The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) has issued a class 2 drug recall for all pholcodine-containing medicines. All pholcodine-containing medicines are being recalled and withdrawn from the UK as a precaution. This is a pharmacy level recall and not a patient level recall.
Further actions and information for pharmacists, and details of the affected products can be found on the MHRA website.
A Drug Safety Update regarding the withdrawal of pholcodine-containing medicines from the market has also been published. This contains further information for healthcare professionals including advice to provide to patients.
The Commission on Human Medicines (CHM), the independent advisory body that provides expert advice on the safety, quality and efficacy of medicines, has considered the evidence of an increased risk of the very rare event of anaphylaxis when exposed to neuromuscular blocking agents (NMBA) and advised that pholcodine-containing medicines should be withdrawn.