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What can it do?

Welcome to the beta Arthritis Virtual Assistant. At the moment it can give you general information about your condition and medication, and provide you with useful exercises to help manage your arthritis.

Why do we need your help?

The Arthritis Virtual Assistant has been built to learn and improve with every use. That way, whenever you use it, you’re indirectly helping another person get the answers that they need for their arthritis.

What can you ask?

You'll get the best response if your question relates to a single type of arthritis, and is expressed as clearly and simply as possible. For example, "What are the best exercises for osteoarthritis?" or "What are the side effects of methotrexate?"

Are you sure you want to close your conversation?

Your conversation will not be visible the next time you visit the Arthritis Virtual Assistant. If you want to keep a copy of the advice you've been given, you can print it using the button at the top of the chat window.

Arthritis Virtual Assistant

The Arthritis Virtual Assistant is being developed into a brand new type of tool which will help you to get the answers you need for your type of arthritis.

This automated chat service is designed to provide general information about your condition and ways you can manage it. It’s been developed from over 80 years of our research work and also learns from the experiences of its users. It’s a ‘beta’ version which means it’s still learning from you, and others. It uses artificial intelligence to decide which are the best responses to give you and it will improve each time it’s used. The better the information we can provide then the more people we can help to manage their condition too.

The advice in this service isn’t a substitute for professional medical advice so we’d always recommend speaking to your doctor about your treatment. When you use the Arthritis Virtual Assistant, you’ll be asked for your first name and the type of arthritis you have, there’s no need to tell us anything more personal than that.

By using the Arthritis Virtual Assistant you confirm that you understand and accept the terms of use and consent to how we will use the information you provide.

Helpline 0800 5200 520 More information

Call us for free information, help and advice on your type of arthritis.

All calls are recorded for training and quality purposes.
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Compound analgesics

Compound analgesics are made from a combination of two different drugs – usually a standard painkiller such as paracetamolaspirin or ibuprofen plus a low dose of an opioid analgesic such as codeine or dihydrocodeine.

Compound analgesics containing low doses of codeine are available over the counter from pharmacists, but stronger ones are only available on prescription.

What are they used for?

You can use them:

What are the common types of compound analgesics?


Co-codamol
Co-codaprin Co-dydramol
What is it?
Codeine (8 mg) and paracetamol (500 mg) Codeine (8 mg) and aspirin (400 mg)
Dihydrocodeine (10 mg) and paracetamol (500 mg)
What dose can I take? Up to 2 tablets 4 times a day Up to 2 tablets 4 times a day with food Up to 2 tablets 4 times a day
Where do I get them? Buy them at supermarkets/pharmacies or on prescription On prescription On prescription
What are the most common side-effects? constipation
nausea
drowsiness
dizziness
See also side-effects of long-term use of paracetamol
constipation
nausea
drowsiness
dizziness
heartburn
indigestion
constipation
nausea
drowsiness
dizziness
See also side-effects of long-term use of paracetamol
What else should I know? For more severe pain, combinations of 15 mg/500 mg and 30 mg/500 mg are available on prescription. For more severe pain, combinations of 20 mg/500 mg and 30 mg/500 mg are available.

What are the possible risks and side-effects?

Normally you'll be advised not to take medicines containing codeine for more than a few days at a time. This is because they are potentially addictive and hard to stop. 

Compounds made from codeine can cause:

  • constipation
  • nausea
  • difficulty concentrating.

Older people may be advised to take less than the maximum dose.

Ask your doctor’s advice if you’re pregnant or breastfeeding.

Helpline

0800 5200 520

Our new helpline: Call us for free information, help and advice on your type of arthritis. Open Mon–Fri 9am–8pm.

All calls are recorded for training and quality purposes

Virtual Assistant

Our new Arthritis Virtual Assistant uses artificial intelligence to answer your arthritis related questions 24/7.

Ask a question
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For more information, go to www.arthritisresearchuk.org.
Arthritis Research UK fund research into the cause, treatment and cure of arthritis. You can support Arthritis Research UK by volunteering, donating or visiting our shops.