Fenergan: is it corticoid? See indications and side effects

It is quite common to have questions when it comes to taking any medicine, even with professional guidance (essential because the self-medication is not recommended ).

Therefore, having access to the package insert can be quite enlightening as to the indication of the medication, the possible side effects, form of use, contraindications, etc.

In this text, we separate some of this (and others) information about the Fenergan remedy:


What is Fenergan?

Fenergan is a medication that uses promethazine hydrochloride as an active ingredient, a substance with antihistamine action. Therefore, it is indicated mainly for the treatment of allergic reactions.

In addition, the tablet and injectable versions can also be prescribed to relieve nausea and vomiting, as well as collaborate with its sedative action in pre-anesthetic use.

Apart from these presentations, Fenergan is also available in syrup and ointment.

In this case, the syrup is indicated to treat allergic attacks, bronchitis and symptoms related to the respiratory tract (stuffy nose, watery eyes, etc.). The ointment, on the other hand, is restricted to topical reactions such as itching, redness and complications from insect bites.

It is worth mentioning that this medication, as well as being common to other antiallergic agents, can cause side effects such as drowsiness, dizziness and tiredness . Still, it is worth emphasizing that there are contraindications (such as for infants and children under 2 years old).

Therefore, it is essential to seek prior medical advice and not practice self-medication .

Is it corticosteroid?

No . The drug Fenergan is registered with ANVISA (National Health Surveillance Agency) as a systemic antihistamine .

This means that it is a medication that inhibits the action of histamine, a substance involved in the biochemical processes of the body’s immune responses, which naturally cause allergic reactions.

Thus, it is responsible for ceasing the allergic process, as well as its symptoms.

What are the presentations?

The Fenergan remedy is available in 4 presentations: syrup (expectorant), ointment, tablet and injectable. All are mainly indicated to treat allergic reactions.

However, each has a specific specification. Check and understand better:

Expectorant syrup)

Syrup medication is an expectorant type, so in addition to being indicated for the treatment of allergic conditions, it can also be indicated for cases of bronchitis and nasal airway obstructions (stuffy nose).

It can also help to treat symptoms such as sneezing and watery eyes, which usually occur due to inflammation and irritation in the airways.

The main feature of this presentation is the fact that it is commonly indicated for pediatric use (from 2 years old), considering the lower milligram and easier administration in children.


Fenergan in ointment (cream) can be used by both adults and children, being recommended for topical use in cases of allergies that affect the dermis (exclusively, or not), as well as its symptoms (such as itching, for example).

This medication can also be prescribed for unwanted reactions to mosquito bites.


The tablet presentation of Fenergan is one that, like the injectable version, is indicated for the broadest forms of use of the drug. So it can treat everything from simple allergic attacks, to anaphylactic reactions or have its use as a pre-anesthetic.

This version is also not suitable for children under 2 years old, although its pediatric use is not common, and it is usually prescribed for adults.


As mentioned, as well as the tablet version, the use of injectable Fenergan can also be beneficial in several uses ( allergy , anaphylactic reaction, vomiting and nausea relief etc.).

This medication is exclusively for intramuscular application (directly in the muscle) and needs prior medical guidance and prescription. Usually, it is only used in more severe cases or when, for some reason, the person cannot use the other versions of the medicine.

What is it for?

The drug Fenergan is, according to the package insert, indicated to treat symptoms of anaphylactic reactions (rapid and progressive reaction to a certain substance, which can cause life-threatening) and allergic attacks .

In addition, it also has antiemetic action, which means that it can provide relief for symptoms such as nausea and vomiting . As, for example, in cases of postoperative, travel, pregnancy and chemotherapy.

It can also be indicated by the doctor in the pre-anesthesia phase and to enhance the action of analgesic drugs , due to its sedative (soothing) action.

It is worth mentioning that the ointment version is only indicated for the treatment of topical allergic reactions, itching and insect bites. And yet, the syrup version is prescribed only to treat cough and symptoms related to inflammation of the airways.

What is the effect of Fenergan?

Fenergan, in its different presentations, is classified as an antihistamine medication. This means that its action occurs through the inhibition of a natural substance in the body: histamine.

This is produced by the body during an allergic reaction, mainly affecting the skin, vessels and mucous membranes (conjunctival, nasal, bronchial and intestinal).

Thus, when it enters the body, Fenergan opposes the effects of histamine and combats the symptoms of allergic conditions. In this sense, it is highlighted that the package insert indicates the time of action of the medicine as being 20 minutes and usually lasting between 4 and 6 hours.

How to take (or use) Fenergan for allergy?

Fenergan has 4 different presentations, consequently, these also have different forms of use. Here’s how to take or use this medicine in its versions:

  • Tablet – the recommended dose is 2 to 6 tablets daily. It should be divided into two, three or four times, always leaving the largest fraction for the night;
  • Injectable – the application is exclusively intramuscular (direct in the muscle), the doses must be defined by the doctor, but usually 25mg to 50mg is used, not exceeding 100mg. It is noteworthy that the injectable use of Fenergan is only indicated in very specific or severe cases, requiring medical assistance;
  • Ointment – just apply the cream directly to the area affected by the allergic and / or itchy reaction, which can be done 3 or 4 times a day ;
  • Syrup (expectorant) – commonly indicated for pediatric use, in this case, the recommendation is 1 teaspoon (5mL) 3 to 5 times a day for children aged 2 to 6 years and 4 to 6 times for children over 6 years old. When prescribed for adult use, you can use 1 or 2 teaspoons every 2 or 3 hours.

It is worth mentioning that these are general guidelines for the medication leaflet. However, it is essential to follow the medical instructions, prescribed according to your situation.

