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HELP!!! Can I take pseudoephedrine hydrocholride (Sudafed Nasal Decongestant)?

post #1 of 15
Thread Starter 
I am feeling terrible. Was up most of last night with this very bad cold. I have gotten conflicting information about whether or not I can take this Sudafed nasal decongestant? The doc's office (not the doc specifically) said yes, pharmacist said no, lots of websites seem unsure. Anybody??? Thanks!
post #2 of 15
I wouldn't -- some antihistamines are okay (Chlor-Trimeton for instance, if you're sneezy) but ephedrine-based drugs mess with heartrate, etc.

Try saline nose spray and standing in a steamy shower, and/or using a vaporizer/humidifier with some Vicks Vapor Rub (which is totally safe) on your chest and a bit under your nose.

Sorry you're stuffed up and HTH!
post #3 of 15
I took it thru both my pg's mostly at night since if I hadnt I couldnt sleep for not being able to breath thru my nose. It was listed on both my mw's and ob's safe list of drugs.
post #4 of 15
I wouldn't in the 1st trimester as it can mess with the placentas bood vessels.
post #5 of 15
not recommended by my midwife. in times of desperation, sudafed PE (which does NOT contain pseudoephedrine) is on the safe list after 1st trimester.

this is one of my favorite sites ... it gives you the chance to see the pregnancy recommendations along with some information about what the actual risks are:


good luck. i hope you feel better soon.
post #6 of 15
My ob said no. I called him last week when I was miserable with a horrible cold, and he said Benadryl is the only thing he considers safe in the first trimester, and even after that he prefers moms not to take decongestants because they raise your heart rate, and possibly the baby's heart rate. One of those "we don't know if it could cause long term heart problems in the baby, so I'd prefer you not to risk it" things.

At least Benadryl helps you sleep...sigh. The saline stuff (not the nose spray, the stuff you snort into your sinuses) helped me a lot, as did menthol cough drops and hot showers. And I have a sock filled with rice that I microwave...it helps the pressure ease.

Believe me, I'm right there with you. Now that the cold is gone, my allergies have kicked in. Sigh.
post #7 of 15
And not to be a party pooper, but in terms of antihistamines, Chlor-Trimeton is safer than Benedryl. It's been on the market much longer and its effects are better known.

You just have to take it every 4 hours is all.


ETA: Have you tried Zicam nasal swabs? I know there was some discussion a while back about an unreleased study on long-term Zicam use possibly affecting your ability to smell, but beyond that (which I've not read), it's safe during pg and it always helps me -- shortens the duration and the intensity of the cold every time. Just don't use the spray as it tastes horrible. The swabs are messy but work the best for me.

post #8 of 15
WOw! So much changes! I was pg in 2003 and sudafed was on the safe list.
Thanks for sharing the info gals!

post #9 of 15
EEGADS! The pharmacist, PA, and my nurse at the OB's office told me it was ok to take sudafed! I took it twice, 1st trimester, before my plane trips (My ears get plugged easily).

Alavert is a Category B drug, I do know that! I took one of those per day when I had my ears plugged/sinus infection. Check with your doctor of course!
post #10 of 15
Just wanted to add--for a stuffy nose, those breathe-right strips, with a dab of vicks vapo run on the nostril have saved my life. Not the most attractive look, but who cares...
post #11 of 15
Wow, I wish I had asked when I was first pg. I had a terrible cold that lasted almost a week. My MW told me that Halls Mentholyptus were ok and that I should drink lots of mint tea. It seems like I suffered needlessly!

Hope you feel better!
post #12 of 15

Sudafed, and all other pill-type decongestants are on the big NO list with both my midwives and the OB's at my hospital.

It's much, much better to take a OTC *nosespray* - such as afrin- for a couple of days to keep your nose open, to prevent a sinus infection and enable yourself to sleep. Three days is really the max, and you can alternate sides that you use it on to try and get another day out of it. Of course, this is along with the saline, heat, steam, tea, hydration, all the other suggestions, etc. I'm a veteran sinus infection/allergy/awful nose person, so I have some experience here. The zincam nasal moisturizer- no zinc in it- spray gel works better to keep you moisturized throughout the night than plain saline, and you can use it as much as you want. It's a little pricey but worth it. I also do nasal lavage when I start getting a sinus infection, but that's gross advanced technique right there .

My nose stuffiness/allergies/post nasal drip is so severely bad that I do take percription Rhinochort nosespray, and it is a total lifesaver for me. That's more for severe chronic problems, though, not just for a cold. It's category B for pregancy, bless it's little heart.

Antihistamines really won't help a cold per se, but you can try and see how they work for you. Sometimes they dry you up and don't really help the nose, and make you tired and sleep when you really shouldn't because you can't breathe well. On the other hand, if you're having an *allergic* reaction to the virus you have (I get that, which is why my asthma gets much worse with colds), then it can be useful. -j
post #13 of 15
Sudafed is not an antihistimine -- it is a decongestant. It is still (as well as actifed which is a combo decongestant/antihistimine) on my ob's "safe" list in the second and third trimester. I have taken it during all three of my pregnancies and I thank goodness for it because I get really nasty sinus headaches and Sudafed is the only thing that works for them.
post #14 of 15
It's on the "no" list here too, but saline nasal spray is highly recommended.
post #15 of 15
I third a simple saline nasal spray. You can invest in a neti pot or disolve 1 tsp salt into 2 c lukewarm water & spray it up there with one of those bulbous baby-nose-suction-thingies (the water will come out of your nose & mouth, so do it over the sink). Sounds nasty, but it is the best releif ever!

FYI, OTC nosesprays such as afrin should never be used more than a couple of days.
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