Robitussin Dry Cough Medicine

Summary of Product Characteristics Updated 14-Nov-2023 | Haleon UK Trading Limited

1. Name of the medicinal product

Robitussin Dry Cough Medicine

2. Qualitative and quantitative composition

Active Ingredient

Dextromethorphan Hydrobromide Ph Eur 7.5mg per 5ml

Excipients with known effect

Amaranth (E123) - 0.33 mg of Amaranth in each 10 ml dose

Ethanol: 219.3 mg of alcohol (ethanol) in each 10 ml dose

Maltitol (E965): 484 mg of Maltitol in each 10 ml dose

Sodium: 21.94 mg of Sodium in each 10 ml dose

Sodium benzoate (E211): 12.0 mg of Sodium Benzoate in each 10 ml dose

Sorbitol (E420): 2094 mg sorbitol in each 10 ml dose

For full list of excipients see section 6.1

3. Pharmaceutical form

Clear red colour liquid with a characteristic odour and taste of cherry for oral administration.

4. Clinical particulars
4.1 Therapeutic indications

For the relief of persistent dry irritant coughs.

4.2 Posology and method of administration

Oral administration.

Adults, the elderly and children over 12 years: One 10ml measure up to four times daily.

Children under 12 years: Do not use

4.3 Contraindications

Hypersensitivity to any of the ingredients.

Taking a prescription monoamine oxidase inhibitor (MAOI), a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI), or other medications for depression, psychiatric, or emotional conditions, or Parkinson's disease, or for 2 weeks after stopping the medication. If you are not sure if your prescription medication contains one of these medicines, ask a doctor or pharmacist before taking this product. (See section 4.5).

Use in children under 12 years.

4.4 Special warnings and precautions for use

Patients suffering from chronic cough as occurs with smoking, asthma or patients suffering from an acute asthma attack, or where cough is accompanied by excessive secretions should be advised to consult a Healthcare Professional before use.

Causes of chronic cough should be excluded if symptoms are persistent. Any accompanying symptoms should be actively sought and appropriately investigated/ treated. Stop use and ask your healthcare professional if your cough lasts more than 7 days, comes back or is accompanied by a fever, rash or persistent headache. These could be signs of serious conditions.

Drug dependence, tolerance and potential for abuse

For all patients, prolonged use of this product may lead to drug dependence (addiction), even at therapeutic doses. The risks are increased in individuals with current or past history of substance misuse disorder (including alcohol misuse) or mental health disorder (e.g., major depression). Caution is particularly recommended for adolescents and young adults as well as in patients with a history of drug abuse or psychoactive substances.

Drug withdrawal syndrome

The drug withdrawal syndrome is characterised by some or all of the following: restlessness, lacrimation, rhinorrhoea, yawning, perspiration, chills, myalgia, mydriasis and palpitations. Other symptoms may also develop including irritability, agitation, anxiety, hyperkinesia, tremor, weakness, insomnia, anorexia, abdominal cramps, nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea, increased blood pressure, increased respiratory rate or heart rate.

Dextromethorphan is metabolised by hepatic cytochrome P450 2D6. The activity of this enzyme is genetically determined. About 10% of the general population are poor metabolisers of CYP2D6. Poor metabolisers and patients with concomitant use of CYP2D6 inhibitors may experience exaggerated and/or prolonged effects of dextromethorphan. Caution should therefore be exercised in patients who are slow metabolizers of CYP2D6 or use CYP2D6 inhibitors (see also section 4.5).

Keep out of the sight and reach of children.

Do not exceed recommended dose.

Excipient warnings:

- Patients with rare hereditary problems of fructose intolerance should not take this medicine because this product contains Sorbitol and Maltitol.

- This product contains Amaranth (E123), which may cause allergic reactions.

- This medicine contains 219.3 mg of alcohol (ethanol) in each 10 ml dose which is equivalent to 22 mg/ml (2.08% w/v). The amount in 10 ml of this medicine is equivalent to less than 6 ml beer or 3ml wine. Harmful for those suffering from alcoholism. To be taken into account in pregnant or breast-feeding women and high-risk groups such as patients with liver disease, or epilepsy.

