-5 years
- 0.025%: 2-3 sprays per nostril every 10-12 hours
- Not to exceed 2 doses/24 hours for up to 3 days
Children 6 years and above
- 0.05%: 2-3 drops/sprays per nostril every 10-12 hours
- Not to exceed 2 doses/24 hours for up to 3 days
- Intranasal overdose or excessive use of oxymetazoline can cause rebound nasal congestion, nasal irritation, and systemic effects, particularly in children, which may include respiratory depression, bradycardia, and low blood pressure (hypotension).
- Overdose from oral ingestion can cause nausea, vomiting, lethargy, decreased respiration, tachycardia, bradycardia, low or high blood pressure (hypotension or hypertension), sedation, drowsiness (somnolence), pupil dilation (mydriasis), stupor, low body temperature (hypothermia), drooling, and coma.
- Overdose of oxymetazoline intranasal is treated with symptomatic and supportive care.
What drugs interact with oxymetazoline intranasal?
Inform your doctor of all medications you are currently taking, who can advise you on any possible drug interactions. Never begin taking, suddenly discontinue, or change the dosage of any medication without your doctor’s recommendation.
- Oxymetazoline intranasal has no listed severe interactions with other drugs.
- Serious interactions of oxymetazoline intranasal include:
- Moderate interactions of oxymetazoline intranasal include:
- Oxymetazoline intranasal has no listed mild interactions with other drugs.
The drug interactions listed above are not all of the possible interactions or adverse effects. For more information on drug interactions, visit the RxList Drug Interaction Checker.
It is important to always tell your doctor, pharmacist, or health care provider about all prescription and over-the-counter medications you use, as well as the dosage for each, and keep a list of the information. Check with your doctor or healthcare provider if you have any questions about the medication.
Pregnancy and breastfeeding
- Use oxymetazoline intranasal with caution for occasional relief from nasal congestion during pregnancy only if clearly needed. Excessive use in the first trimester has been associated with adverse fetal effects.
- It is not known if oxymetazoline intranasal is present in breast milk. Use with caution in nursing mothers.
- Do not use any OTC drugs including oxymetazoline intranasal without first checking with your healthcare provider, if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.
What else should I know about oxymetazoline intranasal?
- Use oxymetazoline intranasal exactly as prescribed or as per label directions.
- Do not exceed recommended dosages.
- Do not share your spray dispenser with others, it can spread the infection.
- If self-medicating with OTC oxymetazoline intranasal, do not use for longer than 3 days. Stop use and consult with a physician if the condition persists or worsens.
- Store safely out of reach of children.
- In case of overdose, seek medical help or contact Poison Control.
Oxymetazoline intranasal is a nasal spray medication used for the temporary relief of nasal congestion caused by the common cold, hay fever, upper respiratory allergies, and sinus congestion and pressure. Prolonged and frequent use of oxymetazoline may cause rebound nasal congestion or worsen the condition. Common side effects of oxymetazoline intranasal include nasal dryness, nasal irritation, burning, stinging, rebound nasal congestion, sneezing, increased nasal discharge, headache, nausea, dizziness, nervousness, and insomnia.
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Cold Sores (Oral Herpes, Herpes Labialis)
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Hay Fever (Allergic Rhinitis)
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The allergic cascade refers to allergic reactions that happen in the body in response to allergens. A variety of immune cells and chemical messengers participate in the allergic cascade. Symptoms of the allergic cascade range from mild swelling and itching to full-blown anaphylactic shock. Allergen avoidance and medications are used to prevent or treat allergies.
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Without treatment, allergic conjunctivitis symptoms could last the entire time that your critical allergen is present — which can vary greatly.
Sinus Infection vs. Cold
Viruses cause the common cold and most sinus infections. Bacterial and fungal infections may also cause a sinus infection. Signs and symptoms of colds and sinus infections include nasal irritation or dryness, sore throat, stuffy nose, nasal discharge/congestion, sneezing, and cough. Additional symptoms of sinus infections include sinus pressure behind the cheeks or eyes, facial pain when pressure is applied, bad breath, and thick yellow or green mucus. Treatment focuses on symptom relief.
Can Congestion Be the Only Symptom of COVID-19?
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What Are the Best Treatments for Allergic Conjunctivitis?
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Can You Eat Avocado if You Have a Nut Allergy?
Since avocado is classified as a fruit and not a tree nut, you should be able to eat avocados even if you have a nut allergy. However, some studies have shown that avocados have similar proteins as chestnuts. So if you’re allergic to chestnuts, you may have to avoid avocados.
Insect Sting Allergies
The majority of stinging insects in the United States are from bees, yellow jackets, hornets, wasps, and fire ants. Severity of reactions to stings varies greatly. Avoidance and prompt treatment are essential. In selected cases, allergy injection therapy is highly effective.
Do Allergy Desensitization Shots Work?
