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Zinc gluconate Side Effects

Medically reviewed by Last updated on Nov 13, 2023.

Applies to zinc gluconate: mouth/throat lozenge, oral capsule, oral tablet, oral tablet extended release.

Serious side effects of Zinc gluconate

WARNING/CAUTION: Even though it may be rare, some people may have very bad and sometimes deadly side effects when taking a drug. Tell your doctor or get medical help right away if you have any of the following signs or symptoms that may be related to a very bad side effect:

Other side effects of Zinc gluconate

All drugs may cause side effects. However, many people have no side effects or only have minor side effects. Call your doctor or get medical help if you have any side effects that bother you or do not go away.

These are not all of the side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, call your doctor. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects.

You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-332-1088. You may also report side effects at

For Healthcare Professionals

Applies to zinc gluconate: compounding powder, oral lozenge, oral tablet, oral tablet chewable, oral tablet dispersible.


Endocrine side effects have included the reduction of high density lipoprotein (HDL) in males.[Ref]

Due to an accompanying decrease in low density lipoproteins (LDL), the LDL/HDL ratio remains relatively unchanged and little risk is assumed in terms of coronary heart disease. Triglyceride levels have not been shown to be affected.[Ref]


Gastrointestinal side effects have included an unpleasant taste (80%), nausea (20%), mouth irritation (24%), dry mouth (12%), gastrointestinal upset (10%), distortion of taste, abdominal pain, vomiting, and diarrhea.[Ref]

Gastrointestinal irritation appears to be dose-related.[Ref]

Nervous system

Nervous system side effects have rarely included dizziness and headache.[Ref]

Frequently asked questions


1. Product Information. Galzin (zinc acetate). Teva Pharmaceuticals USA. 2001;PROD.

2. Mossad SB, Macknin ML, Medendorp SV, Mason P. Zinc gluconate lozenges for treating the common cold. A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study. Ann Intern Med. 1996;125:81-8.

3. Eby GA, Davis DR, Halcomb WW. Reduction in duration of common colds by zinc gluconate lozenges in a double-blind study. Antimicrob Agents Chemother. 1984;25:20-4.

4. Al-Nakib W, Higgins PG, Barrow I, Batstone G, Tyrrell DA. Prophylaxis and treatment of rhinovirus colds with zinc gluconate lozenges. J Antimicrob Chemother. 1987;20:893-901.

5. Godfrey JC, Conant Sloane B, Smith DS, Turco JH, Mercer N, Godfrey NJ. Zinc gluconate and the common cold: a controlled clinical study. J Int Med Res. 1992;20:234-46.

6. Macknin ML, Piedmonte M, Calendine C, Janosky J, Wald E. Zinc gluconate lozenges for treating the common cold in children: a randomized controlled trial [see comments. JAMA. 1998;279:1962-7.

Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.

Some side effects may not be reported. You may report them to the FDA.