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Medications and Drugs

Brand Names: Ambifed CD, Ambifed CDX, Ambifed-G CD, Ambifed-G CDX, Biotussin DAC, Cheratussin DAC, Codafed, Codahistine Expectorant, Halotussin DAC, Maxifed CD, Medent C, Phenhist Expectorant

Generic Name: codeine, guaifenesin, and pseudoephedrine (Pronunciation: KOE deen, gwye FEN e sin, and soo doe e FED rin)

What is codeine, guaifenesin, and pseudoephedrine (Ambifed CD, Ambifed CDX, Ambifed-G CD, Ambifed-G CDX, Biotussin DAC, Cheratussin DAC, Codafed, Codahistine Expectorant, Halotussin DAC, Maxifed CD, Medent C, Phenhist Expectorant)?

Codeine is a narcotic cough suppressant.

Guaifenesin is an expectorant. It helps loosen mucus congestion in your chest and throat, making it easier to cough out through your mouth.

Pseudoephedrine is a decongestant that shrinks blood vessels in the nasal passages. Dilated blood vessels can cause nasal congestion (stuffy nose).

The combination of codeine, guaifenesin, and pseudoephedrine is used to treat stuffy nose and cough, and to reduce chest congestion caused by the common cold, infections, or allergies.

Codeine, guaifenesin, and pseudoephedrine may also be used for other purposes not listed in this medication guide.

What are the possible side effects of codeine, guaifenesin, and pseudoephedrine?

Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Stop taking this medication and call your doctor at once if you have any of these serious side effects:

  • fast, pounding, or uneven heartbeat;
  • slow heart rate, weak pulse, fainting, weak or shallow breathing;
  • severe dizziness, anxiety, restless feeling, or nervousness, headache, tremors;
  • confusion, unusual thoughts or behavior;
  • seizure (convulsions);
  • urinating less than usual or not at all; or
  • increased blood pressure (severe headache, blurred vision, trouble concentrating, chest pain, numbness, seizure).

Less serious side effects include:

  • dizziness or headache;
  • constipation;
  • nausea, vomiting, upset stomach, loss of appetite;
  • feeling excited or restless;
  • sleep problems (insomnia);
  • increased sweating;
  • warmth, tingling, or redness under your skin; or
  • mild skin rash or itching.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

What is the most important information I should know about codeine, guaifenesin, and pseudoephedrine?

Do not use a cough or cold medicine if you have used an MAO inhibitor such as isocarboxazid (Marplan), phenelzine (Nardil), rasagiline (Azilect), selegiline (Eldepryl, Emsam), or tranylcypromine (Parnate) within the past 14 days. Serious, life-threatening side effects can occur if you take cough or cold medicine before the MAO inhibitor has cleared from your body.

Do not use any other over-the-counter cough or cold medication without first asking your doctor or pharmacist. If you take certain products together you may accidentally take too much of one or more types of medicine. Read the label of any other medicine you are using to see if it contains guaifenesin or pseudoephedrine.

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



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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