What happens if I overdose Dextromethorphan?
Contact 1-800-222-1222 (the American Association of Poison Control Centers), your local poison control center, or emergency room immediately. Symptoms may include confusion; excitement; hallucinations; slowed breathing.
Proper storage of Dextromethorphan orally disintegrating strips:
Store Dextromethorphan orally disintegrating strips between 68 and 77 degrees F (20 and 25 degrees C), away from heat, moisture, and light. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep Dextromethorphan orally disintegrating strips out of the reach of children and away from pets.
Overdose of Dextromethorphan in details
If someone has overdosed and has serious symptoms such as passing out or trouble breathing, call 911. Otherwise, call a poison control center right away. US residents can call their local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222. Canada residents can call a provincial poison control center. Symptoms of overdose may include: fast heartbeat, vomiting, sweating, nervousness, feeling high (euphoria), hallucinations, problems walking (staggering), agitation, severe drowsiness.
Keep all regular medical and laboratory appointments.
If you are taking this product on a regular schedule and miss a dose, take it as soon as you remember. If it is near the time of the next dose, skip the missed dose and resume your usual dosing schedule. Do not double the dose to catch up.
Store at room temperature between 68-77 degrees F (20-25 degrees C) away from light and moisture. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep all medicines away from children and pets.
Do not flush medications down the toilet or pour them into a drain unless instructed to do so. Properly discard this product when it is expired or no longer needed. Consult your pharmacist or local waste disposal company for more details about how to safely discard your product.
What should I avoid while taking Dextromethorphan?
Avoid drinking alcohol. It can increase some of the side effects of Dextromethorphan. This medication can cause side effects that may impair your thinking or reactions. Be careful if you drive or do anything that requires you to be awake and alert.
Avoid taking diet pills, caffeine pills, or other stimulants (such as ADHD medications) without your doctor's advice. Taking a stimulant together with cough medicine can increase your risk of unpleasant side effects.
Do not use any other over-the-counter cough, cold, or allergy medication without first asking your doctor or pharmacist. Dextromethorphan is contained in many combination medicines available over the counter. If you take certain products together you may accidentally take too much of this medicine. Read the label of any other medicine you are using to see if it contains Dextromethorphan.
Avoid drinking alcohol. It can increase some of the side effects of Dextromethorphan.
This medication can cause side effects that may impair your thinking or reactions. Be careful if you drive or do anything that requires you to be awake and alert.
Avoid taking diet pills, caffeine pills, or other stimulants (such as ADHD medications) without your doctor’s advice. Taking a stimulant together with cough medicine can increase your risk of unpleasant side effects.
Do not use any other over-the-counter cough, cold, or allergy medication without first asking your doctor or pharmacist. Dextromethorphan is contained in many medicines available over the counter. If you take certain products together you may accidentally take too much of this medicine. Read the label of any other medicine you are using to see if it contains Dextromethorphan.
What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before taking Dextromethorphan?
In deciding to use a medicine, the risks of taking the medicine must be weighed against the good it will do. This is a decision you and your doctor will make. For Dextromethorphan, the following should be considered:
Tell your doctor if you have ever had any unusual or allergic reaction to Dextromethorphan or any other medicines. Also tell your health care professional if you have any other types of allergies, such as to foods, dyes, preservatives, or animals. For non-prescription products, read the label or package ingredients carefully.
Although there is no specific information comparing use of Dextromethorphan in children with use in other age groups, Dextromethorphan is not expected to cause different side effects or problems in children 4 years of age and older than it does in adults.
Do not give any over-the-counter (OTC) cough and cold medicine to a baby or child under 4 years of age. Using these medicines in very young children might cause serious or possibly life-threatening side effects.
Many medicines have not been studied specifically in older people. Therefore, it may not be known whether they work exactly the same way they do in younger adults or if they cause different side effects or problems in older people. There is no specific information comparing use of Dextromethorphan in the elderly with use in other age groups.
Studies in women suggest that this medication poses minimal risk to the infant when used during breastfeeding.
Interactions with Medicines
Although certain medicines should not be used together at all, in other cases two different medicines may be used together even if an interaction might occur. In these cases, your doctor may want to change the dose, or other precautions may be necessary. When you are taking Dextromethorphan, it is especially important that your healthcare professional know if you are taking any of the medicines listed below. The following interactions have been selected on the basis of their potential significance and are not necessarily all-inclusive.
