Coproxamol; Demand That Co-proxamol Is Relicensed

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The MHRA announced in January 2005 that Co-proxamol would be withdrawn at the end of 2007 following a phased withdrawal. This decision was reached after a safety review of the risks and benefits of Co-proxamol concluded that the "efficacy of Co-proxamol was poorly established and the risk of toxicity in overdose, both accidental and deliberate, was unacceptable.” (Suicide And Accidental Suicide)

17th Jan 2007: Caroline Flint “ (Department of Health) stated "As a result of the concerns, in 2004 the Committee on Safety of Medicines conducted a “RIGOROUS REVIEW” of the available evidence on the risks and benefits of Co-proxamol.”

This “so called rigorous review” consisted of Approximately 365 Requests for Information Being Sent out with a Response of Just 52 Replies. (A little over 14%)

“GPs demanded a U-turn on the c Co-proxamol ban.” The Pulse magazine reported its own survey, which showed that 70 per cent of GPs and 94 per cent of Rheumatologists demanded that the MHRA revisit its decision. This request fell on DEAF EARS

I had always thought that the decision to withdraw the license for Co-proxamol was seriously flawed and the views of patients and healthcare professionals had been completely ignored by MHRA.

Many Patients, Doctors, and Consultants complained directly to MHRA about the failure of their "Named Patient" safety net for prescribing Co-proxamol. The patients who couldn't find an accommodating GP were FORCED TO ACCEPT THE UNACCEPTABLE or fight tooth & nail until they could find a GP who was courageous enough to ignore the pressures coming from their insurers and continue to prescribe what was needed by their patients.

After almost two years of suffering the unbearable side effects of Co-codamol, Tramadol, and Dihydrocodeine. I was eventually placed within the small group of patients ("Named Patient") who had found it difficult to make the change.

My GP certainly made my life tolerable over the past seven  years and I appreciate there must have been a valid reason for his decision to stop prescribing Co-proxamol at this time (November 2015). This situation now leaves me in complete dread of the side effects I and thousands of other patients will have to face in the future.

NHS released a bulletin in May 2013 which was re-released in July 2015 (PrescQIPP DROP List); Co-proxamol featured at  no. 9 in the list of medications to be dropped, stating "However, over seven years later, prescribing of Co-proxamol is still occurring for a significant number of patients". I can only assume that this is the reason my prescription has been stopped!

FACTS:- 

When Co-proxamol was a licensed product the cost for a box of 100 tablets was approximately £2.75! The dramatic rise in the cost lies solely at the feet of the CSM and MHRA.

The “SO CALLED RIGOROUS REVIEW.” MHRA decided to ignore the majority of GPs and Rheumatologists who demanded a U-turn on the co-proxamol ban.

Number of deaths were specific drugs are mentioned on the death certificate, 2007–14 in England and Wales (ONS)

                                             2007               2014

Co-proxamol                       242                   *

Tramadol                               79                 240

Codeine                                 60                 136

Other specified opiate          49                129 

Unspecified opiate                  9                169

*I haven’t been able to confirm this results. I assume they have now been included in the “Specified or Unspecified opiate category.”

With deaths involving Tramadol continuing to rise year on year Since the licence for Co-proxamol was revoked (240 deaths in 2014) I think the original suicide argument is now questionable!

DID THE CSM / MHRA REPORT DELIBERATELY MISLEAD PARLIAMENT REGARDING THIS MATTER? OR DID PARLIAMENT SINCERELY BELIEVE THAT THE 14% RESPONSE TO THE CSM REQUEST FOR INFORMATION WAS SUFFICIENT AND THEIR FINDINGS TO BE A “GENUINE AND RIGOROUS REVIEW” OF ALL THE AVAILABLE EVIDENCE ON THE RISKS AND BENEFITS OF CO-PROXAMOL?

 



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