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Phenylpropanolamine (PPA), pseudoephedrine (PDE), and propylhexedrine (PE) are the most prominent decongestants, all having chemical structures similar to that of amphetamine though with a much lower dependency liability. Initially, all were available as over-the-counter (OTC) medications, but as a group they have come under increasing legal scrutiny since 2000 due to health risks associated with their use, their ability to enhance athletic performance, and because of their use as a precursor in the production of methamphetamine. This has led their OTC status to be dramatically modified. Like other central nervous system (CNS) stimulants, they are able to constrict blood vessels and through this process relieve nasal and sinus congestion; however, they also became widely used as anorexiants. Decongestants are found in many cold and allergy ...

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