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Antihistamine, analgesic and decongestant combination (OTC) for treatment of a cold in Adults with cold

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    Bottom Line

  • Treatment with antihistamine, analgesic and decongestant combination (e.g. Acetaminophen, Chlorpheniramine and Pseudoephedrine). 4 valid studies conducted, with 760 adults. Improves general feeling and reduces fever, pain, and cough. May slightly reduces runny nose and stuffy nose. Seems safe.

    • -  Evidence icon EVIDENCE | NEEDS MORE TESTING
    • -  Effectiveness icon EFFECTIVENESS | EFFECTIVE for fever, general discomfort, pains, runny nose and stuffy nose
    • -  Safety Circle icon SAFETY | MILD RISKS -  Tooltip icon Consult a Doctor


Use this treatment:

It reliefs discomfort caused by a cold ( fever, pain and cough) and slightly reliefs other cold symptoms. Side effects seem minor, when taken for a short period (2-3 days).

Doctors Say That -  Tooltip icon

You should prefer combinations with Paracetamol, since they are safer than combinations with NSAIDs (e.g. Advil) . Using NSAIDs can cause severe damage, especially to adults with gastric-intestinal infections or hidden kidney disease, which are quite common.If you suffer from high blood pressure avoid this treatment: decongestants can increase your blood pressure even further, and put you at risk.

Note that while infections with various strains of Corona viruses are responsible for most cases of common cold, the new corona virus strain, SARS-CoV-2, leads to an entirely different coronavirus infectious disease, COVID-19. The research of treatments for COVID-19 is still pre mature and not based on solid evidence. Therefore, at this stage, we can only speculate that effective treatments for common cold (and related Corona virus strains) may prove effective for Corona disease 2019 (COVID-19) and the related SARS-CoV-2 strain. Please don't count on it.

About Antihistamine, analgesic and decongestant combination (OTC)

For example - a combination of Acetaminophen, Chlorpheniramine and Pseudoephedrine

  • - Population icon

    Target Population:

    Adults with cold, 16 to 65 years old

  • - Dosage icon


    Varies according to combination. Stick to the directions on the package or as prescribed by your doctor.

  • - Goal icon


    Treatment of Common Cold symptoms

Research Summary

  • - Green Pages icon Needs more testing
  • 4 Clinical Studies
  • 760 - Tooltip icon Adults Tested
  • Effective
  • Benefits:

    Improves general feeling. Reduces fever, pain and cough. Slightly reduces runny nose and stuffy nose. Does not reduce sneezing. Does not speed up recovery.

  • - Safety icon Mild risks
  • Risks:

    Minor reported side effects vary according to combination (for example - dizziness, drowsiness, sleep problems, diarrhea, nervousness and dry mouth). Decongestants increase blood pressure.

Common Cold Overview

  • - Medical Problem icon

    Medical problem:

    Common Cold (symptoms caused by viral infection of the upper respiratory system).

  • - Sumptoms icon

    Symptoms and signs:

    Cough, general discomfort, headache, runny nose, sneezing, sore throat, stuffy nose and weakness.

  • - Complications icon


    Bacterial infections: lung infection, middle ear infection, strep throat, sinus infection.

Brand Names

Antihistamine, analgesic and decongestant combination (OTC)

  • Actifed Plus
  • Codimal
  • Dimetapp Cold and Fever
  • Drixoral Sinus
  • Dryphen
  • Gendecon
  • Kolephrin
  • Lorsin
  • NyCair
  • Protid
  • Rhinogesic
  • Simplet
  • Sinarest
  • Sine-Off Sinus and Cold
  • Singlet
  • Sinumed
  • Tavist Allergy/Sinus/Headache
  • Theraflu Sore Throat
  • Tricom
  • Tylenol Cold

Additional Information

Antihistamine, analgesic and decongestant combination

Antihistamines are drugs which treat allergic rhinitis and other allergies. As an alternative to taking an antihistamine, people who suffer from allergies can instead avoid the substance which irritates them. Antihistamines are usually for short-term treatment. An analgesic or painkiller is any member of the group of drugs used to achieve analgesia, relief from pain. Analgesic drugs act in various ways on the peripheral and central nervous systems. Analgesics include paracetamol (known in North America as acetaminophen or simply APAP), the nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as the salicylates, and opioid drugs such as morphine and oxycodone. A decongestants, or nasal decongestant, is a type of pharmaceutical drug that is used to relieve nasal congestion in the upper respiratory tract. The active ingredient in most decongestants is either pseudoephedrine or phenylephrine. (source)

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