Consumer Complaints and Reviews
I have been sick for a week with a nasty cold, sinus problem, even into my eyes. I hadn't gone to the doctor because it was the busy season at work. It was a long, uncomfortable week. I've been taking the Zicam rapidmelts (recommended to me and used in the past) for 24 hours, every 3 hours and my cold symptoms are literally gone. I could kick myself that I didn't buy them a week ago. My mouth does feel a little rough and my sense of taste is a little off but I know they will return to normal quickly and I'm just thankful to feel decent again.
About a month ago, I had a sore throat, so started taking **. I have used this product before & have not experienced any problems. This time my cold symptoms became a dry, scratchy throat, so I continued the ** because the directions are "use until symptoms completely subside". I had a dry scratchy throat for about 2 weeks, so I continued to take ** for that long. After I had finished 3 bottles, I noticed that sweet foods tasted like soap. Then I stopped taking the **. Maybe I just took ** for too long. It was Christmas time, so there were lots of sweets around which I couldn't enjoy! I explained this problems to my doctor, who had never heard of it before. I still have not completely regained my sense of taste. The only good thing that happened is that I lost 6 lbs because I did not eat sweets this Christmas!
Been using this product in the last 2 days. So far been happy with it. Even though there are some saying they can't smell or lost it due to this. How can they when it helps with nasal congestion. Which in my case, I had no smell due to nasal congestion, which reduces your sense of smell anyway. That is why taste is messed up, when you’re sick. Then ZINC FREE swabs they have replaced their old products which works. Never thought I would never use these, but they have helped with the nasal congestion better than the over the counter nasal sprays. Which is saying something. So Zicam has gained a new customer. Until you get over your nasal congestion, as well as being sick, your smell and taste will come back. Taking any homeopathic drug is really up to you.
I had never used Zicam until two months ago. I had previously heard about the nasal swabs being taken off the market because of people losing their sense of smell, but I'd never used it myself. A lady at my work swears by the nasal swabs and hasn't gotten a cold in years. She bought a ton of the swabs before they were taken off the shelves and has been using them for several years. She worries about what she'll do when she runs out. She uses the swabs at the very first sign of a cold and doesn't actually get the cold.
Anyway, with this in mind, I was feeling sick in June so I thought I'd try the Zicam Rapidmelts at the very first sign of a cold. I took them every 3 hours for a day and a half, and didn't actually get the cold. 36 hours after my first Rapidmelt, I was completely back to normal. So... for the last couple of months I've taken them twice with the same results. I'm taking them right now because 2 days ago I had a horrible sore throat that I thought was probably strep - that's how bad the pain is. I took Zicam every 3 hours and by day 2, my sore throat was completely gone. I can't taste anything, but that's happened every time I take them, and comes back after a day or two off the melts.
I wonder if people with the more severe reactions to the melts are allergic. I guess it's like any drug that some people react horribly to and suffer side effects and others don't experience any symptoms. I'm glad it works for me. If I ever suffered some of the horrible side effects that have been described by other users (such as bleeding sores in the mouth), I'd never use them again. So far, so good for me though.
I should have done my research before purchasing this product. I took a RapidMelt 3 hours ago for a cold. I have developed extreme nausea and stomach pain even though I followed all the instructions. I have bumps on the sides of my tongue and have lost all sense of taste and smell. The carton does not mention side effects nor was there any printed material inside the carton warning of side effects. This product should not be sold in drug stores. It is not safe. My husband is going back to CVS to return and speak with the manager.
Updated on 4/26/16: Although my cold symptoms were gone 4 days later, I did not regain my full sense of taste for a week. My sense of smell took two weeks to return. The painful bumps on the side of my tongue took a week to go away. I only develop these painful bumps when I use toothpastes or mouthwashes containing sodium laureth sulfate. Obviously I do not use these products. I wonder if Zicam may contain this ingredient although it is not stated on the packaging.
