Thousands of packs of an over-the-counter painkiller could contain a potentially harmful anti-psychotic drug, a watchdog has warned.
People are being warned to check Nurofen Plus packets after the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) issued a safety alert following reports that some batches of Nurofen Plus contain individual blister packs of another drug, Seroquel XL 50mg.
Seroquel XL is a prescription-only anti-psychotic drug used to treat several disorders including schizophrenia, mania and bipolar depression.
Nurofen Plus is for pain relief and contains codeine.
The makers of the drug today said it was too early to rule out sabotage.
Angie Wiles, joint chief executive of Virgo Health, which represents Nurofen Plus, said: “We are not ruling it out but we are considering other options as well. I think that is pretty unlikely.”
People who accidentally take Seroquel may experience sleepiness and are advised not to drive or operate any tools or machinery until they know how the tablets have affected them.
The mix-up is believed to have happened at a wholesaler’s and thousands of packs could potentially be affected, prompting the MHRA to urge extra vigilance.
The packs have been found in pharmacies across the UK.