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Monday 25th June 2018

Child cough medicines removed

27th March 2008

Fears of accidental overdose have prompted some cough remedies aimed at very young children to be taken off the open shelves in stores.


Six products for children under the age of two are to be permanently removed following a ruling by the Medicine and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA).

Asda Children’s Chesty Cough Syrup, Calcough Chesty, Boots Chesty Cough Syrup (one year plus), Children’s Chesty Cough , Boots Sore Throat and Cough Linctus (one year plus) and Buttercup Infant Cough Syrup, will no longer be sold by pharmacists for children under two.

Health experts suggest parents instead use paracetamol and ibuprofen medicines, vapour rubs and simple cough syrup.

The MHRA says there are 12 ingredients in these medicines that are of concern, with each remedy containing a combination of each, but no evidence that they are of any benefit to children under two.

They affected ingredients are: brompheniramine; chlorphenamine; diphenhydramine; dextromethorphan; pholcodine; guaifenesin; ipecacuanha; phenylephrine; pseudoephedrine; ephedrine; oxymetazoline and xylometazoline.

Since 1981, there have been five deaths where such medicines have been a factor, say the MHRA.

MHRA spokeswoman Sara Coakley said the move was a “precautionary measure.

She added: “There’s nothing wrong with these medicines, it was the way that they had been given.?

Anyone who asks to buy the products affected will be questioned about the age of the child who is unwell with the product sold if the child is over that age.

The Royal Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain felt it was good practice to restrict the use of these over-the-counter cough treatments.


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