The maker of several store-brand cough syrups for children has recalled several batches of grape and cherry-flavored cough medicine. The plastic cups provided with the syrup to measure the proper dose were marked incorrectly so that parents using these dosing cups might administer too much medicine. Since accuratedoses for children are notoriously troublesome, this is a serious cause for concern.
Cough Syrup Recall Affects Several Chains:
The FDA’s recall warning named these affected pharmacy chains: Sunmark, Rite-Aid, Topcare, Kroger, GoodSense, Dollar General, Care One and CVS. The cough syrup in question contains guaifenesin and dextromethorphan, abbreviated DM.
What Should Parents Do?
Parents who have purchased one of these products affected by the cough syrup recall should not use it. Symptoms of DM overdose include excitability, muscle twitching, rapid eye movements and hallucinations.
Several studies suggest that cough syrup is not very effective for calming coughs in kids. We have written about them here and here. Instead, several experts suggest home remedies such as a spoonful of buckwheat honey, so long as the youngster is at least a year old.
Other remedies that may be helpful-or at least not harmful-include putting Vicks VapoRub on the soles of the feet or preparing thyme tea from 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme leaves per cup. The thyme tea may be flavored with lemon and sweetened with honey, if that makes it more palatable.