Oral Liquids of the British Pharmacopoeia

In addition to the above requirements of the European Pharmacopoeia, the following statements apply to any elixir, linctus, mixture, oral drops, oral emulsion, oral solution, oral suspension or syrup that is the subject of an individual monograph in the British Pharmacopoeia.




The vehicle for any particular Oral Liquid should be chosen having regard to the nature of the active ingredient or ingredients and to provide organoleptic characteristics appropriate to the intended use of the preparation.


Oral Liquids other than Oral Emulsions may be supplied as liquids or prepared just before issue for use by dissolving or dispersing granules or powder in the liquid stated on the label.




The label states (1) the date after which the Oral Liquid is not intended to be used; (2) the conditions under which the Oral Liquid should be stored; (3) for Oral Emulsions, Oral Suspensions and, where appropriate, for Mixtures, that the bottle should be shaken before use.


If the Oral Liquid is supplied as granules or powder to be constituted just before issue for use the label states (1) that the contents of the container are granules or powder for the preparation of an Oral Liquid; (2) the strength as the amount of the active ingredient in a suitable dose-volume of the constituted preparation; (3) the directions for preparing the Oral Liquid including the nature and quantity of liquid to be used.






Elixirs are clear , flavoured Oral Liquids containing one or more active ingredients dissolved in a vehicle that usually contains a high proportion of Sucrose or a suitable polyhydric alcohol or alcohols and may also contain Ethanol (96 per cent) or a Dilute Ethanol.






Linctuses are viscous Oral Liquids that may contain one or more active ingredients in solution. The vehicle usually contains a high proportion of Sucrose, other sugars or a suitable polyhydric alcohol or alcohols. Linctuses are intended for use in the treatment or relief of cough, and are sipped and swallowed slowly without the addition of water.






Mixtures are Oral Liquids containing one or more active ingredients dissolved, suspended or dispersed in a suitable vehicle. Suspended solids may separate slowly on standing but are easily redispersed on shaking.






Oral Drops are Oral Liquids that are intended to be administered in small volumes with the aid of a suitable measuring device.






Oral Emulsions are Oral Liquids containing one or more active ingredients. They are stabilised oil-in-water dispersions, either or both phases of which may contain dissolved solids. Solids may also be suspended in Oral Emulsions.


When issued for use, Oral Emulsions should be supplied in wide-mouthed bottles.


Extemporaneous preparation


In Oral Emulsions prepared according to the formula and directions given for Extemporaneous preparation, the quantity of emulsifying agent specified in individual monographs may be reduced to yield a preparation of suitable consistency provided that by so doing the stability of the preparation is not adversely affected.






Oral Solutions are Oral Liquids containing one or more active ingredients dissolved in a suitable vehicle.






Oral Suspensions are Oral Liquids containing one or more active ingredients suspended in a suitable vehicle. Suspended solids may slowly separate on standing but are easily redispersed.






Syrups do not contain active ingredients. They are not intended to be administered as such but are used as vehicle ingredients for their flavouring and sweetening properties.




Syrups should be recently prepared unless they contain suitable antimicrobial preservatives.




Syrups should be stored at temperatures not exceeding 30.




The label states (1) the date after which the Syrup is not intended to be used; (2) the conditions under which the Syrup should be stored.


The following oral liquids are the subject of an individual monograph in the British Pharmacopoeia.




Ephedrine Elixir


Phenobarbital Elixir


Piperazine Citrate Elixir




Codeine Linctus


Codeine Linctus, Paediatric


Methadone Linctus


Pholcodine Linctus


Pholcodine Linctus, Strong


Simple Linctus


Simple Linctus, Paediatric


Squill Linctus, Opiate


Squill Linctus, Paediatric Opiate


Tolu Linctus, Paediatric Compound




Ammonium Chloride Mixture


Gentian Mixture, Acid


Gentian Mixture, Alkaline


Ipecacuanha Emetic Mixture, Paediatric


Kaolin and Morphine Mixture


Kaolin Mixture


Magnesium Carbonate Mixture, Aromatic


Magnesium Hydroxide Mixture


Magnesium Sulphate Mixture


Magnesium Trisilicate Mixture


Potassium Citrate Mixture


Oral Drops


Sodium Fluoride Oral Drops


Vitamins A, C and D Oral Drops, Paediatric


Oral Emulsions


Liquid Paraffin Oral Emulsion


Liquid Paraffin and Magnesium Hydroxide Oral Emulsion


Oral Solutions


Alimemazine Oral Solution, Paediatric


Alimemazine Oral Solution, Strong Paediatric


Amantadine Oral Solution


Atenolol Oral Solution


Baclofen Oral Solution


Bumetanide Oral Solution


Chlorphenamine Oral Solution


Chlorpromazine Oral Solution


Cimetidine Oral Solution


Clemastine Oral Solution


Clomethiazole Oral Solution


Co-amilozide Oral Solution


Codeine Phosphate Oral Solution


Diazepam Oral Solution


Dicycloverine Oral Solution


Digoxin Oral Solution, Paediatric


Dihydrocodeine Oral Solution


Diphenhydramine Oral Solution


Docusate Oral Solution


Docusate Oral Solution, Paediatric


Ethosuximide Oral Solution


Ferrous Sulphate Oral Solution, Paediatric


Flucloxacillin Oral Solution


Fluoxetine Oral Solution


Haloperidol Oral Solution


Haloperidol Oral Solution, Strong


Iodine Oral Solution, Aqueous


Lithium Citrate Oral Solution


Methadone Oral Solution (1 mg per ml)


Metoclopramide Oral Solution


Neomycin Oral Solution


Orciprenaline Oral Solution


Paracetamol Oral Solution, Paediatric


Phenoxymethylpenicillin Oral Solution


Prochlorperazine Oral Solution


Promethazine Oral Solution


Ranitidine Oral Solution


Selegiline Oral Solution


Sodium Feredetate Oral Solution


Sodium Valproate Oral Solution


Temazepam Oral Solution


Thioridazine Oral Solution


Triclofos Oral Solution


Oral Suspensions


Aciclovir Oral Suspension


Aluminium Hydroxide Oral Suspension


Amoxicillin Oral Suspension


Amphotericin Oral Suspension


Ampicillin Oral Suspension


Barium Sulphate Oral Suspension


Benorilate Oral Suspension


Cefaclor Oral Suspension


Cefadroxil Oral Suspension


Cefalexin Oral Suspension


Cefradine Oral Suspension


Cimetidine Oral Suspension


Co-fluampicil Oral Suspension


Co-magaldrox Oral Suspension


Co-trimoxazole Oral Suspension


Co-trimoxazole Oral Suspension, Paediatric


Erythromycin Ethyl Succinate Oral Suspension


Ferrous Fumarate Oral Suspension


Flucloxacillin Oral Suspension


Fusidic Acid Oral Suspension


Ibuprofen Oral Suspension


Magaldrate Oral Suspension


Metronidazole Oral Suspension


Nabumetone Oral Suspension


Nalidixic Acid Oral Suspension


Naproxen Oral Suspension


Nitrazepam Oral Suspension


Nitrofurantoin Oral Suspension


Nystatin Oral Suspension


Paracetamol Oral Suspension


Phenytoin Oral Suspension


Primidone Oral Suspension


Promazine Oral Suspension


Rifampicin Oral Suspension


Simeticone Suspension for Infants


Terfenadine Oral Suspension


Thioridazine Oral Suspension


Trimethoprim Oral Suspension




Black Currant Syrup


Invert Syrup


Lemon Syrup


Orange Syrup




Tolu Syrup