Medicines: Why are some not available in the UK?
Tuesday 10 April 2007
Many of my friends and colleagues, when on holiday, buy "over the counter" medicines not available in the UK - mainly Tylenol and melatonin. Why are these not available in the UK? Is it legal to bring back large quantities for distribution to friends and family?
Dr Fred Kavalier answers your health question:
Tylenol is a US trade name for paracetamol. Paracetamol is available over the counter in the UK, so it would be silly to import Tylenol. Melatonin was available from health-food shops in the UK before 1995, but it was banned from general sale on the grounds that it was a medicinal product (previously, it was considered a nutritional supplement). It is not available from pharmacies because it does not have a licence for sale as a medicine. People use melatonin to overcome jet lag. It's supposed to work by resetting the body's time-clock, tricking the brain into thinking it is night when the body still thinks it is daytime. You can buy melatonin on the internet, and abroad. It is not illegal to bring it back and not illegal to possess it. But you would be breaking the law if you imported large quantities for distribution or sale, because you would be selling or supplying an unlicensed medicinal product
Please mail your questions for Dr Fred to firstname.lastname@example.org. He regrets that he is unable to respond personally to questions.
Life & Style blogs
Dozens of empty homes in two of Liverpool’s most deprived areas will be brought back into use thanks...
A roundup of the latest property news
Plus, do energy saving measures boost house prices?
The 10 Best Scotch Whiskies
The 10 Best new smartphones
Bollywood star, Shahrukh Khan, accused of choosing sex of baby
Uncooked curry leaves caused mass outbreak of salmonella in Newcastle, say health officials
Stripes set to be big for Dolce and Gabbana as fashion designers get 20 months in prison for tax evasion
- 1 Bankers could face jail after report urges the Government to introduce new criminal offence for reckless management
- 2 Breaking the Silence: In the reality of occupation, there are no Palestinian civilians – only potential terrorists
- 3 Richard Nieuwenhuizen death: Six teenagers and 50-year-old father convicted of manslaughter in shocking case of referee killed over a game of football
- 4 Exclusive: Newcastle's star talent-spotter on brink as Joe Kinnear sparks walkout
- 5 Vast methane 'plumes' seen in Arctic ocean as sea ice retreats
£500 - £600 per day: Orgtel: FX Options Front Office Java / C# Developer - Ba...
£600 - £700 per day: Orgtel: Project Manager - Front Office - Regulatory IT C...
£33000 - £35000 Per Annum: The Green Recruitment Company: The Green Recruitmen...
£21000 - £22000 per annum: Randstad Education Chelmsford: NQTs required now fo...