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Infant have blocked nose and congestion. Put oral drop in nose. Any complication?

Sep 2012
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General & Family Physician
Practicing since : 2008
Answered : 1416 Questions
Hi, we have a 7 month old baby and we were giving him two types of drops for his blocked nose and congestion. One was a saline solution for the nose and we just assumed that the other was a nasal drop too. It was actually oral drops with a syrup base. We've put the oral drops in his nose twice now and only now have we realised that they were oral drops. Will this create a problem? He seems to be doing fine.
Posted Thu, 27 Dec 2012 in Child Health
Answered by Dr. Das Arindam 59 minutes later
Thank you for posting a query.

Firstly, Maxtra contains phenylephrine. Now, it is available both as oral and nasal solution. Nasal solutions are of o.125% or 0.16%.

If your doctor has prescribed and told you to use the nasal solution, you should replace the oral solution with nasal solution tomorrow.

Giving oral solution to nose will not give rise to any big problem usually. But keep watching him. If he develops any type of respiratory distress apart from the nasal congestion, you should call the doctor or go to an Pediatric Emergency of any hospital immediately.

Here, I want to add one thing, that this phenylephrine solution is not used in children below 2 years of age. You should consult with your treating doctor about this. In case of nasal congestion, in this particular age group, the saline solution is most appropriate one.

Hope this information suffices. Let me know, if you have any more question.

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Follow-up: Infant have blocked nose and congestion. Put oral drop in nose. Any complication? 1 hour later
Thanks for your reply. His congestion is much better, nearly gone in fact. We will, as per your advice, discontinue the maxtra and use only the saline if required. I just wanted to know for how long we should keep an eye on him regarding the possibility of his developing respiratory distress due to our error..? Right now he's actually sleeping peacefully and there has been no sign of anything wrong. It has been about 8 hours since we gave him those drops.
Answered by Dr. Das Arindam 20 minutes later
Thank you for writing back.

I can understand your situation.

I think, as 8 hours has already passed, you do not have any reason to be worried right now.

I am sure, that irrespective of my advise, you will watch him. So, if you notice any abnormality in his behavior, within 2 to 3 days ( maximum) you can consult with a pediatrician.

Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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