Recent Articles

Cough and Cold

Government Panel Votes Nonprescription Cough and Cold Medicines Are Risky for Those Under 6

I have a cold and was wondering if I could take Cepacol and Dimetapp Cold and Congestion together?
Yes. If you have high blood pressure or heart disease, please speak to your physician before taking any oral decongestant like pseudoephedrine (Sudafed). Use these products as instructed on the packaging and only as needed.

I currently take 50mlg of Zoloft daily and have a bad cold with cough. My doctor prescribed Bromfed DM. Are these OK to mix?
The only problem is with the DM part of the Bromfed DM (brompheniramine, pseudoephedrine, dextromethorphan). When used with Zoloft (sertraline) there may be an increase in likelihood or severity of side effects. These drugs may be used together with caution. This combination may increase the risk of confusion, increased blood pressure or heart rate, loss of coordination, restlessness, sweating, tremor, vomiting, or other side effects. The pseudoephedrine (Sudafed) part of the Bromfed DM may also increase the blood pressure.

I have cold and I'm taking lisinopril in the morning and simvastatin at night with 81mg aspirin as my regular medication. Can I take Vicks Nyquil?
The only real problem between lisinopril, simvastatin, aspirin and Vicks Nyquil is with the decongestant part of the Nyquil, pseudoephedrine (Sudafed). Do not take cough, cold, flu and allergy products containing pseudoephedrine with your blood pressure or heart medication, lisinopril, without talking to your doctor.

Can I take acetaminophen with Xarelto? I'm looking for a cold medicine.
There are no direct drug interactions between acetaminophen (Tylenol) and Xarelto (rivaroxaban). They may be taken together
if needed. Many cold medications include aspirin or ibuprofen. Please read the labels. Generally speaking, the most common antihistamines and decongestants may be taken with the Xarelto.

I take 5mg amlodipine once daily and omeprazole 20mg twice daily. I have a cold with sore throat and cough. Can I take Coricidin HBP day/night multi-symptom cold?
None of these have direct drug interactions with either amlodipine (Norvasc) or omeprazole (Prilosec). Keep in mind that most Coricidin products contain acetaminophen (Tylenol). The antihistamines in some of these Coricidin products can cause drowsiness.

Can I take Alka-Seltzer Plus tab for my cold while taking metaprolol ER tab at night and losartan in the morning?
There are many Alka-Seltzer products that have the term: Plus, in the name. Many of these have an oral decongestant such as phenylephrine or pseudoephedrine as ingredients. If your cold product contains an oral decongestants, please contact your doctor before taking this medication. Both the metaprolol ER (Toprol XL) and losartan (Cozaar) are used to lower blood pressure.

I am taking cephalexin and allergy 4mg. Can I also take cough syrup?
The most common cough suppressant is dextromethorphan (DM), and this is found frequently in combination with guaifenesin (Mucinex or Robitussin), in OTC cough syrups. There are no direct drug interactions between either of these with cephalexin (Keflex) an antibiotic, or chlorpheniramine (Chlor-Trimeton) an antihistamine that is available in 4mg sizes.

I take Zyrtec daily for a cough due to allergies. Now I have a head cold and my sinuses are draining. As the Zyrtec is not working for this symptom, should I discontinue it before taking an over-the-counter drug containing Chlorpheniramine maleate 4mg and Phenylephrine HCI 10mg?
First, do not take the Zyrtec (cetirizine), with any other antihistamine like chlorpheniramine (Chlor-Trimeton) without talking to your doctor.

You may feel drowsy or more tired when taking these drugs together. In addition, you may experience other side effects. If you have high blood pressure or heart disease, do not take any oral decongestant without first speaking to your physician. The Advil Cold and Congestion (ibuprofen, pseudoephedrine) and phenylephrine can constrict your blood vessels, which will reduce congestion in your sinuses but increase stress and pressure on your heart. So only take one antihistamine at a time, and if OK to take decongestants, you may take the Zyrtec with the Advil product as they do not have any direct interactions between the two medications. Do not take the chlorpheniramine/phenylephrine with the Advil Cold product.

I'm currently taking phentermine 37.5 mg. May I take Alka Seltzer Plus Cold & Flu and Nyquil?
Do not take phentermine (Adipex) with oral decongestants. Both Alka Seltzer Plus Cold and Flu (acetaminophen, dextromethorphan, chlorpheniramine, phenylephrine) and Vicks Nyquil (acetaminophen, dextromethorphan, doxylamine and pseudoephedrine) have oral decongestants. Actually, both of the cold products have virtually the same ingredients. Taking Phentermine with the either of the cold products can increase the risk of high blood pressure, nervousness, palpitations, problems with sleep, or other serious side effects.
Please speak to your doctor before taking any cold product if you are taking phentermine. The other alternative is to stop taking the phentermine for a couple of days before taking the cold medications. Do not take both cold medications in the same day. Take one or the other but not both.

I'm on Cymbalta and Topamax and have a dry cough. Is there anything I can take for this cough?
The most common over-the-counter cough suppressant is dextromethorphan (Delsym, or any product with DM). The dextromethorphan does interact with the Cymbalta (duloxetine) and you should not take these together unless your physician has instructed you to do so. These two together may increase the risk of confusion, increased blood pressure or heart rate, loss of coordination, restlessness, sweating, tremor, vomiting, or other serious side effects. I can suggest to try and drink plenty of water, keep yourself well hydrated. Any of the over-the-counter cough lozenges that do not contain dextromethorphan would also possibly help you.

I take 10mg Amlodipine and 50mg Losartan daily. I have a head cold with sore throat and cough. Can I take Paracetamol?
Paracetamol (acetaminophen) is a brand not commonly found in the United States. Like Tylenol, it can be used in combination with
many different drugs. If your type of Paracetamol is plain acetaminophen, there are no direct drug interactions with either of amlodipine (Norvasc) or the losartan (Cozaar).

