Chlorpheniramine

Chlorpheniramine is an antihistamine medication.

Pronunciation: klor-fen-IHR-ah-meen

What are chlorpheniramine’s uses?

Chlorpheniramine is used to treat the symptoms of allergic conditions, such as watery eyes, runny nose, sinus, hay fever and sneezing.

It is also used in the management of acute urticaria (hives) and angio-oedema (a condition similar to hives, but where tissue swelling occurs under the skin).

What dosage should you take?

The typical dose for adults for symptomatic relief is 4mg three to four times a day.

For children:

  • Six to 12 months: 1mg twice daily
  • One to five years: 1-2mg three times a day
  • Six to 12 years: 2-4mg three times a day

However, always check the correct dosages with your Clicks pharmacist.

What special precautions should you take?

  • Avoid use in children younger than two years.
  • Use with caution in children under the age of six (this relates to the use of injections, tablets and syrup formats).
  • The elderly must receive lower doses.
  • This medication should be stopped at least 48 hours before having a skin test, as it may cause unreliable results.
  • Chlorpheniramine is only recommended for use during pregnancy and breastfeeding if the benefit outweighs the risk, so consult your doctor or Clicks pharmacist.
  • Advise your doctor or dentist if you are taking this medication before surgery.
  • It is advised to avoid alcohol while taking this medication as the effects of alcohol may be increased.

Chlorpheniramine should be avoided if you suffer from the following conditions:

  • An antihistamine allergy
  • Severe liver disease

Chlorpheniramine should be used with caution if you suffer from the following conditions:

  • Asthma
  • Lung problems
  • Heart problems
  • High blood pressure (hypertension)
  • Stroke
  • Glaucoma (an eye disorder that results in optic nerve damage)
  • Blockages in the stomach, intestines or bladder
  • An enlarged prostate
  • Epilepsy
  • An overactive thyroid (hyperthyroidism)
  • Decreased liver function
  • Difficulty passing urine
  • Porphyria (a group of rare genetic disorders that affect mainly the skin or nervous system)
  • Diabetes
  • Kidney and liver impairments

What drug interactions could you experience?

To avoid adverse drug interactions, always inform your doctor or Clicks pharmacist what prescription and non-prescription medications, vitamins, nutritional supplements and herbal products you are taking or planning to take.

What are chlorpheniramine’s side effects?

Side effects could include:

  • Dizziness, drowsiness and/or blurred vision
  • Increased sensitivity to the sun
  • Constipation
  • Dry mouth, nose or throat
  • Decreased coordination

This is not a complete list of side effects. It’s essential that you call your doctor should you notice any severe or odd side effects.

What are the overdose symptoms?

Call a doctor or an ambulance immediately if you suspect an overdose and notice the following symptoms:

  • Fever
  • Hallucinations
  • Weakness
  • Shaking
  • Loss of consciousness
  • Seizures
The accuracy of this information was checked and approved by Clicks' pharmacist Waheed Abdurahman in April 2015