For those of you who have stated that a cold makes you lose your sense of smell and taste, let me be perfectly clear that my sense of taste was perfect before I took the rapid melt. I had thoroughly enjoyed the flavor of my lunch and could taste how awful the rapid melt tasted. Furthermore, my sense of smell was also perfect as I had truly enjoyed the scent of the perfume I had just sprayed on. For those of you who truly derive a benefit from this product and are not paid by the manufacturer to write a rosy review, I hope that this product will continue to work for you. As for me, I will never take this poison again and have warned friends, family and neighbors about it. It is frightening to think that you may never regain your sense of smell. DO NOT USE THIS PRODUCT. IT IS NOT SAFE.
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I have been a devoted user of Zicam for about two years. I try to keep it on hand because you never know when a cold will hit and Zicam has always proven to be a lifesaver for me. I usually get extremely sick when I get a cold. I cough for a month or more if the cold progresses too much. But whenever I feel that little twinge in the back of my throat, or start sneezing too much, I start taking Zicam every 3-4 hours and continue doing that until my symptoms are gone. With Zicam my colds only last about a week. Taking the Zicam usually makes the symptoms disappear for the 3 hours until my next dose.
It's very unfortunate that people have had bad experiences. I once was out of Zicam (and had no way of getting more) and used zinc for the duration of my cold and sure, it helped, but the zinc is what seriously messed with my taste buds. Zicam hasn't ever had lasting effects on my ability to taste. And if you really think about it, that's what a cold will do to you anyway. Colds camp in your airways and even before I ever tried Zicam, I would often lose my sense of taste and smell simply because I had a cold. Whenever I use Zicam as directed every 3 hours my cold is gone within a week! This would never happen for me without the Zicam. Zicam has taken my colds duration down from a month to a week! LOVE it and recommend it wholeheartedly.
I used Zicam cold remedy nose spray for about three days, and it did literally nothing in helping me cure the cold. However, I experienced the loss of ability to taste and smell like everybody mentioned here. The loss of senses last around a week and two and I was able to pick up a little taste and smell gradually. So for people still experiencing the issue, you still have chances to get your senses back. And NEVER USE ZICAM AGAIN!
Have taken the nose spray for two days and now I can't smell or taste anything. Can anyone tell me if this has happened to them and if it goes away? Please, I am worried.
I took one tablet of Zicam on Thanksgiving night and my mouth burned and I experienced terrible bitter taste on my tongue. I have a metallic sense on my tongue but no smell or taste since November 26, 2015. One star is too many for this product. DO NOT USE THIS PRODUCT.
I bought Zicam pre-cold remedy Nasal spray and it was the biggest waste of 15$. It doesn’t do **. The extreme congestion works fine, this does absolutely nothing for you. ** Zicam for ripping me off and you owe me 15$ you dumb ass pieces of **!
I've used this product (the rapid melts) & have no issues whatsoever, unlike the majority of the folks on here who sound like they're exaggerating their experiences in order to jump on a PAST & ALREADY RESOLVED class action lawsuit! I, unlike the others posting on here, did my research before taking the product & learned of the best type to take & a better way of taking it, in order to NOT have any negative side effects... it's called educating yourselves. I highly recommend doing it before you convince yourself you have all these issues from an OTC product.
I took Zicam one day for my sinus. I took the nose spray. I could breath a little better at first. I took some just before bed time. The next morning I woke up early. MY husband asked me if I was ok. Ya breathing funny. I got up because my mouth was so dry and tasted awful. That's when I noticed my tongue was swollen and caked with blood. I had bumps in my mouth. This was a very scary experience. I brought it back to Bed Bath & Beyond, they gave me my money back.
I only use Zicam Intense Nasal Relief Spray when I cannot breathe. Because when I use it, my nostril burns so badly it hurts and brings tears to my eyes, and yes it works but during the day I feel an itching burning sensation that feels like I need to sneeze. I hate this stuff.
At the start of a cold I sucked on two Zicam lozenges. For 3 weeks now I have noticed my taste buds during eating at every meal taste like zinc, or a slight metallic taste on my tongue. I hope this is not permanent and will go away soon.
