Phenylephrine (On the skin)

Introduction

Phenylephrine (fen-il-EF-rin)

Treats swelling, itching, burning, or discomfort caused by hemorrhoids (piles).

Brand Name(s)

Formulation R

There may be other brand names for this medicine.

When This Medicine Should Not Be Used

You should not use this medicine if you have had an allergic reaction to phenylephrine or to any other ingredient listed on the product label.

How to Use This Medicine

Ointment

  • Your doctor will tell you how much of this medicine to use and how often. Do not use more medicine or use it more often than your doctor tells you to.
  • If you are using this medicine without a prescription, follow the instructions on the medicine label.
  • This medicine may be used on the outer anal area, or placed just inside your rectum. Ask your doctor if you are not sure where you should use the medicine.
  • Wash your hands with soap and water before and after using this medicine. Clean your rectal area with a cleansing wipe and gently dry the area before applying the medicine.
  • It is best to use this medicine in the morning, after a bowel movement, or before going to bed. Apply the medicine around your anal area (rectum) up to 4 times daily unless your doctor tells you otherwise.
  • To apply the ointment inside your rectum, attach the special applicator tip to the medicine tube. To make the applicator easier to insert, you may coat it with a lubricating gel such as K-Y® Jelly or petroleum jelly (Vaseline®). Insert the tip gently into your rectum and squeeze the tube to release the ointment. Remove the tip and then apply a small amount of ointment to the outside of your anal area.
  • Remove the applicator tip from the tube and wash the tip with soap and water. Replace the tip and put the protective cap back on. Be sure to wash the applicator tip after each time you use it.

If a dose is missed:

  • If you miss a dose or forget to use your medicine, apply it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, wait until then to apply the medicine and skip the missed dose. Do not apply extra medicine to make up for a missed dose.

How to Store and Dispose of This Medicine

  • Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light. Always store the medicine with the protective cap on the tube.
  • Ask your pharmacist, doctor, or health caregiver about the best way to dispose of the used medicine applicator(s), containers, and any leftover medicine after you have finished your treatment. You will also need to throw away old medicine after the expiration date has passed.
  • Keep all medicine away from children and never share your medicine with anyone.

Drugs and Foods to Avoid

Ask your doctor or pharmacist before using any other medicine, including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.

  • Make sure your doctor knows if you are also using medicine to lower blood pressure. Some blood pressure medicines are atenolol, hydrochlorothiazide (HCTZ), lisinopril, metoprolol, quinapril, Accupril®, Cozaar®, Diovan®, Lotrel®, Norvasc®, Toprol®, Zestril®.
  • Tell your doctor if you are also using medicine to treat depression, such as citalopram, fluoxetine, paroxetine, sertraline, Celexa®, Effexor®, Lexapro?, Paxil®, Prozac®, or Zoloft®.
  • Make sure your doctor knows if you use an MAO inhibitor (MAOI) such as Eldepryl®, Marplan®, Matulane®, Nardil®, or Parnate®.

Warnings While Using This Medicine

  • Make sure your doctor knows if you are pregnant or breast feeding.
  • Tell your doctor if you have diabetes, heart disease, thyroid disease, high blood pressure, or problems urinating due to an enlarged prostate.
  • Do not use this medicine on a child under 12 years of age unless your doctor tells you to.
  • If your symptoms do not improve or if they get worse, call your doctor.

Possible Side Effects While Using This Medicine

Call your doctor right away if you notice any of these side effects:

  • Allergic reaction: Itching or hives, swelling in your face or hands, swelling or tingling in your mouth or throat, chest tightness, trouble breathing
  • Bleeding from your rectum.
  • No improvement, or worsened symptoms after using the medicine for 7 days.
  • Pain in your rectum when using the medicine applicator.

If you notice other side effects that you think are caused by this medicine, tell your doctor

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088

Version Info

  • Last Reviewed on 06/12/2013

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This page was last updated: September 18, 2013

         
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