How Do You Spell Relief?

Source: The American Prospect
by Robert Kuttner

“This week, an advisory panel of the FDA unanimously concluded that a widely used nasal decongestant is ineffective and basically worthless. The ingredient, phenylephrine, is found in numerous over-the-counter remedies (including Mucinex, NyQuil, and Theraflu) in all, in some 250 different products worth $1.8 billion in sales last year. Decongestants in general are not very good. There is a well-known rebound effect. You get some relief for a while but then are more congested than ever. As it happens, there is a near-miraculous generic cold medicine, ambroxol, that is available over the counter all over the world, but not in the United States. I stumbled on this medication last year when I was in France and had a bad cold. I went to the local pharmacy and asked if they carried something like Mucinex or Robitussin.” (09/15/23)