I have a really bad runny nose and I take Prozac, Alprazolam (Xanax) and Vyvanse. What cold or runny nose medication can I use and not use?
Do not take Xanax (alprazolam) and other drugs for anxiety, sleep or nerves together with Benadryl without talking to your health care provider. You are already taking Prozac (fluoxetine) and Xanax but the Prozac can decrease the elimination of Xanax from the body. Side effects from Xanax may get worse if you take Prozac. You may feel drowsy or more tired. Side effects from Prozac may get worse if you take Amphetamine medications (like Vyvanse). Taking these drugs together could result in side effects such as confusion, dizziness, drowsiness, excessive dry mouth, nausea/vomiting, loss of coordination, muscle weakness, sweating, tremor, and/or palpitations. Do not take pseudoephedrine and other sympathomimetics together, like Vyvanse. Taking Vyvanse with stimulants can increase the risk of high blood pressure, nervousness, palpitations, problems with sleep, or other serious side effects.

I took Adderall and got hit with a wicked cold/flu. Can I take Nyquil and a 10mg Flexeril to try to sleep?
Do not take the Vicks Nyquil with Adderall. Taking Adderall with the pseudoephedrine in the Nyquil, can increase the risk of high blood pressure, nervousness, palpitations, problems with sleep, or other serious side effects. Discuss your drug regimen with your health care provider prior to taking these drugs together. The Flexeril (cyclobenzaprine) also interacts with the Nyquil (and any antihistamine). Do not drive or operate machinery until you know how these drugs affect you. The Adderall and Flexeril do not have any direct drug interactions.

What cough medicines are safe while taking taking topiramate?
The most common over-the-counter cough suppressant is dextromethorphan (Delsym). This drug is frequently found in combination with the expectorant, guaifenesin (Robitussin, Mucinex).

I take phentermine and Lexapro. Can I take Delsym for a cough?
Adding the Delsym to the Lexapro may cause the side effects of the Lexapro to become worse. Although an interaction is theoretically possible, these drugs are often used together for brief periods of time. These interactions could include increasing the risk of restlessness, sweating, tremor, vomiting, or other side effects. Always inform your health care providers of any new medication or health condition you may have.

What can be used for mucus and coughing due to congestion?
The most commonly used medication for mucus and cough due to congestion is guaifenesin (Robitussin or Mucinex). Drinking plenty of water helps to keep the mucus thinner or less viscous. Breathing in steam from a hot shower helps moisturize the airways also.

What is a good cold medicine for a cold, runny nose and sneezing? I was told Claritin.
Claritin (loratidine) as well as Zyrtec (cetirizine) and Allegra (fexofenadine) are all long acting non sedating antihistamines that should help take care of the runny nose and sneezing allergy symptoms.

I take clonidine and metoprolol for high blood pressure. What cold medicines can I take?
You did not list any symptoms so I can only give some general answers. Neither the clonidine (Catapres) or metoprolol (Toprol or Lopressor) will have direct interactions with any long acting antihistamines, Tylenol (acetaminophen), or guaifenesin (Robitussin or Mucinex). Do not take any oral decongestant like Sudafed (pseudoephedrine) or Sudafed PE (phenylephrine) without speaking to your physician.

I have a severe cough due to bronchitis and cannot sleep. My doctor prescribed Hydromet syrup (5-1.5MG/5ML) 1 tsp at bedtime. It helped for about three hours. Would it be safe to take another dose?
Contact your physician to ask for more frequent dosing for you. Never take more than what your physician prescribes. This medicine may cause problematic side effects.

What cough suppressant can I use while on Adipex and an anti-inflammatory?
The most common over-the-counter cough suppressant is dextromethorphan (DM, Delsym). Adipex (phentermine), Motrin (ibuprofen) and Aleve (naproxen) do not interact with dextromethorphan and would be OK to take from a drug interaction perspective.

Can I take Coricidin if I take meds for my thyroid and high blood pressure?
There are two different types of Coricidin cold products. One has an oral decongestant (pseudoephedrine) and the other, Coricidin HBP, does not. If you have high blood pressure or while taking a thyroid replacement drug, you should avoid oral decongestants. In addition, the antihistamine (chlorpheniramine) in Coricidin may affect thyroid drugs. The effects of thyroid hormones may be increased by chlorpheniramine and pseudoephedrine, especially if you also have heart disease. Avoid use of these drugs together, if possible. Speak to your local pharmacist for help in choosing the right one for you.

I take thyroid medication. I have a cough and need to take an expectorant. Which one can I take?
The most common and effective expectorant is guaifenesin (Mucinex). Mucinex does not interact with the most common thyroid medications of Synthroid (levothyroxine), Armour Thyroid (desiccated thyroid) or Cytomel (liothyronine). Drink plenty of water with expectorants.

What cough syrup can I take with 150mg Effexor?
The most common over-the-counter cough suppressant is dextromethorphan (DM). It is the part of most every over-the-counter multi symptom cold and cough medication. Effexor (venlafaxine) interacts with dextromethorphan. Do not take any over-the-counter cough and cold remedy without speaking to your physician or pharmacist first. This combination may increase the risk of confusion, increased blood pressure or heart rate, loss of coordination, restlessness, sweating, tremor, vomiting or other serious side effects. One of the non-narcotic prescription cough medications is benzonatate (Tessalon). This does not interact with Effexor, but does require a prescription. Any cough drop or throat lozenge without dextromethorphan may help. Sometime just drinking extra fluids (water) and using a lemon drop or mint will stop the tickle causing the cough.

Can I take NyQuil with a nighttime cough medicine?
Vicks NyQuil is a night time cough and cold medication. You should not need to take anything more for a cough. If your NyQuil formula does not contain dextromethorphan (DM), and the nighttime cough medicine you have only contains dextromethorphan, then you could take them together. Not knowing what the other product is, I cannot give a definite answer.

