Glob­ally banned cough syrups still le­gal in In­dia

Hindustan Times ST (Mumbai) - HT Navi Mumbai Live - - FRONT PAGE - Rhythma Kaul let­ters@hin­dus­tan­times.com

If you’re plan­ning to buy a codeine-based cough syrup for your child’s cough, think again. Medicines with codeine – a chem­i­cal de­rived from opium — are banned for chil­dren be­low 12 in many coun­tries but are freely avail­able in In­dia as pop­u­lar cough syrups — such as Corex, Phensedyl, Be­nadryl and Teddy cough.

In 2013, the United States, United King­dom, Euro­pean Union, Canada, Aus­tralia and New Zealand banned codeinebased medicines for chil­dren un­der 12 and new moth­ers af­ter a safety re­view found se­ri­ous side ef­fects in chil­dren, in­clud­ing faint­ing, seizures and death.

But most codeine-con­tain­ing cough syrup brands do not even carry a la­bel that warns of the po­ten­tial side ef­fects of the chem­i­cal on chil­dren and breast­feed­ing women.

Codeine is known to cause opi­oid poi­son­ing in chil­dren and adults with high meta­bolic rates, say ex­perts.

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