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Patient Information Leaflet

Co-codamol 15mg/500mg Capsules
Codeine Phosphate/Paracetamol
Read all of this leaflet carefully before you start taking this medicine.
Keep this leaflet. You may need to read it again. If you have any further questions, ask your doctor or pharmacist. This
medicine has been prescribed for you. Do not pass it on to others. It may harm them, even if their symptoms are the
same as yours. If any of the side effects become serious, or if you notice any side effects not listed in this leaflet, please
tell your doctor or pharmacist.
The product is known by the name above but will be referred to as Co-codamol Capsules throughout the rest of this
In this leaflet
1. What Co-codamol Capsules are and what they are used for
2. Before you take Co-codamol Capsules
3. How to take Co-codamol Capsules
4. Possible side effects
5. How to store Co-codamol Capsules
6. Further information

Co-codamol Capsules contain paracetamol and codeine. Paracetamol is an analgesic (relieves pain) and an antipyretic
(lowers raised temperatures). This product contains codeine. Codeine belongs to a group of medicines called opioid
analgesics which act to relieve pain. It can be used on its own or in combination with other pain killers.
Co-codamol Capsules are used for the relief of moderate pain. Co-codamol Capsules can be used in children over 12 years
of age for the short-term relief of moderate pain that is not relieved by other painkillers such as paracetamol or ibuprofen

Do not take with any other paracetamol-containing products. Do not take for longer than directed by your prescriber. Do
not use Co-codamol Capsules for pain relief in children and adolescents (0-18 years of age) after removal of their tonsils
or adenoids as Codeine in Co-codamol Capsules may cause obstructive sleep apnoea syndrome (sleep disruption due
to respiratory pauses). Taking codeine regularly for a long time can lead to addiction, which might cause you to feel
restless and irritable when you stop the capsules. Taking a painkiller for headaches too often or for too long can make
them worse.
Do not take Co-codamol Capsules if
• you know that you are allergic to paracetamol or codeine, or any of the other ingredients (refer to section 6 below)
• you suffer from severe kidney or liver disease
• you know that you metabolise very rapidly codeine into morphine
• you are breast feeding
• you suffer from asthma or any other breathing problems, for example chronic bronchitis or emphysema
• you are taking monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs) or have been taking them within the last two weeks. MAOIs.
such as phenelzine or isocarboxazid are medicines used to treat depression
• you have just had a head injury or suffer from increased pressure on the brain
• you drink a lot of alcohol, or have done in the past
• you have recently had an operation to your gall bladder.
Co-codamol Capsules should not be taken by children under 12 years of age.
Take special care and tell your doctor or pharmacist before taking Co-codamol Capsules if
• you are elderly or weak
• you have any stomach pains or other sudden problems in your abdomen (belly)
• you have an underactive thyroid gland
• you have liver, kidney or thyroid problems, because the dose might need to be lower
• you have problems with your adrenal glands (Addison’s disease – your doctor will advise you)
• you suffer from an enlarged prostate gland (if male) or narrowing of your urethra (tube through which urine is passed)
• you feel you have taken Co-codamol Capsules for a long time. You may develop a dependence on Co-codamol
Capsules which may be harmful.
Codeine is transformed to morphine in the liver by an enzyme. Morphine is the substance that produces pain relief. Some
people have a variation of this enzyme and this can affect people in different ways. In some people, morphine is not
produced or produced in very small quantities, and it will not provide enough pain relief. Other people are more likely to
get serious side effects because a very high amount of morphine is produced. If you notice any of the following side
effects, you must should stop taking this medicine and seek immediate medical advice: slow or shallow breathing,
confusion, sleepiness, small pupils, feeling or being sick, constipation, lack of appetite.
Warnings and precautions Children and adolescents
Use in children and adolescents after surgery
Codeine should not be used for pain relief in children and adolescents after removal of their tonsils or adenoids due to
Obstructive Sleep Apnoea Syndrome (sleep disruption due to respiratory pauses). They may be at increased risk of severe
side effects in case of morphine toxicity.
Use in children with breathing problems
Codeine is not recommended in children with breathing problems, since the symptoms of morphine toxicity may be worse
in these children.
Taking other medicines
Please tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are taking or have recently taken any other medicines, including medicines
obtained without a prescription. Some medicines interact with each other and this can alter their effect. It is particularly
important to tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are taking the following medicines:
• MAOIs used to treat depression, taken within the last 14 days (refer to “do not take if” in section 2 above)
• sedatives and sleeping tablets, eg temazepam and diazepam
• medicines for irregular heart beats (mexiletine, quinine or quinidine)
• drugs used to dry fluids in the mouth and lungs known as anticholinergics
• medicines to treat diarrhoea or sickness (metoclopramide, domperidone)
• medicines used to treat problems of the stomach, gall bladder, heart burn or sickness, (e.g. cimetidine, colestyramine)
• other strong painkillers called opioids
• medicines which prevent blood clotting (anticoagulants such as warfarin)
• Co-codamol Capsules must not be taken with any other medicines containing paracetamol or codeine. Some products
which can be bought without a prescription may contain paracetamol or codeine, so always check the labels for ingredients.
Co-codamol Capsules can interfere with some laboratory tests used for determining some diseases.
Taking Co-codamol Capsules with food and drink
Do not drink alcohol whilst taking Co-codamol Capsules.
Pregnancy and breast-feeding
Co-codamol Capsules should not be used during pregnancy as they can affect the baby and can cause breathing
problems when the baby is born. Do not take codeine while you are breast feeding. Codeine and morphine passes into
breast milk. Ask your doctor or pharmacist before taking any medicine.
Driving and using machines
Co-codamol Capsules may cause dizziness or drowsiness and you should not drive or operate machinery if you are
affected this way. Codeine may disturb your vision.

