Benadryl WTF



  • I was hoping I'd be able to scan this, but the scanner seems to be out of commission. These are the instructions on my Benadryl Itch Stopping Cream, which looks like this:

    Uses
    • temporarily relieves itching and pain associated with insect bites, minor skin irritations and rashes due to <FONT style="BACKGROUND-COLOR: #ffffff" color=#a52a2a>poison ivy</FONT>, poison oak, or poison sumac
    • dries the oozing and weeping of <FONT color=#a52a2a>poison ivy</FONT>, poison oak, or poison sumac
    Warnings - for external use only
    Do Not Use • on chicken pox, measles, <FONT color=#a52a2a>poison ivy</FONT>, sunburn, large areas of the body, broken, blistered, or oozing skin, more often than directed, or with any other product containing diphenhydramine, even one taken by mouth
    • on children under 12 years of age [ ... snip ...]

    (color change added for emphasis)



  • @Alex Papadimoulis said:

    I was hoping I'd be able to scan this, but the scanner seems to be out of commission. These are the instructions on my Benadryl Itch Stopping Cream, which looks like this:

    Uses
    • temporarily relieves itching and pain associated with insect bites, minor skin irritations and rashes due to <font style="background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);" color="#a52a2a">poison ivy</font>, poison oak, or poison sumac
    • dries the <font color="#00c000">oozing</font> and weeping of <font color="#a52a2a">poison ivy</font>, poison oak, or poison sumac
    Warnings - for external use only
    Do Not Use • on chicken pox, measles, <font color="#a52a2a">poison ivy</font>, sunburn, large areas of the body, broken, blistered, or <font color="#00c000">oozing</font> skin, more often than directed, or with any other product containing diphenhydramine, even one taken by mouth
    • on children under 12 years of age [ ... snip ...]

    (color change added for emphasis)

    more colors added for emphasis ;-)



  • I wonder if you should use it on poison oak or sumac? Distressing.

    Nice how they say it will also dry "oozing and weeping" caused by poison X but you're not supposed to use it on oozing skin!



    Benedryl can cure cancer!*

    *Do not use if you or a close relative have any form of cancerous tissue.



  • It says: "Do not use on poison ivy"... So don't rub it on the plant, only on your skin...



  • @HitScan said:



    Benedryl can cure cancer!*

    *Do not use if you or a close relative have any form of cancerous tissue.

    100% of our customers have been certified by a doctor that they have NO cancerous tumors after 30 days of proper use!



  • @Alex Papadimoulis said:

    I was hoping I'd be able to scan
    this, but the scanner seems to be out of commission. These are the
    instructions on my Benadryl Itch Stopping Cream, which looks like this:

    Uses
    • temporarily relieves itching and pain associated with insect bites, minor skin irritations and rashes due to <font style="background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);" color="#a52a2a">poison ivy</font>, poison oak, or poison sumac
    • dries the oozing and weeping of <font color="#a52a2a">poison ivy</font>, poison oak, or poison sumac
    Warnings - for external use only
    Do Not Use • on chicken pox, measles, <font color="#a52a2a">poison ivy</font>, sunburn, large areas of the body, broken, blistered, or oozing skin, <font color="#9acd32">more often than directed</font>, or with any other product containing diphenhydramine, even one taken by mouth
    • on children under 12 years of age [ ... snip ...]

    (color change added for emphasis)


    Um... Not really a WTF


  • @zen said:

    @Alex Papadimoulis said:

    Uses
    • temporarily relieves itching and pain associated with insect bites, minor skin irritations and rashes due to <font style="background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);" color="#a52a2a">poison ivy</font>, poison oak, or poison sumac
    • dries the oozing and weeping of <font color="#a52a2a">poison ivy</font>, poison oak, or poison sumac
    Warnings - for external use only
    Do Not Use • on chicken pox, measles, <font color="#a52a2a">poison ivy</font>, sunburn, large areas of the body, broken, blistered, or oozing skin, <font color="#9acd32">more often than directed</font>, or with any other product containing diphenhydramine, even one taken by mouth
    • on children under 12 years of age [ ... snip ...]