I have a bad cold with cough. I am taking Wellbutrin and Adipex. What cold medicine can I take?
Using Wellbutrin and Adipex together should be avoided. If used together, you should be closely monitored by your doctor. Report side effects such as nervousness, irritability, difficulty sleeping, or increased blood pressure. The most common cough suppressant is dextromethorphan (DM). This is what is in Delsym and Robitussin DM. There is no direct interaction with your two medications. The expectorant guaifenesin (Mucinex or Robitussin) is also OK to use with your medications, as well as the most common antihistamines (diphenhydramine and chlorpheniramine). You should avoid oral decongestants like Sudafed (pseudoephedrine) or phenylephrine.

If taking carbidopa, what over-the-counter cold medicines can be taken?
There are no direct drug interactions between carbidopa and most of the common over-the-counter cold medications.

Can I use cold medicine while on Xopenex?
There are issues with Xopenex (levalbuterol) and any of the oral decongestants. The common cough suppressants, antihistamines and expectorants are not going to interact with Xopenex. Have your pharmacist, or physician, help you decide what medications will be safe and effective with the symptoms you have.

I am taking Biaxin. Can I take any cough suppressants or syrup, including hydrocodone?
There is a possible interaction between Biaxin and Tessalon (benzonatate). Although an interaction is possible, these drugs are sometimes used together. Side effects from the Biaxin may get worse if you take benzonatate including slurred speech, confusion, severe weakness, or difficulty breathing while taking these medicines. It would be safe to take Delsym or other prescription cough medications with Biaxin. Take this antibiotic until finished.

I have been taking Tylenol Cold MS. Is it OK to take Nyquil four hours after taking the Tylenol?
They should not be taken together. If you would want to alternate taking these, keeping 4 to 6 hours between each dose, this would be fine. Drink plenty of water and do not take either one of these if you have high blood pressure or heart disease without speaking to your physician first.

What cold medicine can I take while on prescription Adderall?
It depends on your symptoms. Avoid oral nasal decongestants due to the increased risk of high blood pressure, nervousness, palpitations, problems with sleep. Sedating antihistamines like diphenhydramine (Benadryl) may decrease the action of the Adderall. Non-sedating antihistamines, like Claritin or Zyrtec, do not seem to have that problem. If you have a cough, an expectorant and cough suppressant like Robitussin DM (guaifenesin with dextromethorphan) has no direct drug interaction with Adderall. Talk to your pharmacist.

I'm allergic to sulfa drugs. Can I take Alka-Seltzer cold remedy?
Yes. Take this only when needed.

Can I take a multi-symptom cold relief medicine while taking metronidazole?
Not knowing what multi-symptom cold relief product you have makes it difficult to be 100 percent certain, but metronidazole (Flagyl) does not interact with any of the common products used for cold relief. Be sure to take the metronidazole until finished with food or milk.

How long would 180 millimeters of cough medicine last if the directions say one teaspoon three times a day?
180ml (milliliters) is 6 ounces. One teaspoonful is 5ml (cc). If you take three doses of 5ml per day, that is 15ml per day. The 180ml would last 12 days if your teaspoonful is the "official" size and you take the full three doses per day.

I have terrible sinus pain left over after a cold. What decongestant can I take while on Prozac?
There are no direct drug interactions between Prozac (fluoxetine) and any of the common oral decongestants, such as Sudafed (pseudoephedrine) and Sudafed PE (phenylephrine). If you have high blood pressure or heart problems, talk to your doctor before taking any oral decongestant. Also use nasal saline solution for congestion.

How do you figure the carbohydrate count for cough syrups?
One carbohydrate serving is equal to 15 grams of carbohydrate. If a dose of cough syrup is 5 grams of carbohydrate or less, you do not have to count it. Count it as half of a carbohydrate serving if it has 6-11 grams of carbohydrate per dose. If you take more than 3 doses a day, your blood glucose level may be affected slightly. The carbohydrate information may not be on the label. You could go to the medication's website or call the 800 number on the bottle, if available, to find out the carbohydrate content.

What cough medicine can I take with Zyrtec?
Zyrtec (cetirizine) may be taken with Delsym (dextromethorphan) for a nagging dry cough or Robitussin DM (guaifenesin with dextromethorphan) for a productive cough with chest congestion. There are no interactions with either product and Zyrtec. Follow the instructions on the bottles for the dose and timing. Use cough syrup only as needed.

I take 50mg of sertraline HCL every night. What decongestant can I take with it?
I could not find any direct interactions with the common nasal decongestants and Zoloft (sertraline).  If you have high blood pressure or heart disease, talk to your physician before starting any oral decongestant. I would suggest trying normal saline nasal spray first.

I take 20mg of simvastatin once a day. What cough medicine can I take? I have a stuffy nose and not coughing. It's all in my head.
If you do not have a cough, you do not need a cough syrup. The simvastatin (Zocor) is for cholesterol reduction, so taking an oral decongestant would constrict the blood vessels and perhaps be a problem for you. I would suggest using a saline nasal spray and a humidifier. If this is an ongoing problem, talk with your doctor.

I have a cold and the flu. I am taking Coricidin Maximum Strength Flu, but need something for my sinus pressure and nasal congestion. Can I take Sudafed Nasal Decongestant?
There are many types of Coricidin and Sudafed products but as long as you have these two -- [Coricidin Maximum Strength Flu (acetaminophen, chlorpheniramine and dextromethorphan) and Sudafed Nasal Decongestant (pseudoephedrine)] -- there are no direct drug interactions or duplications. This Coricidin product could make you drowsy. Do not take Sudafed, or any oral nasal decongestant, if you have high blood pressure or heart problems without talking to your doctor first. Take these only as needed.

