Dextromethorphan: Therapeutic use

Last modified: Saturday, 30. May 2009 - 3:36 pm

Dextromethorphan is generally used in the relief of cough associated with colds or influenza, but is not associated with any chronic conditions such as asthma, smoking, and emphysema. Dextromethorphan is combined with different compounds to produce varying effects. One such combination is with guaifenesin and pseu-doephedrine. Guaifenesin is a drug called an expectorant, which means that it helps expel bronchial secretions from the respiratory tract. Pseudoephedrine hydrochloride is a decongestant that helps clear the nasal passages.
Iodinated glycerol, another agent that is often combined with dextromethorphan, functions as an expectorant. Promethazine hydrochloride is an antihistamine agent sometimes combined with dextromethorphan.
Precautions
Dextromethorphan should be used with caution in individuals who are debilitated or under sedation. Individuals who are prescribed bed rest should also use the drug with great caution. If the symptoms of the condition are not completely resolved with the use of dextromethorphan, then a physician should be consulted about performing additional diagnostic tests or alternative treatment plans. Those with a history of hypersensi-tivity to dextromethorphan with side effects such as heart rhythm changes, tremor, insomnia, dizziness, and weakness should not use it.
Dextromethorphan should be used with great caution in individuals who have a history of chronic or persistent cough, persistent headache, nausea, vomiting, or fever.

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