Codipar 15mg/500mg Capsules
Co-codamol 15mg/500mg Capsules
Each capsule contains Paracetamol 500mg and Codeine Phosphate 15mg.
For full list of excipients, see section 6.1
red (cap) and white (body) coloured hard gelatine capsules (size 0) filled with a homogenous white powder
For the relief of moderate pain
Codeine is indicated in patients older than 12 years of age for the treatment of acute moderate pain which is not considered to be relieved by other analgesics such as paracetamol or ibuprofen (alone).
Prior to starting treatment with opioids, a discussion should be held with patients to put in place a strategy for ending treatment with codeine in order to minimise the risk of addiction and drug withdrawal syndrome (see section 4.4).
Adults: The usual dose is one or two capsules every four to six hours as required up to a maximum of 8 capsules in any 24 hour period.
Codeine should be used at the lowest effective dose for the shortest period of time. This dose may be taken, up to 4 times a day at intervals of not less than 6 hours. Maximum daily dose should not exceed 240 mg.
The duration of treatment should be limited to 3 days and if no effective pain relief is achieved the patients/carers should be advised to seek the views of a physician.
Elderly: A reduced dosage may be necessary.
Children aged 16-18 years: 1-2 capsules every 6 hours when necessary up to a maximum of 8 capsules in 24 hours.
Children aged 12 – 15 years: 1 capsule every 6 hours when necessary up to a maximum of 4 capsules in 24 hours.
Children aged less than 12 years:
“Codeine should not be used in children below the age of 12 years because of the risk of opioid toxicity due to the variable and unpredictable metabolism of codeine to morphine (see sections 4.3 and 4.4).
Dosage needs to be adjusted according to the severity of pain and the response of the patient.
Tolerance to Codeine can develop with continued use. The incidence of unwanted effects is dose related. Doses of Codeine above 60 mg are associated with an increase in unwanted effects.
Method of administration
Hypersensitivity to the active substances or to any of the excipients listed in section 6.1
Children under 12 years of age.
This medicine is contraindicated in patients with moderate to severe degrees of renal or hepatic impairment.
It is contraindicated in patients for whom opiate medications should not be used, such as patients with acute asthma, obstructive airway disease, respiratory depression, acute alcoholism, head injuries, raised intracranial pressure, after biliary surgery, patients suffering from diarrhoea of any cause, and patients who have taken MAOIs within 14 days.
In all paediatric patients (0-18 years of age) who undergo tonsillectomy and/or adenoidectomy for obstructive sleep apnoea syndrome due to an increased risk of developing serious and life threatening adverse reactions (see section 4.4)
In women during breastfeeding (see section 4.6)
In patients for whom it is known they are CYP2D6 ultra-rapid metabolisers.
The efficacy and safety of this medicine in children below the age of 12 years has not been established and use in such children is contraindicated.
This medicine must be used with caution in patients with increases intracranial pressure, the debilitated, impaired hepatic or renal function and urethral stricture. (See also “Contraindications”. Note particularly that this medicine is contraindicated in patients with severe renal or hepatic impairment.)
Care should be observed in administering the product to any patient, whose condition may be exacerbated by opioids, including the elderly, who may be sensitive to their central and gastro-intestinal effects, those on concurrent CNS depressant drugs, those with prostatic hypertrophy, hypothyroidism and those with acute abdominal conditions like inflammatory or obstructive bowel disorders, Addison's disease or myasthenia gravis. Care should also be observed if prolonged therapy is contemplated.
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).
Additional support and monitoring may be necessary when prescribing for patients at risk of opioid misuse.
A comprehensive patient history should be taken to document concomitant medications, including over-the-counter medicines and medicines obtained on-line, and past and present medical and psychiatric conditions.
Patients may find that treatment is less effective with chronic use and express a need to increase the dose to obtain the same level of pain control as initially experienced. Patients may also supplement their treatment with additional pain relievers. These could be signs that the patient is developing tolerance.
The risks of developing tolerance should be explained to the patient.
Overuse or misuse may result in overdose and/or death. It is important that patients only use medicines that are prescribed for them at the dose they have been prescribed and do not give this medicine to anyone else.
Patients should be closely monitored for signs of misuse, abuse, or addiction.
The clinical need for analgesic treatment should be reviewed regularly.
Drug withdrawal syndrome
Prior to starting treatment with any opioids, a discussion should be held with patients to put in place a withdrawal strategy for ending treatment with codeine.
Drug withdrawal syndrome may occur upon abrupt cessation of therapy or dose reduction. When a patient no longer requires therapy, it is advisable to taper the dose gradually to minimise symptoms of withdrawal. Tapering from a high dose may take weeks to months.
