- What is pseudoephedrine, and how does it work (mechanism of action)?
- What are the uses for pseudoephedrine?
- What are the side effects of pseudoephedrine?
- What is the dosage for pseudoephedrine?
- Which drugs or supplements interact with pseudoephedrine?
- Is pseudoephedrine safe to take if I'm pregnant or breastfeeding?
- What else should I know about pseudoephedrine?
What is pseudoephedrine, and how does it work (mechanism of action)?
- Pseudoephedrine is a decongestant used for reducing nasal congestion caused by allergies or the common cold. Pseudoephedrine causes blood vessels in the nasal passages to shrink (vasoconstrict). Vasoconstriction reduces nasal congestion by preventing fluid from draining from blood vessels into nasal passages. Pseudoephedrine also directly stimulates beta-adrenergic receptors and causes relaxation of bronchioles, as well as increased heart rate and contractility.
- The FDA approved pseudoephedrine in August 1975.
What brand names are available for pseudoephedrine?
Sudafed, Nexafed, Zephrex-D
Is pseudoephedrine available as a generic drug?
Do I need a prescription for pseudoephedrine?
What are the side effects of pseudoephedrine?
Common side effects of pseudoephedrine include:
- Possible serious side effects of pseudoephedrine include:
- High blood pressure
- Heart attack
- Abnormal heartbeats
- Ischemic colitis
Pseudoephedrine should not be used by people with severe hypertension or coronary artery disease. It should be used with caution in people with mild to moderate hypertension, cardiac disease, hyperthyroidism, hyperglycemia, benign prostatic hyperplasia, diabetes mellitus, kidney problems, seizure disorder, and glaucoma.
What is the dosage for pseudoephedrine?
- The recommended dose is 60 mg every 4 to 6 hours when using immediate release tablets. When using extended release tablets the recommended dose is 120 mg every 12 hours or 240 mg every 24 hours.
Which drugs or supplements interact with pseudoephedrine?
- Pseudoephedrine should not be combined with monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs) because such combinations may cause an acute hypertensive episode. Examples of MAOIs include rasagiline (Azilect), selegiline (Eldepryl, Zelapar), isocarboxazid (Marplan), phenelzine (Nardil), and tranylcypromine (Parnate).
Is pseudoephedrine safe to take if I'm pregnant or breastfeeding?
What else should I know about pseudoephedrine?
What preparations of pseudoephedrine are available?
- Tablet (immediate-release): 30, 60 mg; Tablet (extended-release): 120, 240 mg
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Pseudoephedrine Plus Oral (Afrinol, Novafed, Sudafed) is a medication used to treat relief of sinus, nose, and ear congestion caused by the common cold. Side effects, drug interactions, and patient information should be reviewed prior to taking any medication.
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