Actifed® Cold & Allergy (chlorpheniramine maleate and phenylephrine hydrochloride) is a non-prescription medicine used to treat the symptoms of the common cold or allergies (such as hay fever).
As a combination medicine, Actifed works in two different ways. It works as a decongestant by stimulating certain receptors known as alpha-adrenergic receptors. In the lining of the nose and sinuses, this action causes the blood vessels to constrict, allowing less fluid to leave the blood vessels and decreasing inflammation. Actifed also works to treat and prevent allergy symptoms by blocking a specific type of histamine receptor in the body (known as H1 receptors).
Actifed medicine is only approved for adults and children age 12 years old and older, and is typically taken every four hours. Although most people have no problems with this drug, it is not suitable for everyone. Before starting treatment with Actifed, make sure your healthcare provider is aware of any other medical conditions you may have and any other medications you are taking (including vitamins and non-prescription medicines).
(Click Actifed for more information on using Actifed, a medicine used for treating symptoms of allergies and the common cold. This article also discusses potential side effects, general dosing guidelines, and safety precautions.)