Phenergan VC with Codeine

Generic Name: codeine, phenylephrine, and promethazine (KOE deen, FEN il EFF rin, and pro METH a zeen)
Brand Names: Promethazine VC with Codeine

What is Phenergan VC with Codeine (codeine, phenylephrine, and promethazine)?

Codeine is a narcotic. It is a pain reliever and a cough suppressant.

Promethazine is an antihistamine. It blocks the effects of the naturally occurring chemical histamine in your body.

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

The combination of codeine, phenylephrine, and promethazine is used to treat cold or allergy symptoms such as stuffy nose, sneezing, and cough.

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

What is the most important information I should know about Phenergan VC with Codeine (codeine, phenylephrine, and promethazine)?

Tell your doctor about all of your medical conditions before you start taking this medication. You should not use this medication if you are allergic to codeine, phenylephrine, or promethazine, or if you have high blood pressure, a blood vessel disorder, or asthma. Do not use if you have taken an MAO inhibitor such as isocarboxazid (Marplan), phenelzine (Nardil), rasagiline (Azilect), selegiline (Eldepryl, Emsam), or tranylcypromine (Parnate) within the past 14 days. Codeine may be habit-forming and should be used only by the person it was prescribed for. This medication should never be given to another person, especially someone who has a history of drug abuse or addiction. Keep the medicine in a secure place where others cannot get to it. Do not give this medication to a child younger than 16 years old without the advice of a doctor. There are many other medicines that can cause interact with codeine, phenylephrine, and promethazine. Tell your doctor about all the prescription and over-the-counter medications you use. This includes vitamins, minerals, herbal products, and drugs prescribed by other doctors. Do not start using a new medication without telling your doctor. Keep a list with you of all the medicines you use and show this list to any doctor or other healthcare provider who treats you.

What should I discuss with my doctor before taking Phenergan VC with Codeine (codeine, phenylephrine, and promethazine)?

You should not use this medication if you are allergic to codeine, phenylephrine, or promethazine, or if you have high blood pressure, a blood vessel disorder, or asthma. Do not use 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 cough or cold medicine before the MAO inhibitor has cleared from your body.

Before taking codeine, phenylephrine, and promethazine, tell your doctor if you are allergic to any drugs, or if you have:

  • sleep apnea (breathing stops during sleep);

  • chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD);

  • glaucoma;

  • epilepsy or other seizure disorder;

  • stomach ulcer, intestinal disorder, or digestive obstruction;

  • recent stomach or urinary tract surgery;

  • a weak immune system;

  • Addison's disease;

  • diabetes;

  • a thyroid disorder;

  • enlarged prostate, problems with urination;

  • heart disease, poor circulation;

  • liver or kidney disease; or
  • a head injury or brain tumor.

Codeine may be habit-forming and should be used only by the person it was prescribed for. Codeine, phenylephrine, and promethazine should never be given to 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. FDA pregnancy category C. This medication may be harmful to an unborn baby. It could also cause addiction or withdrawal symptoms in a newborn if the mother takes codeine, phenylephrine, and promethazine during pregnancy. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant during treatment. Codeine can pass into breast milk and may harm a nursing baby. The use of codeine 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. Do not give this medication to a child younger than 16 years old without the advice of a doctor.

How should I take Phenergan VC with Codeine (codeine, phenylephrine, and promethazine)?

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.

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.

Call your doctor if your symptoms do not improve within 5 days of using this medicine.

Codeine, phenylephrine, and promethazine can cause you to have unusual results with certain medical tests. Tell any doctor who treats you that you are using codeine, phenylephrine, and promethazine.

Store this medication at room temperature away from moisture, heat, and light. Keep track of how much of this medicine has been used. Codeine 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?

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 the next regularly scheduled time. Do not take extra medicine to make up the missed dose.

What happens if I overdose?