Allergies happen when your immune system overreacts to harmless substances called allergens. Allergy desensitization shots make your body less likely to react to allergen.
Sinus Infection vs. Allergies
Both sinus infections and allergies (allergic rhinitis) cause symptoms such as runny or stuffy nose and fatigue. Sinus infection (known as sinusitis) is inflammation of the sinuses, caused by infection from bacteria, viruses, and/or fungi (molds). Allergic rhinitis occurs when certain allergies cause nasal symptoms. When a person with allergies breathes in an allergen, such as pollen, dust, or animal dander, symptoms such as runny or stuffy nose, itching, sneezing, and fatigue occur.
Are Food Allergies Passed Down Genetically?
A food allergy is a condition that causes your immune system to fight against a particular part of food — which is called an allergen. Food allergies can be hereditary — that is, parents can pass the likelihood of developing a food allergy to their children through genes that code for inherited traits.
What Causes Allergy Flare-ups?
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Is It a Cold or a Sinus Infection?
A sinus infection, also known as sinusitis or rhinosinusitis, is a condition in which the delicate membranes that line the sinuses may get swollen and become red. A cold or common cold is a viral infection. It affects the upper respiratory system, which includes the nose, mouth, throat, and lungs.
How Do You Calm Down an Allergy Attack?
Here are thirteen tips to calm an allergy attack and put an end to constant sneezing, itching, and congestion.
Drug Allergy (Medication Allergy)
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What Is the Difference Between Allergy and Hay Fever?
Hay fever is a type of allergy that occurs in response to specific allergens and typically lasts for months. Learn more about allergies vs. hay fever.
COVID-19 vs. Allergies
Though there is some overlap in allergy and COVID-19 signs and symptoms there are also significant differences. Symptoms that they have in common include headache, fatigue, tiredness, shortness of breath, wheezing, and sore throat. Fever does not occur with allergies but is one of the defining symptoms of COVID-19 infections.
Does Congested Mean Sick?
Congestion is a symptom that is usually the response of an infection, allergy, or a foreign body.
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What Can You Take for a Cold While Pregnant?
You may take over-the-counter (OTC) treatment after consulting with the physician because these are generally safe. OTC medications for colds and flus include acetaminophen, guaifenesin syrup and saline nasal drops or spray. You can also use natural remedies to treat a cold during pregnancy.
How Do I Know if I Am Lactose Intolerant or Allergic to Milk?
Lactose intolerance is caused by a deficiency of an enzyme (lactase) that helps digest the sugar (lactose) in milk. Milk allergy, on the other hand, is an adverse immune reaction to proteins found in milk. The symptoms of the two conditions are different.
How Long Is a Cold Sore Contagious?
Cold sores are blisters around your mouth and lips. Cold sores are contagious until they are completely healed.
Emphysema, Chronic Bronchitis, and Colds
If you have a COPD such as emphysema, avoiding chronic bronchitis and colds is important to avoid a more severe respiratory infection such as pneumonia. Avoiding cigarette smoking, practice good hygeine, stay away from crowds, and alerting your healthcare provider if you have a sinus infection or cold or cough that becomes worse. Treatment options depend upon the severity of the emphysema, bronchitis, or cold combination.
Why Won’t My Allergy Symptoms Go Away?
Allergies happen when your body's immune system reacts to certain substances as though they are harmful. Allergy symptoms may not go away unless you avoid your triggers, stick to your medications, find the right combination of medications, and consider surgery.
What Are the Signs and Symptoms of Allergic Conjunctivitis?
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What Is the Fastest Way to Fix Seasonal Allergies?
Seasonal allergies are common and tend to ramp up during the spring and summer. Learn about how to get rid of seasonal allergies fast with these 13 home remedies.
What Are the 4 Most Common Allergens?
The four most common types of allergens include food and medications, pollen, pet dander, and latex.
How Common Is It to Be Allergic to Nickel?
Nickel allergies are common in 10 percent of the population in the United States and 18 percent of people in North America, including 11 million children.
What Can Trigger a Cold Sore?
After you get infected with HSV, it lies inactively in the nerve cells inside your skin and may appear as another cold sore at the same place as before.
What Causes Nose Allergies?
Nose allergies can be caused by irritants such as pollen, animal dander, and household dust. Learn about symptoms, treatment, and prevention.
How Long Does a Cold Last?
Most often, a common cold lasts anywhere from 5 to 10 days in length.
How Do You Know if You Are Allergic to Pollen?
Pollen is a powdery yellow grain that fertilizes other plants of the same species. The only way to know for sure if a person has pollen allergy is to see a board-certified allergist for allergy testing.
What Do You Give a Child With a Cold?
Unfortunately, there is no cure for the common cold. Antibiotics may be used to fight bacterial infections, but they have no effect on viruses.
When to See a Doctor When Your Baby Has a Cold
If your baby has a cold, signs that it may be time to see a doctor include poor feeding, dehydration, breathing difficulties, ear pain, and more.