The opioid 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.
If women take this drug during pregnancy, there is a risk that their newborn infants will experience neonatal withdrawal syndrome.
Hyperalgesia may be diagnosed if the patient on long-term opioid therapy presents with increased pain. This might be qualitatively and anatomically distinct from pain related to disease progression or to breakthrough pain resulting from development of opioid tolerance. Pain associated with hyperalgesia tends to be more diffuse than the pre-existing pain and less defined in quality. Symptoms of hyperalgesia may resolve with a reduction of opioid dose.
Risk from concomitant use of sedative medicines such as benzodiazepines or related drugs:
Concomitant use of Codipar/ Co-codamol capsules and sedative medicines such as benzodiazepines or related drugs may result in sedation, respiratory depression, coma and death. Because of these risks, concomitant prescribing with these sedative medicines should be reserved for patients for whom alternative treatment options are not possible. If a decision is made to prescribe Codipar/Co-codamol capsules concomitantly with sedative medicines, the lowest effective dose should be used, and the duration of treatment should be as short as possible.
The patients should be followed closely for signs and symptoms of respiratory depression and sedation. In this respect, it is strongly recommended to inform patients and their caregivers to be aware of these symptoms (see section 4.5).
Codeine is metabolised by the liver enzyme CYP2D6 into morphine, its active metabolite. If a patient has a deficiency or is completely lacking this enzyme an adequate analgesic effect will not be obtained. Estimates indicate that up to 7% of the Caucasian population may have this deficiency. However, if the patient is an extensive or ultra-rapid metaboliser there is an increased risk of developing side effects of opioid toxicity even at commonly prescribed doses. These patients convert codeine into morphine rapidly resulting in higher than expected serum morphine levels.
General symptoms of opioid toxicity include confusion, somnolence, shallow breathing, small pupils, nausea, vomiting, constipation and lack of appetite. In severe cases this may include symptoms of circulatory and respiratory depression, which may be life-threatening and very rarely fatal.
Estimates of prevalence of ultra-rapid metabolizer in different populations are summarized below:
3.4% to 6.5%
1.2% to 2%
3.6% to 6.5%
Post-operative use in children
There have been reports in the published literature that codeine given post-operatively in children after tonsillectomy and/or adenoidectomy for obstructive sleep apnoea, led to rare, but life-threatening adverse events including death (see also section 4.3). All children received doses of codeine that were within the appropriate dose range; however, there was evidence that these children were either ultrarapid or extensive metabolisers in their ability to metabolise codeine to morphine.
Children with compromised respiratory function
Codeine is not recommended for use in children in whom respiratory function might be compromised including neuromuscular disorders, severe cardiac or respiratory conditions, upper respiratory or lung infections, multiple trauma or extensive surgical procedures. These factors may worsen symptoms of morphine toxicity.”
Overdosage in patients with non-cirrhotic alcoholic liver disease can be hazardous. The hazard of paracetamol overdose is greater in those with alcoholic liver disease.
Codeine at high doses has the same disadvantages as morphine, including respiratory depression. Drug dependence of the morphine type can be produced by the Codeine, and the potential for drug abuse with codeine must be considered. Codeine may impair mental or physical abilities required in the performance of potentially hazardous tasks.
Patients must be advised not to exceed the recommended doses.
Patients must be advised not to take other products containing paracetamol or opiate derivatives when taking this medicine, and to consult their doctor if symptoms persist.
The cough suppressant effect of codeine may be undesirable in patients with some respiratory conditions.
The leaflet will state in a prominent position in the 'before taking' section
•Do not take for longer than directed by your prescriber
•Taking codeine regularly for a long time can lead to addiction, which might cause you to feel restless and irritable when you stop taking the capsules.
•Taking a painkiller for headaches too often or for too long can make them worse.
The label will state (To be displayed prominently on outer pack- not boxed):
•Do not take for longer than directed by you prescriber as taking codeine regularly for a long time can lead to addiction.
The hypotensive effects of antihypertensive agents, including diuretics, may be potentiated by codeine.
Quinine or quinidine may inhibit the analgesic actions of codeine.
The CNS depressant action of this medicine may be enhanced by coadministration with any other drug which has a CNS depressant effect (e.g. anxiolytics, hypnotics, antidepressants, antipsychotics and alcohol). Concomitant use of any drug with a CNS depressant action should be avoided. If combined therapy is necessary, the dose of one or both agents should be reduced.
Concomitant administration of this medicine and MAOIs or tricyclic antidepressants may increase the effect of either the antidepressant or codeine.
Concomitant administration of codeine and anticholinergics may cause paralytic ileus.
