Oximetazoline: Composition, Use Mode, Side Effects and Precautions

It is a complete α₁ agonist and a partial α₂ agonist used as a topical decongestant in the form of oxymetazoline hydrochloride.

It is an aerosol medication that serves to temporarily reduce or relieve nasal congestion caused by the common cold, sinusitis , hay fever, allergies, among other conditions that prevent breathing fluidly.

Its use is not recommended in children between the ages of 6 and 12 years unless it is indicated by a pediatrician and under the supervision of the parents and / or representatives.

How to use

Oxymetazoline is a liquid solution that must be applied to the nasal passages following the indications on the label, the prescription of the attending physician or as follows:

  • Verify the expiration date of the medication before use.
  • If you are using the product in its spray version keep the head vertically.
  • Cover one of the holes in the nostrils.
  • Place the tip of the vial in the open hole of the nostrils.
  • Press the bottle while inhaling through the hole.
  • Repeat the procedure in the other nostril.

After applying the oxymetazoline you should wash the tip of the dispenser with plenty of hot water and check that it does not enter the container. Do not lend your medicine to prevent the spread of infection.

To ensure the effectiveness of the medication, it must be done every 10 or 12 hours in a 3-day period, or at the discretion of the attending physician. If nasal congestion does not improve, you should stop using it to avoid side effects or future complications.

Oxymetazoline is a nasal treatment, so you should avoid contact with the eyes or other mucous membranes and under no circumstances can be ingested as a syrup, if it happens to contact your doctor immediately to prevent other complications.

If you use this medication for prolonged periods of time without medical supervision, it may cause the following injuries:

  • Nasal redness
  • Swelling inside the nose.
  • Increase of nasal secretion.
  • Difficulty breathing.

If you experience any of these symptoms, stop using it and attend a medical appointment to prescribe a new treatment.

Side effects

Oximetazoline almost never generates side effects in the patient, some unfavorable reactions reported are due to misuse of the drug or its excessive use without the prescription of a medical specialist.

However, you must suspend its application when presenting the following symptoms:

  • Nasal discharge pronounced.
  • Headache after the application of the medicine.
  • Itching on the inner walls of the nose.
  • Redness in the nasal passages.
  • Constant sneezing
  • Accelerated heartbeats
  • Sweating

During the gestation period, risks to the fetus have not been ruled out, so it is recommended to use only in strictly necessary cases and under medical supervision.

Children under the age of 12 should not use this medicine because it can cause depression in the central nervous system.

The oxymetazoline is used in short periods of time but progressive, if you miss a dose, apply immediately to not lose the effectiveness of treatment, but if the next dose is close, omit the forgotten and continue with the next.


Taking inhibitors such as linezolid, moclobemide, procarbazine, safinamide, tranylcypromine, isocarboxazide, methylene blue, phenelzine rasagiline, selegiline, in conjunction with oxymetazoline can cause future complications in the body, even fatal.

It is important that you tell your treating doctor if you have any treatment with the medicines mentioned to take preventive measures.


Once the medication is opened, it should be stored in a space that is out of the reach of children and pets, under an ambient temperature and away from humidity, light and excessive heat. It is not necessary to refrigerate or freeze and should be kept in a container.

Oximetazoline can not be exposed to contact with other liquid or solid components, if the bottle suffers any deterioration that harms the isolation of the product stop its use and throw it away because the medication can be contaminated by decreasing the effectiveness of the treatment.

When disposing of this or any medication, it should be avoided to throw it down the toilet or in common containers that are within reach of inappropriate persons, children or pets that are prone to ingest them.


  • Each millimeter of the solution contains 0.5 mg of Oximetazoline Hydrochloride.


Afrin, Dristan, Nasivion, Nostrilla, Vicks Sinex, Sudafed OM, Otrivin Oxy, Mucinex Sinus-Max, Drixine, Nasivin, Nezeril, Logicin, Visine L.R., Zicam y SinuFrin.