Using Dextromethorphan with any of the following medicines is not recommended. Your doctor may decide not to treat you with this medication or change some of the other medicines you take.
Using Dextromethorphan with any of the following medicines is usually not recommended, but may be required in some cases. If both medicines are prescribed together, your doctor may change the dose or how often you use one or both of the medicines.
Using Dextromethorphan with any of the following medicines may cause an increased risk of certain side effects, but using both drugs may be the best treatment for you. If both medicines are prescribed together, your doctor may change the dose or how often you use one or both of the medicines.
Interactions with Food/Tobacco/Alcohol
Certain medicines should not be used at or around the time of eating food or eating certain types of food since interactions may occur. Using alcohol or tobacco with certain medicines may also cause interactions to occur. The following interactions have been selected on the basis of their potential significance and are not necessarily all-inclusive.
Other Medical Problems
The presence of other medical problems may affect the use of Dextromethorphan. Make sure you tell your doctor if you have any other medical problems, especially:
- Asthma—Since Dextromethorphan decreases coughing, it makes it difficult to get rid of the mucus that collects in the lungs and airways during asthma
- Diabetes (sugar diabetes)—Some products contain sugar and may affect control of blood glucose monitoring
- Liver disease—Dextromethorphan may build up in the body and cause unwanted effects
- Chronic bronchitis or
- Emphysema or
- Mucus or phlegm with cough—Since Dextromethorphan decreases coughing, it makes it difficult to get rid of the mucus that may collect in the lungs and airways with some diseases
- Slowed breathing—Dextromethorphan may slow the rate of breathing even further
Concurrent drug therapy issues:
• Serotonin syndrome: Symptoms of agitation, confusion, hallucinations, hyper-reflexia, myoclonus, shivering, and tachycardia may occur with concomitant proserotonergic drugs (ie, SSRIs/SNRIs or triptans); especially with higher Dextromethorphan doses.
• CYP2D6 poor metabolizers: Dextromethorphan is metabolized by hepatic CYP2D6. Poor metabolizers of CYP2D6 may have exaggerated or prolonged effects of Dextromethorphan. Increased risk may be seen with concomitant use of potent CYP2D6 inhibitors; use with caution (Abduljalil 2010; Jurica 2012; Sager 2014; Zhou 2009).
• Debilitated patients: Use with caution in patients who are sedated, debilitated or confined to a supine position.
• Pediatric: Use with caution in atopic children. Not for OTC use in children <4 years of age.
Dosage form specific issues:
• Benzyl alcohol and derivatives: Some dosage forms may contain sodium benzoate/benzoic acid; benzoic acid (benzoate) is a metabolite of benzyl alcohol; large amounts of benzyl alcohol (≥99 mg/kg/day) have been associated with a potentially fatal toxicity (“gasping syndrome”) in neonates; the “gasping syndrome” consists of metabolic acidosis, respiratory distress, gasping respirations, CNS dysfunction (including convulsions, intracranial hemorrhage), hypotension, and cardiovascular collapse (AAP ["Inactive" 1997]; CDC, 1982); some data suggests that benzoate displaces bilirubin from protein binding sites (Ahlfors, 2001); avoid or use dosage forms containing benzyl alcohol derivative with caution in neonates. See manufacturer
What happens if I miss a dose of Dextromethorphan?
Since cough medicine is usually taken only 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. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and take the medicine at your next regularly scheduled time. Do not take extra medicine to make up the missed dose.
- DailyMed. "DEXTROMETHORPHAN HYDROBROMIDE: DailyMed provides trustworthy information about marketed drugs in the United States. DailyMed is the official provider of FDA label information (package inserts).". https://dailymed.nlm.nih.gov/dailyme... (accessed September 17, 2018).
- DrugBank. "dextromethorphan". http://www.drugbank.ca/drugs/DB00514 (accessed September 17, 2018).
- MeSH. "Excitatory Amino Acid Antagonists". https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/mesh/68... (accessed September 17, 2018).
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Information checked by Dr. Sachin Kumar, MD Pharmacology