Concomitant administration of codeine with an anti-diarrhoeal agent increases the risk of severe constipation, and coadministartion with an antimuscarine drug may cause urinary retention.
The absorption of paracetamol is speeded by metaclopramide or domperidone, and absorption is reduced by colestyramine.
Codeine may delay the absorption of mexilitine, and cimetidine may inhibit codeine metabolism.
Opioids may interfere with the results of plasma amylase, lipase, bilirubin, ALP, LDH, AST, and ALT tests.
The effects of codeine on the gut may interfere with diagnostic tests of gastro- intestinal functions.
The anticoagulant effect of warfarin and other coumarins may be increased by long term regular daily use of paracetamol, with increased risk of bleeding. Occasional doses of paracetamol do not have a significant effect on these anticoagulants.
Sedative medicines such as benzodiazepines or related drugs:
The concomitant use of opioids with sedative medicines such as benzodiazepines or related drugs increases the risk of sedation, respiratory depression, coma and death because of additive CNS depressant effect. The dose and duration of concomitant use should be limited (see section 4.4).
Regular use during pregnancy may cause drug dependence in the foetus, leading to withdrawal symptoms in the neonate.
If opioid use is required for a prolonged period in a pregnant woman, advise the patient of the risk of neonatal opioid withdrawal syndrome and ensure that appropriate treatment will be available.
Administration during labour may depress respiration in the neonate and an antidote for the child should be readily available.
A large amount of data on pregnant women indicate neither malformative, nor feto/neonatal toxicity. Epidemiological studies on neurodevelopment in children exposed to paracetamol in utero show inconclusive results. If clinically needed, paracetamol can be used during pregnancy however it should be used at the lowest effective dose for the shortest possible time and at the lowest possible frequency.
Administration to nursing women is not recommended as codeine may be secreted in breast milk and may cause respiratory depression in the infant.
If the patient is an ultra-rapid metaboliser of CYP2D6, higher levels the active metabolite, morphine, may be present in breast milk and on very rare occasions may result in symptoms of opioid toxicity in the infant, which may be fatal.
If symptoms of opioid toxicity develop in either the mother or the infant, then all codeine containing medicines should be stopped and alternative non-opioid analgesics prescribed. In severe cases consideration should be given to prescribing naloxone to reverse these effects.
No data available
Patients should be advised not to drive or operate machinery if this medicine causes dizziness or sedation. Codeine may cause visual disturbances.
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 prescribing 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 to treat a medical or dental problem and
o You have taken it according to the instructions given by the prescriber and in the information provided with the medicine and
o It was not affecting your ability to drive safely
Reported adverse reactions appear more common in ambulatory: rather than non-ambulatory patients. Lying down may alleviate these effects they occur. Lying down may alleviate these effects they occur.
The information below lists reported adverse reactions, ranked using the following frequency classification:
common (≥1/100 to <1/10); uncommon (≥1/1,000 to <1/100) and not known (cannot be estimated from the available data).
System organ class
Blood and lymphatic system disorders
Blood disorder*, Thrombocytopenia*, Agranulocytosis*
Immune system disorder
Hypersensitivity (including skin rash)a
Dysphoria , Euphoria, Drug dependence (see section 4.4), Restlessness, Irritability
Nervous system disorders
Dizziness, Light-headedness, Sedation, Headache
Miosis, visual disturbances
Respiratory, thoracic and mediastinal disorders
Shortness of breath,
Abdominal pain, Pancreatitis
Skin and subcutaneous tissue disorders
Renal and urinary disorders
Difficult micturition and urinary retention
General disorders and administration site conditions
Drug withdrawal syndrome
aCodeine can cause respiratory depression particularly in overdosage and in patients with compromised respiratory function.
bLiver damage in association with therapeutic use of paracetamol has been documented; most cases have occurred in conjunction with chronic alcohol abuse.
*There have been some reports of blood dyscrasias - thrombocytopenia and agranulocytosis, with the use of paracetamol-containing products, but the causal relationship has not been established.
Prolonged use of a pain killer for headaches can make them worse.
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
website: www.mhra.gov.uk/yellowcard or search for MHRA Yellow Card in the Google Play or Apple App Store
Patients should be informed of the signs and symptoms of overdose and to ensure that family and friends are also aware of these signs and to seek immediate medical help if they occur.
Liver damage is possible in adults who have taken 10g or more of paracetamol. Ingestion of 5g or more of paracetamol may lead to liver damage if the patient has risk factors (see below).
If the patient
a, Is on long term treatment with carbamazepine, phenobarbitone, phenytoin, primidone, rifampicin, St John's Wort or other drugs that induce liver enzymes.
b, Regularly consumes ethanol in excess of recommended amounts.
c, Is likely to be glutathione deplete e.g. eating disorders, cystic fibrosis, HIV infection, starvation, cachexia.
