Navigation Links
Vapor rub relieves cold symptoms for children, helps them sleep better
Date:11/8/2010

Applying a vapor rub is effective for treating children with night-time cough and congestion and improves sleep for children with cold symptoms, according to Penn State College of Medicine researchers.

"Upper respiratory infections are the most common acute illnesses in the world," said Ian Paul, M.D., M.Sc., associate professor of pediatrics and public health sciences. "Symptoms caused by these infections are disruptive for children, and often disturb sleep for both ill children and their parents, with an impact on subsequent daytime activities. Safe and effective, evidence-based treatments are desperately needed by parents and healthcare providers for children."

Recent studies by Paul and colleagues at the Penn State College of Medicine looked at the efficacy of oral over-the-counter treatments such as dextromethorphan and diphenhydramine for upper respiratory infection symptoms. They found the preparations no more effective than a placebo. Vapor rubs, containing menthol, camphor and eucalyptus oils, have been used for over a century without published evidence to support their use.

"The American Academy of Pediatrics does not support the use of over-the-counter oral cough and cold medications for children due to a lack of evidence of efficacy and the potential for side effects," Paul said. "The question of whether clinicians can recommend a vapor rub topical treatment to treat cold symptoms required evaluation."

Paul and his research team recruited 138 children ages 2 to 11 for the study. Parents assessed their child's symptoms the night before enrollment in the study. Each child was then randomly assigned to one of three treatment groups: Vicks VapoRub, petroleum jelly placebo, and no treatment. Parents of children receiving the vapor rub or petroleum jelly massaged the treatment into their child's neck and chest 30 minutes before bedtime.

The randomized study was partially double-blinded. Medical staff did not know what treatment each participating family received when distributing their sealed specimen cup-containing envelope. Parents of children who received the vapor rub or petroleum jelly were blinded to their treatment group. To accomplish this, given the characteristic scent of vapor rubs, parents received their own specimen cup of vapor rub that they were instructed to apply between their own upper lip and nose before opening their child's treatment in order to ensure they could not detect the smell of their child's treatment. Parents of children in the no treatment group received an empty specimen cup.

Parents then completed a second survey the following morning assessing their child's cough, sleep, congestion and runny nose.

In comparisons across the three treatment groups, parents reported that the vapor rub provided significantly greater relief as measured by cough frequency, cough severity, congestion and the child's ability to sleep. Parents also rated their own sleep as most improved in the vapor rub group when compared across the three study groups. Paired comparisons between the vapor rub group and the no treatment group demonstrated the superiority of the vapor rub for all study outcomes except runny nose. Paired comparison of the vapor rub group to the petroleum jelly group showed vapor rub improved child's sleep, parent's sleep and the combined symptom score. The petroleum jelly placebo was not significantly better than no-treatment for any study outcome.

The most common side effect cited with the use of the vapor rub was a burning sensation of the skin, reported by 28 percent of participants receiving that treatment. No side effects were reported with use of petroleum jelly.

The results of this study suggest that an old, commonly used remedy is effective at providing symptomatic relief from night-time cold symptoms with the added benefit of improving sleep for children with colds and their parents," Paul said. "Vapor rubs have been used for generations, but this study demonstrates that this therapy is indeed effective." The research results appear in the December issue of "Pediatrics."


'/>"/>

Contact: Matt Solovey
msolovey@hmc.psu.edu
717-531-0003
Penn State
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Vaporizer Price Wars and Knock-Offs Spawn Authorized Vaporizer Dealers
2. New Vaporizer Technologies Revolutionize Smoking
3. Study: Tai Chi relieves arthritis pain, improves reach, balance, well-being
4. Surgical technique relieves painful spine fractures in patients with metastatic cancer
5. Self-directed behavioral IBS treatment rapidly relieves even the most severe symptoms
6. Children with ADHD Symptoms at Higher Risk of Obesity
7. Study suggests sensitivity to bodily symptoms of anxiety may make a difference in treatment
8. Yoga May Combat Fibromyalgia Symptoms
9. Physical symptoms common, disabling among patients with cancer and pain or depression
10. Physical symptoms prevalent no matter what stage of cancer including remission
11. Air pollution alters immune function, worsens asthma symptoms
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:3/24/2017)... ... 2017 , ... According to a new study by NCPA Senior Fellow John ... the rules Congress has directed the CBO to follow. The CBO itself previously recognized ... Yet, it estimates a reduction in employer-based coverage due to the GOP reform, which ...
(Date:3/24/2017)... ... March 24, 2017 , ... In just two ... Frame vertical micro-veggies garden on Kickstarter . Surpassing the $100,000 milestone so ... nearly 2,000 consumers (and counting) already backing the campaign. , “We are ...
(Date:3/24/2017)... ... ... Viewers who like to educate themselves on current issues and who enjoy gaining ... issues tend to appreciate and love the "Informed" series, hosted by Rob Lowe. ... causes around the world. , Running for charity has become a multi-million ...
(Date:3/24/2017)... ... March 24, 2017 , ... “End Time GPS”: a ... will interrelate. “End Time GPS” is the creation of published author, Wesley Gerboth, ... working on military munitions and space-vehicle projects. Now, at age ninety-one, he shares the ...
(Date:3/23/2017)... ... ... A recent report from the National Council on Teacher Quality (NCTQ) advocates ... based on a review of GPA and SAT/ACT requirements at 221 institutions in 25 ... argues that this higher bar should be set by states, by the Council for ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:3/24/2017)... , March 24, 2017 New England Pediatric ... of an award including funding and in-kind service towards ... technology.  "Making blood draws less traumatic ... their whole hospital experience better.  We,re looking forward to ... can help improve care for the kids we treat," ...
(Date:3/24/2017)... , Mar. 24, 2017 Research and Markets ... Business Report" report to their offering. ... This report analyzes the worldwide markets for Dental Implants ... Canada , Japan , ... , and Rest of World. Annual estimates and ...
(Date:3/24/2017)... FinancialBuzz.com News Commentary   ... Medical cannabis products around the world are projected to ... global medical cannabis market will reach a value of USD 55.8 billion ... for the new growing industry. By the end of 2016, 28 states ... medical cannabis. More conservative states like Arkansas and ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: