Compare Phenergan vs. Scopolamine

Head-to-head comparisons of medication uses, side effects, ratings, and more.

Phenergan
(Promethazine)

Transderm-Scop
(Scopolamine)

Helps you feel less queasy. Phenergan (Promethazine) is used to treat and prevent nausea and vomiting from surgery, motion sickness, or pregnancy. While it's cheap and available in different forms to make it easier to take, it can make you feel very sleepy, and its side effects mean that children under 2 and adults over 65 shouldn't take it.Helps you feel less queasy. Transderm-Scop (Scopolamine) works well to prevent nausea and vomiting and the patch is low-hassle, but it takes about 4 hours to kick in.
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Reviews & ratings
Button Group. All currently active
Button Group. All currently active
5.96969696969697Phenergan
Reviews for Phenergan (Promethazine)
79%
of people say Phenergan (Promethazine) is worth it
73%
say it works well
3%
say it's a big hassle
Reviews for Transderm-Scop (Scopolamine)
72%
7% vs. Phenergan (Promethazine)
56%
17% vs. Phenergan (Promethazine)
20%
17% vs. Phenergan (Promethazine)
Side effects
PhenerganScopolamine

The Phenergan FDA package insert doesn’t have numbers about how common side effects are.

More about Phenergan side effects »
  • Any side effect 9%
  • Drowsiness 4%
  • Visual impairment 2%
  • Agitation 2%
  • Confusion 1%
  • Sore throat 1%
More Scopolamine side effects »
How it works
PhenerganScopolamine
Phenergan (Promethazine) is an antihistamine, which helps control allergies. It also seems to block your body's natural reflex for vomiting, which makes it useful as an antiemetic (anti-nausea medicine).Transderm-Scop (Scopolamine) is an antiemetic (anti-nausea medicine). It works by blocking signals in the part of your brain that causes vomiting.
Type of medication
PhenerganScopolamine
Anti-nausea
Antihistamine
Prescription only
Anti-nausea
Anticholinergic
Prescription only
Available as
PhenerganScopolamine
  • Pill
  • Liquid
  • Suppository
  • Patch
Used for (click to learn more)
PhenerganScopolamine
Risk factors for serious side effects
PhenerganScopolamine
  • Children under 2 years of age
  • History of seizures
    • Age over 65
      Detailed Phenergan (Promethazine) risks & warnings »
      • Glaucoma
        • Doing an MRI
        • History of seizures
        • History of psychosis
        • Taking with alcohol
        • Taking other medicines that make you less alert
        Detailed Transderm-Scop (Scopolamine) risks & warnings »
        Pregnancy category
        PhenerganScopolamine
        CFDA pregnancy category (Weigh risks vs. benefits)

        Research studies with animals found harmful effects on unborn babies. It hasn’t been properly studied in humans. The benefits might outweigh the risks even if you’re pregnant. Talk with your doctor.

        See the FDA package insert
        CFDA pregnancy category (Weigh risks vs. benefits)

        Research studies with animals found harmful effects on unborn babies. It hasn’t been properly studied in humans. The benefits might outweigh the risks even if you’re pregnant. Talk with your doctor.

        See the FDA package insert
        Alcohol
        • Can make you feel very sleepy, especially if you're taking other drugs that can make you sleepy or if you drink alcohol.
        • Don't drink alcohol to avoid intense side effects.
        • You have to avoid alcohol while on the medication.
        • Don't drink alcohol if you have to use the patch.
        Food
        No specific food-related info.No specific food-related info.
        Kidneys and liver
        No specific kidneys and liver-related info.No specific kidneys and liver-related info.
        Sex
        No specific sex-related info.No specific sex-related info.
        Sleep
        No specific sleep-related info.No specific sleep-related info.
        Weight
        No specific weight-related info.No specific weight-related info.
        Upsides and benefits
        PhenerganScopolamine
        • Available in generic.
        • Available as a syrup or tablet that you can take by mouth, or as a rectal suppository if you're unable to take anything by mouth.
        • Even though there's no generic version available, it's inexpensive.
        • Placed on the skin so it can be used if you can't keep anything in your stomach.
        • Can be used for long-term control of nausea and vomiting since it's only placed on every 3 days.
        Downsides and risks
        PhenerganScopolamine
        • Can make you feel very sleepy, especially if you're taking other drugs that can make you sleepy or if you drink alcohol.
        • Can't be used in children under 2 years of age or if you're over 65 because of increased risk from side effects.
        • Can make your skin more sensitive to the sun.
        • Can only be used to prevent nausea and vomiting, not to treat it if it's already happening.
        • Takes about 4 hours for it to start working.
        • You have to avoid alcohol while on the medication.
        Tips from our pharmacists for people taking the medication
        PhenerganScopolamine
        • Promethazine comes in different forms. Be clear on which one you were prescribed - swallow tablets orally, unwrap and insert suppositories rectally.
        • Don't give to kids 2 and under.
        • You'll likely feel very sleepy, sluggish, or less alert after taking Promethazine. Avoid driving or other tasks that require your focused attention; be safe.
        • Don't drink alcohol to avoid intense side effects.
        • Taking certain medications for pain, allergies, or mood conditions can worsen the side effects of Promethazine.
        • Avoid using if you experience seizures (epilepsy).
        • Don't use if you're 65 or older because you're at higher risk for serious side effects.
        • Wash your hands after you place the patch.
        • Don't touch or rub your eyes after putting on the patch before washing your hands.
        • Can cause blurry vision and sleepiness.
        • Take the patch off if you have to do an MRI.
        • Don't drink alcohol if you have to use the patch.
        • Place it on a few hours before if you know you'll be in a place where you might get motion sickness.
        Learn more
        More about PhenerganSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
        More about ScopolamineSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert