What is Tessalon Perles (benzonatate)?
Tessalon Perles (benzonatate) is a nonnarcotic antitussive (anti-cough) medication used 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.
Tessalon Perles begins to work within 15 to 20 minutes, and its effects last for approximately 3 to 8 hours. Tessalon Perles is unrelated to narcotics such as codeine, which is frequently used to suppress coughs.
Common side effects of Tessalon Perles include:
- mild dizziness,
- nasal congestion,
- itching skin,
- confusion, and
- numbness in the chest.
Serious side effects of Tessalon Perles include severe hypersensitivity reactions (including airway spasms and cardiovascular collapse) that occur from sucking or chewing the capsule instead of swallowing it.
There are no known drug interactions with Tessalon Perles.
There is very little information about the effects of Tessalon Perles on a fetus. Physicians may use it during pregnancy if its benefits are deemed to outweigh its potential but unknown risks.
What are the important side effects of Tessalon Perles (benzonatate)?
Benzonatate should not be used in children who are less than 10 years of age because unintentional overdose and death have been reported in this age group.
The most frequent adverse reactions of Tessalon Perles include:
Other side effects that have been reported include:
Severe hypersensitivity reactions (including airway spasms and cardiovascular collapse) may occur from sucking or chewing the capsule instead of swallowing it.
Tessalon Perles (benzonatate) side effects list for healthcare professionals
Potential Adverse Reactions to Tessalon may include:
Hypersensitivity reactions including bronchospasm, laryngospasm, cardiovascular collapse possibly related to local anesthesia from chewing or sucking the capsule.
CNS: sedation; headache; dizziness; mental confusion; visual hallucinations.
GI: constipation; nausea; GI upset.
Dermatologic: pruritus; skin eruptions.
Other: nasal congestion; sensation of burning in the eyes; vague “chilly” sensation; numbness of the chest; hypersensitivity.
Deliberate or accidental overdose has resulted in death, particularly in children.
Tessalon Perles (benzonatate) is a nonnarcotic antitussive (anti-cough) medication used 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. Common side effects of Tessalon Perles include sedation, headache, mild dizziness, constipation, nausea, vomiting, nasal congestion, hallucinations, itching skin, rash, indigestion, confusion, and numbness in the chest. There are no known drug interactions with Tessalon Perles. Children under 10 should not use Tessalon. There is very little information about the effects of Tessalon Perles on a fetus. Physicians may use it during pregnancy if its benefits are deemed to outweigh its potential but unknown risks. It is unknown Tessalon Perles is secreted into breast milk.
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Coughing is a reflex that helps a person clear their airways of irritants. There are many causes of an excessive or severe cough including irritants like cigarette and secondhand smoke, pollution, air fresheners, medications like beta blockers and ACE inhibitors, the common cold, GERD, lung cancer, and heart disease. Natural and home remedies to help cure and soothe a cough include stay hydrated, gargle saltwater, use cough drops or lozenges, use herbs and supplements like ginger, mint, licorice, and slippery elm, and don't smoke. Over-the-counter products (OTC)to cure and soothe a cough include cough suppressants and expectorants, and anti-reflux drugs. Prescription drugs that help cure a cough include narcotic medications, antibiotics, inhaled steroids, and anti-reflux drugs like proton pump inhibitors or PPIs, for example, omeprazole (Prilosec), rabeprazole (Aciphex), and pantoprazole (Protonix).
Chronic cough is a cough that does not go away and is generally a symptom of another disorder such as asthma, allergic rhinitis, sinus infection, cigarette smoking, GERD, postnasal drip, bronchitis, pneumonia, medications, and less frequently tumors or other lung disease. Chronic cough treatment is based on the cause, but may be soothed natural and home remedies.
Cold and Cough Medicine for Infants and Children
The safety of giving infants and children over-the-counter (OTC) cold and cough medicine is important for caregivers to understand. While there is no "gold standard" recommendation for giving infants and children OTC cold and cough medicine for fever, aches, cough, and runny nose, a few standards have been recommended. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that OTC cold and cough medicine only be used in children age four years and older. The American College of Chest Physicians recommend that these medicines only be used in children age 15 years and older. The FDA recommends that OTC cold and cough medicine be used in children 2 years of age and older. However, there is agreement in regard to which OTC medications should not be used in children under the age of four (or the age of two, depending upon which guidelines are used), and they are 1) certain antihistamines like brompheniramine, chlorpheniramine maleate, and diphenhydramine (Benadryl); 2) cough expectorants (guaifenesin); 3) cough suppressants (dextromethorphan, DM); and 4) decongestants (pseudoephedrine and phenylephrine). Aspirin should never be given to infants, children, and adolescents due to the possibility of a rare, but often severe and even fatal illness called Reye's syndrome. REFERENCES:FDA. "Most Young Children with a Cough or Cold Don't Need Medicines." July 18, 2017. FDA. "Use Caution When Giving Cough and Cold Products to Kids." Updated: Nov 04, 2016.
Is a Cough Contagious?
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Whooping Cough (Pertussis)
Whooping cough (pertussis) is highly contagious respiratory infection that is caused by the bacteria Bordetella pertussis. There are an estimated 300,000 plus deaths annually from whooping cough (pertussis). Whooping cough commonly affects infants and young children but can be prevented with immunization with the vaccine. First stage whooping cough symptoms are a runny nose, sneezing, low-grade fever, a mild cough with the cough gradually becoming more severe. After one to two weeks, the second stage of whooping cough begins.
Children's Cough Causes and Treatments
Children's cough causes include infection, acid reflux, asthma, allergies or sinus infection, whooping cough, and exposure to irritants. Treatment for a child's cough include cough medicine for children over the age of four.
Is Whooping Cough (Pertussis) Contagious?
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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.