many over-the-counter medications are unnecessary

Humex, Fervex… Many drugs have little or no beneficial effects and potentially significant side effects.

On Monday, January 23, the UFC-Que Choisir again designated several substances aimed at various winter ailments such as the common cold.

Over the counter, Fervex, HumexLib, or even other Rhinofebra, DoliRhume… combine paracetamol and active ingredients, vitamins. However, according to the Consumer Protection Association and many specialists, they are very far from bringing any kind of well-being against upper respiratory infections.

“No proven effectiveness against colds”

UFC-Que Choisir remembers that “The ban on the advertising of specialties containing pseudoephedrine in 2018 prompted laboratories to highlight their cold remedies containing antihistamines, a class usually given in allergies. This is the case with the Fervex and Humex ranges, where there are products with pheniramine or chlorphenamine.”.

The association believes that these treatments “have not been shown to be effective against colds”stating:

The trials that evaluated them alone in this indication show a small effect in the first two days on the intensity of the symptoms, but none in the following days, and they made no difference with placebo on the runny nose, the feeling of stuffy nose and the sneeze.

Significant side effects

In addition to questionable effectiveness, pheniramine and chlorphenamine are accompanied, mainly in the elderly, by undesirable effects: dry mouth, constipation, blurred vision, accelerated heart rate, etc.

These first-generation antihistamines may cause daytime sleepiness.

Beware of fabric stacking

In addition to all this, care must be taken with the composition of these drugs. Because if you are already taking paracetamol, an overdose of paracetamol can have dramatic and irreversible consequences for the liver.

It is therefore recommended, with a cold, to stick to paracetamol and sea water to clear the nose. All this, taking into account the dosage indicated in the instructions for these drugs. Simply.

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