What Are Typical Allergy Symptoms?
Allergy symptoms differ depending on the type of allergy and body part involved. For example, food allergies may cause different symptoms than nasal allergies or eye allergies. The severity of symptoms may also vary, ranging from mild irritation to a life-threatening reaction called anaphylaxis.
How Can I Help My Child With a Peanut Allergy?
Since there is no cure for peanut allergies, prevention and keeping an epinephrine injector (EpiPen) on hand is key to helping your child’s allergy.
What Does an Allergic Reaction Bump Look Like?
Hives due to allergic reactions appear as reddish or raised bumps or welts. Check out the center below for more medical references on allergic reactions, including multimedia (slideshows, images, and quizzes), related disease conditions, treatment and diagnosis, medications, and prevention or wellness.
Should I Exercise Outside if I Have Allergies?
An allergy is a condition in which the immune system overresponds to a foreign substance. With the right treatment and precautions, you can completely eliminate allergy flare-ups during your outdoor workout.
What Is Good for a Child's Cold?
The common cold is one of the main reasons for missing schools in children and missing work in adults. Children are affected more commonly with cold than adults, who may have an average of two to three colds each year.
What Helps Sinus Congestion and Pain?
Sinus congestion and pain can be relieved at home by keeping your nasal passages moist and taking over-the-counter medications that help reduce inflammation.
Why Are Allergies So Bad Right Now 2021?
Scientists believe that allergies are getting worse because of climate change.
How Do You Tell If Your Child Has Allergies or a Cold?
Colds and allergies have different causes, but both involve the body's immune system. Since the symptoms of allergies and the symptoms of a cold overlap, it can be hard to tell which one your child has.
Is Allergic Conjunctivitis the Same as Conjunctivitis?
Allergic conjunctivitis may occur along with sneezing, runny nose, or sinus headache. Many people also find that they are tired and feel agitated.
How Do You Get Tested for Food Allergies?
If you develop symptoms of a food allergy, your doctor will have you undergo a skin test or blood test to determine which foods you are allergic to.
What Are Typical Seasonal Allergy Symptoms?
Typical seasonal allergy symptoms include a stuffy or runny nose, sneezing, coughing, watery eyes, congestion, and a sore throat.
Is My Sore Throat Allergies or COVID-19?
Sore throat can be a symptom of allergies or COVID-19, and it can be difficult to tell which one you have. Understanding the difference between these two illnesses can help.
How Do You Get a Cold Sore on Your Lip?
Cold sores, also called fever blisters or oral herpes, are a viral infection that leaves small blisters around your mouth. You get a cold sore on your lip due to viral infection from herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1).
Can Fall Allergies Cause Sinus Headaches?
Fall allergies can cause symptoms such as sneezing, congestion, and sinus headache. Learn more about causes, treatment, and prevention of fall allergies.
How to Identify Cold Symptoms in Children
When a child is sick, their way of showing it may not always be clear. Here’s what to look for to determine whether your child is sick with a cold.
How Is COVID-19 Different From Allergies?
COVID-19 symptoms are often similar to symptoms of seasonal allergies, so it is important to know how to tell the difference. Learn how to distinguish between the two.
Treatment & Diagnosis
- Nasal Congestion
- Oral Herpes (Cold Sores)
- Common Cold
- Allergy Attacks? Fight Back
- Allergies- Easing Sneezing: House Cleaning Tips
- Allergy: Winning the War Against Allergies
- Killer Cold Virus Infection
- Allergy: Taking the Sting Out of Insect Allergies
- Asthma and Allergies and Your Child
- Allergies: Mold and More:Battling Indoor Allergens
- Allergies, Control Your Spring
- Allergies FAQs
- Cold & Flu FAQs
- Common Cold FAQs
- Are Hives Always Caused by an Allergy?
- Killer Cold Virus (Adenovirus Strains)
- Colds: 10 Tips to Prevent The Common Cold
- Cough, Cold, Weight Loss Drug Dangerous - Warning
- Questions To Ask Your Doctor - Allergy
- Air Pollution and Allergies: A Connection?
- Common Cold . . . Social Ties Decrease Risk
- Colds: Zinc For Colds...Jury Still Out!
- Allergies: Don't Sneeze at Allergy Relief
- Do Anti-Mite Carpet Cleaners Help Mite Allergies?
- What Can You Give a Toddler for Severe Cough?
- Can Psoriasis Be Caused by Allergy?
- Do Allergy Drugs Interact with Synthroid?
- What Kind of Cold Medicine Can Diabetics Take?
- Allergy to Stinging Insects Can Be Life Threatening
- 5 Food Allergy Myths
- Cold Sore Treatment
- OTC Cold and Cough Medications
- When to Call the Doctor for Fever, Nausea, Diarrhea, Colds, and Coughs
- Air Travel, Colds, and Sinus Infections
Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration
You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.