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Regret at co-proxamol ban

From Dr Martin Johnson, Barnsley

From Dr Martin Johnson, Barnsley

I was the GP on the committee that tried unsuccessfully to oppose the ban on co-proxamol when the MHRA review happened in 2004.

Co-proxamol was viewed as an old-fashioned ineffective drug with dangerous side-effects – due to the incidence of deaths associated with alcohol and the drug.

One of the major problems was that there were multiple manufacturers and the packaging was inconsistent. Despite making suggestions about strengthening warnings on the computer and on the packaging we were told that was not sufficient.

Co-proxamol has very few efficacy studies due to its age and therefore the purists view it as weak.

Congratulations on your recent Pulse reports confirming many practitioners find it a very useful drug – especially in the elderly. Overall it appears to have a low incidence of side-effects compared with other mild to moderate painkillers.

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