A person with Parkinson's taking medication

Sinemet news

Date

As you may know there have been supply problems with some Sinemet products since September 2018. Here's the latest update, which includes some information about changes to the appearance of 3 Sinemet products.

We have edited this story as of 17 May to reflect that Sinemet 10mg/100mg is now back in stock.

MSD (Merck Sharp & Dohme Limited) have informed us there are still supply issues with these products and they won't be available until early June:

  • Sinemet 25mg/250mg 10x10 tablets.
  • Sinemet 12.5mg/50mg 9x10 tablets.
  • Sinemet CR 50mg/200mg 6x10 tablets.

MSD have confirmed that these Sinemet products should all be available:

  • Sinemet Plus 25mg/100mg 10x10 tablets.
  • Sinemet Half CR 25mg/100mg 6x10 tablets.
  • Sinemet 10mg/100mg 10x10 tablets.

Will this affect me?

If you take Sinemet 25mg/250mg, Sinemet 12.5mg/50mg, or Sinemet CR 50mg/200mg your pharmacist may be unable to give you your prescription.

However, there are generic versions of Co-careldopa, the active ingredient in Sinemet, available in a range of strengths.

Your GP or pharmacist can discuss this with you and should be able to offer you a suitable alternative.

Changes to 3 Sinemet products

MSD have taken action to stop this ongoing supply issue and have decided to move manufacturing of 3 Sinemet products to another manufacturing site, where they hope to provide a more consistent supply.

This means the look of these products will change, from round to oval. However, the tablets contain the same ingredients and should therefore work as they do now. They will just look different.

The 3 products that will change their appearance from early May are:

 

Presentation (co-careldopa)

Previous tablet appearance

Updated tablet appearance

Sinemet 10mg/100mg

Light blue round tablet marked 647, no score

Dark blue scored oval tablet marked 647

Sinemet 25mg/250mg

Light blue round tablet marked 654, no score

Dark blue scored oval tablet marked 654

Sinemet Plus 25mg/100mg

Yellow round tablet marked 650, no score

Yellow scored oval tablet marked 650

When will the tablets change?

These new look tablets will start to be used from early June. However, some pharmacies may continue to dispense the round tablets until their supplies have been depleted.

This may mean you receive round tablets for some time from your usual pharmacy. They are still ok to be taken.  

Keeping you informed

We continue to receive regular updates from the company who manufacture Sinemet, letting us know about the supply issues and action they’re taking to ensure Sinemet is available for people with Parkinson's across the UK.

We will continue to share further updates on Sinemet availability as we receive them.

A statement from MSD says:

"MSD in the UK is currently experiencing intermittent supply for some presentations of Sinemet as a result of unexpected capacity constraints at one of our partner manufacturing sites. MSD fully understands the difficulty this may cause to patients and customers.

"MSD has a broad network of manufacturing facilities globally and timely delivery of our medicines to patients and providers is our key priority at all times. Unfortunately, from time to time, delays can occur for various reasons and we are doing everything we can to expedite resupplies of the presentations affected.

"Patients who may be affected by this shortage should contact their healthcare professional or pharmacist to discuss their treatment options."

Diane, a person with Parkinson's, with her Parkinson's local adviser

Get support

If you have any questions or concerns regarding your medication, or if you're unable to obtain Sinemet, you can discuss this with your GP, consultant, pharmacist or Parkinson's nurse.

You can also contact our helpline on 0808 800 0303.

More about our helpline and local advisers