I have a chest cold. Can I take Coricidin HBP with levothyroxine and phentermine?
There are no direct drug interactions between Coricidin HBP (dextromethorphan and guaifenesin) and phentermine (Adipex).  Drink plenty of water with the Coricidin and if you have cardiac problems, talk to your doctor before taking phentermine. Make sure all your health care providers are aware of all the medications you take, including over-the-counter drugs, vitamins and herbals.

I took Ambien at 9 p.m. At midnight, I still haven't slept due to coughing. Can I take Cheratussin AC syrup?
Yes. As long as you do not walk or drive in your sleep! There are no drug interactions, but the drowsiness side effects can be increased with taking the Cheratussin AC (guaifenesin with codeine) after the Ambien (zolpidem). Be careful if you have to get up during the night, as your balance may not be what is normal for you. Consider taking a long-acting cough suppressant at bedtime. Delsym (dextromethorphan) is a 12-hour product. Talk to your local pharmacist about this with your complete list of medications.

I have a runny nose, sneezing and nose congestion. I take Ativan and Paxil. My doctor said I should not take anything with a decongestant in it. What over-the-counter medicine would you recommend?
For sneezing and runny nose, an antihistamine would help. There are many and some are long-acting. These may cause drowsiness.  Be careful if you must be alert. Have your local pharmacist help pick out the proper one for you. To avoid decongestants, read the labels and skip any that have phenylephrine or pseudoephedrine as an ingredient. A saline nasal spray will relieve congestion. There are several brand names, and your local pharmacy most likely has a generic, too.

Is 30ml of Balminil expectorant liquid too high a dose for a one-time dose?
Balminil is a brand of guaifenesin not available in the United States. I am unfamiliar with the concentration of this particular brand. The normal dose for adults is 200mg-400mg every 4 to 6 hours as needed for congestion, with a maximum daily amount of 2400mg. Check your bottle's label for the strength of your product.  If it states the concentration as 10mg/ml, then 30ml would equal 300mg. Take this with plenty of water to reduce your chest congestion and thin secretions.

I was prescribed benzonatate for cough, but it doesn't seem to help. Can I take NyQuil for the cough and help me sleep?
Yes. The normal dosing for benzonatate (Tessalon) is 100mg-200mg three times daily, as needed. No more than 600mg per 24 hours. The cough suppressant in Vicks NyQuil (acetaminophen, dextromethorphan, doxylamine and pseudoephedrine), works via a different mechanism. You may take them together. The chance of drowsiness can increase taking both together, so be careful if you must be alert. If you have high blood pressure or heart disease, talk to your doctor before taking NyQuil.

I have a bad chest cold with unpleasant sinus pressure and congestion. What can I take, since I also take Adderall?
Adderall (mixed amphetamine salts) does not directly interact with any "cold" medications. If you have to take a decongestant, remember Adderall can cause an increased chance of higher blood pressure, just as most decongestants can. Talk to the physician who prescribed your Adderall to get a recommendation.

What cold medicine is safe to take while on Septra and hydrocodone/acetaminophen 500mg?
The choice of cold medication depends on your symptoms and other health information. Go to your regular pharmacy, and talk to your pharmacist about your symptoms, including all your medications and other health issues.

What is the best medicine for sinus pressure in my head which causes a headache nightly? My doctor put me on regular Mucinex for 30 days, but it doesn't seem to be doing any good. I also take Wellbutrin, Simvastatin and Lunesta.
First I would suggest seeing an ENT specialist (ears, nose & throat) or allergist for the nightly congestion problem. Mucinex (guaifenesin) is great for chest congestion, but does not work on nasal/head congestion. The most preferred products for head congestion can cause problems if you have high blood pressure or heart disease. You could try using saline nasal spray prior to bedtime or even a menthol rub (Vicks, Mentholatum) to help open the nasal passages while you sleep.

Can I take Cymbalta and tizanidine?
Yes. There are no direct drug interactions between Cymbalta (duloxetine), tizanidine (Zanaflex) and most of the commonly used antihistamines (Benadryl/Allegra/Zyrtec) and decongestants (pseudoephedrine/phenylephrine/saline nasal spray). If you have high blood pressure, heart disease or prostate problems, talk to your physician before taking any of these cold/sinus products. The antihistamines may cause a higher risk of drowsiness, so be careful if you must be alert. Drink plenty of water with any of these.

I take one Singulair every night before bed. If I have a bad cold, it is safe to take NyQuil as well? 
There are no direct drug interactions between Singulair (montelukast) and Vicks NyQuil (acetaminophen, dextromethorphan, doxylamine & pseudoephedrine). Take the Nyquil only at bedtime when needed. Take the Singulair daily as prescribed for the best results.

I am taking Robitussin for a cough and I have gout. Can I take colchicine and indomethacin while taking Robitussin?
Yes. There are no direct drug interactions between Robitussin (guaifenesin), colchicine and indomethacin (Indocin). Drink plenty of water with both Robitussin and colchicine. Take indomethacin with food or milk. Colchicine is one of the drugs that will interact with grapefruit, so avoid grapefruit. Take all of these only as needed or as prescribed by your physician. You may want to get a referral to a dietitian to assist in meal planning to help the gout.

My doctor prescribed either Claritin D or Zyrtec D with benzonatate for my sinus allergies and cough. Can I take guaifenesin with either of these antihistamine/decongestant combinations and the benzonatate to break up the congestion? Can I simply take loratadine (10 mg) and pseudoephedrine hydrochloride (120mg) instead of Claritin D?
The medications you should take, depend on the symptoms with which you have the most trouble. The only drug you listed that is for cough is benzonatate (Tessalon). This is usually given 100mg-200mg up to 3 times daily as needed. Claritin D (loratadine 5mg/pseudoephedrine 120mg) and Zyrtec D (cetirizine 5mg/pseudoephedrine 120mg) are antihistamine/decongestant combinations that may be taken up to twice daily. If you have chest (lung) congestion, guaifenesin (Mucinex, Humibid) would help. If you have all of these symptoms, Claritin D OR Zyrtec D may be taken with both benzonatate and plain guaifenesin. Take all of these with plenty of water. There is no reason to take loratadine and pseudoephedrine together if you have Claritin D or Zyrtec D already. If you have high blood pressure or heart problems, talk to your doctor before taking any decongestant. When self-medicating for any common condition, have your pharmacist find the best products for your symptoms. Always have your medication list with you.