Symptoms of paracetamol overdosage in the first 24 hours are pallor, nausea, vomiting, anorexia and abdominal pain. Liver damage may become apparent 12 to 48 hours after ingestion. Abnormalities of glucose metabolism and metabolic acidosis may occur. In severe poisoning, hepatic failure may progress to encephalopathy, haemorrhage, hypoglycaemia, cerebral oedema, and death. Acute renal failure with acute tubular necrosis, strongly suggested by loin pain, haematuria and proteinuria, may develop even in the absence of severe liver damage. Cardiac arrhythmias and pancreatitis have been reported.
Immediate treatment is essential in the management of paracetamol overdose. Despite a lack of significant early symptoms, patients should be referred to hospital urgently for immediate medical attention. Symptoms may be limited to nausea or vomiting and may not reflect the severity of overdose or the risk of organ damage. Management should be in accordance with established treatment guidelines, see BNF overdose section.
Treatment with activated charcoal should be considered if the overdose has been taken within 1 hour. Plasma paracetamol concentration should be measured at 4 hours or later after ingestion (earlier concentrations are unreliable) but results should not delay initiation of treatment beyond 8 hours after ingestion, as the effectiveness of the antidote declines sharply after this time. If required the patient should be given intravenous N-acetylcysteine, in line with the established dosage schedule. If vomiting is not a problem, oral methionine may be a suitable alternative for remote areas, outside hospital.
The effects in overdosage will be potentiated by simultaneous ingestion of alcohol and psychotropic drugs.
Central nervous system depression, including respiratory depression, may develop but is unlikely to be severe unless other sedative agents have been co-ingested, including alcohol, or the overdose is very large. The pupils may be pin-point in size; nausea and vomiting are common. Hypotension and tachycardia are possible but unlikely.
ManagementThis should include general symptomatic and supportive measures including a clear airway and monitoring of vital signs until stable. Consider activated charcoal if an adult presents within one hour of ingestion of more than 350 mg or a child more than 5 mg/kg.
Give naloxone if coma or respiratory depression is present. Naloxone is a competitive antagonist and has a short half-life so large and repeated doses may be required in a seriously poisoned patient. Observe for at least four hours after ingestion, or eight hours if a sustained release preparation has been taken.
Pharmacotherapeutic group: Opioids in combination with non-opioid analgesics, ATC code: N02AJ06
Paracetamol (N02B E51) has analgesic and antipyretic actions. It is a weak inhibitor of prostaglandin biosynthesis. Single or repeated therapeutic doses of paracetamol do not affect the cardiovascular or respiratory systems. Gastric irritation, erosion, or bleeding is not produced by paracetamol. There is minimal effect on platelets, no effect on bleeding time or excretion of uric acid.
Codeine (N02A A59) is a centrally acting weak analgesic. Codeine exerts its effect through μ opioid receptors, although codeine has low affinity for these receptors, and its analgesic effect is due to its conversion to morphine. Codeine, particularly in combination with other analgesics such as paracetamol, has been shown to be effective in acute nociceptive pain.
Codeine effects the CNS and the gut, including analgesia, drowsiness, mood changes, respiratory depression, reduced gastrointestinal motility, nausea or vomiting, changes in the endocrine and autonomic nervous system. Codeine's effect on pain relief is selective, and it does not effect other sensations such as touch, vibration, vision, or hearing.
Paracetamol is readily absorbed from the gastro-intestinal tract. It is metabolised in the liver and undergoes extensive biotransformation. The major metabolites are inactive phenolic sulphate and glucuronide conjugates. An adequate supply of SH groups can prevent hepatic toxicity. Paracetamol is excreted in the urine. The elimination half life varies from about 1 to 4 hours.
Codeine is absorbed from the gastro-intestinal tract and peak plasma concentrations are produced in about 1hour. It is metabolised in the liver to morphine and norcodeines. Codeine and its metabolites are excreted almost entirely by the kidney. The plasma half line is between 3 and 4 hours.
Conventional studies using the currently accepted standards for the evaluation of toxicity to reproduction and development are not available.
Sodium Lauryl sulfate
Cross carmellose sodium
Titanium dioxide E171
Red Iron Oxide E172
Do not store above 25°C
Blister strips of PVDC coated PVC /Aluminium , 10 capsules per strip
In pack size of 30, 32 or 100 capsules.
No special requirements for disposal
Any unused medical product or waste material should be disposed of in accordance with local requirements.
Mercury Pharmaceuticals Ltd
85 King William Street
Date of first authorisation: 06 September 2010