Lungs Home > Dextromethorphan Polistirex

Dextromethorphan polistirex is an over-the-counter cough suppressant specially designed to last for 12 hours at a time. This medication is different from other, similar formulations in that some of the active ingredient is released immediately after a dose to provide fast relief, while the remaining amount dissolves slowly over time. Possible side effects include dizziness and drowsiness.

What Is Dextromethorphan Polistirex?

Dextromethorphan polistirex (Delsym®) is a nonprescription cough medication. It is a long-acting product that is taken just twice a day to suppress coughing. In fact, it is the only 12-hour, over-the-counter (OTC) cough medication available in the United States.
(Click What Is Dextromethorphan Polistirex Used For? for more information on this topic, including possible off-label uses.)

Are There Side Effects?

Just like any medicine, dextromethorphan polistirex can cause side effects. However, not everyone who uses the drug will experience problems. Most people tolerate it quite well. If reactions do occur, in most cases, they are minor and either require no treatment or are treated easily by you or your healthcare provider. Serious side effects are less common.
Possible side effects seen with dextromethorphan polistirex include but are not limited to:
  • Dizziness
  • Drowsiness
  • Upset stomach.
(Click Side Effects of Dextromethorphan Polistirex to learn more, including potentially serious side effects you should report immediately to your healthcare provider.)
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;
Last updated/reviewed:
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