I have post-nasal drip that keeps me up at night with an irritating cough. I was told to take Claritin D for that, but I am also currently taking Robitussin Night Time Cough & Cold. Can I mix these two medicines?
No. You would be duplicating both the antihistamine and decongestant. Take plain diphenhydramine and Delsym (dextromethorphan). Diphenhydramine should stop the drip. Delsym cough suppressant lasts 12 hours. You may want to determine if this is an allergic response causing the post-nasal drip.

I take Tenormin (beta blocker). I have a bad cold with coughing especially at night. What cough medicine can I take safely?
Delsym (dextromethorphan), a long acting cough suppressant. Drink plenty of water to keep your throat moist.

I have cold-like symptoms -- sore throat, chest congestion and earache. I take 10mg Adderall twice a day. Is there a safe over-the-counter medicine I can take?
Adderall is not contra-indicated with any medications normally given for cold symptoms. You can take ibuprofen or acetaminophen for the earache and sore throat. Gargle with warm salt water and use throat lozenges to stop the throat pain. Take Mucinex or Robitussin (guaifenesin) with the Adderall (mixed amphetamine salts), and drink plenty of water.

My daughter is 18 and started with nasal congestion and a cough four days ago. I am giving her Sudafed PE nondrowsy (cold and cough). She is doing better but at night is still coughing for short periods. Can I give her Delsym Cough Suppressant?
Yes. Delsym is a good choice, as it is long lasting and tastes good. These two may be given together and should be taken only as needed. Have her drink plenty of water and other fluids. If you have a humidifier on your furnace, check the settings to see if it is at the highest level.

Can I take Mucinex DM with Claritin D? If not, what other medication can I take with Claritin D? I started taking Claritin D a day ago and I feel like my cold is getting worse.
Yes. These medications each contain two drugs that treat two different conditions. Mucinex DM (guaifenesin with dextromethorphan) is an expectorant and cough suppressant. Claritin D (loratadine with pseudoephedrine) is an antihistamine decongestant. If you have high blood pressure or heart problems, talk with your doctor before taking any decongestant. If you develop a fever, take Tylenol (acetaminophen) or Motrin (ibuprofen).

What can I take for a head cold with congestion when on Synthroid?
According to the product summary sheet that comes with Synthroid (levothyroxine), none of the products that are commonly used for head colds, sinus congestion or chest congestion would cause any issues with the thyroid hormone replacement. Take Synthroid early in the morning, before breakfast. I would suggest taking it alone. Any medication required for colds or congestion, should only be taken as needed. Follow the instructions on the packaging.

Can I take Advil (ibuprofen) and cetirizine (Zyrtec) or triprolidine for common cold symptoms at the same time?
There are no drug interactions between Advil and either cetirizine or triprolidine. But cetirizine and triprolidine are both antihistamines. Take one or the other, not both. Cetirizine is long-acting, has a better side effect profile and causes less drowsiness than triprolidine. Drink plenty of water. Take Advil with food or milk to avoid stomach upset. Take only as needed.

What cold medicine can I take with lorazepam (Ativan). I suffer from anxiety and get nervous if my heart rate increases.
Do not take any decongestant (oral or nasal spray) except normal saline (Ocean) nasal spray. Any decongestant can increase heart rate. You can take expectorants like guaifenesin (plain Mucinex or Robitussin). Any antihistamines can cause drowsiness. Talk to your physician, and make sure all your health care providers are aware that you take the lorazepam.

What cold medicine can I take with Coumadin?
This would depend on what symptoms you have. Contact your physician and describe your symptoms.

What kind of cold medicine can I take while on Cymbalta, Klonopin, Lyrica and Vicodin?
What type of "cold medicine" do you mean? If antihistamines, there can be added drowsiness to any/all of the drugs on your list. An expectorant would be fine as would a decongestant. Talk to your physician, and let all of your doctors know what medications you are taking. There is documentation of drug interactions between hydrocodone (Vicodin) and your other medications. Watch for drowsiness.

I have a racking dry cough and also have my period. I take Midol for my period. What is the best medicine for the cough?
Are you taking other medications? Some of the blood pressure and cardiac medications cause a dry hacking cough. If not, I would recommend Delsym (dextromethorphan), a long-acting cough suppressant. Drink plenty of water to keep your mucous membranes moist and perhaps carry sugar-free hard candy with you to help keep your mouth moist. Delsym will not interact with Midol. If this continues, talk to your doctor.

I'm on Cozaar and hydrochlorothiazide for high blood pressure. Because of this, I can't take any cold medication with a decongestant in it. Why? A decongestant is usually what I need the most when I get a cold.
High blood pressure can be caused by many things, but one of the major causes is blood vessel constriction. Most nasal decongestants work by constricting the blood vessels and capillaries. This would cause a person with high blood pressure or hypertension, to see an increase in their blood pressure. This can put more pressure on the heart muscle. Talk to your doctor for a recommendation, or get a referral to an allergist. Many "colds" are really allergies. One nasal decongestant product that should be safe for most is a saline nasal spray. It moisturizes nasal passages and helps to relieve congestion. Stand in a hot shower and breath in the mist. Use a cold mist humidifier.

Can Mucinex and NyQuil be used together for a cold?
I looked at the ingredients of 19 different formulas of Vicks NyQuil. None contained an expectorant. So take plain Mucinex (guaifenesin) with NyQuil. Drink plenty of water and watch for drowsiness, as several NyQuil formulas have antihistamines. Take only as needed.

