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brompheniramine, dihydrocodeine, and phenylephrine

Pronunciation: BROM fen IR a meen, dye HYE dro KOE deen, FEN il EFF rin

Brand: Poly-Tussin DHC

What is the most important information I should know about brompheniramine, dihydrocodeine, and phenylephrine?

Multum donot

Do not use this medication if you have used an MAO inhibitor such as isocarboxazid (Marplan), phenelzine (Nardil), rasagiline (Azilect), selegiline (Eldepryl, Emsam), or tranylcypromine (Parnate) within the past 14 days. Serious, life-threatening side effects can occur if you take a cough and cold medicine before the MAO inhibitor has cleared from your body.

Multum donot

You should not use brompheniramine, dihydrocodeine, and phenylephrine if you are allergic to it, or if you have peptic ulcer, severe or uncontrolled high blood pressure, severe coronary artery disease, ischemic heart disease (reduced circulation of blood to the heart), narrow-angle glaucoma, if you are breast-feeding a baby, or if you are unable to urinate.

Before taking this medication, tell your doctor if you have heart disease or high blood pressure, asthma or other breathing disorder, diabetes, a thyroid disorder, glaucoma, kidney or liver disease, gallbladder disease, pancreatitis, Addison's disease or other adrenal gland disorder, a seizure disorder, head injury or brain tumor, an enlarged prostate, problems with urination, mental illness, or a history of drug or alcohol addiction.

Multum nochild

Always ask a doctor before giving cough or cold medicine to a child. Death can occur from the misuse of cough or cold medicine in very young children. Brompheniramine, dihydrocodeine, and phenylephrine should not be given to a child younger than 6 years old.

What is brompheniramine, dihydrocodeine, and phenylephrine?

Brompheniramine is an antihistamine that reduces the natural chemical histamine in the body. Histamine can produce symptoms of sneezing, itching, watery eyes, and runny nose.

Dihydrocodeine is a narcotic cough suppressant.

Phenylephrine is a decongestant that shrinks blood vessels in the nasal passages. Dilated blood vessels can cause nasal congestion (stuffy nose).

The combination of brompheniramine, dihydrocodeine, and phenylephrine is used to treat nasal congestion, sneezing, runny nose, and cough caused by the common cold.

Dihydrocodeine will not treat a cough that is caused by smoking, asthma, or emphysema.

Brompheniramine, dihydrocodeine, and phenylephrine may also be used for other purposes not listed in this medication guide.

What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before taking brompheniramine, dihydrocodeine, and phenylephrine?

Multum donot

Do not use this medication if you have used an MAO inhibitor such as isocarboxazid (Marplan), phenelzine (Nardil), rasagiline (Azilect), selegiline (Eldepryl, Emsam), or tranylcypromine (Parnate) within the past 14 days. Serious, life-threatening side effects can occur if you take a cough and cold medicine before the MAO inhibitor has cleared from your body.

Multum donot

You should also not take codeine if you are having an asthma attack or if you have a bowel obstruction called paralytic ileus.

Multum donot

You should not use brompheniramine, dihydrocodeine, or phenylephrine, if you have ever had an allergic reaction to it, or if you have:

  • severe or uncontrolled high blood pressure;
  • severe coronary artery disease;
  • narrow-angle glaucoma;
  • peptic ulcer;
  • if you are unable to urinate;
  • if you are pregnant;
  • if you are having an asthma attack.

If you have certain conditions, you may need a dose adjustment or special tests to safely take brompheniramine, dihydrocodeine, and phenylephrine. Before taking this medication, tell your doctor if you have:

  • heart disease or high blood pressure;
  • ischemic heart disease (reduced circulation of blood to the heart);
  • asthma, COPD, or other breathing disorder;
  • glaucoma;
  • diabetes;
  • kidney or liver disease;
  • a thyroid disorder;
  • enlarged prostate, urination problems;
  • gallbladder disease or pancreatitis;
  • Addison's disease or other adrenal gland disorders;
  • a history of head injury or brain tumor;
  • epilepsy or other seizure disorder;
  • mental illness; or
  • a history of drug or alcohol addiction.
Multum nopreg

FDA pregnancy category C. This medication may be harmful to an unborn baby. Dihydrocodeine may cause breathing problems or addiction/withdrawal symptoms in a newborn. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant while you are taking this medication.

Multum nobrfeed

This medication can pass into breast milk and may harm a nursing baby. The use of dihydrocodeine by some nursing mothers may lead to life-threatening side effects in the baby. Do not use this medication without telling your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.

Older adults may be more sensitive to the side effects of this medication.

Multum habit

Dihydrocodeine may be habit-forming and should be used only by the person it was prescribed for. This medication should never be shared with another person, especially someone who has a history of drug abuse or addiction. Keep the medication in a secure place where others cannot get to it.

How should I take brompheniramine, dihydrocodeine, and phenylephrine?

Take this medication exactly as it was prescribed for you. Do not take the medication in larger amounts, or take it for longer than recommended by your doctor. Follow the directions on your prescription label. Cold medicine is usually taken for only a short time until your symptoms clear up.

