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Pronunciation: DYE-fi-lin
Class: Xanthine derivative

Trade Names

- Elixir 100 mg per 15 mL

- Tablets 200 mg
- Tablets 400 mg


Relaxes bronchial smooth muscle and stimulates central respiratory drive.

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Rapidly absorbed, reaching a mean C max of 17.1 mcg/mL in about 45 min.


Not metabolized.


Unchanged by the kidney. Elimination half-life is approximately 2 h. Approximately 88% excreted unchanged in the urine.

Special Populations

Renal Function Impairment

Cl would be correspondingly reduced in patients with impaired renal function. In anuric patients, the half-life may be increased 3 to 4 times normal.

Hepatic Function Impairment

Pharmacokinetics not affected by hepatic function impairment.

Indications and Usage

Relief of acute bronchial asthma and reversible bronchospasm associated with chronic bronchitis and emphysema.


Hypersensitivity to any component of the product or related xanthine compounds.

Dosage and Administration


PO Usual dose is up to 15 mg/kg every 6 h.


200 to 400 mg (2 to 4 Tbsp) every 6 h. Dose should be titrated to severity of condition and response of patient. Measure and administer prescribed dose of elixir using dosing syringe, dosing spoon, or dosing cup.

Renal Function Impairment

Cl is reduced in patients with impaired renal function; make appropriate dosage adjustments.


Store elixir at 59° to 86°F. Store tablets at 68° to 77°F.

Drug Interactions


Catecholamine-induced arrhythmias have been reported when halothane was administered after theophylline.


May increase the plasma half-life of dyphylline.

Sympathomimetic bronchodilators

Synergistic pharmacologic effect may occur.

Laboratory Test Interactions

None well documented.

Adverse Reactions


Circulatory failure, extrasystoles, flushing, hypotension, palpitation, tachycardia, ventricular arrhythmias.


Agitation, generalized clonic and tonic convulsions, headache, hyperexcitability, insomnia, irritability, muscle twitching, restlessness.


Diarrhea, epigastric pain, hematemesis, nausea, vomiting.


Hyperglycemia, SIADH.


Albuminuria, diuresis, gross and microscopic hematuria.





Note frequency and severity of asthma attacks.


Category C .


Excreted in breast milk.


Safety and efficacy have not been established.


Use with caution (usually starting at the low end of the dosage range) because of the greater frequency of decreased hepatic, renal, or cardiac function, and concomitant diseases or other drug therapy.

Renal Function

Cl is reduced in patients with impaired renal function; make appropriate dosage adjustments.

Special Risk Patients

Use with caution in patients with severe cardiac disease, hypertension, hyperthyroidism, acute myocardial injury, or peptic ulcer.

Xanthine products

Ensure other xanthine products (eg, theophylline) are not being coadministered with dyphylline.



Agitation, anorexia, cardiac arrhythmias, CV collapse, death, dehydration, diaphoresis, diarrhea, excessive thirst, extrasystoles, fasciculation, generalized clonic and tonic convulsions, headache, hyperreflexia, hyperthermia, insomnia, irritability, nausea, nervousness, restlessness, seizures, severe vomiting, tachycardia, tinnitus, vomiting.

Patient Information

  • Advise patient to take prescribed dose every 6 h without regard to meals, but to take with food if stomach upset occurs.
  • Advise patient or caregiver using elixir to measure and administer prescribed dose using dosing syringe, dosing spoon, or dosing cup.
  • Advise patient if a dose is missed, to take the dose as soon as remembered; however, if it is less than 3 h before the next scheduled dose, advise patient to skip the missed dose and take the next dose at the regularly scheduled time. Caution patient not to double the dose to catch up.
  • Instruct patient not to stop the medication once symptoms have been controlled and that continued daily use is necessary to continue to control symptoms.
  • Advise patient that medication does not replace controller medications (eg, inhaled or oral corticosteroids) and to continue daily use of controller medications as prescribed by health care provider.
  • Caution patient not to increase dose and to inform health care provider if asthma symptoms do not improve or worsen, if more short-acting bronchodilator than usual is needed, or if the short-acting bronchodilator appears to become less effective.
  • Advise patient to carry medical identification (eg, card, bracelet) if experiencing acute severe asthma attacks requiring rapid systemic treatment.
  • Advise patient or caregiver to promptly report any of the following to health care provider: anxiety, nervousness, or restlessness; persistent nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea; fainting spells or light-headedness; fast or irregular heartbeat; pounding in the chest; flushing of the face; seizures (convulsions); skin rash, itching, or hives; tremor; unusual weakness or tiredness.

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