A person with Parkinson's taking medication

Sinemet availability

Date

The latest news on the Sinemet supply issue.

Merck Sharp & Dohme Limited (MSD) moved production of its Sinemet products to a new manufacturing site in Italy, to reduce the supply issues it was experiencing last year.

As a result there have been some supply issues. 

However, these products are back in stock:

  • Sinemet CR 50mg/200mg 6x10 tablets
  • Sinemet Half CR 25mg/100mg 6x10 tablets
  • Sinemet 10mg/100mg 10x10 tablets
  • Sinemet 25mg/250mg 10x10 tablets

There are still some intermittent supply issues with Sinemet 12.5mg/50mg 9x10 tablets and Sinemet Plus 25mg/100mg 10x10 tablets, which should be back in supply by September 2019.

All updates have been provided to us by MSD.

Will this affect me?

If you take Sinemet 12.5mg/50mg or Sinemet Plus 25mg/100mg, your pharmacist may be unable to give you your full 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 has taken action to stop this ongoing supply issue and has decided to move the manufacturing of 3 Sinemet products to another 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 work as they do now. They will just look different.

The 3 products that will change their appearance from early May 2019 are below.

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 May 2019. 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 that manufactures 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 in 2018.

"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."

Updates to Sinemet availability

This story was originally published in September 2018. It has been updated since to reflect the changing availability of Sinemet.

It was last updated on 12 July 2019 to reflect that most products are back in stock, but there are still some intermittent supply issues with Sinemet 12.5mg/50mg 9x10 and Sinemet Plus 25mg/100mg.

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.