- This medicine contains 12.0 mg sodium benzoate in each 10 ml dose which is equivalent to 1.2 mg/ml.

- This medicine contains 2094 mg sorbitol per 10 ml dose which is equivalent to 209.4 mg/ml. Sorbitol may cause gastrointestinal discomfort and mild laxative effect.

- This medicine contains less than 1 mmol sodium (23 mg) per 10 ml.

Serotonin Syndrome

Serotonergic effects, including the development of a potentially life-threatening serotonin syndrome, have been reported for dextromethorphan with concomitant administration of serotonergic agents, such as selective serotonin re-uptake inhibitors (SSRIs), drugs which impair metabolism of serotonin (including monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs)) and CYP2D6 inhibitors.

Serotonin syndrome may include mental-status changes, autonomic instability, neuromuscular abnormalities, and/or gastrointestinal symptoms. If serotonin syndrome is suspected, treatment with Robitussin Dry Cough should be discontinued.

4.5 Interaction with other medicinal products and other forms of interaction

Do not use if you are now taking a prescription monoamine oxidase inhibitor (MAOI), a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI), or other medications for depression, psychiatric, or emotional conditions, or Parkinson's disease, or for 2 weeks after stopping the medication. If you are not sure if your prescription medication contains one of these drugs, ask a doctor or pharmacist before taking this product.

CYP2D6 inhibitors

Dextromethorphan is metabolized by CYP2D6 and has an extensive first-pass metabolism. Concomitant use of potent CYP2D6 enzyme inhibitors can increase the dextromethorphan concentrations in the body to levels multifold higher than normal. This increases the patient's risk for toxic effects of dextromethorphan (agitation, confusion, tremor, insomnia, diarrhoea and respiratory depression) and development of serotonin syndrome. Potent CYP2D6 enzyme inhibitors include fluoxetine, paroxetine, quinidine and terbinafine. In concomitant use with quinidine, plasma concentrations of dextromethorphan have increased up to 20-fold, which has increased the CNS adverse effects of the agent. Amiodarone, flecainide and propafenone, sertraline, bupropion, methadone, cinacalcet, haloperidol, perphenazine and thioridazine also have similar effects on the metabolism of dextromethorphan. If concomitant use of CYP2D6 inhibitors and dextromethorphan is necessary, the patient should be monitored and the dextromethorphan dose may need to be reduced.


A dose of 10ml of this medicine administered to an adult weighing 70 kg would result in exposure to 2.8 mg/kg of ethanol which may cause a rise in bloodalcohol concentration (BAC) of about 0.4mg/100 ml.

A dose of 10ml of this medicine administered to a child over 12 years of age and weighing 40 kg would result in exposure to 4.9 mg/kg of ethanol which may cause a rise in blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of about 0.8 mg/100 ml

For comparison, for an adult drinking a glass of wine or 500 ml of beer, the BAC is likely to be about 50 mg/100 ml. Co-administration with medicines containing e.g. propylene glycol or ethanol may lead to accumulation of ethanol and induce adverse effects, in particular in young children with low or immature metabolic capacity.

4.6 Pregnancy and lactation

Although dextromethorphan has been in widespread use for many years without apparent ill-consequence, there are no specific data on its use during pregnancy. Caution should therefore be exercised by balancing the potential benefit of treatment against any possible hazards. It is not known whether dextromethorphan or its metabolites are excreted in human milk.

4.7 Effects on ability to drive and use machines

This medicine can impair cognitive function and can affect a patient's ability to drive safely. This class of medicine is in the list of drugs included in regulations under 5a of the Road Traffic Act 1988. When taking this medicine, patients should be told:

• The medicine is likely to affect your ability to drive

• Do not drive until you know how the medicine affects you

• It is an offence to drive while under the influence of this medicine

• However, you would not be committing an offence (called 'statutory defence') if:

o The medicine has been prescribed taken to treat a medical problem and

o You have taken it according to the information provided with the medicine and

o It was not affecting your ability to drive safely

4.8 Undesirable effects

Adverse effects are rare, however the following side effects may be associated with dextromethorphan hydrobromide:

