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Pack of twelve sachets of Amoxil powdered syrup, England, 1978-1986

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Amoxil is a brand name for the antibiotic amoxicillin, a semi-synthetic penicillin. Amoxicillin was discovered by Beecham Research Laboratories Ltd (now part of GlaxoSmithKline) in 1972. Unlike the first naturally occurring penicillins to be discovered, this affects a wide variety of bacteria and can survive the rigours of human digestion, so it can be taken by mouth. Amoxicillin is used to treat a wide range of bacterial infections, especially those of the chest, ear and bladder, and can be used in the treatment of the sexually transmitted infection gonorrhoea. It can also be taken orally with food. This carton is from a syrup version, especially designed for children and those who may not be able to swallow tablets easily. It is still on the market today.

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    Glossary: penicillin

    The first antibiotic drug to treat infections which is made from the mould penicillium. Its discovery is attributed to Alexander Fleming in 1928.

    Glossary: sexually transmitted infection

    Any disease transmitted by sexual intercourse. STIs include HIV/AIDS, syphilis, gonorrhoea, some chlamydia infections and genital herpes.

    Glossary: synthetic

    A substance that has been made artificially, i.e. one that does not come from a natural source. Nylon is an example of a synthetic fibre.

    Glossary: gonorrhoea

    A sexually transmitted infection that affects the genital membranes of either sex. Symptoms include a yellowish discharge from the genitals.

    Glossary: antibiotic

    A substance that is used to treat infections.

    Glossary: amoxicillin

    A form of penicillin that is easily absorbed. It is used for a variety of ailments, including middle-ear and sinus infections, salmonella and gonorrhoea.