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diphenhydramine, hydrocodone, and phenylephrine

Generic Name: diphenhydramine, hydrocodone, and phenylephrine (dye fen HYE dra meen, hye droe KOE dohn, feh nill EH frin)
Brand Name: D-Tann HC, Dytan-HC, Hydro-DP, Endal HD, Rindal HPD, Tussinate, Gestuss-HC

What is this medicine?

Diphenhydramine 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 medicine.

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

Diphenhydramine, hydrocodone, and phenylephrine is a combination medicine used to treat runny or stuffy nose, sinus congestion, and cough caused by the common cold or flu.

Diphenhydramine, hydrocodone, and phenylephrine may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.

Important Information

Do not use this medicine if you have used an MAO inhibitor in the past 14 days, such as isocarboxazid, linezolid, methylene blue injection, phenelzine, rasagiline, selegiline, or tranylcypromine.

You should not use this medicine if you have recently used alcohol, sedatives, tranquilizers, or other narcotic medications.

Before taking this medicine

Do not use this medicine if you have taken 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, and tranylcypromine.

You should not use diphenhydramine, hydrocodone, and phenylephrine if you are allergic to it, or if you have recently used alcohol, sedatives, tranquilizers, or other narcotic medications.

To make sure this medicine is safe for you, tell your doctor if you have:

It is not known whether this medicine will harm an unborn baby. 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.

Diphenhydramine, hydrocodone, and phenylephrine can pass into breast milk and may harm a nursing baby. You should not breast-feed while using this medicine.

How should I take diphenhydramine, hydrocodone, and phenylephrine?

Follow all directions on your prescription label. Do not take this medicine in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended.

Hydrocodone may be habit-forming. Never share this medicine with another person, especially someone with a history of drug abuse or addiction. Keep the medication in a place where others cannot get to it.

Misuse of habit-forming medicine can cause addiction, overdose, or death. Selling or giving away this medicine is against the law.

You may take the medicine with or without food.

You may need to shake the oral suspension (liquid) before you measure a dose. Follow directions on the medicine label.

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.

Store at room temperature away from moisture and heat.

Keep track of the amount of medicine used from each new bottle. 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?

Since this medicine is used when needed, you may not be on a dosing schedule. If you are on a schedule, use the missed dose as soon as you remember. Skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next scheduled dose. Do not use 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. An overdose of hydrocodone can be fatal.

Overdose symptoms may include extreme drowsiness, pinpoint pupils, confusion, cold and clammy skin, weak pulse, shallow breathing, fainting, or breathing that stops.

What should I avoid while taking diphenhydramine, hydrocodone, and phenylephrine?

This medication may cause blurred vision and may impair your thinking or reactions. Be careful if you drive or do anything that requires you to be alert and able to see clearly.

Drinking alcohol can increase certain side effects of diphenhydramine, hydrocodone, and phenylephrine.

Diphenhydramine, hydrocodone, and phenylephrine 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.

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

  • pounding heartbeats or fluttering in your chest;

  • a light-headed feeling, like you might pass out;

  • severe anxiety, confusion, fear;

  • painful or difficult urination;

  • little or no urinating; or

  • dangerously high blood pressure (severe headache, blurred vision, pounding in your neck or ears, nosebleed, anxiety, confusion, severe chest pain, shortness of breath, irregular heartbeats).

Common side effects may include:

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)

Diphenhydramine, hydrocodone, and phenylephrine dosing information

Usual Adult Dose for Cough and Nasal Congestion:

Diphenhydramine/hydrocodone/phenylephrine 12.5 mg-2 mg-7.5 mg/5 mL:
10 mL orally every 4 hours not to exceed 40 mL daily.

Diphenhydramine/hydrocodone/phenylephrine 12.5 mg-3.5 mg-5 mg/5 mL:
10 mL orally every 4 to 6 hours not to exceed 40 mL daily.

Diphenhydramine/hydrocodone/phenylephrine 25 mg-3.5 mg-7.5 mg/5 mL:
5 mL to 10 mL orally every 12 hours.

Usual Pediatric Dose for Cough and Nasal Congestion:

Diphenhydramine/hydrocodone/phenylephrine 12.5 mg-2 mg-7.5 mg/5 mL:
>12 yrs: 10 mL orally every 4 hours not to exceed 40 mL daily.
6 yrs to >=12 yrs: 5 mL orally every 4 hours not to exceed 20 mL daily.

Diphenhydramine/hydrocodone/phenylephrine 12.5 mg-3.5 mg-5 mg/5 mL:
>12 yrs: 10 mL orally every 4 to 6 hours not to exceed 40 mL daily.
6 yrs to >=12 yrs: 5 mL orally every 4 to 6 hours not to exceed 20 mL daily.

Diphenhydramine/hydrocodone/phenylephrine 25 mg-3.5 mg-7.5 mg/5 mL:
>12 yrs: 5 mL to 10 mL orally every 12 hours
6 yrs to >=12 yrs: 2.5 mL to 5 mL orally every 12 hours

What other drugs will affect diphenhydramine, hydrocodone, and phenylephrine?

Taking this medicine with other drugs that make you sleepy or slow your breathing can cause dangerous or life-threatening side effects. Ask your doctor before taking diphenhydramine, hydrocodone, and phenylephrine with a sleeping pill, narcotic pain medicine, muscle relaxer, or medicine for anxiety, depression, or seizures.

Other drugs may interact with diphenhydramine, hydrocodone, and phenylephrine, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Tell each of your health care providers about all medicines you use now 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.

Date modified: March 01, 2018
Last reviewed: March 22, 2016

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