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Drugs reference index «Benzonatate»



Brand names: Tessalon

Why is Benzonatate prescribed?

Tessalon is taken for relief of a cough.

Most important fact about Benzonatate

Tessalon should be swallowed whole, not chewed.

How should you take Benzonatate?

Tessalon perles (soft capsule form) should be swallowed whole. If chewed, they can produce a temporary numbness of the mouth and throat that could cause choking or a severe allergic reaction.

  • If you miss a dose...Take the forgotten dose as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the one you missed and go back to your regular schedule. Never double the dose.
  • Storage instructions...Store Tessalon at room temperature.

What side effects may occur?

Side effects cannot be anticipated. If any occur or change in intensity, inform your doctor as soon as possible. Only your doctor can determine if it is safe to continue taking Tessalon.

  • Side effects may include:Allergic reactions, burning sensation in the eyes, constipation, dizziness, extreme calm (sedation), headache, itching, mental confusion, nausea, numbness in chest, skin eruptions, stuffy nose, upset stomach, vague "chilly" feeling, visual hallucinations

Why should Benzonatate not be prescribed?

Tessalon should not be used if you are sensitive to or have ever had an allergic reaction to benzonatate or similar drugs (such as local anesthetics).

Special warnings about Benzonatate

Remember to swallow Tessalon perles whole.

Possible food and drug interactions when taking Benzonatate

There have been rare occurrences of bizarre behavior, including confusion and visual hallucinations, when Tessalon is taken with other prescribed drugs. Check with your doctor before taking Tessalon with other medications.

Special information if you are pregnant or breastfeeding

The effects of Tessalon during pregnancy have not been studied adequately. Tessalon should be used during pregnancy only if clearly needed. If you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant, notify your doctor immediately. It is unknown if Tessalon appears in breast milk and could affect a nursing infant. If Benzonatate is essential to your health, your doctor may advise you to stop breastfeeding until your treatment with Tessalon ends.

Recommended dosage for Benzonatate



The usual dose is a 100-milligram perle 3 times per day, as needed. The maximum dose is 600 milligrams, or 6 perles, a day.


If capsules are chewed or allowed to dissolve in the mouth, numbness of the mouth and throat will develop rapidly. Symptoms of restlessness and tremors may be followed by convulsions.

If you suspect a Tessalon overdose, seek medical attention immediately.

  • Benzonatate MedFacts Consumer Leaflet (Wolters Kluwer)
  • Benzonatate Prescribing Information (FDA)
  • Benzonatate Professional Patient Advice (Wolters Kluwer)
  • benzonatate Concise Consumer Information (Cerner Multum)
  • benzonatate Advanced Consumer (Micromedex) - Includes Dosage Information

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