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Chlorpheniramine and hydrocodone

Generic Name: chlorpheniramine and hydrocodone (KLOR fen IR a meen and HYE droe KOE done)
Brand Name: S-T Forte 2, TussiCaps, Tussionex PennKinetic, HyTan, Novasus, Vituz

Medically reviewed on January 22, 2018

What is chlorpheniramine and hydrocodone?

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.

Hydrocodone is a narcotic cough suppressant. It affects the signals in the brain that trigger cough reflex.

Chlorpheniramine and hydrocodone is a combination medicine used to treat runny nose, sneezing, itching, watery eyes, and cough caused by allergies, the common cold, or the flu.

Chlorpheniramine and hydrocodone may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.

Important Information

Hydrocodone can slow or stop your breathing, and may be habit-forming. MISUSE OF chlorpheniramine and hydrocodone CAN CAUSE ADDICTION, OVERDOSE, OR DEATH, especially in a child or other person using the medicine without a prescription.

This medicine is not for use in anyone under 18.

Fatal side effects can occur if you use hydrocodone with alcohol, or with other drugs that cause drowsiness or slow your breathing.

Before taking this medicine

You should not use this medicine if you are allergic to chlorpheniramine or hydrocodone.

Do not give this medicine to anyone younger than 18 years old.

To make sure chlorpheniramine and hydrocodone is safe for you, tell your doctor if you have ever had:

If you use hydrocodone while you are pregnant, your baby could become dependent on the drug. This can cause life-threatening withdrawal symptoms in the baby after it is born. Babies born dependent on habit-forming medicine may need medical treatment for several weeks. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant.

You should not breast-feed while using chlorpheniramine and hydrocodone.

How should I take chlorpheniramine and hydrocodone?

Follow all directions on your prescription label and read all medication guides. Never use chlorpheniramine and hydrocodone in larger amounts, or for longer than prescribed.

Hydrocodone may be habit-forming, even at regular doses. Never share this medicine with another person, especially someone with a history of drug abuse or addiction. MISUSE OF NARCOTIC MEDICINE CAN CAUSE ADDICTION, OVERDOSE, OR DEATH, especially in a child or other person using the medicine without a prescription. Selling or giving away the medicine is against the law.

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

Do not mix the oral suspension with any other liquids or medicines.

Do not crush, chew, break, or open an extended-release capsule. Swallow it whole.

Call 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.

If you need surgery, tell the surgeon ahead of time that you are using chlorpheniramine and hydrocodone.

Store at room temperature away from moisture and heat. Do not freeze.

Keep track of your medicine. Hydrocodone is a drug of abuse and you should be aware if anyone is using your medicine improperly or without a prescription.

What happens if I miss a dose?

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. A hydrocodone overdose can be fatal, especially in a child or other person using the medicine without a prescription. Overdose symptoms may include slow breathing and heart rate, severe drowsiness, muscle weakness, cold and clammy skin, pinpoint pupils, and fainting.

What should I avoid while taking chlorpheniramine and hydrocodone?

Do not drink alcohol. Dangerous side effects or death could occur.

Avoid driving or operating machinery until you know how chlorpheniramine and hydrocodone will affect you. Dizziness or severe drowsiness can cause falls or other accidents.

Ask a doctor or pharmacist before using any other cold, allergy, cough, or sleep medicine. Taking certain products together can cause you to get too much of a certain drug.

Chlorpheniramine and hydrocodone side effects

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

Like other narcotic medications, hydrocodone can slow your breathing. Death may occur if breathing becomes too weak.

A person caring for you should seek emergency medical attention if you have slow breathing with long pauses, blue colored lips, or if you are hard to wake up.

Stop using this medicine and call your doctor at once if you have:

  • severe drowsiness;

  • noisy breathing, sighing, shallow breathing;

  • confusion; or

  • a slow heart rate or weak pulse.

Side effects such as dry mouth, constipation, and confusion may be more likely in older adults.

Common side effects may include:

  • trouble breathing;

  • drowsiness;

  • confusion;

  • nausea, vomiting; or

  • little or no urination.

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.

See also: Side effects (in more detail)

Chlorpheniramine and hydrocodone dosing information

Usual Adult Dose for Cold Symptoms:

Immediate-release (IR): 5 mL orally every 4 to 6 hours as needed
Maximum dose: 20 mL in 24 hours
-Each 5 mL of IR oral solution contains hydrocodone bitartrate 5 mg with chlorpheniramine maleate 4 mg

Extended-release (ER): One dose orally every 12 hours
Maximum dose: 2 doses in 24 hours
-A dose equals 1 ER capsule or 5 mL ER suspension; each dose provides hydrocodone polistirex equivalent to 10 mg of hydrocodone bitartrate and chlorpheniramine polistirex equivalent to 8 mg chlorpheniramine maleate

Comments:
-Oral solution and suspension must be measured with an accurate milliliter measuring device; do not use a household teaspoon.

Use: For the symptomatic relief of cough and upper respiratory symptoms associated with allergy or a cold.

Usual Adult Dose for Cough:

Immediate-release (IR): 5 mL orally every 4 to 6 hours as needed
Maximum dose: 20 mL in 24 hours
-Each 5 mL of IR oral solution contains hydrocodone bitartrate 5 mg with chlorpheniramine maleate 4 mg

Extended-release (ER): One dose orally every 12 hours
Maximum dose: 2 doses in 24 hours
-A dose equals 1 ER capsule or 5 mL ER suspension; each dose provides hydrocodone polistirex equivalent to 10 mg of hydrocodone bitartrate and chlorpheniramine polistirex equivalent to 8 mg chlorpheniramine maleate

Comments:
-Oral solution and suspension must be measured with an accurate milliliter measuring device; do not use a household teaspoon.

Use: For the symptomatic relief of cough and upper respiratory symptoms associated with allergy or a cold.

What other drugs will affect chlorpheniramine and hydrocodone?

Taking chlorpheniramine and hydrocodone with other drugs that make you sleepy or slow your breathing can cause dangerous side effects or death. Ask your doctor before taking a sleeping pill, narcotic pain medicine, prescription cough medicine, a muscle relaxer, or medicine for anxiety, depression, or seizures.

Other drugs may interact with chlorpheniramine and hydrocodone, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Tell your doctor about all your current medicines and any medicine you start or stop using.

Further information

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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