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Smokers Dying From Nicotine Cure Drug
Zyban, a drug made by GlaxoSmithKline, which 'cures' nicotine addiction - and passed all animal tests - is rapidly becoming a dangerous killer. By 8th April 2001 thirty five smokers had died after taking the drug.
One of the most worrying aspects of this is the sharp increase in deaths and adverse drug reactions (ADRs) amongst smokers taking this drug. The drug was launched in June 2000, and by February 2001 there had been 18 deaths and 1,529 reported ADRs. Just seven weeks later by the end of March there had been 35 deaths and 4,986 ADRs. This means that more people died after taking Zyban in 7 weeks than in the previous seven-and-a-half months; and the rate of ADRs had increased by a massive 324%.
Of the 35 who died, 13 had heart disease, one had a heart attack, two committed suicide, one had acute asthma and six had brain disorders. In 12 cases the cause of death was unknown. Adverse Drug Reactions include chest pains, seizures, fits and depression. It should also be borne in mind that it is generally accepted that the level of reporting of ADRs is probably significantly lower than the actual number of cases.
The Department of Health and GlaxoSmithKline insisted Zyban was safe. It was reported in the Mail on Sunday that Professor Alasdair Breckenridge, chair of the Committee on the Safety of Medicines, "said the number of reported Adverse Drug Reactions was in line with what was expected for a new drug." ! Professor Breckenridge also claimed that many of the deaths have been caused by underlying health problems. Aside from the question why "underlying health problems," which smokers almost by definition are likely to suffer from, haven't been considered in the development of this drug, the Mail points out that "there is no evidence whether this is the case."
[Mail on Sunday, 'Zyban-linked deaths double in 2 months,' by Rachel Ellis, 8th April 2001, p. 35; What Doctors Don't Tell You, June 1998, p. 9]
NSAID Use Increases Risk of Miscarriage
New research has highlighted a link between NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) taken during and an increase in the risk of miscarriage.
Danish researchers studied more than 4000 women who had miscarried and compared them with 30,000 women who had live births. They found the risk of miscarriage to be related to hospital prescription for an NSAID; and was greatest within a week of receiving the prescription - 6.99 times greater.
The implication of this research is that there is an as yet unidentified group of women who are particularly vulnerable to NSAID-induced miscarriage.
[What Doctors Don't Tell You, April 2001, p. 9]
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