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Additives in medicines

(85 Posts)
Liza80 Fri 15-Nov-13 12:40:25

A little while ago, I decided to google all the E numbers in my Calpol bottle, what I found shocked me to the very core!
I urge you all to do the same with any childrens medicines you have.
It's so upsetting to think that I gave this stuff to my beautiful baby girl, while being so careful to avoid anything nasty in her diet.
I have contacted various people about this, including my GP, J&J (who make Calpol), the MHRA, and the HACSG, who have documented links to behavioural problems.
Basically everybody is pointing the finger at someone else, so it's up to us parents to kick up a fuss about this.....

Sirzy Fri 15-Nov-13 12:54:12

The only medicines DS has are the ones he has because he needs them, most of them are needed to keep him alive. He has shown no adverse side affects to them so I will stick with the medicines and having a healthy child thanks!

Liza80 Fri 15-Nov-13 13:48:55

The point is we should be able to give our children medicines, when they need them without the uneccessary additives!?

Sirzy Fri 15-Nov-13 13:56:12

as long as they do their job TBH I don't care!

Liza80 Fri 15-Nov-13 14:07:29

Well, than this probably isn't the right thread for you, this is aimed at parents who DO care!

curlew Fri 15-Nov-13 14:10:10

Tell us more.....

Liza80 Fri 15-Nov-13 14:14:20

Of the E numbers I found in Calpol sugar free infant suspension, several said 'unsuitable for infants', several are illegal in various countries, many are also prohibited for use in products for infants and children.
Here is an article on the subject:
www.foodcomm.org.uk/articles/childrens_medicines/

bruffin Fri 15-Nov-13 14:17:33

Most parents have the common sense to realise that additives for a few days dont make that much difference and its better to have a medicine with additives that their child will take, than a foul tasting medicine that they wont take at all.
My DS was prescribed Flucloxacillin and nothing could disguise the taste, it was vile.

Sirzy Fri 15-Nov-13 14:21:39

Exactly Bruffin!

Justletmestayinbed Fri 15-Nov-13 14:24:05

You do realise most E numbers aren't artificial ingredients?

Liza80 Fri 15-Nov-13 14:30:03

As it states in the above article, there are plenty of natural alternatives for improving taste and appearance.
Many parents don't even question what is in their medicines, as they are usually prescribed by doctors, why would they!
Furthermore, if that is all that is available, then what choice do they have!

I have been talking to Sally Bunday of the HACSG (Hyperactive Childrens support group), there have been studies which have found direct links between these additives and behavioural disorders.

www.hacsg.org.uk/about-the-hacsg

Liza80 Fri 15-Nov-13 14:32:44

As it states in the above article, there are plenty of natural alternatives for improving taste and appearance.
Many parents don't even question what is in their medicines, as they are usually prescribed by doctors, why would they!
Furthermore, if that is all that is available, then what choice do they have!

I have been talking to Sally Bunday of the HACSG (Hyperactive Childrens support group), there have been studies which have found direct links between these additives and behavioural disorders.

www.hacsg.org.uk/about-the-hacsg

Liza80 Fri 15-Nov-13 14:33:13

What do you mean?

Sidge Fri 15-Nov-13 14:38:41

If your child is sick enough to need medicine then a few E-numbers are the least of your worries. Most E-numbers and additives are not harmful.

Natural alternatives in medicinal products may not meet licensing, medicinal and preservative standards.

Unless your child has a confirmed allergy to a product or its components, or a condition that means they are best avoided, then you give the medication as needed. If you don't want the additives then don't give the medication.

A bit more about E numbers and additives for you

Liza80 Fri 15-Nov-13 14:42:15

I'm talking specifically about 'additives', ingredients which have been added to the medicine.
For example, Calpol is basically parecetamol, parecetamol is the only ingredient of any medicinal purpose, so everything else has been added for other reasons.
Not all E numbers are harmful, but severel of the E numbers used in childrens medicines are deemed unsuitable/harmful for infants.

Liza80 Fri 15-Nov-13 14:48:14

Sidge, you have just posted a link about E numbers and additives in food...
This is the whole point, many of the additives banned in food products for children are found in childrens medicines.
Read the article I posted:
www.foodcomm.org.uk/articles/childrens_medicines/

The point is you shouldnt have to choose between giving a child harmful additives or your child being sick. There ARE medicines available which DO NOT contain additives, yet do the same job as the ones with additives, this in itself proves they are not neccessary.

To be clear, I am not suggesting that parents stop giving medicines to sick children, I am suggesting that the medicines available should not contain unneccessary harmful substances.

BaldricksTurnip Fri 15-Nov-13 14:48:56

Oh god not this again. Are you the same person that started that last hysterical thread about E numbers in Calpol? For god's sake if you're that much of a purist then don't give your kids Calpol! It's irresponsible to keep starting threads about medicines and whether it's appropriate for people to give medications to their children. The only person qualified to do this is a medical professional. If a child has a high fever then giving Calpol could help save their life by bringing their temperature down.

shallweshop Fri 15-Nov-13 14:49:12

I think you are overreacting somewhat. As Sidge says, a lot of the natural alternatives may not be licensed and could also be considerably more expensive. If you are that worried it may be worth asking for the calpol with sugar which may be better than the sugar free version which contains sweeteners etc.

Liza80 Fri 15-Nov-13 14:51:00

Wow!

Sidge Fri 15-Nov-13 14:51:46

Like what? I can see a product list and all the ingredients are approved by the FSA and EU. They are either sweeteners, colours or preservatives.

If they didn't have those things it would be unpalatable and go off!

Sidge Fri 15-Nov-13 14:54:13

None of the E numbers contained in Calpol are banned or unsuitable for infants.

*CALPOL Infant Suspension contains 120mg Paracetamol in each 5ml.

Excipients: sucrose (contains 2.2 g of sucrose per 5 ml), sorbitol liquid (E420), methyl parahydroxybenzoate (E218), ethyl parahydroxybenzoate (E214), propyl parahydroxybenzoate (E216) and carmoisine (E122).*

If you cross reference those E numbers they are all on the list of approved additives on the FSA list except for E216 which is an approved synthetic additive for pharmaceutical products.

Sirzy Fri 15-Nov-13 14:58:11

Do you really think a company the size of Calpol are going to put a banned product into their products? Do you really think they would be allowed to?

Sidge has made a very sensible post (and IIRC she has a medical background?) I really do think you are overreacting.

Liza80 Fri 15-Nov-13 14:58:30

No. I have never posted on this topic before. I am astounded that people don't care about this.
And once again, I have NEVER once implied that anyone should not give medicines to children, how many times do I have to say this? I am saying that we should have the option to give our children the medication they need WITHOUT the harmful additives!

I really thought, I might get a bit of support here... I don't know which is more upsetting, the fact that the government are happy for our children to be given potentially harmful substances or the amount of parents who just don't care!

I am communicating with GP's, medicine companies, HACSG, and media in an attempt to raise awareness and campaign to get things changed. Others have been fighting this for years and have successfully managed to change the laws on packaging. (previously, it was not neccessary for these products to warn of adverse side effects etc).

I decided to post here, as I thought it would be a great place to raise interest, awareness and support... I guess I was wrong! My mistake, so sorry to have bothered you.

Liza80 Fri 15-Nov-13 15:02:13

Just one example: E216:

www.ukfoodguide.net/e216.htm

Liza80 Fri 15-Nov-13 15:03:42

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