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Generic name: codeine [ KOE-deen ]

Drug classes: Antitussives, Opioids (narcotic analgesics)

What is Codeine?

Codine can be described as an opioid pain relief drug that is used for treating mild to moderately intense discomfort and also in reducing symptoms of coughing. Codeine can be purchased as a one-ingredient tablet and is also available as multi-ingredient products, combined with other pain relievers and cold and influenza medications.


Codeine should not be used when you suffer from severe breathing issues, a blockage of your stomach or intestines, or you experience frequent attacks of asthma episodes or excessive hyperventilation.

Codeine can cause breathing to slow down or cease and cause profound sedation and can be a habit-forming drug. Misusing this medication can result in addiction, overdose or even death, particularly in children or other patients taking the medication without a prescription.

Codeine is not suitable for usage by anyone who is under 18 years of age.

Codeine taken during pregnancy could cause withdrawal symptoms that can be life-threatening to the baby.

The risk of fatal side effects could occur when you are using codeine in combination with alcohol or other substances, which cause drowsiness or sedation of breathing or slowing your breathing.

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Before you Take this Medicine:

It is not recommended to use this medication if you are sensitive to it or if you suffer from

  • Severe asthma or breathing issues;
  • A blockage in your stomach or intestines or
  • Hyperventilation or frequent asthma attacks.

In certain people, the codeine is broken down quickly in the liver. It can reach higher levels than the normal ones within the body. This could cause dangerously slow breathing and can cause death, particularly for children.

Do not offer codeine to anyone younger than 18 years old.

To ensure that this medication is suitable for you, inform your physician if you've any of the following:

  • The liver condition;
  • Breathing issues, sleep apnea
  • Asthma, COPD, sleep apnea or other breathing conditions;
  • An abnormal curvature of the spine that can affect breathing
  • Kidney disease;
  • A head injury or brain tumour;
  • Low blood pressure;
  • Obstruction in the digestion tract (stomach and intestines);
  • An inflamed pancreas or gallbladder;
  • Inactive thyroid;
  • Addison's Disease or any other adrenal gland disorders;
  • Enlarged prostate, urination problems; or
  • Mental illness, addiction to drugs or alcohol dependence.

Certain medicines may interfere with codeine and create serotonin syndrome. Check with your physician whether you are also taking stimulant medications, herbal supplements or medications to treat mental illness, Depression such as Parkinson's Disease, migraine, severe infections, headaches, or to prevent vomiting and nausea. Talk to your doctor before changing how often you take your medication.

If you use this medicine when you are expecting, your child could develop a dependence on the medication. This can cause dangerous withdrawal symptoms in the infant after it is born. Children dependent on habit-forming drugs might require medical attention for some time. Inform your doctor if you are expecting or planning to be pregnant.

Do not breastfeed when using codeine. This medicine can enter your baby's milk and cause breathing difficulties, drowsiness or even death for the infant who is nursing.

How to Take Codeine?

Follow the exact dosage as recommended by your physician. Follow the instructions on the prescription label. Codeine may slow or stop your breathing. Do not take this medication in more significant quantities or for a longer duration than what is prescribed. Talk to your doctor if the medicine ceases to ease your discomfort.

Codeine can be addictive even in regular doses. Don't share this medicine with someone you know, particularly one with an addiction history or addiction. Misuse of NARCOTIC MEDICINE may cause  Addiction and overdose or even death, particularly in children or another person taking the drug that is not prescribed. Selling or giving away codeine is against the law.

Use this medicine with milk or food if it causes stomach upset.

Consume 6 to 8 full glasses of fluids daily to prevent constipation while taking this medication. Don't use stool softeners (laxatives) without consulting your physician.

Don't stop taking codeine suddenly after prolonged use; you may experience uncomfortable withdrawal effects. Discuss with your physician how you can completely stop taking this medication.

Place in a cool, dry place far from heat and moisture. Make sure you keep track of your medication. Codeine is a narcotic of abuse, and you should be aware of anyone using the medicine in a way that is not approved and without a prescription.

Do not store any leftover medication for opioids. One dose could cause death for someone taking the drug incorrectly or incorrectly. Ask your pharmacist for a take-back program for disposal. If there's no taking-back service, combine the remaining medicine with coffee grounds or cat litter in a sealed plastic bag and place the bag in the garbage.

What Happens If I Miss a Dose?

Because this medicine is prescribed to treat pain, you will likely not skip the dose. Avoid missed doses when it's almost time to take your following amount. Don't take any extra medication to make up for the missed dose.

