Robitussin, an over-the-counter medicine made by Pfizer, Inc. to treat cough, runny nose, and/or chest congestion, comes in two versions: regular and DM. Reading the label can give you a basic idea of the differences between the two, but you should also understand the medical implications of the additional ingredients in Robitussin-DM.
If you are experiencing serious medical symptoms, seek emergency treatment immediately.
Generic and Brand Name Differences
According to Drugs.com, dextromethorphan is a cough suppressant that affects the signals in the brain that trigger the cough reflex 12. Dextromethorphan does not treat coughs that are the result of smoking, asthma, or emphysema 2.
Guaifenesin is an expectorant, which means that it helps loosen congestion in your chest and throat, making it easier to cough out through your mouth 3.
For Consumers with Medical Problems
Asthma (and other respiratory illness) sufferers should be aware that, according to Drugs.com, dextromethorphan decreases coughing but makes it difficult to get rid of the mucus that collects in the lungs and airways 12. It also can result in slow breathing.
Diabetics should watch out for products that contain sugar, as some cough syrups do, since these formulations may affect glucose levels.
Drugs.com advises consumers to seek the advice of their doctor or pharmacist if use of cough or cold medications is necessary. ?
Taking While Breast Feeding
Since it is currently unknown whether or not guaifenesin poses harm to unborn babies, or whether or not it passes through breast milk, consumers are advised to consult their physicians prior to consuming Robitussin-DM or similar products 3.
Possibility of Abuse
Although only a rare occurrence, dextromethorphan has become habit-forming in some users who consume more than the recommended dosage for prolonged periods 2.
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