Can I take Robitussin Cough DM while taking Mucinex expectorant?
No. Both have guaifenesin as the active ingredient. Use either one, but not both for a cough with chest congestion. Drink plenty of fluids.

I have dry cough and cold. Is it okay to take Tylenol extra-strength 500mg with Robitussin cough suppressant/expectorant?
You do not say why you want to take Tylenol (acetaminophen). I assume the Tylenol is for fever or aches and pains. Robitussin DM (guaifenesin with dextromethorphan) is fine to take with Tylenol. Drink plenty of water with the Robitussin and limit yourself to no more than 3000 mg of Tylenol in 24 hours. Take each product only as long as needed. If you have a fever for more than 24-48 hours while on the Tylenol, call your doctor.

Is guaifenesin metabolized by the liver? My husband has Hepatitis C.
Guaifenesin (Mucinex, Robitussin, etc.) is absorbed quickly through the GI tract, metabolized quickly in the liver and excreted through the kidneys. I cannot find any articles or literature that indicates that guaifenesin has any effect on hepatitis of any type. Guaifenesin is not contra-indicated with any liver disease. The phone number for Adams Pharmaceutical Company, makers of Mucinex, is 866.682.4639. This number is only answered during business hours. Drink plenty of water while taking any guaifenesin product.

Is it safe to take phenylephrine hydrochloride and loratadine at the same time?
Yes. Phenylephrine HCl is an over-the-counter nasal decongestant that may be taken with the long-acting antihistamine loratadine (Claritin) or any other antihistamine that works for you. Do not take phenylephrine if you have heart disease or high blood pressure. Drink plenty of water with both.

How does Mucinex DM work, and how long does it take to have an effect?
Mucinex DM (guaifenesin with dextromethorphan) is a mixture of a cough suppressant and expectorant products. Guaifenesin is thought to increase the volume of but reduce the viscosity of secretions in the trachea and bronchi (lungs). It also may make the cough reflex more efficient. Dextromethorphan works on the cough center in the brain to stop coughing.

I take felodipine and HCTZ for HTN. I have a terrible cough and cold. Can I take Sudafed (nondrowsy)?
No. Sudafed (pseudoephedrine) is a vasoconstrictor; it increases blood pressure and could put a strain on the heart. Talk to your internist or cardiologist. Use saline nasal spray, humidifiers or even menthol rub on your chest without worry about your blood pressure.

Is it safe to take Tylenol Cold Severe with Keflex?
Yes. Keflex (cephalexin) is a first generation cephalosporin antibiotic that may be taken with any cough/cold/fever remedy. Tylenol Cold Severe has dextromethorphan, guaifenesin, pseudoephedrine and acetaminophen, so take it with plenty of water and only as needed. Take the Keflex until finished.

What type of cold and sinus medicines can I take if I am taking Topamax for epilepsy? I have been told my blood pressure is high.
People with high blood pressure or heart problems should avoid any decongestant. Use Ocean (saline) nasal spray. If you have allergy symptoms -- sneezing, itchy watery eyes or runny nose -- take an antihistamine (Claritin, Zyrtec, Benadryl) with the Topamax.  Be careful when driving or if you need to be alert. Talk to your internist or allergist if you have sinus congestion. Make sure all your doctors know what your are taking.

I have a cold with cough. Can I take benzonatate for the cough and a paracetamol/chlorpheniramine/phenylephrine compound for the cold at the same time? How long do I have to wait?
Taking these two is not unusual for the bedtime dose. Both can cause drowsiness. Drink plenty of fluids with both.

I have a severe head cold with cough and fever running 100 to 103 for four days. I am taking cefalexin. Can I take Tylenol Sinus?
Yes. Tylenol Sinus (acetaminophen) has several formulations. Any of them may be taken with cefalexin. Take the antibiotic until finished. With the fever going for so long, call your doctor.

I have a chest infection. Can I take cough medicine?
Talk with your physician. Some types of coughs can be helpful. Hopefully you are taking an antibiotic to kill the infection.

Does prednisolone help with cough and congestion?
Prednisolone is a steroid that has many uses. One is as an anti-inflammatory. If the congestion or cough is due to inflammation, it will help. Prednisolone requires a prescription.

I am taking Klonopin (generic Clonazepam) 1mg at night and .5mg in the morning. I have a cold. Can I take over-the-counter Comtrex (night and day capsules)?
There are several formulas of Comtrex. An interaction involving all formulas that include antihistamines is brompheniramine and Clonazepam. Brompheniramine is mildly sedating, so an enhanced central nervous system depressant effect may occur when it is combined with other central nervous system depressants including anxiolytics, sedatives and hypnotics. This includes Clonazepam. Tell your physician and pharmacist you are taking these medications.

What cough medicine can I take if I am taking medication for my heart and diabetes?
There are several sugar-free cough syrup formulas. As long as you take a cough suppressant with no decongestant, your blood pressure should not be affected. Benylin Adult and Diabetic Tussin are available. Your pharmacy may have others. Ask the pharmacist to help you get the correct formula.

I have been on warfarin for the past year. My doctors told me that there is a deficiency of thrombosis 3 so I will need to take this for the rest of my life. Now I have a cough and cold. What can I take?
If you are just taking Coumadin (warfarin), you may take many of the commonly used cough and cold products. These include antihistamines (Benadryl, Claritin), cough suppressant dextromethorphan (Delsym), expectorants [Mucinex (guaifenesin), Robitussin] and decongestants [Sudafed (pseudoephedrine)]. Consult your physician.

What can I take for a cough with phlegm? How long does a cough last?
Robitussin DM (guaifenesin with dextromethorphan) is the drug of choice for cough and phlegm. Drink plenty of water. If this lasts longer than 10 days, see your doctor.

Can I take Mucinex nasal spray (oxymetazoline hci) and Sudafed PE (guaifenesin and phenylephrine) together?
Oxymetazoline is a topical decongestant in many nasal sprays. This should only be used for a short time for congestion. You may use it at the same time as Sudafed PE. All these products should be avoided if you have high blood pressure, unless recommended by your physician.

