Consumer Medicine Information
What is in this leaflet
This leaflet answers some common questions about Codeine Phosphate tablets.
It does not contain all of the available information about Codeine Phosphate tablets.
It does not take the place of talking to your doctor or pharmacist.
All medicines have risks and benefits. Your doctor has weighed the risks of you taking Codeine Phosphate tablets against the benefits he/she expect it will have.
If you have any concerns about taking this medicine, ask your doctor or pharmacist.
Keep this leaflet with the medicine.
You may need to read it again.
What is CODEINE PHOSPHATE tablets
The name of your medicine is CODEINE PHOSPHATE tablets.
The active ingredient is called codeine phosphate.
Codeine phosphate belongs to a group of medicines called analgesics, which are used to block pain. It is an opioid analgesic, and it acts by blocking pain and your emotional response to pain.
What CODEINE PHOSPHATE tablets is used for
Codeine Phosphate tablets is used for the treatment of mild to moderate pain.
Your doctor, however, may have prescribed Codeine Phosphate tablets for another purpose.
Ask your doctor if you have any questions about why Codeine Phosphate tablets has been prescribed for you.
If you have any concerns, you should discuss this with your doctor.
Codeine Phosphate tablets is available only with a doctor's prescription.
Before you take CODEINE PHOSPHATE tablets
When you must not take it
Do not take Codeine Phosphate tablets if you are allergic to:
Codeine Phosphate or any of the ingredients listed at the end of this leaflet.
Some of the symptoms of an allergic reaction to Codeine Phosphate may include red, itchy skin rashes, difficulty breathing, faintness, hay fever, swelling of the face or throat.
Codeine Phosphate should not be taken if you are experiencing breathing difficulties such as asthma, bronchitis or emphysema.
Do not take Codeine Phosphate if you have had recent biliary tract surgery.
Do not take Codeine Phosphate if you have recently ingested a large amount of alcoholic beverages.
Do not take Codeine Phosphate if you recently have had a head injury or conditions that raise the pressure within your head.
Do not use Codeine Phosphate if you are suffering from diarrhoea caused by poisoning or antibiotics.
Do not take Codeine Phosphate if you have been taking monoamine oxidase inhibitors (medicines for treating depression or mood swings, such as phenelzine, tranylcypromine or moclobemide) within the last ten days.
Do not use Codeine Phosphate tablets after the expiry date (EXP.) printed on the pack.
If you take it after the expiry date has passed, it may have no effect at all, or worse, there may be an entirely unexpected effect.
Do not purchase or use Codeine Phosphate tablets if the packaging is torn or shows signs of tampering. The tablets should not be taken if they show visible signs of deterioration.
Do not give it to children under the age of 12 years unless your doctor has prescribed it for them.
Like all medicines, Codeine Phosphate should not be used during pregnancy without first consulting your doctor.
Codeine Phosphate is distributed to the breast milk so it is not recommended for nursing mothers.
Elderly patients are more likely to have less effective kidney function due to age. This may increase the risk of side effects. You should discuss how much Codeine Phosphate to take with your doctor or pharmacist.
Before you start to take it
You must tell your doctor if you are:
1.Allergic to any other medicines or any foods, dyes or preservatives.
2.You have any other medical conditions/ health problems including:
A breathing disorder, lung disease or a history of asthma
Liver disease, hepatitis
Kidney disease or difficulty urinating
An underactive thyroid gland
Addison's disease (low activity of the adrenal glands)
Inflammatory bowel disease or other gastro-intestinal problems
Gallbladder disease or gallstones
A prostate disorder
3.You are a heavy drinker or drug user
4.You have had a recent head injury
5.You have recent biliary tract surgery
6.You are about to have surgery under a general anaesthetic
7.You are pregnant or intend to become pregnant
8.You are breastfeeding or intend to breastfeed
Your doctor will discuss the risks and benefits of using Codeine Phosphate during pregnancy or when breastfeeding.
If you have not told your doctor about any of the above, tell them before you take any Codeine Phosphate tablets.
Taking other medicines
Tell your doctor if you are taking any other medicines, including medicines that you buy without a prescription from a pharmacy, supermarket or health food shop.
Some medicines may interfere with Codeine Phosphate tablets.
Medicines to help you sleep or relieve anxiety
Anticholinergics, medicines to treat muscle spasms
Medicines used to treat diarrhoea
Medication for epilepsy
Medicines used to treat high blood pressure
Diuretics or fluid tablets
Other opioid analgesics used to block pain
Antihistamines (medicines used to treat allergies such as hay fever, insect bites and some cold remedies)
Monoamine oxidase inhibitors (medicines for treating depression) taken within the last 10 days
Metoclopramide, a medicine used to relieve nausea and vomiting
Antidepressant medicines used to treat depression
Naloxone or Naltrexone, medicines used to counteract the effects of opioid analgesics.
Medicines used to relax muscles
Quinidine (a medicine used to treat abnormal or irregular heart beat)
Cimetidine (a medicine used to treat reflux or stomach ulcer)
The above medicines may reduce the effectiveness of Codeine Phosphate tablets, reduce their own effectiveness and/ or react with Codeine Phosphate tablets resulting in untoward or sometimes dangerous side effects.
This list is not exhaustive. Your doctor or pharmacist has more information on medicines to be careful with or avoid while taking Codeine Phosphate tablets.
