Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

It's time to phase out codeine, researchers urge

Date:
October 4, 2010
Source:
Canadian Medical Association Journal
Summary:
It is time to phase out the use of codeine as a pain reliever because of its significant risks and ineffectiveness as an analgesic, states a new editorial.

It is time to phase out the use of codeine as a pain reliever because of its significant risks and ineffectiveness as an analgesic, states an editorial in CMAJ (Canadian Medical Association Journal).

Although codeine has been used for pain relief for more than 200 years, it has never been subjected to the rigorous regulatory and safety requirements applied to all new drugs and its pharmacokinetics are unpredictable. Genetic variations in patients can mean very different responses to codeine, some with serious consequences. Infants and children are particularly vulnerable, and there have been several deaths due to different genetic responses. Serious, life-threatening effects have also been reported in adults.

"Because the need for oral pain control is so pervasive, the potential risk associated with codeine must be mitigated," write pediatricians Drs. Noni MacDonald, Section Editor, Public Health, CMAJ and Dr. Stuart MacLeod, University of British Columbia.

While limiting use of codeine, with minimum ages for codeine-based treatment, is one option, it is not ideal. Genetic testing prior to codeine use is expensive and impractical.

"Perhaps a more direct approach is now needed: to stop using the prodrug codeine altogether and instead use its active metabolite, morphine. Not only is the metabolism of morphine more predictable than that of codeine, but also it is cheaper," they write. They call for a warning to physicians and modifications to existing guidelines for codeine use and research to define safety parameters.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Canadian Medical Association Journal. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Canadian Medical Association Journal. "It's time to phase out codeine, researchers urge." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 4 October 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/10/101004130022.htm>.
Canadian Medical Association Journal. (2010, October 4). It's time to phase out codeine, researchers urge. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 1, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/10/101004130022.htm
Canadian Medical Association Journal. "It's time to phase out codeine, researchers urge." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/10/101004130022.htm (accessed October 1, 2014).

Share This



More Mind & Brain News

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Pregnancy Spacing Could Have Big Impact On Autism Risks

Pregnancy Spacing Could Have Big Impact On Autism Risks

Newsy (Oct. 1, 2014) A new study says children born less than one year and more than five years after a sibling can have an increased risk for autism. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Stopping School Violence

Stopping School Violence

Ivanhoe (Oct. 1, 2014) A trauma doctor steps out of the hospital and into the classroom to teach kids how to calmly solve conflicts, avoiding a trip to the ER. Video provided by Ivanhoe
Powered by NewsLook.com
Pineal Cysts: Debilitating Pain

Pineal Cysts: Debilitating Pain

Ivanhoe (Oct. 1, 2014) A tiny cyst in the brain that can cause debilitating symptoms like chronic headaches and insomnia, and the doctor who performs the delicate surgery to remove them. Video provided by Ivanhoe
Powered by NewsLook.com
Burning Away Brain Tumors

Burning Away Brain Tumors

Ivanhoe (Oct. 1, 2014) Doctors are 'cooking' brain tumors. Hear how this new laser-heat procedure cuts down on recovery time. Video provided by Ivanhoe
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins