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codeine and guaifenesin (cont.)

What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before taking codeine and guaifenesin?

You should not take this medication if you are allergic to codeine or guaifenesin.

To make sure you can safely take codeine and guaifenesin, tell your doctor if you have any of these other conditions:

FDA pregnancy category C. It is not known whether codeine and guaifenesin will harm an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant while using this medication.

Codeine can pass into breast milk and may harm a nursing baby. The use of codeine by some nursing mothers may lead to life-threatening side effects in the baby. Do not use this medication if you are breast-feeding a baby.

Codeine may be habit forming and should be used only by the person it was prescribed for. Never share this medication with another person, especially someone with a history of drug abuse or addiction. Keep the medication in a place where others cannot get to it.

Older adults may be more likely to have side effects from this medication.

Liquid forms of this medication may contain sugar or artificial sweetener (phenylalanine). Talk to your doctor before using this form of codeine and guaifenesin if you have diabetes or phenylketonuria (PKU).

How should I take codeine and guaifenesin?

Take exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Do not take in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended. Follow the directions on your prescription label. Cough or cold medicine is usually taken only for a short time until your symptoms clear up.

Do not give this medication to a child younger than 4 years old. Always ask a doctor before giving a cough or cold medicine to a child. Death can occur from the misuse of cough and cold medicines in very young children.

Take codeine and guaifenesin with food if it upsets your stomach.

Drink extra fluids to help loosen the congestion and lubricate your throat while you are taking this medication.

Measure liquid medicine with a special dose-measuring spoon or cup, not a regular table spoon. If you do not have a dose-measuring device, ask your pharmacist for one.

Call your doctor if your symptoms do not improve after 7 days of treatment, or if you also have a fever, headache, or skin rash.

This medication can cause unusual results with certain medical tests. Tell any doctor who treats you that you are using codeine and guaifenesin.

Do not stop using this medication suddenly after long-term use or you could have unpleasant withdrawal symptoms. Ask your doctor how to avoid withdrawal symptoms when you stop using the medication.

Store at room temperature away from moisture, heat, and light. Keep the bottle tightly closed when not in use.

Keep track of the amount of medicine used from each new bottle. Codeine is a drug of abuse and you should be aware if anyone is using your medicine improperly or without a prescription.

Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration

You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

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