BRAND NAMES
 MECHANISM OF ACTION
Pseudoephedrine is a sympathomimetic drug. It acts directly on both α- and β-adrenergic receptors, producing vasoconstriction of respiratory mucosa, relaxation of the bronchioles, and increased heart rate and contractility. Pseudoephedrine also enters the CNS readily.
Pseudoephedrine may be used as a nasal/sinus decongestant, as a stimulant, or as a wakefulness-promoting agent.
Pseudoephedrine has quickly become known in all states and communities as the key ingredient in the illegal manufacturing of methamphetamine because of the simplicity of the diversion. The sale of pseudoephedrine has been restricted, placing it behind pharmacy counters in all states of the US.
- Patients 2-5 years of age: 15 mg every 4-6 hr; maximum dose 60 mg/24 hr
- Patients 6-12 years of age: 30 mg every 4-6 hr; maximum dose 120 mg/24 hr
- Patients > 12 years of age: 30-60 mg every 4-6 hr or for sustained release 120 mg every 12 hr; maximum dose 240 mg/24 hr.
Take the last dose no later than 4-6 hr before bedtime owing to the potential for insomnia.
Drug interactions include MAOIs and tricyclic antidepressants owing to an increased pressor response.
 PREGNANCY AND LACTATION
 SIDE EFFECTS
Side effects include central nervous stimulation (restlessness, insomnia, anxiety, or hallucinations), hypertension, and palpitations.
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