Gastrointestinal Disorders

Rare: Gastrointestinal upset

Nervous System Disorders

Rare: Dizziness, drowsiness, mental confusion

Immune System Disorders


Psychiatric disorders:

Frequency unknown: Drug dependence (see section 4.4)

General disorders and administration site conditions:

Frequency unknown: drug withdrawal syndrome

Reporting of suspected adverse reactions

Reporting suspected adverse reactions after authorisation of the medicinal product is important. It allows continued monitoring of the benefit/risk balance of the medicinal product. Healthcare professionals are asked to report any suspected adverse reactions via the Yellow Card Scheme at: or search for MHRA Yellow Card in the Google Play or Apple App Store.

4.9 Overdose

Symptoms and signs:

Dextromethorphan overdose may be associated with nausea, vomiting, dystonia, agitation, confusion, somnolence, stupor, nystagmus, cardiotoxicity (tachycardia, abnormal ECG including QTc prolongation), ataxia, toxic psychosis with visual hallucinations, hyperexcitability.

In the event of massive overdose the following symptoms may be observed: coma, respiratory depression, convulsions.


-Activated charcoal can be administered to asymptomatic patients who have ingested overdoses of dextromethorphan within the preceding hour.

-For patients who have ingested dextromethorphan and are sedated or comatose, naloxone, in the usual doses for treatment of opioid overdose, can be considered. Benzodiazepines for seizures and benzodiazepines and external cooling measures for hyperthermia from serotonin syndrome can be used.

5. Pharmacological properties
5.1 Pharmacodynamic properties

Dextromethorphan hydrobromide is a cough suppressant which has a central action on the cough centre in the medulla. It has no analgesic properties and little sedative activity.


Pharmacotherapeutic group: Cough suppressant

ATC code: R05DA09

5.2 Pharmacokinetic properties

Dextromethorphan hydrobromide is well absorbed from the gastrointestinal tract.

Dextromethorphan undergoes rapid and extensive first-pass metabolism in the liver after oral administration. Genetically controlled O-demethylation (CYD2D6) is the main determinant of dextromethorphan pharmacokinetics in human volunteers.

It appears that there are distinct phenotypes for this oxidation process resulting in highly variable pharmacokinetics between subjects. Unmetabolised dextromethorphan, together with the three demethylated morphinan metabolites dextrorphan (also known as 3-hydroxy-N-methylmorphinan), 3- hydroxymorphinan and 3-methoxymorphinan have been identified as conjugated products in the urine.

Dextrorphan, which also has antitussive action, is the main metabolite. In some individuals metabolism proceeds more slowly and unchanged dextromethorphan predominates in the blood and urine.

5.3 Preclinical safety data

There is no relevant information additional to that already contained elsewhere in the SmPC or of relevance to the prescriber.

6. Pharmaceutical particulars
6.1 List of excipients


Sodium Carboxymethyl Cellulose

Sodium Benzoate

Disodium Edetate

Maltitol (E965)

Ethanol (96%)

Citric Acid Anhydrous

Amaranth (E123)

Caramel (E150)


Cherry/Grenadine Flavour

Sorbitol Solution 70%

Sodium Cyclamate

Acesulfame Potassium Salt

Purified Water

6.2 Incompatibilities

None stated.

6.3 Shelf life

33 months.

6.4 Special precautions for storage

Do not store above 25° C.

Keep out of reach and sight of children.

6.5 Nature and contents of container

Brown glass bottle, hydrolytic class 3, containing 100 ml or 200ml with child resistant caps.

A transparent polypropylene measuring cap is also included.

6.6 Special precautions for disposal and other handling

No special requirements


7. Marketing authorisation holder

Haleon UK Trading Limited

The Heights



KT13 0NY

United Kingdom

8. Marketing authorisation number(s)

PL 44673/0207

9. Date of first authorisation/renewal of the authorisation

01 September 1993

10. Date of revision of the text

02 November 2023

Company Contact Details
Haleon UK Trading Limited

The Heights, Weybridge, Surrey, KT13 0NY, UK

Medical Information Direct Line

0800 783 8881

Customer Care direct line

0800 783 8881


Medical Information e-mail