Guaifenesin; Pseudoephedrine extended-release tablets or capsules
What are guaifenesin-pseudoephedrine extended-release tablets or capsules?
GUAIFENESIN-PSEUDOEPHEDRINE (Duratuss™, Ru-Tussreg; DE, Nalexreg;, Mucinexreg; D, and others) is a combination product which is a decongestant and cough expectorant. It contains pseudoephedrine which can decrease nasal or sinus congestion (stuffiness) due to colds, the flu, or allergies. It also contains guaifenesin which loosens phlegm or mucus in the lungs, but is not intended to treat chronic cough caused by smoking, asthma, emphysema, heart failure, or problems in which there is a large amount of phlegm. Extended-release guaifenesin-pseudoephedrine tablets can give relief for up to 12 hours. Generic guaifenesin-pseudoephedrine extended-release tablets or capsules are available.
What should my health care professional know before I take guaifenesin-pseudoephedrine?
They need to know if you have any of the following conditions:
•blood vessel disease
•difficulty urinating (urinary retention)
•heart disease or heart rhythm problems
•high blood pressure
•over active thyroid
•peripheral vascular disease
•an unusual or allergic reaction to guaifenesin, pseudoephedrine, other medicines, foods, dyes, or preservatives
•pregnant or trying to get pregnant
How should I take this medicine?
Take guaifenesin-pseudoephedrine extended-release tablets or capsules by mouth. Follow the directions on the prescription label. Swallow whole with a drink of water; do not bite, crush or chew. If the tablet has a groove in it, the tablet may be divided in half for a smaller dose by breaking the tablet along the groove. The tablet piece (one-half tablet) should be swallowed whole (do not bite or chew). Take your doses at regular intervals. Do not take your medicine more often than directed.
Contact your pediatrician or health care professional regarding the use of this medicine in children.
Elderly patients over 60 years old may have a stronger reaction to this medicine. Do not use extended-release products until you know how you react to guaifenesin-pseudoephedrine.
What if I miss a dose?
If you miss a dose, and you are taking it on a regular schedule, take it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose (less than 12 hours), take only that dose. Do not take double or extra doses.
What drug(s) may interact with guaifenesin-pseudoephedrine?
•amphetamine or other stimulant drugs
•bicarbonate, citrate, or acetate products (such as sodium bicarbonate, sodium acetate, sodium citrate, sodium lactate, and potassium citrate)
•medicines for colds and breathing difficulties
•medicines for diabetes
•medicines known as MAO inhibitors, such as phenelzine (Nardilreg;), tranylcypromine (Parnatereg;), isocarboxazid (Marplanreg;), and selegiline (Carbexreg;, Eldeprylreg;)
•medicines for mental depression
•medicines for migraine
•some medicines for chest pain, heart disease, high blood pressure or heart rhythm problems
•some medicines for weight loss (including some herbal products, ephedrine, dextroamphetamine)
•St. John’s wort
Some medications can cause a cough such as ACE inhibitors (captopril, enalapril, and others) which are used to treat high blood pressure or heart failure. Tell your doctor about all the prescription medications you are taking.
Tell your prescriber or health care professional about all other medicines you are taking, including non-prescription medicines, nutritional supplements, or herbal products. Also tell your prescriber or health care professional if you are a frequent user of drinks with caffeine or alcohol, if you smoke, or if you use illegal drugs. These may affect the way your medicine works. Check before starting or stopping any of your medicines.
What side effects may I notice from taking guaifenesin-pseudoephedrine?
Side effects that you should report to your prescriber or health care professional as soon as possible:
Rare (more likely with excessive doses of guaifenesin-pseudoephedrine):
•pain in the side or back pain that extends to the groin (signs of kidney stones)
•persistent or unusual rash
•bloody diarrhea and abdominal pain
•dizziness or fainting spells
•numbness or tingling in the hands or feet
•pain or difficulty passing urine
•rapid or troubled breathing
•severe, persistent, or worsening headache
•anxiety or nervousness
•fast or irregular heartbeat, palpitations
•increased blood pressure
•tremor or muscle contractions
Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to your prescriber or health care professional if they continue or are bothersome):
•increased sensitivity to sunlight
•loss of appetite
•stomach upset, nausea
•reddening of the skin (mild or temporary skin rash)
What should I watch for while taking guaifenesin-pseudoephedrine?
Check with your prescriber or health care professional if your congestion has not improved within 7 days, or if you have a high fever, skin rash, continuing headache, or sore throat with your cough. These signs may mean that you have other medical problems.
If guaifenesin-pseudoephedrine extended-release products make it difficult for you to sleep at night; take your last dose at least 12 hours before bedtime. If nervousness, dizziness, or sleeplessness occur, stop using guaifenesin-pseudoephedrine and consult a physician.
Drink plenty of water while you are taking guaifenesin-pseudoephedrine; this will help loosen the mucus.
If you are going to have surgery, tell your prescriber you are taking guaifenesin-pseudoephedrine.
Where can I keep my medicine?
Keep out of the reach of children in a container that small children cannot open.
Store at room temperature, between 15 and 30 degrees C (59 and 86 degrees F), unless otherwise specified on the product label. Protect from heat and moisture. Throw away any unused medicine after the expiration date.
NOTE: This information is not intended to cover all possible uses, precautions, interactions, or adverse effects for this drug. If you have questions about the drug(s) you are taking, check with your health care professional.
Revision date: June 22, 2011
Last revised: by Sebastian Scheller, MD, ScD
Drugs & Medications
CONDITIONS OF USE: The information in this database is intended to supplement, not substitute for, the expertise and judgment of healthcare professionals. The information is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, drug interactions or adverse effects, nor should it be construed to indicate that use of a particular drug is safe, appropriate or effective for you or anyone else. A healthcare professional should be consulted before taking any drug, changing any diet or commencing or discontinuing any course of treatment.
The drug reference included in this section is provided by Cerner Multum, Inc., of Denver, Colorado. Armenian Medical Network receives monthly updates from Multum.