Actifed Cold and Allergy
Generic name: chlorpheniramine and phenylephrine [ KLOR-fen-IR-a-meen-and-FEN-il-EFF-rin ]
Brand names: Actifed Cold and Allergy, Allerest PE, ChlorTan D, Cold and Allergy Relief, Ed A-Hist, ... show all 27 brands
Drug class: Upper respiratory combinations
What is Actifed Cold and Allergy?
Chlorpheniramine is an antihistamine that reduces the effects of natural chemical histamine in the body. Histamine can produce symptoms of sneezing, itching, watery eyes, and runny nose.
Actifed Cold and Allergy is a combination medicine used to treat symptoms of the common cold or seasonal allergies, including sneezing, runny or stuffy nose, and itchy, watery eyes.
Actifed Cold and Allergy may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.
Actifed Cold and Allergy side effects
Get emergency medical help if you have signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.
Actifed Cold and Allergy may cause serious side effects. Stop using Actifed Cold and Allergy and call your doctor at once if you have:
chest pain, rapid pulse, fast or uneven heart rate;
confusion, hallucinations, severe nervousness;
tremor, seizure (convulsions);
little or no urinating;
easy bruising or bleeding, unusual weakness; or
Common side effects of Actifed Cold and Allergy may include:
dizziness, drowsiness, blurred vision;
dry nose or mouth;
nausea, stomach pain, constipation, loss of appetite;
problems with memory or concentration; or
feeling restless or excited (especially in children).
This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1 800 FDA 1088.
You should not use antihistamine medication to make a child sleepy.
Before taking this medicine
You should not use Actifed Cold and Allergy if you are allergic to chlorpheniramine or phenylephrine.
Do not use this medicine if you have used an MAO inhibitor in the past 14 days. A dangerous drug interaction could occur. MAO inhibitors include isocarboxazid, linezolid, methylene blue injection, phenelzine, rasagiline, selegiline, tranylcypromine, and others.
Ask a doctor or pharmacist if it is safe for you to take this medicine if you have:
asthma or COPD, cough with mucus, or cough caused by smoking, emphysema, or chronic bronchitis;
a blockage in your stomach or intestines;
kidney or liver disease;
enlarged prostate or urination problems;
epilepsy or other seizure disorder;
pheochromocytoma (an adrenal gland tumor);
overactive thyroid; or
if you take potassium (Cytra, Epiklor, K-Lyte, K-Phos, Kaon, Klor-Con, Polycitra, Urocit-K).
It is not known whether Actifed Cold and Allergy will harm an unborn baby. Do not use this medicine without your doctor's advice if you are pregnant.
It is not known whether chlorpheniramine and phenylephrine passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. Antihistamines and decongestants may also slow breast milk production. Do not use this medicine without your doctor's advice if you are breast-feeding a baby.
Older adults may be more likely to have side effects from this medicine.
Artificially sweetened liquid cold medicine may contain phenylalanine. If you have phenylketonuria (PKU), check the medication label to see if the product contains phenylalanine.
How should I take Actifed Cold and Allergy?
Use exactly as directed on the label, or as prescribed by your doctor. Do not use in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended. Cold medicine is usually taken only for a short time until your symptoms clear up.
Do not give this medication to a child younger than 4 years old. Always ask a doctor before giving a cough or cold medicine to a child. Death can occur from the misuse of cough and cold medicines in very young children.
You should not use antihistamine medication to make a child sleepy.
Do not crush, chew, break, or open an extended-release tablet or capsule. Swallow it whole. Breaking or opening the pill may cause too much of the drug to be released at one time.
The chewable tablet must be chewed before swallowing.
Measure liquid medicine with a special dose-measuring spoon or medicine cup, not with 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 after 7 days of treatment, or if you have a fever with a headache, cough, or skin rash.
This medication can cause unusual results with allergy skin tests. Tell any doctor who treats you that you are taking an antihistamine.
If you need surgery, tell the surgeon ahead of time if you have taken a cold medicine within the past few days.
Store at room temperature away from moisture and heat.
What happens if I miss a dose?
Since cold medicine is taken 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. Skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next scheduled dose. Do not take extra medicine to make up the missed dose.
What happens if I overdose?
Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222.
What should I avoid while taking Actifed Cold and Allergy?
This medication may impair your thinking or reactions. Be careful if you drive or do anything that requires you to be alert.
Drinking alcohol can increase certain side effects of chlorpheniramine and phenylephrine.
Ask a doctor or pharmacist before using any other cold, allergy, or sleep medicine. Actifed Cold and Allergy are contained in many combination medicines. Taking certain products together can cause you to get too much of a certain drug. Check the label to see if a medicine contains an antihistamine or decongestant.
What other drugs will affect Actifed Cold and Allergy?
Ask a doctor or pharmacist before using Actifed Cold and Allergy if you are also using any other drugs, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Some medicines can cause unwanted or dangerous effects when used together. Not all possible interactions are listed in this medication guide.
Taking this medicine with other drugs that make you sleepy or slow your breathing can worsen these effects. Ask your doctor before taking Actifed Cold and Allergy with a sleeping pill, narcotic pain medicine, muscle relaxer, or medicine for anxiety, depression, or seizures.
More about Actifed Cold and Allergy (chlorpheniramine / phenylephrine)
- Check interactions
- Compare alternatives
- Side effects
- Dosage information
- During pregnancy
- Drug class: upper respiratory combinations
Related treatment guides
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.
Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.
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