Who can not take Fenergan?

According to the information on the package leaflet, the drug Fenergan is contraindicated for anyone who fits any of the following conditions:

  • Patients with hypersensitivity to promethazine (active ingredient), to other phenothiazine derivatives (group of this medication) or to components of the formula;
  • Patients with a history of agranulocytosis (large reduction in the number of blood cells called granulocytes);
  • Patients who are already at risk prior to urinary retention due to problems related to the urethra;
  • People with glaucoma (disease characterized by increased intraocular pressure);
  • Lactating;
  • Comatose patients;
  • Patient diagnosed with depression;
  • Children under 2 years old.

In addition, the package insert indicates that Fenergan should not be used with alcoholic beverages.

What are the side effects?

Considering that Fenergan is a medication that has 4 different presentations (syrup, ointment, pills and injections), these versions can also cause different side effects.

In the case of tablets and injectable version , the package insert indicates the following possible adverse reactions:

  • Allergic reactions (hives, rash, itching and anaphylactic reaction);
  • Photosensitivity (skin’s exaggerated sensitivity to light);
  • Anticholinergic effects (dilated pupils, blurred vision, dry mouth, etc.), confusion, drowsiness, dizziness, headaches, muscle spasms, tic movements of the head and face – the elderly are more susceptible to these reactions;
  • Epigastric discomfort;
  •  Hemolytic anemia (decrease in the number of red blood cells);
  • Palpitations, arrhythmias, hypotension (low blood pressure);
  • Tiredness.

These are just some of the reactions, it is noteworthy that the package insert does not indicate the probability that they will occur, so that it signals as unknown the frequency of the appearance of such adverse effects with the use of Fenergan (tablets and injectable).

Regarding the use of this medicine in its syrup (expectorant) version , the following side effects are common in the package insert:

  • Sedation or drowsiness;
  • Dryness of the mouth and other mucous membranes;
  • Constipation, risk of urinary retention;
  • Changes in visual accommodation, mydriasis (pupil dilation);
  • Palpitations, bradycardia (decrease in heart rate) or tachycardia (increase in heart rate), increase or decrease in blood pressure;
  • Changes in balance, vertigo, decreased memory or concentration;
  • Lack of motor coordination and tremors (more often in the elderly).

Finally, Fenergan in ointment can cause skin sensitivities, photosensitization and rarely allergic reactions, hives, itching and anaphylaxis .

Do you sleep?

Among the possible side effects of Fenergan (tablet, injectable, syrup) is drowsiness, tiredness and the sensation of sedation. So, yes, this medicine can make you sleepy.

Among the possible side effects of Fenergan is drowsiness, a very common reaction of antiallergic drugs.

However, like any adverse reaction, not all people will necessarily suffer from this problem, so that some may experience this symptom more intensely and others may not feel anything at all.

It is worth mentioning that if you experience this, or another unwanted reaction, you should seek help from a professional in order to avoid this problem and perhaps replace the medication with another that does not cause drowsiness – although it is a common effect of many antiallergens.


There is no indication on the label of the drug Fenergan, in all its 4 versions, that this drug may cause weight gain.

On the contrary, weight loss and even cases of anorexia are said to be an unusual reaction (but that can affect a small portion of patients) .

Anyway, if you have a sudden increase in weight or exacerbated weight loss, seek medical help as soon as possible. Thus, it will be possible to diagnose whether the issue is (or not) related to the use of this medication.

Does Fenergan need a prescription?

-Yeah . The Fenergan medication has a red stripe, which means that its use involves risks and that prescription and medical monitoring of the treatment is necessary.

The prescription for red-stripe drugs may be retained at the pharmacy in some cases, such as when it comes to antibiotics or psychiatric medications (such as anxiolytics ).

However, sometimes the prescription is only checked by the pharmacist. The difference is based on the description of the label on the medicine box and at the end of the package insert.

If it is written “ it can only be sold with retention of the prescription ”, it corresponds to a remedy that needs 1 copy of the prescription to be with the pharmacy. Otherwise, no. And, although it is not ideal, it is sometimes even possible to buy without presenting the recipe.

It is worth mentioning that the purpose of this rule is to control people’s access to these medications, since they may present risks. This may be associated with side effects, contraindications, risk of dependence or the development of other complications.

Furthermore, in any case, self-medication is not recommended – even for medicines that do not need a prescription at the time of purchase.

Price and where to buy

The Fenergan drug can be purchased at pharmacies (physical store or online). In addition, you can buy through platforms such as Consulta Remédios , which allows you to compare the price in different establishments, guaranteeing the purchase at a better value.

In the case of Fenergan, the price * of its different versions can be as follows:

  • Syrup (expectorant) 0.565mg / mL + 9.0mg / mL – the 100mL package can vary between R $ 12 and R $ 18;
  • 25mg tablet – the box with 20 units costs between R $ 9 and R $ 14;
  • Injectable 25mg / mL – 1 ampoule (2mL of intramuscular solution) averages R $ 3;
  • Cream ointment (30g) – around R $ 18.

* Prices consulted in November 2020. Prices may change.

What is the generic for Fenergan?

Fenergan is a medicine classified as “new” and its active ingredient is promethazine hydrochloride. Therefore, the generic version corresponds to remedies that also have this active substance and receive such a classification.

It is worth noting, previously, that generics do not have a commercial name. Therefore, they are marketed from the nomenclature of the active ingredient + the name of the laboratory.

Thus, as an example of generic versions of Fenergan, medicines such as Promethazine Hydrochloride Teuto 25mg and Promethazine Hydrochloride Prati-Donaduzzi 25mg .