What is pseudoephedrine?
Pseudoephedrine is a medication used to treat congestion (a stuffy nose). It is found in many cold medications, including a number of Sudafed products. The label on the product will tell you if it contains pseudoephedrine.
You can buy pseudoephedrine without a prescription from a health care provider. It is also found in some prescription medications, such as Allegra-D.
Pseudoephedrine is safe when you use the right amount. It can be harmful if:
- You take more than the amount recommended by your doctor or by the product label.
- You take more than one product that contains pseudoephedrine.
People with high blood pressure, heart problems or an enlarged prostate, or who take an MAOI antidepressant (monoamine oxidase inhibitor) should not use pseudoephedrine. People with diabetes, thyroid problems, glaucoma, kidney problems or seizures should talk with their doctor before using pseudoephedrine.
In most cases, drug manufacturers do not recommend medications with pseudoephedrine for children under 4 years.