Controls cough by depressing the medullary cough centre

Onset of action: 15-30 minutes
Duration of action: approximately 6 h
Plasma ½ life: 11 h


  • Oral: 10-20 mg q4h or 30 mg q6-8h
  • 1-2 mg/kg/24h in divided doses tid or bid PO


  • Constipation
  • Sedation
  • Nausea
  • Dizziness
  • Respiratory
  • Depression


This information is drawn from a number of sources (see below). The reader is encouraged to access these and other relevant literature for more detail. As always, sound clinical judgment should be used in individual clinical cases. In particular, it should be remembered that there may be significant variation in the pharmokinetics of a drug resulting from a number of factors, including the individual patient’s metabolism/disease status and how the medication has been formulated.


  1. Brunton LL, Lazo JS, Parker KL, editors. Goodman and Gilman’s: the pharmacological basis of therapeutics. 11th ed. McGraw-Hill Professional; 2006.
  2. Twycross R, Wilcock A. Palliative care formulary. 3rd ed. Radcliffe Medical Press Ltd; 2008.
  3. Repchinsky C, editor. Compendium of pharmaceuticals and specialties (CPS): the Canadian drug reference for health professionals. 44th ed. Canadian Pharmacists Association; 2009.
  4. Goldman A, Hain R, Liben S. Oxford textbook of palliative care for children. 1st ed. Oxford University Press; 2006.

Back to Cough

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License