Chicago families should be cautious about giving their infants and toddlers cough medicines in light of reports that the makers of several leading over-the-counter cold medications are voluntarily withdrawing products sold for infants. The Consumer Healthcare Products Association said the products were being withdrawn “out of an abundance of caution” and insisted the products are safe when used as directed.
This withdrawal comes after the U.S. Food & Drug Administration recommended last month that parental “consult your physician” warnings be dropped in exchange for adding a warning not to use cough medicines for children under the age of two in its place. After reviewing reports of side effects over the last four decades, the FDA found 54 child fatalities from over-the-counter decongestant medicines and 69 reports of children's deaths connected with antihistamines, which are used to treat runny noses.
The lists of the companies voluntarily withdrawing their cough medicines include Dimetapp, Little Colds, Pedicare, Robitussin, Triaminic and Tylenol. More specifics about which products were pulled can be found here.
“The reason the makers of over-the-counter, oral cough and cold medicines for infants are voluntarily withdrawing these medicines is that there have been rare patterns of misuse leading to overdose recently identified, particularly in infants, and safety is our top priority,” CHPA president Linda A. Suydam said in a statement.
CVS stores planned to stop selling the withdrawn products and store-brand equivalents, it said. Refunds are being offered if customers return the products.