• Pharmacy Europe warns of possible serious damage from the abuse of ibuprofen with codeine

The Spanish Agency for Medicines and Health Products (Aemps) has reported that in Spain "no adverse reaction has been recorded" to the combination and abuse of ibuprofen and codeine.

The Spanish body has made this statement after the warning from the European Pharmacovigilance Risk Assessment Committee (PRAC) about the detection of

cases of renal, gastrointestinal and metabolic toxicity, some with fatal outcome, in association with situations of codeine abuse and dependence, associated with the use of drugs containing a combination of codeine and ibuprofen.

The Aemps reminds that codeine with ibuprofen is a combination of an opioid analgesic (codeine) and a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory (ibuprofen), "indicated in the treatment of moderate pain that is not relieved with monocomponent analgesics".

In Spain, the agency points out, "they are currently marketed under the trade names of Astefor and Neobrufen with codeine."

Regarding the cases of toxicity indicated by the PRAC, the Spanish agency also points out that the cases evaluated by the European body "come mostly from countries where these products are available without a prescription."

And he clarifies: "

In Spain, these medicines are prescribed

, that is,

they are only dispensed with a prescription

, with low use in relation to other fixed-dose combinations of analgesics."

Echoing Europe's warning, the Aemps also points out that "the repeated use of this combination can cause dependence (addiction) and abuse due to codeine, and, consequently,

consumption above the recommended doses, thus increasing the

Ibuprofen toxicity and the potential for dose-dependent

adverse reactions .

The Spanish agency recommends that patients use these drugs "

only when prescribed by your doctor

. The maximum recommended duration of treatment is three days."

In case you do not achieve the necessary pain relief, remember to consult your doctor again.

In addition, the Aemps warns about the possible

effects of withdrawal

: "If you need to take this medicine for a longer time or at a higher dose than that indicated by the doctor, and once you have finished the treatment you cannot stop taking it or if you get, feel bad and feel better once you start taking it again, it may be indicative of dependence on the medicine, with an increased risk of serious adverse reactions".

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