Immediately my throat was coated with a warm elixir that, not only calmed my cough, but was soothing to swallow. Unlike anything I've tried before, Zicam honey lemon flavored syrup has no sting, no bite, nothing I would not recommend to anyone. Sincerely, got moxie.
Tried zicam and lost sense of smell. Back headaches. Stomach, throat, nose and sinus pain. My face under eyes by nose swelled up. Face itches. Pain in eyes and headaches. All upper teeth pain from swelling.
I took Zicam melts for one day. I took it every three hours as recommended. When i went to bed, my heart was pounding...i could not sleep. My nose and throat is so dry still. It's been five days. It's awful. Do not take this product.
Does ANYONE know why they took the cough syrup off the shelves???? I took it back in 2004 after having a major bronchial infection and have not been sick with a cold or flu since......Kinda weird if you ask me.
Sometime in 2009, my sister-in-law talked me into buying Zicam for nasal congestion. I had never used it before. I used it twice, and several days later, I noticed my sense of smell was affected. I could no longer smell natural gas leaks, gas passed by my Boston Terriers, scent of flowers, coffee and food aromas. There are very few things I can smell and some of them don't smell the same as they once had. My ENT doctor confirmed my inability to smell things as previously. It wasn't until a year or so later I learned of the FDA report on Zicam. If I had known, I would have sued the makers of the product because my quality of life has been severely damaged in that I can no longer smell the good things in life.
I had never taken Zicam before. Took the tablet form one night as I took my dog out for a walk. I didn't get past my first neighbor's house when I started feeling a strange sensation in my throat. I could feel it as it started swelling. I have never had an allergic reaction before, so this was very scary to me. It swelled side to side, front to back. I headed home. My lips felt funny, they were swelling. I started itching all over. I tried to stay calm. I knew that this sounded like an anaphylaxis attack. I called my mom, she told me to call 911, but it seemed like it at least wasn't getting any worse. I had hives that night, swollen throat, lips, and face. After reading up, I had stage 3 anaphylaxis. It was so scary. I had hives on and off for about 3 weeks. I will never take it again!
I'm very disappointed in the long-lasting, probably permanent damage, to my sense of taste. I took the Zicam RapidMelts as directed from the first feelings of illness and continued for 3 days until the symptoms subsided. Yes, the Zicam did shorten the length of my cold. Unfortunately, it has also caused my taste buds to stop working. It has been a month now, and my sense of taste still isn't normal. Food tastes bad now, and the flavor of soda is the worst. My sense of sweet is gone. Now sweetness tastes bitter. YUCK.
Zicam commercials are getting even more disgusting than the original. ENOUGH WITH THE BIG GROSS MONSTER WITH MUCUS!!! It's nasty, makes me want to throw up (literally), and it does not make me want to EVER buy this product. I'm getting sick thinking about it, eew...
Your commercials, with that fictional character is so gross with the mucous coming out of nose. It can almost make me nauseous.
I would not buy your product if I needed it just because of your ad on TV. That is not what I want to see when watching the commercials. Please create a more pleasing commercial that does not repulse people!!!
Before Zicam was first ordered to pull their products from shelves, my husband and I both used the spray and the gel for cold symptoms. We have both experienced loss and changes to both taste and smell. I started noticing that the taste of my foods and drinks tasted funny. Colas tasted like they had pine-sol mixed in. My foods had a chemical taste instead of the tastes that I remembered. I can smell something, but it doesn't smell correctly. Some days nothing smells or tastes at all. It's hard to eat food that has no taste.
Seventy five percent of the time, and even more occasionally, neither my husband nor I can tell if the leftovers or the milk are still good or spoiled. On occasions that I can somewhat smell, I have prevented his eating bad lunch meats or drinking bad milk. Detecting a smell and then determining if it is a warning of danger is a hit or miss situation. It may be smoke or a dangerous chemical and neither of us can smell it or it smells like something totally different than what it actually is. We have propane gas logs for heat. Detecting a leak is a necessity, something neither of us are able to do on most days. We both believe Zicam caused the loss and changes to our taste and smell because they were both fine until we used it, but could never determine the cause until we heard the FDA warning about Zicam.