What Happens If I Overdose?

Get medical attention immediately or contact for help at the Poison Helpline at 1-800-222-1222. An overdose of codeine is fatal, particularly for children or any other patient taking the medicine without a prescription. Overdose can cause extreme muscle weakness, clammy and cold skin, pinpoint pupils, prolonged breathing, severe sleepiness, or even the onset of a coma.

Avoid this.

Don't drink alcohol. Dangerous side effects or even death could happen.

Codeine can affect your thinking or reaction. Avoid operating machinery or driving until you know what effects this medication will have on your body. Dizziness or excessive drowsiness may result in accidents or falls.

Side Effects of Codeine:

See a doctor immediately. Get medical attention if you show symptoms that indicate an allergic reaction to codeine—an allergic reaction to codeine: breathing difficulties and swelling of your lips, face and tongue.

Like other narcotic drugs like codeine, it can slow down the rate of breathing. The risk of death is if your breathing becomes weak.

Anyone who cares for you should seek immediate medical treatment if you suffer from prolonged breathing, pauses in your breathing, blue-coloured lips, or difficulty getting up.

Contact your doctor immediately If you suffer from the following:

Mild Effects:

  • Sighing, noisy breathing, shallow breath, and sleeping that ceases;
  • A slower heartbeat or a weak pulse
  • A lightheaded sensation similar to you're passing out;
  • Insomnia, agitation, hallucinations, bizarre thoughts or behaviour;
  • Feelings of extreme sadness or happiness;
  • Seizure (convulsions);
  • Urinary problems; or
  • Low cortisol levels - nausea, vomiting, appetite loss, fatigue, dizziness that worsens or worsens.

Get medical attention now if you are experiencing symptoms of serotonin disorder, for example, agitation, hallucinations, fever, sweating, shivering, high heart rate, stiffness of muscles or twitching. Also, you may experience nausea, vomiting and diarrhoea.

Risky side effects are more common in older people or those overweight or malnourished. Disabled.

The long-term use of opioids could impact fertility (ability to have kids), whether in women or men. It isn't known if the effects of opioids on fertility are permanent.

Adverse codeine side effects include:

Adverse Side Effects

  • Being dizzy or drowsy;
  • Nausea, vomiting, stomach pain;
  • Constipation;
  • Sweating or
  • Itching that is mild or itching that is mild or.

This is not a comprehensive list of possible side effects, and other side effects could occur. Contact your doctor for advice regarding medical adverse effects. You can report any side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

Details on Dosage

Usual Adult Dose for Pain:

If necessary, the initial dose is 15-60 mg orally every 4 hours.

Maximum amount: 360 mg in 24 hours


Initial doses must be tailored considering the intensity of pain, reaction, previous analgesic treatment experience, and potential risk factors for addiction misuse and abuse.

Doses greater than 60 mg haven't been found to enhance relief from pain and are also linked to a higher incidence of adverse side effects.

Because of the dangers of abuse, addiction or misuse, most minor doses of effectiveness with the shortest time frame compatible with each patient's individual treatment goals should be utilized.

Monitor patients closely in the event of respiratory Depression during the first 24-72 hours following beginning therapy and immediately following any increase in dosage.

Use: To manage the symptoms of moderate to mild pain for which an opioid treatment is appropriate and alternatives are ineffective.

Interaction with Other Medicines:

If you take or stop taking other medications, it is possible to experience breathing issues or withdrawal symptoms. Tell your doctor whether you're also taking an antifungal, antibiotic as well as blood pressure or heart medication, seizure medication or medication for treating HIV and hepatitis C.

Opioid medications may interact with other drugs and can cause deadly side effects or even death. Be sure your doctor is aware of if you take:

  • Medicine for allergies or colds or bronchodilator asthma/COPD medications, or a diuretic ("water pill");
  • Medications to treat motion sickness IBS, motion sickness, or bladder overactive;
  • Other narcotic medicines like opioid pain medication and prescription medicine for cough
  • Sedative that is similar to Valium is diazepam, alprazolam lorazepam, Xanax, Klonopin, Versed, and others;
  • Substances that cause you to feel sleepy or reduce your breathing, such as a sleeping pill, a muscle relaxer, medication to treat mental illnesses or
  • Drugs that alter serotonin levels within your body, stimulants or medication for Parkinson's Disease, Depression, severe infections, migraines or vomiting and nausea.

This list needs to be more comprehensive. Other drugs can be incompatible with codeine, such as prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. The interactions of all drugs are included in this medication guide.




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