Acetylcysteine belongs to the group of medications called amino acids. It is used to reduce the thickness of mucus and aid its removal.
Uses of Acetylcysteine
- Swelling of the mucous membrane in the airways (Bronchitis)
- Air spaces in the lung enlarged and destroyed (Emphysema)
- Thick mucus-producing conditions (Cystic fibrosis)
- Chronic widening of an airway passage (Bronchiectasis)
Contraindications of Acetylcysteine
When should one not use Acetylcysteine
- Allergic to this medicine
- For children under 2 years of age
Side effects of Acetylcysteine
Common side effects of this drug are:
- Severe drop in blood pressure, weak pulse
- Paleness, restlessness
- Sudden fluid accumulation in throat or tongue
- Breathing difficulties
- Allergic reactions like itching and skin rash
- Running nose
Precautions and Warnings of Acetylcysteine
Can I take Acetylcysteine during pregnancy?
The effect of Acetylcysteine on the fetus is not known, consult your doctor if you are pregnant, your doctor will tell you on the use of this medicine after assessing the benefits over risks.
Can I take Acetylcysteine while breastfeeding?
The excretion of Acetylcysteine in breastmilk is not known. It is better to talk to your doctor before breastfeeding.
Can I drive if I have consumed Acetylcysteine?
No information is available on the ability to drive or use machines; however, if you observe or experience any side effect, it is advised not to drive or use tools. Contact your doctor or pharmacist for further information.
Can I consume alcohol with Acetylcysteine?
No information is available on interactions of Acetylcysteine when taken with alcohol, consult your doctor or pharmacist for further information.
Other General Warnings
Talk to your doctor if
- You are suffering from bronchial asthma
- You are suffering from peptic ulcer
- You have severe hypersensitivity reactions (high) fever, skin redness, joint pains or eye infection
- You experience any new changes to the skin or mucous membranes
- You are taking medicines like Mucolytics (that dissolve phlegm)
Mode of Action of Acetylcysteine
How Does It Work?
It is used to reduce the thickness of mucus so that it can be coughed up more quickly.
Interactions of Acetylcysteine
Interactions with other medicines
- Acetylcysteine may interact with some medications, certain vitamins, and herbs
- Specific interactions are not known as yet
- Do not mix other inhaler solutions with acetylcysteine solution as it triggers the side effects
Interactions with food items
Avoid intake of alcohol while on treatment with Acetylcysteine as it increases the side effects.
Dietary Restrictions of Acetylcysteine
Drink lots of fluids to assist and loosen the congestion and lubricate your throat while you are taking this medication.
Dosage of Acetylcysteine
Symptoms of overdose are nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. If you happen to take an overdose, immediately contact your doctor.
Missed a Dose
If you have forgotten to take a dose, do not take the forgotten dose, but continue the usual dosage schedule.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Q: What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before I start
A: You must give the details regarding your prescribed or non-prescribed medicines, food, or drug allergies, if any.
Q: Any precautions to be taken before starting treatment?
A: Do not mix other inhaler medications with Acetylcysteine solution. A nebulizer is used to inhale the Acetylcysteine, so don't take this medicine orally.
Last Updated on: 05 Oct 2020 | 10:47 PM (IST)
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