Multum nochild

Always ask a doctor before giving cough or cold medicine to a child. Death can occur from the misuse of cough or cold medicine in very young children. Brompheniramine, dihydrocodeine, and phenylephrine should not be given to a child younger than 6 years old.

Multum water

Take the medicine with a full glass of water.

Measure liquid medicine with a special dose-measuring spoon or cup, not a regular table spoon. If you do not have a dose-measuring device, ask your pharmacist for one.

Multum donot

Talk with your doctor if your symptoms do not improve after 7 days of treatment, or if you have a fever with a headache or skin rash.

Multum rt

Store brompheniramine, dihydrocodeine, and phenylephrine at room temperature away from moisture and heat.

Keep track of how much of this medicine has been used from the bottle. Dihydrocodeine is a drug of abuse and you should be aware if any person in the household is using this medicine improperly or without a prescription.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Since cough and cold medicine is usually taken only as needed, you may not be on a dosing schedule. If you are taking the medication regularly, take the missed dose as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and take the medicine at your next regularly scheduled time. Do not take extra medicine to make up the missed dose.

What happens if I overdose?

Multum emt

Seek emergency medical attention if you think you have used too much of this medicine. An overdose of dihydrocodeine can be fatal.

Overdose symptoms may include extreme drowsiness, pinpoint pupils, cold and clammy skin, limp muscles, fainting, seizure (convulsions), shallow breathing or breathing that stops.

What should I avoid while taking brompheniramine, dihydrocodeine, and phenylephrine?

Multum dizzy

This medication can cause side effects that may impair your thinking or reactions. Be careful if you drive or do anything that requires you to be awake and alert.

Multum noalcohol

Avoid drinking alcohol while you are taking this medication. Alcohol can add to the side effects of brompheniramine, dihydrocodeine, and phenylephrine.

Tell your doctor if you regularly use other medicines that make you sleepy (such as pain medication, sleeping pills, muscle relaxers, and medicine for seizures, depression or anxiety). They can add to sleepiness caused by brompheniramine, dihydrocodeine, and phenylephrine.

Multum donot

Do not use any other over-the-counter cold, allergy, or pain medication without first asking your doctor or pharmacist. Brompheniramine or phenylephrine are contained in many medicines available over the counter. If you take certain products together you may accidentally take too much of a certain drug. Read the label of any other medicine you are using to see if it contains brompheniramine or phenylephrine.

What are the possible side effects of brompheniramine, dihydrocodeine, and phenylephrine?

Multum emt

Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Multum emt

Stop using this medication and call your doctor at once if you have any of these serious side effects:

  • fast or pounding heartbeat;
  • feeling like you might pass out;
  • weak or shallow breathing;
  • confusion, hallucinations;
  • severe dizziness, anxiety, restless feeling, or nervousness;
  • seizure (convulsions); or
  • painful or difficult urination.

Less serious side effects may include:

  • dizziness, drowsiness, headache, tired feeling;
  • feeling excited or restless;
  • increased dreaming;
  • increased sweating or urination;
  • nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, constipation, loss of appetite;
  • dry mouth;
  • blurred vision, dry eyes; or
  • mild skin rash or itching.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Tell your doctor about any unusual or bothersome side effect. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

What other drugs will affect brompheniramine, dihydrocodeine, and phenylephrine?

Tell your doctor about all other medicines you use, especially:

  • methyldopa (Aldomet);
  • mecamylamine (Inversine);
  • reserpine;
  • promethazine (Phenergan, Adgan, Anergan 50, Pentazine);
  • a beta-blocker such as atenolol (Tenormin), carteolol (Cartrol), metoprolol (Lopressor, Toprol), nadolol (Corgard), propranolol (Inderal), sotalol (Betapace), timolol (Blocadren), and others; or
  • an antidepressant such as amitriptyline (Elavil), clomipramine (Anafranil), imipramine (Janimine, Tofranil), and others.

This list is not complete and there may be other drugs that can interact with brompheniramine, dihydrocodeine, and phenylephrine. Tell your doctor about all your prescription and over-the-counter medications, vitamins, minerals, herbal products, and drugs prescribed by other doctors. Do not start a new medication without telling your doctor.

Where can I get more information?

Your pharmacist can provide more information about brompheniramine, dihydrocodeine, and phenylephrine.


Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.

Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided by Cerner Multum, Inc. ('Multum') is accurate, up-to-date, and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. Drug information contained herein may be time sensitive. Multum information has been compiled for use by healthcare practitioners and consumers in the United States and therefore Multum does not warrant that uses outside of the United States are appropriate, unless specifically indicated otherwise. Multum's drug information does not endorse drugs, diagnose patients or recommend therapy. Multum's drug information is an informational resource designed to assist licensed healthcare practitioners in caring for their patients and/or to serve consumers viewing this service as a supplement to, and not a substitute for, the expertise, skill, knowledge and judgment of healthcare practitioners. The absence of a warning for a given drug or drug combination in no way should be construed to indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective or appropriate for any given patient. Multum does not assume any responsibility for any aspect of healthcare administered with the aid of information Multum provides. The information contained herein is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. If you have questions about the drugs you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse or pharmacist.

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