How does this medication work? What will it do for me?
Xylometazoline belongs to a group of medications called nasal decongestants. It is used in a nasal spray and drops for the relief of symptoms of nasal congestion caused by seasonal allergies, year-round allergies, sinusitis, and ear infections. It is also used to make rhinoscopy (an examination of the inside of the nose) easier. It works by narrowing the blood vessels in the lining of the nose. This helps to clear the symptoms of congestion.
Your doctor may have suggested this medication for conditions other than those listed in these drug information articles. As well, some forms of this medication may not be used for all of the conditions discussed here. If you have not discussed this with your doctor or are not sure why you are taking this medication, speak to your doctor. Do not stop taking this medication without consulting your doctor.
Do not give this medication to anyone else, even if they have the same symptoms as you do. It can be harmful for people to take this medication if their doctor has not prescribed it.
What form(s) does this medication come in?
Each bottle contains xylometazoline 0.1%. Nonmedicinal ingredients: benzalkonium chloride, dibasic potassium phosphate, EDTA disodium, monobasic sodium phosphate, potassium chloride, purified water, and sodium chloride.
How should I use this medication?
Before using this medication, the nose should be blown gently. Do not use this medication for more than 3 days in a row.
Nasal spray: The usual recommended dose for adults is one or two sprays in each nostril every 8 to 10 hours. The head should be tilted slightly forward while using the spray. Breathe deeply.
Measured dose pump: The usual recommended dose for adults is one spray in each nostril every 8 to 10 hours. The head should be tilted slightly forward while using the pump. Before using the pump for the first time, prime it by spraying several times into the air until a fine mist is seen.
Nasal drops: The usual recommended dose for adults is 2 or 3 drops in each nostril every 8 to 10 hours. The head should be tilted back while using the drops.
Many things can affect the dose of medication that a person needs, such as body weight, other medical conditions, and other medications. If your doctor has recommended a dose different from the ones listed here, do not change the way that you are using the medication without consulting your doctor.
It is important to use this medication exactly as prescribed by your doctor. If you miss a dose, use it as soon as possible and continue with your regular schedule. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and continue with your regular dosing schedule. Do not use a double dose to make up for a missed one. If you are not sure what to do after missing a dose, contact your doctor or pharmacist for advice.
If symptoms continue for longer than 3 days, stop using this medication and contact your doctor. Excessive use may cause congestion to become worse.
Store this medication at room temperature, protect it from moisture, and keep it out of the reach of children.
Do not dispose of medications in wastewater (e.g. down the sink or in the toilet) or in household garbage. Ask your pharmacist how to dispose of medications that are no longer needed or have expired.
Who should NOT take this medication?
Do not use this medication if you:
- are allergic to xylometazoline or any ingredients of this medication
- are currently taking monoamine oxidase (MAO) inhibitors (e.g., phenelzine, tranylcypromine)
- are sensitive (i.e., experience trouble sleeping, dizziness, lightheadedness, weakness, tremor, or abnormal heart rhythms) to other related medications (e.g., epinephrine, phenylephrine, pseudoephedrine)
- have narrow-angle glaucoma
- have rhinitis sicca (a chronic type of rhinitis with very little or no nasal discharge)
What side effects are possible with this medication?
Many medications can cause side effects. A side effect is an unwanted response to a medication when it is taken in normal doses. Side effects can be mild or severe, temporary or permanent.
The side effects listed below are not experienced by everyone who takes this medication. If you are concerned about side effects, discuss the risks and benefits of this medication with your doctor.
The following side effects have been reported by at least 1% of people taking this medication. Many of these side effects can be managed, and some may go away on their own over time.
Contact your doctor if you experience these side effects and they are severe or bothersome. Your pharmacist may be able to advise you on managing side effects.
- burning and stinging of the nose
- dryness of the nose
- increased nasal discharge
- trouble sleeping
Although most of the side effects listed below don't happen very often, they could lead to serious problems if you do not seek medical attention.
Check with your doctor as soon as possible if any of the following side effects occur:
- blurred vision
- dizziness or lightheadedness
- high blood pressure
- palpitations (heartbeat that is fast, irregular, or pounding)
Stop taking the medication and seek immediate medical attention if any of the following occur:
- difficulty breathing
- swelling of face or throat
Some people may experience side effects other than those listed. Check with your doctor if you notice any symptom that worries you while you are taking this medication.
Are there any other precautions or warnings for this medication?
Before you begin using a medication, be sure to inform your doctor of any medical conditions or allergies you may have, any medications you are taking, whether you are pregnant or breast-feeding, and any other significant facts about your health. These factors may affect how you should use this medication.
Prolonged or excessive use: If symptoms continue for more than 3 days, stop using this medication and contact your doctor. Excessive or prolonged use of this medication may make congestion worse.
Medical conditions: If you have difficulty urinating because of an enlarged prostate, heart disease, high blood pressure, glaucoma, overactive thyroid, advanced hardening of the arteries, or diabetes, discuss with your doctor how this medication may affect your medical condition, how your medical condition may affect the dosing and effectiveness of this medication, and whether any special monitoring is needed.
Multiple users: Use of this nasal spray by more than one person may cause spread of infection.
Pregnancy: This medication should not be used during pregnancy unless the benefits outweigh the risks. If you become pregnant while taking this medication, contact your doctor immediately.
Breast-feeding: This medication should not be used during breast-feeding unless the benefits outweigh the risks. Women who are breast-feeding should speak to their doctor for guidance.
Seniors: Seniors should use this medication with caution, and should not exceed the recommended dose.
What other drugs could interact with this medication?
There may be an interaction between xylometazoline and any of the following:
- MAO inhibitors (e.g., phenelzine, tranylcypromine)
- other decongestants (e.g. pseudoephedrine)
- sympathomimetic medications (e.g. formoterol, methylphenidate, appetite suppressants)
- tricyclic antidepressants (e.g., amitriptyline, nortriptyline)
If you are taking any of these medications, speak with your doctor or pharmacist. Depending on your specific circumstances, your doctor may want you to:
- stop taking one of the medications,
- change one of the medications to another,
- change how you are taking one or both of the medications, or
- leave everything as is.
An interaction between two medications does not always mean that you must stop taking one of them. Speak to your doctor about how any drug interactions are being managed or should be managed.
Medications other than those listed above may interact with this medication. Tell your doctor or prescriber about all prescription, over-the-counter (non-prescription), and herbal medications you are taking. Also tell them about any supplements you take. Since caffeine, alcohol, the nicotine from cigarettes, or street drugs can affect the action of many medications, you should let your prescriber know if you use them.