Can I take Mucinex (guaifenesin), an expectorant, with:


Plain Mucinex may be taken with any antibiotic or, really, any other non-expectorant drug. The only problem with this would be if you have any direct allergies to guaifenesin or to any fillers, binders, etc., in the formulation of the tablets.  Be sure to drink plenty of water with any expectorant product.
Lisinopril 5mg? Mucinex and lisinopril are fine together, as long as you take the plain Mucinex. If you have hypertension (high blood pressure), you should avoid the decongestant that is found in Mucinex D.  Drink plenty of water with the Mucinex.
Claritin-D 12-Hour? Yes. As long as you have the plain Mucinex. Claritin-D is a combination of a long-acting antihistamine with a decongestant (loratadine with pseudoephedrine).
Tylenol Sinus Pain and Pressure? Tylenol makes several different combinations of drugs that can be used for sinus pain and pressure. The combinations all have acetaminophen and pseudoephedrine in varying strengths. Some also add an antihistamine, usually diphenhydramine or chlorpheniramine. One formula also adds dextromethorphan to stop a cough. Plain Mucinex is fine with any Tylenol product. Drink plenty of water (8 to 10 glasses daily), and limit your total daily amount of acetaminophen to no more than 3000mg per day.
Flonase and amoxicillin?  Yes. Inhaled steroids such as Flonase (fluticasone propionate) may be used with antibiotics and expectorants. Follow the Flonase instructions to ensure proper use. Take the amoxicillin until finished. Drink plenty of water with the Mucinex.
Micardis (Telmisartan)? Yes, assuming you are not pregnant, as Micardis is contraindicated with pregnancy. Drink plenty of water with the Mucinex.

Does Mucinex affect blood sugar levels?
No. Be sure to drink plenty of water with you're taking this drug.

Does Mucinex contain an antihistamine?
No. Mucinex (guaifenesin) is an expectorant. This type of drug will help clear your lungs of mucous. This is not an antihistamine. Antihistamines are for allergy symptoms. One thing in common with the two is that you should drink plenty of fluids with both types of drugs.

Can I take Mucinex DM (guaifenesin and dextromethorphan), an expectorant and cough suppressant, with:

Yes. Drink plenty of water with the Mucinex. Xanax can make you drowsy.
Yes. Take no more than 3000mg of Tylenol per day, and drink plenty of fluids with the Mucinex.
Generic Claritin?  Yes. Be sure to drink plenty of water with these drugs.
High Blood Pressure? Yes. Mucinex should not affect blood pressure. If you have severe chest congestion, drink plenty of water. If you have uncontrolled high blood pressure, talk to your physician before taking any over-the-counter medications. Talk to your physician if this condition lasts several days.

I take Adderall XR 40mg daily. Can I take Mucinex DM, Zicam or Tylenol Cold/Flu?
Yes. You must be careful with Mucinex DM and Tylenol Cold/Flu. Some formulations of Tylenol Cold/Flu also contain DM (dextromethorphan). Follow the instructions on each package, and do not take Mucinex DM with Tylenol Cold/Flu. During the cold/flu season, make sure to get adequate rest/sleep, drink plenty of fluids, get a flu shot, and wash your hands often and/or use hand sanitizer.

Can I take Robitussin Head and Chest Congestion if I am taking paroxetine?
Yes. Robitussin Head and Chest (in each 5 mL tsp: guaifenesin, USP 100 mg & phenylephrine HCl, USP 5 mg) may be taken with paroxetine (Paxil). Drink plenty of water with these medications.

Can I take Claritin and Sudafed at the same time?
Yes. Claritin (loratadine) may be taken with Sudafed (pseudoephedrine) without trouble. In fact, you may purchase these two drugs in one tablet Claritin-D, Alavert-D or any generic loratadine-D.

What cough mixture can I take? I'm on warfarin and methotrexate.
(Coumadin) and methotrexate (Rheumatrex ) may both be taken with any dextromethorphan product. I recommend Delsym. This is a long-acting cough suppressant and has a reasonably good flavor. Avoid taking these medications at the same time as vitamins and citrus fruit.  Drink plenty of water to keep your throat moist and reduce the tickle.

What drug is recommended for congestion while treating fever with Motrin?
If you have hypertension or (high blood pressure), you are limited in what can be safely taken. I prefer Mucinex (guaifenesin) for chest congestion. Follow the directions on the package. This would not affect high blood pressure. For head congestion, saline nasal spray will moisturize and open sinus passages without increasing blood pressure. Sudafed (pseudoephedrine) works well, but can increase blood pressure, and you have the inconvenience of legally needing to sign for this at the pharmacy counter. The current over-the-counter Sudafed PE (phenylephrine) is also effective, but will increase blood pressure. Stand in a warm shower and breath in the mist, use a humidifier (cool mist) and increase the amount of water you drink each day. If your congestion is from a seasonal allergy, speak to your physician about pre-emptive treatments. Motrin (ibuprofen) is fine with using any of these remedies. Take the Motrin with food or milk and only as needed.

Can I mix Mucinex 12-Hour with Delsym 12-Hour?
Yes, as long as the Mucinex is the plain formula (not with any other drug added). Drink plenty of water with both.

Can I take an antibiotic with Tylenol Cold?
There are several different formulas for Tylenol Cold -- all with a combination of dextromethorphan, pseudoephedrine, acetaminophen and chlorpheniramine. As a general rule, there would be no major drug interaction between any given antibiotic and these drugs. Make sure your pharmacist knows you're taking an over-the-counter cold medication. and tell your physician that you are self-medicating for the cold symptoms.