The medicine can affect your ability to drive as it may make you sleepy or dizzy.
• do not drive while taking this medicine until you know how it affects you
• it is an offence to drive if this medicine affects your ability to drive
• however, you would not be committing an offence if:
• the medicine has been prescribed to treat a medical or dental problem and
• you have taken it according to the instructions given by the prescriber or in the information provided with the
medicine and
• it was not affecting your ability to drive safely.
Talk to your doctor or pharmacist if you are not sure whether it is safe for you to drive while taking this medicine.

Always take Co-codamol Capsules exactly as your doctor has told you. You should check with your doctor or pharmacist
if you are not sure. Take the capsules with a glass of water. Do not bite or chew the capsules.
The usual dosage is one or two capsules every four hours as needed. You should not take more than 8 capsules in 24
hours. Children aged 12 years of above should take one capsule every 6 hours, as needed. Do not take more than 6
capsules in 24 hours. If you feel the effect of Co-codamol Capsules is too strong or too weak, speak to your doctor or
pharmacist. This medicine should not be taken for more than 3 days. If the pain does not improve after 3 days, talk to
your doctor for advice. A lower dosage may be needed if you are elderly or have other medical problems. Check with
your doctor about this. Co-codamol Capsules should not be used in children below the age of 12 years, due to the risk
of severe breathing problems. Do not take with any other paracetamol-containing products.
If you take more Co-codamol Capsules than you should
Immediate medical advice should be sought in the event of an overdose, even if you feel well, because of the risk of
delayed, serious liver damage. Bring the remaining capsules and this leaflet with you so that the medical staff know what
you have taken.
If you forget to take Co-codamol Capsules
Do not take more than one dose at a time. If you forget to take a dose then take your next dose at the usual time. Never
take two doses at the same time.
If you stop taking Co-codamol Capsules
Co-codamol Capsules can become habit forming. This is called dependence, if you stop taking your medicine suddenly
it can cause symptoms such as restlessness and irritability. Your doctor will stop your capsules gradually to avoid you
having these withdrawal symptoms. If you have any further questions on the use of this product, ask your doctor or

Like all medicines, Co-codamol Capsules can cause side effects, although not everybody gets them.
Possible side effects are
• feeling sick (nausea) and being sick (vomiting)
• light headedness, dizziness, sleepiness
• shortness of breath
• stomach pains, constipation.
Lying down may help these effects if they happen.
Other side effects include
• allergic reactions, including skin rashes and itching of the skin
• a feeling of extra well being, or of disorientation
• small eye pupils, problems with vision, headaches
• slowing of the pulse
• difficulty in passing urine
• liver damage, especially in heavy drinkers
• changes in blood cells, such as low number of cells which fight infection and of cells which are involved in blood
• problems with breathing.
If a pain killer is used too long for headaches, it can make them worse. If any of the side effects become serious, or if you
notice any side effect not listed in this leaflet, please tell your doctor or pharmacist.
Reporting of side effects
If you get any side effects, talk to your doctor, pharmacist or nurse. This includes any possible side effects not listed in
this leaflet. You can also report side effects directly via the Yellow Card Scheme at:
By reporting side effects you can help provide more information on the safety of this medicine.

• keep this medicine out of the sight and reach of children
• do not use Co-codamol Capsules after the expiry date which is stated on the carton. The expiry date refers to the last
day of that month
• keep this medicine in a dry place
• do not store above 25˚C.
Medicines should not be disposed of via wastewater. Ask your pharmacist how to dispose of medicines no longer required.
These measures will help to protect the environment.

What Co-codamol Capsules contain
• the active substances are paracetamol 500mg and codeine phosphate 15mg
• the other ingredients are maize starch, sodium lauryl sulfate, cross carmellose sodium, purified talc, magnesium
stearate, gelatin, titanium dioxide (E171), erythrosine (E127) and red iron oxide (E172).
What Co-codamol Capsules look like and contents of the pack
Co-codamol Capsules are red (cap) and white (body) coloured hard gelatin oblong capsules with no markings.
Co-codamol Capsules are available in packs of 30, 32 or 100 capsules. Not all pack sizes may be marketed.
Marketing Authorisation Holder and Manufacturer
Mercury Pharmaceuticals Ltd.,
Capital House, 85 King William Street,
London EC4N 7BL, UK
Manufactured By
Bristol Laboratories Ltd.,
Laporte Way, Luton,
Bedfordshire, LU4 8WL, UK
This leaflet was last revised in December 2015.


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Source: Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency

Disclaimer: Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided here is accurate, up-to-date and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. Drug information contained herein may be time sensitive. This information has been compiled for use by healthcare practitioners and consumers in the United States. The absence of a warning for a given drug or combination thereof in no way should be construed to indicate that the drug or combination is safe, effective or appropriate for any given patient. If you have questions about the substances you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse or pharmacist.