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Generic Name: guaifenesin

It helps to thin mucous and make coughs more productive
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What is this medicine?

GUAIFENESIN (gwye FEN e sin) is an expectorant. It helps to thin mucous and make coughs more productive. This medicine is used to treat coughs caused by colds or the flu. It is not intended to treat chronic cough caused by smoking, asthma, emphysema, or heart failure.

What should I tell my health care provider before I take this medicine?

They need to know if you have any of these conditions:
  • fever
  • kidney disease
  • an unusual or allergic reaction to guaifenesin, other medicines, foods, dyes, or preservatives
  • pregnant or trying to get pregnant
  • breast-feeding

How should I use this medicine?

Take this medicine by mouth with a full glass of water. Follow the directions on the prescription label. Do not break, chew or crush this medicine. You may take with food or on an empty stomach. Take your medicine at regular intervals. Do not take your medicine more often than directed.

Talk to your pediatrician regarding the use of this medicine in children. While this drug may be prescribed for children as young as 12 years old for selected conditions, precautions do apply.

What if I miss a dose?

If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, take only that dose. Do not take double or extra doses.

What may interact with this medicine?

Interactions are not expected.

What should I watch for while using this medicine?

Do not treat a cough for more than 1 week without consulting your doctor or health care professional. If you also have a high fever, skin rash, continuing headache, or sore throat, see your doctor.

For best results, drink 6 to 8 glasses water daily while you are taking this medicine.

What side effects may I notice from receiving this medicine?

Side effects that you should report to your doctor or health care professional as soon as possible:
  • allergic reactions like skin rash, itching or hives, swelling of the face, lips, or tongue

Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to your doctor or health care professional if they continue or are bothersome):

  • dizziness
  • headache
  • stomach upset

Where should I keep my medicine?

Keep out of the reach of children.

Store at room temperature between 20 and 25 degrees C (68 and 77 degrees F). Keep container tightly closed. Throw away any unused medicine after the expiration date.

Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.

All visitors to AARP.org should seek expert medical care and consult their own physicians for any specific health issues. Read this disclaimer in its entirety.
Note: This information is not intended to cover all possible uses, precautions, interactions, or adverse effects for this drug. If you have question about the drug(s) you are taking, check with your health care professional.
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