Bromhexine Side Effects

Bromhexine is used to treat respiratory disorders that are caused by excessive or overly sticky mucus. Bromhexine, which is sold under the brand names Bisolvon or Barkacin, acts as a mucolytic agent that increases the water content of mucus, making the mucus thinner and less sticky. This thinner phlegm is more easily expelled out of the lungs. Bromhexine can be administered by itself, or it is sometimes included in cough syrups. The side effects caused by bromhexine are generally mild, although rare cases of severe allergic reactions have been reported.

A woman is suffering from a headache. Credit: cyano66/iStock/Getty Images

Diarrhea and Upset Stomach

Bromhexine is known to cause a variety of gastrointestinal effects. Some people experience diarrhea, while other people may develop nausea and indigestion. Some users of bromhexine also report feeling bloated after taking the medicine.

Allergic Reactions

In rare cases, more severe allergic reactions to bromhexine may develop. Some users have reported itchy skin or skin rashes after taking bromhexine. Instances of shortness of breath and difficult or painful breathing have also been reported.


Another allergic reaction that rarely occurs is swelling of the face, which may include the mouth, lips, tongue or throat.

Drug Interactions

A doctor should always be consulted before taking bromhexine, which may cause complications due to interactions with other medications. Bromhexine has been known to increases the activity of antibiotics, which can have adverse health effects.


Some people may experience headaches after taking taking bromhexine. Additionally, some users complain of vertigo or dizziness. These effects are usually mild.


Instances of increased sweating have also been reported after taking bromhexine.

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