Seek emergency medical attention if you think you have used too much of this medicine. An overdose of this medication may fatal. Overdose symptoms include severe drowsiness, pinpoint pupils, cold or clammy skin, limp or stiff muscles, shallow breathing, slow heart rate, and fainting.

What should I avoid while taking Phenergan VC with Codeine (codeine, phenylephrine, and promethazine)?

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. Avoid drinking alcohol, which can increase some of the side effects of codeine, phenylephrine, and promethazine. Tell your doctor if you regularly use other medicines that make you sleepy (such as cold or allergy medicine, other pain medicine, sleeping pills, muscle relaxers, and medicine for seizures, depression, or anxiety). They can add to sleepiness caused by codeine, phenylephrine, and promethazine.

Avoid taking diet pills while you are taking codeine, phenylephrine, and promethazine.

Avoid exposure to sunlight or artificial UV rays (sunlamps or tanning beds). This medication can make your skin more sensitive to sunlight and sunburn may result. Use a sunscreen (minimum SPF 15) and wear protective clothing if you must be out in the sun.

Phenergan VC with Codeine (codeine, phenylephrine, and promethazine) side effects

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. Stop using this medication and call your doctor at once if you have any of these serious side effects:
  • restless muscle movements in your eyes, tongue, jaw, or neck, tremor (uncontrolled shaking);

  • weak or shallow breathing, feeling like you might pass out;

  • fast, slow, or pounding heartbeats;

  • confusion, agitation, hallucinations, nightmares, seizure (convulsions);

  • jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes);

  • easy bruising or bleeding, weakness;

  • urinating less than usual or not at all; or

  • fever, stiff muscles, confusion, sweating, fast or uneven heartbeats, rapid breathing.

Less serious side effects may include:

  • dizziness, drowsiness, sleepiness;

  • feeling restless, nervous, or anxious;

  • blurred vision, ringing in your ears;

  • constipation, mild nausea or vomiting;

  • warmth, redness, or tingly feeling under your skin;

  • itching, increased sweating; or

  • sleep problems (insomnia).

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Tell your doctor about any unusual or bothersome side effect.

See also: Side effects (in more detail)

What other drugs will affect Phenergan VC with Codeine (codeine, phenylephrine, and promethazine)?

Many drugs can interact with codeine, phenylephrine, and promethazine. Below is just a partial list. Tell your doctor if you are using:

  • atropine (Donnatal, and others), benztropine (Cogentin), dimenhydrinate (Dramamine), methscopolamine (Pamine), or scopolamine (Transderm-Scop);

  • a bronchodilator such as ipratroprium (Atrovent) or tiotropium (Spiriva);

  • glycopyrrolate (Robinul);

  • mepenzolate (Cantil);

  • bladder or urinary medications such as darifenacin (Enablex), flavoxate (Urispas), oxybutynin (Ditropan, Oxytrol), tolterodine (Detrol), or solifenacin (Vesicare);

  • irritable bowel medications such as dicyclomine (Bentyl), hyoscyamine (Anaspaz, Cystospaz, Levsin, and others), or propantheline (Pro-Banthine);

  • ergot medicine such as ergotamine (Ergomar, Cafergot), dihydroergotamine (D.H.E. 45, Migranal Nasal Spray), ergonovine (Ergotrate), or methylergonovine (Methergine);

  • an antidepressant such as amitriptyline (Elavil, Etrafon), clomipramine (Anafranil), nortriptyline (Pamelor), and others; or

  • a beta-blocker such as atenolol (Tenormin), bisoprolol (Zebeta), metoprolol (Lopressor, Toprol), propranolol (Inderal, InnoPran), and others.

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

Where can I get more information?

  • Your pharmacist can provide more information about codeine, phenylephrine, and promethazine.
  • 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
  • Disclaimer: 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.
Copyright 1996-2006 Cerner Multum, Inc. Version: 3.01. Revision Date: 03/24/2008 10:32:35 AM.
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