It never crossed my mind that this little tablet could cause such a reaction. I bought the dissolvable tablets instead of the nose stuff because I didn't want to harm the nose membrane but after two days, I find I cannot smell anything and cannot taste anything. I am seriously hoping this is temporary.
This is great for a temporary fix of nasal congestion. But what I found is that daily use will actually make the symptoms worse. It is almost impossible to go without having to use this nasal gel at least once a day after taking it the first time. It took me almost 2 weeks to wean myself off of this nasal gel. During this process, there were many nights of not being able to breathe. And many days of intense pain. I have not used this stuff in almost 3 days now. I have gone back to using Sudafed decongestants along with an antihistamine allergy pill. If you need something that will work fast and you don’t care about the long term, then this nasal gel is for you. If you want something to help with your congestion long term, then I would suggest looking for alternatives to this gel.
Used the nasal spray and immediately had burning in the nose. Now after one week all I have is this metallic taste that will not go away. First and last time for using Zicam.
I adore this product. I'm so sad to see that people here have had such bad experiences with it but it works fabulously for me. I use to use the nasal gel (that was the best because I didn't have to taste it. It's not exactly yummy) but they don't sell the gel anymore. I use the mouth spray and it works really well. I get horrible colds as a smoker and they last forever (like over a week) and Zicam always makes the cold symptoms almost completely vanish. Sometimes I forget I have a cold. Seriously! I work in broadcast journalism and when there's breaking news I can't just call out sick. I recommend Zicam to everyone I know and they all love me for it. Now, let me say this, yes, it absolutely makes you lose your sense of taste BUT it's mostly during the duration of each dose (3-4 hours).
If I want to enjoy food more, I just wait for about 3 or so hours after taking it and then eat before my next dose. I have never (nor has anyone I know) permanently lost any sense of taste or smell. I'm not saying that others are lying and I wouldn't blame people for not wanting to try it after reading these reviews but I will use it because it works fantastically for me. My only two complaints are that if you miss several doses, the symptoms come back with a vengeance and that there is a temporary loss of taste. I can live with having no sense of taste for a few hours just to feel better. If I eat really intensely flavored foods while taking it, then I can still taste a little.
So I was feeling awful and my husband couldn't take it anymore. He went out and bought the Zicam. I only took 2 and knew it was not for me! It made my hands itch and burn. Be cautious if you have high blood pressure as well. It shot my pressure up to 161/100! My doc gave me meds and said DO NOT Take it.
ConsumerAffairs Research Team
The ConsumerAffairs Research Team believes everyone deserves to make smart decisions. We aim to provide readers with the most up-to-date information available about today's consumer products and services.
Zicam makes and sells products that relieve allergy and cold symptoms in adults and children 12 and older. Their allergy products include Nasal Swabs and No-Drip Liquid® Nasal Gel™. Zicam’s Nasal Swabs are only available at CVS, and their No-Drip Liquid® Nasal Gel™ is available at major national retailers online and in-store.
- Non-drowsy: Zicam’s allergy relief products are non-drowsy, so you can find relief without worrying about getting drowsy during the day.
- Unique formulas: Zicam’s allergy relief formulas are unique in that they specifically provide relief to the nasal passages. These are ideal for people who suffer from nasal allergy symptoms, and the no-drip formula ensures that the gel won’t drip down your throat after application.
- Zicam newsletter: Sign up for the Zicam newsletter to receive quarterly news, promotions, coupons and more. It’s free and only takes a minute to register.
- Facebook promotions: Follow Zicam on Facebook to have a chance of winning prizes and hearing about special promotions first. You can also use Facebook to communicate with Zicam directly. They typically respond to comments privately and efficiently.
- Cold and sinus relief: In addition to allergy relief, Zicam has products for cold and sinus relief, so you can use one brand for all of your cold, sinus and allergy needs. Their children’s cold medicine is made for children ages 6-11.
- Best for Zicam is best for adults who suffer from nasal allergies.
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