Sniff, sniff ... drip, drip

I'm feeling pretty woebegone with a nasty headcold, but when I stopped in at the druggist to pick up a cold remedy, the directions on most cautioned that they should not be taken by anyone who takes an MAO-I or "a Parkinson's medication." What does that mean, I wonder? I settled for chicken broth and Vicks vap-o-rub. I took an antihistamine that has been in the cupboard for a while (not very effective) and a couple ibuprofen. What do you all take for congestion and coughing?

13 Replies

  • Read this it should help you

    A reasonable concern for those people with Parkinson’s disease is whether or not over-the-counter (OTC) medications can safely be taken without interacting with their Parkinson’s medications or worsening their Parkinson’s symptoms. There are numerous cough and cold ingredients sold under different brand names and in different formulations which can make selecting a product very confusing.

    Dextromethorphan is a cough suppressant and common ingredient in many cough and cold medications, either by itself or in combination with other ingredients. Common brands that often contain dextromethorphan are Delsym, Vicks, Robitussin DM, Theraflu, and Triaminic, as well as other generic store brands. People taking the MAO-B inhibitors selegiline (Eldepryl) or rasagiline (Azilect) for Parkinson’s disease should not take dextromethorphan. If you are not sure if a product contains dextromethorphan or not, please ask your pharmacist and let them know what medications you take for Parkinson’s disease.

    There are two common oral decongestants that are found in cough and cold medicine to reduce a stuffy, runny nose. Pseudoephedrine (Sudafed) and phenylephrine (Sudafed PE) are oral decongestants used for nasal congestion associated with allergies or the common cold. Pseudoephedrine is available for purchase at the pharmacy counter only. There is a limit to how much a person can legally buy at one time and how often. Despite earlier warnings that MAO-B inhibitors cannot be used with certain OTC medications due to the risk of an increase in blood pressure, recent studies have shown that Azilect (rasagiline) is safe to use with decongestants such as pseudoephedrine or phenylephrine. The other MAO-B inhibitor, selegiline is similarly considered to be safe. If a decongestant is needed, nasal sprays such as Afrin can also safely be used with any Parkinson’s medications, but to avoid worsening congestion, limit use to a maximum of 3 to 5 days.

    Guaifenesin is an expectorant cough medicine, which means it thins mucous and phlegm and assists in bringing up mucous from the throat and lungs. Guaifenesin can be found in numerous cough and cold products, more common ones being Robitussin, Mucinex, Q-Tussin, as well as many other combination products. Guaifenesin is considered safe when combined with any of the available Parkinson’s medications.

    Many cold and allergy preparations contain antihistamines. They are often used for runny nose, sneezing, itchy or watery eyes, or allergic reactions like hives. Examples of these are diphenhydramine (Benadryl, Tylenol PM, Advil PM), chlorpheniramine (Chlor-Trimeton), loratadine (Claritin), cetirizine (Zyrtec), and numerous other combination products of different names. These are all considered safe to take with Parkinson’s medications, although some have more side effects than others, such as drowsiness, so it’s good to ask a pharmacist for a recommendation.

    Many cough and cold products contain ingredients for pain or fever. The most common products include acetaminophen (Tylenol), ibuprofen (Motrin or Advil), and naproxen (Aleve). These are considered safe medications that won’t interact with Parkinson’s medications. Always check the ingredients or ask your pharmacist to make sure you don’t choose multiple products with the same ingredient.

    With the number of OTC products available in various combinations, it makes choosing a safe and effective product overwhelming. Always ask your pharmacist what they recommend to best target your symptoms without using additional products that may be unnecessary. Most importantly, if you have Parkinson’s disease, always talk to your doctor about which products are okay and which products you shouldn’t take.

  • Very thorough! I'm going to print this and keep it in my glove compartment. Thanks!

  • Long tern try Emergen C.

  • My daughter swears by the stuff. Thanks!

  • I took something for a cold once before I knew I had pd and my head was swimming so I am pretty careful to avoid those things. I felt very strange and had to leave the party I was at for a few minutes to rest.

  • Yow

  • Benadryl

  • Honey for the cough and hot steam to break up the congestion- boil a pot of water, bend your head over the pot- not too close as you don't want to burn yourself. Drape a towel over your head and the pot and breathe. Do it for at least 5 minutes and have tissues ready

    Tea with lemon and honey and of course chicken soup. Hope you feel better soon

  • I think you've just summed up the best and longest-lived remedies of all time!

  • hi @becky, you will find a lot of over the counter meds, for colds or anything else will give a warning. do not use if you have Parkinson's. i took a swallow of Robitussin DM , and i felt like i was drunk for 3 days. mostly DAZE. it was awful. i like being in charge of my own brain, and i didn't feel like my feet were touching the floor a good part of the time. a good part.

    and hitting the walls. etc. i was NOT having a good time. and i wouldn't touch it again under any circumstances. just always look at the warnings on these over the counter meds. and if they say not to be taken by anyone that has Parkinson's , believe them and don't buy it or use it. i was even afraid to walk down to the basement , that i would fall.

    so pay attention. love you . judam 9.

  • Holy Toledo. Forewarned and forearmed! Thanks.

  • I'm just glad your feeling better😀

  • Thanks, John!

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