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SSRI's and over the counter cough syrups

Posted by crayola on January 7, 2002, at 12:27:11

Hi there-
just wanted to let folks know about a common drug interaction that many docs and pharmacists do not remember: Virtually all non-prescription ("over the counter") cough syrups contain dextromethorphan ( a perfectly fine medication). Unfortunately, the combination of SSRI's and dextromethorphan can lead to SEROTONIN SYNDROME.
This is documented ( vol 23:2 and the Feb. 1995 issue of Neurology, p. 219-223) and a good pharmacist will confirm this for you. It is probably a dose-related effect, but could happen to anyone.
Be careful. How many people are out there on SSRI's who occasionally take non-prescrip cough syrup and may be experiencing this?




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