Brompton’s Cocktail is now obsolete and should not be used. It was introduced in the 1920s at the Brompton Hospital in London for post-thoracotomy pain, and was in widespread use by the 1930s. The active ingredient was morphine. The “cocktail” latterly consisted of morphine, cocaine, chlorpromazine, 90% alcohol and flavored syrup.

Cocaine was added as a stimulant to reduce drowsiness. It is not an analgesic and can cause agitation and confusion. Chlorpromazine causes too much sedation for routine use. 90% alcohol causes an unpleasant stinging in patients with a sore mouth, and causes confusion in the elderly.

Fixed “cocktails” of drugs should generally be avoided because the correct dose of one component will usually result in inappropriate doses of the others. Other fixed solutions (“Schlessinger’s Solution”, “Oncology Mixture”) should not be used. (see Analgesics, Morphine)





The author and publisher have taken precautions to ensure that the information in this book is error-free. However, readers must be guided by their own personal and professional standards of good practice in evaluating and applying recommendations made herein. The contents of this book represent the views and experience of the author, and not necessarily those of the publisher.

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