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Written by Healthwords's team of doctors and pharmacists based in UK | Updated: 25.04.2023 | 2 min read

Prochlorperazine (also known as Buccastem M) is an anti-sickness medication used for the prevention and treatment of nausea and vomiting in migraine. It should have previously been diagnosed by a doctor, and be for adults aged 18 and over. It is known as a P (pharmacy) medication that can be bought from a pharmacy after a discussion with the pharmacist or counter assistant to ensure it is suitable for use. It is also available on prescription from your doctor to treat nausea and vomiting of other cause.

How does it work?

It acts in the "chemoreceptor trigger zone" in the brain, to treat nausea and vomiting that may be experienced with migraine attacks. Buccastem M is available as a tablet that can be placed between the upper gums and inner cheek, rather than swallowed. This is so the medication can be released gradually over time and be absorbed directly into the blood through the blood vessels that line your gums and cheek. This means the medication gets to work quickly, as soon as 5 - 10 minutes, but it can take up to 30 minutes to feel the full effect.

How do I take it?

Place a tablet high up along the upper gum line, beneath the upper lip of either side of your mouth.

Apply slight pressure to the tablet for a moment until the tablet softens and gels to your gum.

Allow the tablet to dissolve slowly – this often takes between 1 - 2 hours. DO NOT swallow the tablet.

Do not move the tablet around with your finger or tongue as this will cause the tablet to dissolve too quickly. 1 - 2 tablets can be used up to twice a day for up to a maximum of 2 days. A pack will only contain 8 tablets.

Pharmacist recommended products

Who should not take the medication?

It is not to be used in children under the age of 18 years or anyone who has not seen a doctor about their migraines. Buccastem M should not be used in pregnancy or breastfeeding.

Do not take Buccastem M if you are allergic to prochlorperazine or any other ingredients. You should talk to your doctor before taking it if you have any of the following conditions: Parkinson's disease, epilepsy, liver disease or blood disorders.

Are there any side effects?

Common side effects can include feeling sleepy, blurred vision, dry mouth, blocked nose, headache, local irritation to the gums and mouth.

If you experience any symptoms of fever, confusion or muscle rigidity or uncontrollable movements of the face and tongue then you should seek urgent medical advice.

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