red dye allergy generic pain medicine

New Topic Post Reply Printable Version
[ << Previous Thread | Next Thread >> ]

New Member

Date Joined Sep 2015
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 9/21/2015 2:50 PM (GMT -6)   
I recently suffered a traumatic fall that resulted in several ruptured discs in both my back and neck. I have to see a surgeon for evaluation for surgery to correct these.

In the mean time my GP prescribed me Norco for the pain. However the pharmacy gave me a generic that has a red speckled dye in it. It is making me break out in hives and itching. I have had this medicine before in the name brand and NEVER had this issue before.

Can I be allergic to the red dye? Can I have my Doctor re-prescribe it in the name brand?

Where can I find information about this? My pharmacist? I need the medicine but I can't take this the itching/burning is unbearable and Benadryl or other antihistamines are doing NOTHING for it.

HELP! Thank You!

Veteran Member

Date Joined Oct 2009
Total Posts : 5022
   Posted 9/21/2015 6:21 PM (GMT -6)   
Welcome, red.

There shouldn't be enough dye to trigger a reaction, but other excipients could.

Do you have a problem with corn or potato starch? There may be a disintegrant in the pill too, depending on manufacturer. You need to google the med and the manufacturer, maybe even call them. The starches are made using sulfites, so that's a possibility, but only if you have a bad allergy to it, not just a mild sensitivity.

There could be sucrose, table sugar. And with generics, who knows what's in there and not 100% on the label.

Propylene glycol is another possible thing. It's used in makeup too. Do you have any reactions to makeup?

I would talk with the pharmacist. Also write down the manufacturer and never take that brand again and be leery of anything else they produce.

I would think your doctor should be able to write a different Rx. Definitely call and ask! Insurance might put up a fight, but they can be called by your doctor. You might have to return the leftover pills, probably to the pharmacist. Make sure your pharmacist puts a note in your file about this reaction.

Best wishes and keep in touch!

Veteran Member

Date Joined Apr 2011
Total Posts : 1604
   Posted 10/7/2015 10:47 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi there,

I react to capsules and tablets that are coloured blue or red as I am allergic to most food colouring!

As Alcie says I would talk to the pharmacist - probably your pain medication can be re-prescribed as a liquid or they may have another brand that is not coloured.

Once you've tried a different preparation you'll then have more of an idea whether it's the drug or what it's been wrapped up in!

GERD (4 years and counting)
Lifelong stuff: Food allergies/intolerance, eczema, asthma

Veteran Member

Date Joined Aug 2008
Total Posts : 1772
   Posted 10/7/2015 8:15 PM (GMT -6)   
It is possible too, that you could have developed an allergy to the Norco itself, since allergies can develop at any time, but I think a true allergy to narcotics is somewhat rare. Intense itching is a common side effect of narcotics (it happens to me with hydrocodone and morphine), but that isn't a true allergy. But since you also have hives, though, it does sound like an allergic reaction - to something.

I agree about talking to your pharmacist. I would probably call your doctor too just in case you need to change medications all together. If it is an allergy to the hydrocodone itself, there are other meds you can try. And I'm not sure if the pharmacist can refill or change the preparation without the doctor's consent. State laws are so touchy about narcotic prescriptions.
New Topic Post Reply Printable Version
Forum Information
Currently it is Friday, August 17, 2018 9:57 PM (GMT -6)
There are a total of 2,993,921 posts in 328,089 threads.
View Active Threads

Who's Online
This forum has 161251 registered members. Please welcome our newest member, allmo.
268 Guest(s), 7 Registered Member(s) are currently online.  Details
PeterDisAbelard., Donjr, JNF, pasayten, astroman, Wotan, ManGuy'sWife