    (color change added for emphasis)


    Um... Not really a WTF

    I don't think that your position holds up under close scrutiny.  Unless I misunderstand you, you're assertion is that a proper interpretation of this would be:

    Do not use on Chicken Pox more often than directed
    Do not use on Poison Ivy more often than directed
    Do not use on oozing skin more often than directed
    -and/or perhaps
    Do not use on Poison Ivy with any other product containing diphenhydramine

    But I don't think that is the proper way of reading it.  If that were the case, the corollary statements would be:

    Go ahead and use it on mosquito bites more often than directed
    Go ahead and use it on your athlete's foot more often than directed
    Go ahead and use it on your butt rash with any other product containing diphenhydramine

    That just doesn't make (scata)logical sense.  I'm reasonably certain that Benadryl people would tell you to NEVER use it more often than directed.  So the reasonable way of interpreting the contraindications would be:

    Do not use on Chicken Pox
    Do not use on Poison Ivy
    Do not use on oozing skin
    Do not use more often than directed

    So I would say it's still a WTF?

    (I'm not a Doctor, but I play one on TV.)


  • "on chicken pox, measles, <font color="#a52a2a">poison ivy</font>, sunburn, large areas of the body, broken, blistered, or oozing skin, <font color="#9acd32">more often than directed</font>, <font color="#0000ff">or</font> with any other product containing diphenhydramine, even one taken by mouth"


    notice the word "or."  I think we all no what or means, but if you were to program this this is what it would look like.

    affliction foo = myAffliction;
    usage bar = myUsage;
    if (foo == chickien pox || foo == measles || foo == poison ivy ... || foo == oozing skin || usage == more often than directed || usage == with other things) { bad usage }

    as you can see, if foo == chicken pox then the usage is bad.   if you ask me it's an extremely poorly written box, but I understand what it is suppose to say.



  • Natural Language ambivalence. Gotta love it.

    This reminds me of that syntactic shortcut to an if.

    var data = getValue() || getDefaultValue() || "[empty]";



  • Reminds me of one I saw a few years back. I can't remember the
    specifics, but it was regarding a medicine used to reduce the side
    effects of another medication. Obviously the instructions included "do
    not use while taking any other form of medication".



    Alternatively was the asthma medication where you was warned not to use it if you had breathing difficulties.



    My all time favourite though was "For treatment of [condition x] ...
    blah blah ... may cause [condition x], severe illness and diarrhea,
    internal bleeding, severe allergic reactions, and death. If you
    experience any of the above conditions, seek immediate medical advice."




  • @RayS said:



    [snipped]



    My all time favourite though was "For treatment of [condition x] ...
    blah blah ... may cause [condition x], severe illness and diarrhea,
    internal bleeding, severe allergic reactions, and death. If you
    experience any of the above conditions, seek immediate medical advice."


    Read the product brochure for birth control pills if you ever get a chance.  Side effects for those include stroke and heart attack.  Although come to think of it, most drugs these days list side effects that are MUCH worse than the problem they're supposed to treat....



  • They don't have enough room, I guess, to also put the statistic chance of the side-effect actually occuring, and their severity. Which is possible very small on both accounts.



  • Although this obviously works fine with Poison Ivy, I thought I'd call Pfizer's customer service and see what they had to say. Here's what I learned:

    • the Warnings portion is incorrect; it is officially OK to use Benadryl with poison ivy
    • the packaging information was updated with correct information over seven years ago
    • my Benadryl expired in 2001 and should be thrown out


  • Fine lessons indeed.


    I'm delighted that customer service knew about a change that happened seven years ago.



  • @dhromed said:

    Natural Language ambivalence.


    I wasn't aware that ambiguity and abivalence were synonyms, but a quick google define:ambivalence indicates they are.


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