Dextromethorphan/ guaifenesin extended-release tablets

Generic Name: dextromethorphan/guaifenesin (DEX-troe-meth-OR-fan/gwye-FEN-e-sin)
Brand Name: Examples include Guaifenex DM and Bidex-A

Dextromethorphan/ guaifenesin extended-release tablets is used for:

Temporarily relieving cough due to the common cold, upper respiratory tract infections, sinus inflammation, sore throat, or bronchitis.

Dextromethorphan/guaifenesin extended-release tablets is a combination of an expectorant (guaifenesin) and a cough suppressant (dextromethorphan). It works by loosening mucus and lung secretions in the chest and making coughs more productive.

Do NOT use dextromethorphan/ guaifenesin extended-release tablets if:

  • you are allergic to any ingredient in dextromethorphan/guaifenesin extended-release tablets
  • you are taking or have taken a monoamine oxidase inhibitor (MAOI) (eg, selegiline) within the last 14 days
  • you are taking a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) (eg, fluoxetine)

Contact your doctor or health care provider right away if any of these apply to you.

Slideshow: OTC Medication Use In Pregnancy: Wise or Worrisome?

Before using dextromethorphan/ guaifenesin extended-release tablets:

Some medical conditions may interact with dextromethorphan/guaifenesin extended-release tablets. Tell your health care provider if you have any medical conditions, especially if any of the following apply to you:

  • if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding
  • if you are taking any prescription or nonprescription medicine, herbal preparation, or dietary supplement
  • if you have allergies to medicines, foods, or other substances
  • if you have chronic cough, chronic bronchitis or any breathing problems, such as asthma, emphysema, or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)
  • if you have been very ill or weakened, or you are confined to a bed or chair

Some MEDICINES MAY INTERACT with dextromethorphan/guaifenesin extended-release tablets. Tell your health care provider if you are taking any other medicines, especially any of the following:

  • MAOIs (eg, selegiline) and SSRIs (eg, fluoxetine) because the risk of serious side effects may be increased by dextromethorphan/guaifenesin extended-release tablets

This may not be a complete list of all interactions that may occur. Ask your health care provider if dextromethorphan/guaifenesin extended-release tablets may interact with other medicines that you take. Check with your health care provider before you start, stop, or change the dose of any medicine.

How to use dextromethorphan/ guaifenesin extended-release tablets:

Use dextromethorphan/guaifenesin extended-release tablets as directed by your doctor. Check the label on the medicine for exact dosing instructions.

  • Take dextromethorphan/guaifenesin extended-release tablets by mouth with or without food. If stomach upset occurs, take with food to reduce stomach irritation.
  • Swallow dextromethorphan/guaifenesin extended-release tablets whole. Do not break, crush, or chew before swallowing. Some brands of dextromethorphan/guaifenesin extended-release tablets may be broken in half before taking. If you have difficulty swallowing the whole tablet, ask your pharmacist if your brand of medicine may be broken in half.
  • Drinking extra fluids while you are taking dextromethorphan/guaifenesin extended-release tablets is recommended. Check with your doctor for instructions.
  • If you miss a dose of dextromethorphan/guaifenesin extended-release tablets and you are taking it regularly, take it as soon as possible. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule.

Ask your health care provider any questions you may have about how to use dextromethorphan/guaifenesin extended-release tablets.

Important safety information:

  • Dextromethorphan/guaifenesin extended-release tablets may cause drowsiness or dizziness. These effects may be worse if you take it with alcohol or certain medicines. Use dextromethorphan/guaifenesin extended-release tablets with caution. Do not drive or perform other possibly unsafe tasks until you know how you react to it.
  • Do not drink alcohol or use medicines that may cause drowsiness (eg, sleep aids, muscle relaxers) while you are using dextromethorphan/guaifenesin extended-release tablets without first checking with your doctor; it may add to their effects. Ask your pharmacist if you have questions about which medicines may cause drowsiness.
  • If your cough lasts for more than 1 week or comes back, or if you also have a fever, rash, or persistent headache, contact your health care provider. A persistent cough could be a sign of a serious condition.
  • Dextromethorphan/guaifenesin extended-release tablets has dextromethorphan in it. Before you start any new medicine, check the label to see if it has dextromethorphan in it too. If it does or if you are not sure, check with your doctor or pharmacist.
  • Dextromethorphan/guaifenesin extended-release tablets may interfere with certain lab tests. Be sure your doctor and lab personnel know you are taking dextromethorphan/guaifenesin extended-release tablets.
  • Use dextromethorphan/guaifenesin extended-release tablets with caution in the ELDERLY; they may be more sensitive to its effects.
  • Dextromethorphan/guaifenesin extended-release tablets should not be used in CHILDREN younger than 6 years old; safety and effectiveness in these children have not been confirmed.
  • PREGNANCY and BREAST-FEEDING: If you become pregnant, contact your doctor. You will need to discuss the benefits and risks of using dextromethorphan/guaifenesin extended-release tablets while you are pregnant. It is not known if dextromethorphan/guaifenesin extended-release tablets is found in breast milk. Do not breast-feed while taking dextromethorphan/guaifenesin extended-release tablets.

Possible side effects of dextromethorphan/ guaifenesin extended-release tablets:

All medicines may cause side effects, but many people have no, or minor, side effects. Check with your doctor if any of these most COMMON side effects persist or become bothersome:

Dizziness; drowsiness; stomach upset.

Seek medical attention right away if any of these SEVERE side effects occur:

Severe allergic reactions (rash; hives; itching; difficulty breathing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue).

This is not a complete list of all side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, contact your health care provider. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. To report side effects to the appropriate agency, please read the Guide to Reporting Problems to FDA.

If OVERDOSE is suspected:

Contact 1-800-222-1222 (the American Association of Poison Control Centers), your local poison control center, or emergency room immediately. Symptoms may include confusion; excitement; hallucinations; slowed breathing.

Proper storage of dextromethorphan/guaifenesin extended-release tablets:

Store dextromethorphan/guaifenesin extended-release tablets at room temperature, between 59 and 86 degrees F (15 and 30 degrees C). Store away from heat, moisture, and light. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep dextromethorphan/guaifenesin extended-release tablets out of the reach of children and away from pets.

General information:

  • If you have any questions about dextromethorphan/guaifenesin extended-release tablets, please talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
  • Dextromethorphan/guaifenesin extended-release tablets is to be used only by the patient for whom it is prescribed. Do not share it with other people.
  • If your symptoms do not improve or if they become worse, check with your doctor.
  • Check with your pharmacist about how to dispose of unused medicine.

This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take dextromethorphan/guaifenesin extended-release tablets or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about dextromethorphan/guaifenesin extended-release tablets. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to dextromethorphan/guaifenesin extended-release tablets. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using dextromethorphan/guaifenesin extended-release tablets.

Issue Date: September 3, 2014
Database Edition 14.3.1.003
Copyright © 2014 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc.

Disclaimer: This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take this medicine or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about this medicine. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to this medicine. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using this medicine.

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