Intended for healthcare professionals



BMJ 2009; 338 doi: (Published 24 March 2009) Cite this as: BMJ 2009;338:b1171

Painkillers of all strengths, including prescription only drugs, can be bought online over the internet. In one survey, 76% of websites available to the UK population did not require the customer to possess a valid prescription, and 46% of them sold prescription only analgesics. These medicines are usually purchased at greater than British National Formulary prices, and in large quantities (British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology 2009;67:250-4, doi:10.1111/j.1365-2125.2008.03343.x).

A German case control study of 333 infants who died before age six months and 998 age matched controls found that both exclusive and partial breast feeding in the month before death reduced the risk of SIDS. The proposed biological mechanisms are plausible: breast feeding protects against infection, and some deaths from SIDS are thought to be caused by uncontrolled inflammatory reaction to infectious agents; and sleep studies show that breastfed infants are more easily roused than formula fed babies (Pediatrics 2009;123:e406-e410, doi:10.1542/peds.2008-2145).

Breathlessness …

View Full Text

Log in

Log in through your institution


* For online subscription