Licorice Coughing Liquid OTC Cough Syrup Recalled by FDA

Posted on in Product Liability

By Shawn Kasserman

licorice coughing syrup, Chicago pharmaceutical litigation lawyerCough syrup can contain a myriad of ingredients to help alleviate pain, cough, or general discomfort; morphine is not typically one of those ingredients, but it was found in Ma Ying Long Pharmaceutical Group’s over-the-counter Licorice Coughing Liquid. Even more concerning is that the ingredient was never listed on the product’s packaging. As such, the retailer in conjunction with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is recalling the drug.

About the Recall

Manufactured in China and distributed in the United States by Master Herbs USA, Inc., Licorice Coughing Liquid is an over-the-counter cough syrup with labeling written in both English and Chinese. The product was found to contain morphine, which was not identified on the label in English. While every person taking this medication could be at risk for adverse effects, individuals who are sensitive to morphine and those that are in addiction recovery are at the highest level of risk for a severe consequence.

Morphine Addiction

Morphine is one of the most widely prescribed drugs in the world, but it is also one of the most addictive. Chemically similar to heroine, it has one of the highest relapse rates of any drug for those that are addicted. With recent information suggesting that about two million Americans do, in fact, suffer from a morphine addiction or dependency, the implications of the unmarked ingredient in the recalled cough syrup is far-reaching and potentially catastrophic for those that have made efforts to remain clean and sober.

Morphine Side Effects

In addition to being highly addictive, morphine use comes with a battery of negative side effects that range from sleepiness and disorientation to respiratory depression and death. Those that have a sensitivity to morphine are at the highest level of risk for severe or potentially fatal side effects, which can include:

  • Change in the ability to see colors;
  • Shakiness in the legs, arms, hands, or feet;
  • Very slow heartbeat;
  • Low blood pressure or pulse;
  • Irregular, fast or slow, or shallow breathing;
  • Dizziness or loss of consciousness; and
  • Unusual bleeding or bruising.

In addition, those taking the medication may be at risk for a morphine overdose if they failed to follow the product’s dosing recommendations. This may also increase the risk of death or severe adverse effects, particularly for those that suffer a sensitivity to morphine.


At this time, the FDA is recommending that individuals avoid purchasing the Licorice Coughing Liquid, and that those who have previously purchased it discard it immediately. Unfortunately, there are many that may have already been adversely affected by the drug’s use. In those instances, individuals may be entitled to fair compensation to cover medical bills, pain and suffering, or other associated expenses

The knowledgeable attorneys of Tomasik Kotin Kasserman, LLC have extensive experience in handling defective drug litigation cases. Our attorneys can assist you pursue your claim and will provide aggressive representation to ensure your rights are protected. To learn more, schedule a free initial consultation with our Chicago, Illinois pharmaceutical litigation attorneys. Call 312-605-8800 today.

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