How to take CODEINE PHOSPHATE tablets
a) how much to take
The recommended dose of Codeine Phosphate tablets is:
Adults: 1 to 2 tablets every four to six hours.
b) how to take it
The tablets should be swallowed whole with a glass of water.
c) how long to take it
Continue taking Codeine Phosphate tablets for as long as your doctor tells you to.
If symptoms persist, see your doctor.
d) If you forget to take it
Take you dose as soon as you remember and then go back to taking it as you would normally.
Do not take a double dose to make up for the dose that you missed.
If you are unsure about whether to take your next dose, speak to your doctor or pharmacist.
Do not try to make up for missed doses by taking more than one dose at a time. This may increase the chance of you getting an unwanted effect.
If you have trouble remembering when to take your medicine, ask your pharmacist for some hints.
If you take too much (Overdose):
Immediately telephone your doctor or Poisons Information Centre (telephone 13 11 26) for advice, or go to casualty at your nearest hospital, if you think that you or anyone else may have taken an overdose of Codeine Phosphate. Do this even if there are no signs of discomfort or poisoning. Also report any other medicine or alcohol (including any barbiturates or narcotics) which has been taken. You may need urgent medical attention.
Keep telephone numbers for these places handy
If you take too much Codeine Phosphate you may have symptoms of weakness, dizziness, lethargy, nausea, vomiting, sweating, mental confusion and hypotension.
While you are using Codeine Phosphate tablets
Things you must do:
Use Codeine Phosphate tablets exactly as directed or as prescribed by your doctor.
Tell your doctor if you feel Codeine Phosphate tablets is not helping your condition.
Visit your doctor regularly, as your doctor needs to check your progress and see whether you need to keep taking Codeine Phosphate tablets.
Always discuss with your doctor any problems or difficulties during or after taking Codeine Phosphate tablets.
You should tell any other doctors or dentists treating you that you are taking Codeine Phosphate tablets.
Things you must not do:
Do not take any other medicines while you are taking Codeine Phosphate tablets without first telling your doctor.
Do not drive or operate machinery until you know how Codeine Phosphate tablets affects you.
Codeine Phosphate may cause dizziness in some people and therefore may affect alertness. Make sure you know how you react to Codeine Phosphate before you drive a car, operate machinery, or do anything else that could be dangerous if you are dizzy or have blurred vision.
Do not give this medicine to anyone else, even if his or her symptoms seem similar to yours.
Things to be careful of:
Be careful drinking alcohol while taking Codeine Phosphate tablets. If you drink alcohol, it could make some of the unwanted side effects of Codeine Phosphate worse.
Your doctor may suggest that you avoid alcohol completely or reduce the amount of alcohol you drink while you are taking Codeine Phosphate tablets.
Some people may experience side effects such as nausea, vomiting, constipation, drowsiness, dizziness, which may further affect the risk when driving or using dangerous machinery.
Codeine Phosphate tablets may be habit forming if used for extended periods of time.
Tell your doctor or pharmacist as soon as possible if you do not feel well while you are taking Codeine Phosphate tablets.
Codeine Phosphate tablets helps most people in the treatment of mild to moderate pain. However it may have unwanted side effects in some people, especially in elderly patients or those with underlying disorders.
All medicines have side effects. Sometimes they are serious, most of the time they are not. You may need medical treatment if you get some of the side effects.
Ask your doctor or pharmacist any questions you may have.
Common Side Effects:
Tell your doctor if you notice any of the following and they worry you:
loss of appetite
nausea (feeling sick)
unable to sleep
Some side effects are potentially serious. Contact your doctor immediately if you notice any of the following side effects:
itchy, raised or red skin rash
swelling of face
blurred or double vision
difficulty in urinating (passing water)
Some people may get other side effects of Codeine Phosphate tablets that are not listed in this leaflet.
Check with your doctor as soon as possible if you have any problems while taking Codeine Phosphate tablets even if you do not think the problems are connected with the medicine or are not listed in this leaflet.
After using CODEINE PHOSPHATE tablets
Keep it where children cannot reach it.
A locked cupboard at least one-and-a-half metres above the ground is a good place to store medicines.
Keep Codeine Phosphate tablets in a cool dry place where the temperature stays below 30 °C and protect from light.
Do not store it, or any other medicines, in a bathroom or near a sink.
Do not leave it in the car or on windowsills.
Heat and dampness can destroy some medicines.
Do not take Codeine Phosphate if the tablets do not look quite right.
Keep your tablets in the blister pack they were provided in until it is time to take them.
If your doctor tells you to stop taking this medication OR it has passed their expiry date, ask your pharmacist what to do with any left over.
a) What it looks like
Codeine Phosphate is a white unscored tablet that is available in blister packs of 20, 30 and 100 tablets.
Each Codeine Phosphate tablet contains 30 mg of codeine phosphate.
Codeine Phosphate tablets also contain the following excipients:
Gelatin, starch - maize, propyl hydroxybenzoate, lactose, starch - wheat and magnesium stearate.
This product is not gluten free.
Sponsor or Supplier
Fawns & McAllan Pty Ltd
(A member of the Sigma Group of Companies)
1408 Centre Road
Clayton Victoria 3168
Telephone: 03 - 9839 2800
The Australian Registration Number for Codeine Phosphate tablets is: AUST R 42077.
This leaflet was prepared 9 December 1998 and updated 30 September 1999.