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In clinical studies the most commonly reported side effect of Nicotrol NS was nasal irritation. This often went away after a few days, but did persist in some people. Other common reactions include changes in taste, sneezing, facial flushing, and short-term nosebleeds. If you experience serious problems, such as heart palpitations or trouble breathing, contact your healthcare provider right away.

An Introduction to Nicotrol NS Side Effects

As with any medicine, Nicotrol® NS (nicotine nasal spray) can cause side effects. However, not everyone who takes the medication will have problems. In fact, most people tolerate it quite well. If side effects do occur, in most cases, they are minor and either require no treatment or are treated easily by you or your healthcare provider.
(This article covers many, but not all, of the possible side effects with Nicotrol NS. Your healthcare provider can discuss a more complete list with you.)

Common Side Effects of Nicotrol NS

Nicotrol NS has been studied thoroughly in clinical trials. In these studies, one group of people received the real medication, while another group was given a placebo (a nasal spray with no active ingredients). As a result, it was possible to see what side effects occurred and how they compared to the other medication.
The prescribing information for many medications includes the exact percentage of side effects seen in clinical trials. The prescribing information for Nicotrol NS includes side effects without the exact percentages. Therefore, it can be difficult to know exactly how common many of these side effects are.
The most common adverse reactions to Nicotrol NS, based on the prescribing information, include:
  • Nose and throat irritation, which may feel like a hot, peppery sensation
  • Sneezing
  • Coughing
  • Watery eyes
  • Runny nose.
Nose irritation occurred in up to 94 percent of people in the first two days of use. Although it went away in some people, up to 81 percent of people were still experiencing nose irritation after three weeks. This was usually mild to moderate in severity.
Other possible bothersome side effects of Nicotrol NS may include:
  • Nasal congestion
  • Unpleasant taste
  • Sinus irritation
  • Short-term nosebleeds
  • Short-term changes in smell or taste
  • Feelings of tingling, pricking, numbness, or burning in the nose or mouth
  • Irritation or burning of the eyes
  • Sore throat or hoarseness
  • Earache
  • A sudden feeling of warmth or redness (flushing) of the face
  • Headache
  • Back pain
  • Nausea
  • Tooth or gum problems
  • Gassiness
  • Joint or muscle aches or pain
  • Changes in menstruation
  • Abdominal pain (stomach pain)
  • Acne
  • Nicotine withdrawal symptoms, such as:
    • Dizziness
    • Anxiety
    • Irritability
    • Restlessness
    • Tobacco craving
    • Difficulty concentrating
    • Increased appetite and weight gain
    • Frequent changes in mood
    • Insomnia
    • Increased sweating
    • Fatigue and tiredness
    • Confusion
    • Tremors.
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;
Last updated/reviewed:
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