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Chlorpheniramine / codeine Side Effects

For the Consumer

Applies to chlorpheniramine / codeine: oral suspension extended release

In addition to its needed effects, some unwanted effects may be caused by chlorpheniramine / codeine. In the event that any of these side effects do occur, they may require medical attention.

Major Side Effects

You should check with your doctor immediately if any of these side effects occur when taking chlorpheniramine / codeine:

Incidence not known:
  • Acid or sour stomach
  • anxiety
  • belching
  • bloating
  • blurred or loss of vision
  • chills
  • cold clammy skin
  • cold sweats
  • confusion
  • dark colored urine
  • depression
  • diarrhea
  • difficult or painful urination
  • disturbed color perception
  • dizziness, faintness, or lightheadedness when getting up suddenly from a lying or sitting position
  • double vision
  • dryness or spasm of the throat
  • feeling of constant movement of self or surroundings
  • fever
  • halos around lights
  • headache
  • heartburn
  • increased hunger
  • indigestion
  • irregular, fast or slow, or shallow breathing
  • loss of appetite
  • nausea
  • nervousness
  • night blindness
  • nightmares
  • overbright appearance of lights
  • pain or discomfort in the chest, upper stomach, or throat
  • pain in the stomach, side, or abdomen, possibly radiating to the back
  • pale or blue lips, fingernails, or skin
  • pressure in the stomach
  • pounding in the ears
  • seizures
  • sensation of spinning
  • shakiness
  • sleepiness or unusual drowsiness
  • slow, fast, or irregular heartbeat
  • slurred speech
  • stomach discomfort, upset, or pain
  • sweating
  • tunnel vision
  • unusual tiredness or weakness
  • vomiting
  • yellow eyes or skin

Minor Side Effects

Some of the side effects that can occur with chlorpheniramine / codeine may not need medical attention. As your body adjusts to the medicine during treatment these side effects may go away. Your health care professional may also be able to tell you about ways to reduce or prevent some of these side effects. If any of the following side effects continue, are bothersome or if you have any questions about them, check with your health care professional:

Incidence not known:
  • Anxiety
  • blistering, crusting, or irritation of the skin
  • continuing ringing or buzzing or other unexplained noise in the ears
  • cracked, dry, scaly skin
  • dry mouth
  • early menstrual periods
  • face is warm or hot to touch
  • false or unusual sense of well-being
  • general feeling of discomfort or illness
  • hearing loss
  • hiccups
  • increased appetite
  • increased in sexual ability, desire, drive, or performance
  • increased interest in sexual intercourse
  • irritability
  • lack or loss of strength
  • redness of the face
  • restlessness
  • skin rash, itching, redness, hives, swelling
  • swelling of the breasts or breast soreness in both females and males
  • trouble sleeping
  • twitching, twisting, uncontrolled repetitive movements of the tongue, lips, face, arms, or legs
  • watering of eyes

For Healthcare Professionals

Applies to chlorpheniramine / codeine: oral liquid, oral suspension, oral suspension extended release, oral tablet


Cardiovascular side effects have included fast, slow, or pounding heartbeat, hypertension, hypotension, orthostatic hypotension, palpitation, shock-like state, and syncope.[Ref]

Nervous system

Nervous system side effects have included blurred, double, or other visual disturbances; confusion; dizziness; depression; drowsiness and sedation; headache; euphoria; facial dyskinesia; false sense of well-being; feeling faint, lightheadedness, general feeling of discomfort or illness; nervousness, agitation and restlessness; minimal sedation; somnolence; insomnia, dyskinesia, irritability, and tremor.[Ref]


Gastrointestinal side effects have included abdominal distension, abdominal pain, acute pancreatitis, constipation, diarrhea, dry mouth, dyspepsia, epigastric distress, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, and decreased gastric motility with increased likelihood of esophageal reflux.[Ref]


Respiratory side effects have included dryness of pharynx and respiratory passages, laryngismus, nasal stuffiness, wheezing or troubled breathing, and respiratory depression.[Ref]


Endocrine side effects have included changes in glucose utilization, decreased lactation, early menses, glycosuria, gynecomastia, hypoglycemia, increased appetite, increased libido, and pheochromocytoma stimulation.[Ref]


Dermatologic side effects have included dermatitis, excessive perspiration, urticaria, erythema, pruritus, and rash.[Ref]


Hypersensitivity side effects have included allergic laryngospasm, atelectasis, bronchospastic allergic reaction, hives, itching, and swelling of face.[Ref]


Ocular side effects have included blurred vision, diplopia, hypermetropia, lacrimation increased, mydriasis, and photophobia.[Ref]


General side effects have included asthenia, feeling of relaxation, redness or flushing of the face, and unusual tiredness or weakness.[Ref]


Other side effects have included labyrinthitis, tinnitus, and vertigo.[Ref]


Immunologic side effects have included drug fever.[Ref]


1. "Product Information. Zodryl AC Adult (chlorpheniramine-codeine)." codaDOSE Incorporated, Flowery Branch [Atlanta], GA.

Not all side effects for chlorpheniramine / codeine may be reported. You should always consult a doctor or healthcare professional for medical advice. Side effects can be reported to the FDA here.

Disclaimer: Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided is accurate, up-to-date and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. In addition, the drug information contained herein may be time sensitive and should not be utilized as a reference resource beyond the date hereof. This material does not endorse drugs, diagnose patients, or recommend therapy. This information is a reference resource designed as supplement to, and not a substitute for, the expertise, skill , knowledge, and judgement of healthcare practitioners in patient care. The absence of a warning for a given drug or combination thereof in no way should be construed to indicate safety, effectiveness, or appropriateness for any given patient. does not assume any responsibility for any aspect of healthcare administered with the aid of materials provided. 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 substances you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse, or pharmacist.