I have had a cough on and off for over 12 weeks. I have been on five courses of antibiotics including Ceftin, Levaquin and azithromycin. The cough returns quickly. I have had a Medrol packet prescribed, but have one last dose of azithromycin (500mg) to complete. Should I finish and then take the Medrol or wait out azithromycin's 3-day half-life?
You may take Azithromycin (Zithromax or Z-pak) with Medrol (methylprednisolone). You may take both with food to avoid stomach upset.

I have been taking Mucinex D -- extra-strength three days plus azithromycin. I still have sinus congestion, which does not let me breathe. Should I give it more days to work or go back to my doctor?
Give it a little more time (2 days). Try using saline nasal spray, and drink more liquids. The azithromycin must be taken until complete.

I am 38 and have been on telmisartan for hypertension for three years. What can I take for the common cold?
You may use saline nasal spray/drops for congestion, dextromethorphan for a cough and any antihistamine for runny nose/allergy symptoms. Do not take any oral decongestant without consulting your doctor.

What cold medicine is good while on Coumadin?
Any product that does not contain aspirin, any salicylate, steroid or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug. Avoid large doses of acetaminophen (Tylenol).

Can prolonged use (several years) of naphazoline (nasal drops) cause arterial hypertension? I stopped taking it recently and my blood pressure continues to be high.
Yes. Using a vaso-constrictive nasal spray for extended periods of time will cause blood pressure to increase. It may take a while to become normal again.

What can I take for the common cold and nasal congestion?
If you have high blood pressure, the best product to use is saline nasal drops or spray. Anything else may cause the pressure to increase. If your pressure is normal, you can use pseudoephedrine or phenylephrine. Follow the directions on the package appropriate for your age.

Does taking Mucinex DM increase the amount of times that I cough?
Some people find that Mucinex products, or any medication that has an expectorant in the formula, may cause them to be coughing.  Actually, the coughing helps bring the congested materials up out of the lungs. In theory, it is a good cough to clear your lungs. The DM (dextromethorphan) in the Mucinex stops nonproductive, unnecessary coughs. Be sure to drink plenty of fluids while taking any Mucinex (guaifenesin) product.

Will Walgreen's Wal-Dryl provide the same sedative effect as Benadryl?
If Wal-Dryl is diphenhydramine, and the strength is the same as Benadryl (diphenhydramine), then yes -- they are equivalent. Diphenhydramine is a short-acting antihistamine, and I would use the least expensive I could find. You could price the generic Benadryl at the BJC outpatient pharmacies.

Can I safely take 800 milligrams of guaifenesin per dose? What is the maximum amount per day?
The dose of guaifenesin depends upon the type of product you have. This is available in both an immediate-release or in a sustained-release product, either of which should be taken with plenty of water. The adult dose for each type is: liquid/syrup/immediate-release, 200 to 400 mg orally every 4 hours, maximum dose 2400 mg/day; sustained-release, 600 to 1200 mg orally every 12 hours, maximum dose 2400 mg/day

This can be taken with antihistamines, decongestants and cough suppressants, if needed.

What is the carb/sugar count per adult dosage in Robitussin DM?
Robitussin DM is a mixture of guaifenesin and dextromethorphan as active ingredients. According to Wyeth Labs, maker of Robitussin products, the inactive ingredients in Robitussin Cough DM are:citric acid, FD&C red no. 40, flavors, glucose, glycerin, high-fructose corn syrup, menthol, saccharin sodium, sodium benzoate and water. The normal dose for this cough syrup is 5-10ml (cc) every 4-6 hours as needed. I was able to determine that each teaspoonful (5cc/ml) contains 1.05mg carbs and no sugar. There is 0.38gm of sorbitol per teaspoon. I would not think that the typical patient -- even a controlled diabetic -- would have much concern for this limited amount carbs/sugars. Talk to your dietitian to ensure this is alright for you.

My cough keeps me awake and gives chest pain. What's the best cough medicine to stop a persistent dry cough, especially at night?
The longest lasting over-the-counter cough syrup is Delsym. It has dextromethorphan in a time-release suspension. Shake the bottle before using. Drink extra water during the day. There are prescription cough suppressants that have a long action also. If this continues, contact your physician.

Do antihistamines cause increased or decreased appetite?
In children, antihistamines tend to excite; in adults, they tend to sedate. Antihistamines can dry out mucous membranes and increase thirst. This type of medication should have no affect on appetite.

What's a good expectorant for an adult?
The most commonly used/prescribed expectorant is guaifenesin. Two popular brands are Robitussin and Mucinex.

Can I, a 22-year-old male, take Mucinex DM and Aleve Liquid Pill at the same time for a very bad sore throat and headache?
Yes. Aleve (naproxen sodium) is a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug used to relieve pain and inflammation. Mucinex DM is a combination of guaifenesin and dextromethorphan used to stop a cough and relieve chest congestion. Taking the two together should not pose any problems, if you drink plenty of water and take after a meal. The Aleve can irritate your GI track. Do not take Aleve if you are taking aspirin or steroids, without contacting your physician first.

Can I take over-the-counter cold remedies while taking Seroquel?
Seroquel (quetiapine fumarate) is an antipsychotic drug in the dibenzothiazepine class. There are no listed interactions with the typical over-the-counter cold remedies.  There are some antibiotics that can interact with Seroquel, as well as prednisone, which is used often with asthmatics and for some people with extreme allergies. Be careful with antihistamines.  These can cause drowsiness, and Seroquel could add to this effect.

What instructions would you give a patient with controlled hypertension to whom you have recommended a topical nasal decongestant?
Nasal decongestant sprays or drops (Afrin/Neo-Synephrine/others) constrict blood vessels in the nasal mucosa. When you constrict blood vessels, your blood pressure usually goes up. Only use 2-3 days. I recommend patients try nasal saline spray (Ocean/Ayr) first; take hot, steamy showers and breathe in the mist. This can help congestion without the worry of increasing blood pressure.

 Copyright ©1997-, BJC HealthCare.
All Rights Reserved.