de·​con·​ges·​tant ˌdē-kən-ˈje-stənt How to pronounce decongestant (audio)
: an agent that relieves congestion (as of mucous membranes)
decongestant adjective

Examples of decongestant in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web September's advisory panel noted that although oral doses of phenylephrine do not sufficiently constrict blood vessels enough to act as an effective decongestant, nasal sprays of the product sufficiently relieve congestion symptoms. Gabrielle M. Etzel, Washington Examiner, 19 Oct. 2023 All used clinically acceptable designs and nasal congestion symptom scores as a way to measure decongestant efficacy. Beth Mole, Ars Technica, 15 Sep. 2023 The group’s negative opinion opens the door for the FDA to pull phenylephrine from a federal list of decongestants deemed effective for over-the-counter pills and liquids. Matthew Perrone, Fortune Well, 12 Sep. 2023 Armand said that people using decongestant nasal sprays should not use them for more than three days. Berkeley Lovelace Jr., NBC News, 9 Jan. 2024 There are two main oral decongestants in products on store shelves — phenylephrine and pseudoephedrine. Roni Caryn Rabin, New York Times, 13 Sep. 2023 Drugs like Sudafed, from pharmaceutical company Johnson & Johnson, are part of a roughly $2.2 billion market for oral decongestants. Megan Cerullo, CBS News, 12 Sep. 2023 Phenylephrine does work when it is delivered directly to the nose as a spray, however, as does another decongestant called oxymetazoline. Marla Broadfoot, Scientific American, 1 Dec. 2023 In a clarifying statement Thursday, the FDA noted there will not be a swift blowout of the popular decongestant. Beth Mole, Ars Technica, 15 Sep. 2023

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'decongestant.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1947, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of decongestant was in 1947

Dictionary Entries Near decongestant

Cite this Entry

“Decongestant.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 18 Apr. 2024.

Medical Definition


1 of 2 noun
de·​con·​ges·​tant ˌdē-kən-ˈjes-tənt How to pronounce decongestant (audio)
: an agent that relieves congestion (as of mucous membranes)


2 of 2 adjective
: relieving or tending to relieve congestion
nasal decongestant action

More from Merriam-Webster on decongestant

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