Zicam Cold Remedy is an over-the-counter homeopathic medicine that acts to reduce the duration and severity of the common cold when taken at the first sign of cold symptoms. Manufactured by Matrixx Initiatives, Inc., Zicam Cold Remedy is a zinc-based solution that can be taken as a tablet or a nasal spray. The medication works by delivering a dose of zinc gluconate to the nasal passages, throat and pharynx.
Zicam Cold Remedy is used to shorten the duration and minimize the symptoms associated with the common cold.
The FDA is currently investigating consumer complaints that Zicam is causing anosmia, or the loss of smell and taste. The FDA has received more than 130 reports of loss of sense of smell associated with the use of these three Zicam products. In these reports, many people who experienced a loss of smell said the condition occurred with the first dose; others reported a loss of the sense of smell after multiple uses of the products.
Zicam Warnings and Alerts
FDA Advises Consumers Not To Use Certain Zicam Cold Remedies
Despite the manufacturer’s assurances that Zicam adheres to FDA guidelines and restrictions, lawsuits have been filed by Zicam users against both Matrixx Initiatives and Zicam LLC, claiming that taking Zicam has caused anosmia, or a loss of smell and taste. Many Zicam users have also reported experiencing horrific, almost unbearable burning after using the nasal spray.
On June 16, 2009 the FDA advised consumers to stop using Zicam due to its link to 130 reports of loss of sense of smell after using the products. The Zicam products the FDA is warning the public about are:
- Zicam Cold Remedy Nasal Gel
- Zicam Cold Remedy Nasal Swabs
- Zicam Cold Remedy Swabs, Kids Size*
*(a discontinued product)
Zicam is contraindicated in those who are hypersensitive to any component of a zinc-containing supplement.
Has Zicam been recalled by the FDA?
A Zicam recall has not occurred, but the FDA has recommended that all consumers top using certain Zicam cold remedies.
How effective are natural remedies like zinc?
Some studies show that zinc nasal sprays help cut a cold’s severity and duration. Zinc sprays may coat the cold virus and prevent it from attaching to nasal cells where they enter the body. But other studies show that zinc is no more effective than a placebo.
What are homeopathic remedies?
Homeopathic remedies (also called homeopathics) are a system of medicine based on three principles:
- Like cures like – For example, if the symptoms of your cold are similar to poisoning by mercury, then mercury would be your homeopathic remedy.
- Minimal Dose – The remedy is taken in an extremely dilute form; normally one part of the remedy to around 1,000,000,000,000 parts of water.
- The Single Remedy – No matter how many symptoms are experienced, only one remedy is taken, and that remedy will be aimed at all those symptoms.
The Federal Trade Commission has demanded that producers of homeopathic treatments say on the label that they do not work.
Why can’t I eat or drink citrus fruits or juices for 30 minutes after taking Zicam?
The acids found in citrus fruits and juices can interact with the efficacy of zinc.
Is Zicam safe for pregnant women?
The recommended daily allowance for zinc increases during pregnancy from 12 mg to 25 mg per day. A daily dosage of (6) six Zicam lozenges delivers 80 mg of elemental zinc. As pre-natal vitamins contain elevated dosages of zinc, and a normal 2000-calorie diet delivers approximately 10mg of zinc per day, the addition of as few as (1) one or (2) two Zicam lozenges (13.3 mg each) may exceed upper limits for daily intake or approximately 40 mg. As with all other medications, if you are pregnant or breast feeding, ask a health professional before using.
Is there a Zicam class action?
There are many lawsuits against Zicam due to its alleged side effect of anosmia. If you would like to join a Zicam lawsuit, contact a defective drug lawyer immediately.
Can I file a lawsuit if I have suffered damages from taking Zicam?
Possibly. While all medications have certain, anticipated side effects, a drug manufacturer has a duty to inform physicians adequately regarding the known risks associated with its drugs. If a manufacturer fails to do so, it can be held responsible to patients who are injured as the result of inadequate warnings, under a legal theory known as “product liability.” Depending upon the particular circumstances of your case, damages may include recovery for any of the following:
- Past and future medical expenses
- Past and future pain and suffering
- Lost wages
- Loss of future earning capacity
- Emotional distress
If you or a loved one has experienced any health problems while taking Zicam, you should contact your doctor immediately. You may also wish to contact an experienced Zicam lawyer to discuss your legal options. As all legal claims are subject to time limits, however, you may risk forfeiture of your right to financial compensation if you delay.