What is Chlorpheniramine?

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  • Written By: Allison Boelcke
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 13 May 2019
  • Copyright Protected:
    Conjecture Corporation
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Chlorpheniramine is an antihistamine medication that prevents the release of histamine, a naturally occurring substance that causes allergic reactions. The medication is generally used to treat symptoms such as runny nose, sneezing, congestion, and itchy eyes. Although the medication may temporarily relieve these symptoms, it does not cure the underlying problem that causes the symptoms.

One of the main uses for chlorpheniramine is for the relief of mild symptoms caused by exposure to substances that cause allergies. If a person has serious allergies that can prove to be fatal if he or she is exposed to a particular allergen, this medication will typically not be recommended because it has not been found to treat emergency allergy symptoms, such as facial swelling or difficulty breathing. The medication can, however, be used to relieve symptoms of the common cold, as well as hay fever, a condition that can cause symptoms as a result of exposure to pollen.

Chlorpheniramine is generally available in a tablet or capsule form that is to be taken orally approximately four to six times per day. It may also be packaged and sold in a liquid form, particularly for use in children. Some versions of the medication may also contain other active ingredients rather than just the antihistamines in order to provide quicker relief of symptoms or to help treat additional symptoms that may occur with allergies or colds, such as cough, congestion, fever, or other all-around pain.


Certain side effects can occur when taking chlorpheniramine. Common side effects that may occur with this medication include decreased appetite, nausea, vomiting, chest congestion, headache, drowsiness, constipation, or dryness in the throat, nose, or mouth. As the body becomes used to the ingredients in the medication, the side effects should go away on their own. Although the effects are not considered dangerous, if they do not subside within approximately ten days or seem to worsen, medical attention may be required.

In rare cases, chlorpheniramine can cause serious health complications. If a person experiences trouble urinating normally, as well as blurred vision, this may be a sign of an adverse reaction to the medication and will generally require immediate medical attention. The medication is also not considered safe for children under the age of four and can even lead to death in infants and young children; therefore, it is not recommended for women who are pregnant or breastfeeding.



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