Phenylephrine is a medication that is commonly used to treat nasal congestion and other sinus issues.
It is an alpha-1 and alpha-2 agonist that affects the body’s sympathetic nervous system, at the same time constricting blood vessels in the body. It is used in a range of cold and flu medication and can also be prescribed as a treatment for high blood pressure.
What is High Blood Pressure?
High blood pressure, otherwise known as hypertension, is a long-term medical condition that affects millions of people worldwide. It is characterized by consistently high readings of systolic (the top number) or diastolic (the bottom number) blood pressure due to an accelerated heartbeat or narrowing of the arteries, leading to unfavourable pressure levels. Over extended periods, hypertension can cause damage to the circulatory system and potentially lead to major health complications.
Dosage Advice for Phenylephrine and High Blood Pressure
When it comes to taking Phenylephrine for high blood pressure, it is important to adhere to the advice and prescription of your medical practitioner. While they may not always prescribe the medicine, they will be able to recommend and monitor a safe, effective dose relevant to your individual situation. The dosage information provided here is designed as a guide only.
For adults, the usual dose of Phenylephrine is 10mg every 4-6 hours. The medication therefore should not be taken more than 4 times a day. It is not recommended to give to children under the age of 16, and should be carefully monitored in those with existing health conditions or on a regular regime of medication.
It is important to note that Phenylephrine is not an effective long-term treatment for high blood pressure and is best used in isolation in cases such as a cold or flu, or for short-term congestion relief.
Benefits of Taking Phenylephrine for High Blood Pressure
Phenylephrine offers a variety of benefits in the treatment of high blood pressure, as long as it is used correctly and with direction from your doctor. These include:
• Relief from nasal congestion – Phenylephrine is very effective in providing fast relief from sinus related issues, and can help in moderation of high blood pressure readings.
• Fast working – Because Phenylephrine is administered directly into the bloodstream, it is far more efficient in providing fast relief compared to other medications.
• Reduces side effects – By targeting only the nasal area, Phenylephrine treatments help to reduce the range of side effects usually associated with medications taken orally.
Risks and Precautions
Although Phenylephrine is usually well tolerated, there are certain risks and precautions associated with its use.
• Overdose – When taking more than the prescribed dosage of Phenylephrine, it is possible to experience serious side effects. These include nausea and vomiting, chest pain and a rapid or very slow heart rate.
• Pre-existing conditions – Before using Phenylephrine, any pre-existing health conditions should be discussed with a doctor. This includes any heart, liver or kidney conditions, as well as any associated allergies.
• Pregnant and breastfeeding – It is not recommended to take Phenylephrine while pregnant or breastfeeding, as the effects on the infant are largely unknown.
Phenylephrine is a medication that is often prescribed for treating nasal congestion and high blood pressure. In the case of hypertension, Phenylephrine is best used with advice and direction from a doctor, and due to its fast-working properties can offer short-term relief.
If used correctly, Phenylephrine can provide a highly effective form of treatment, however it is important to be aware of the risks and precautions associated with its use. In general, Phenylephrine should not be used more than 4 times a day, and more care should be taken with those who have allergies or existing health conditions.
If you are pregnant or breastfeeding, it is not recommended to take the medication at all. In all cases, an open line of communication between doctor and patient is essential to ensure that treatment is safe and effective.