Few medical miscalculations have the potential to harm more people than mass medication errors. When unsafe drugs are continually given to patients, the consequences are often catastrophic. That is exactly what happened with two drugs that were recently pulled from the market for the unacceptable health risks that they caused. However this was not before the medication was given to patients for more than half a century, even though concerns about its safety had been made clear for decades.
Darvocet and Darvon, also known as propoxyphene, was finally pulled from shelves by the FDA in November. The recall was spurred by evidence of the drugs’ causing dangerous disturbances in heart rhythm. An unusually high number of patients were found to exhibit the heart problem after 18 months on the medication.
The Darvon and Darvocet recall is only the latest in a series of FDA actions that have been questioned, mostly for their delay. On many occasions the decision to recall a drug is a battle of risks, financial investment, and patient safety. Millions and millions of dollars are spent investing in new medications and pharmaceutical companies always exert pressure to keep the drugs on the market.
Our Chicago product liability lawyers are grateful that steps have been taken to help save lives by eliminating dangerous medical products from the shelves. However, these steps are often taken too little too late. It is unclear how many thousands of patients were killed or injured from propoxyphene in the decades since its dangers were known. Medical patients deserve an active, reasonable application of safety standards by the Food and Drug Administration to ensure their medical care is as effective as possible.
Click Here to read more of the Times Free Press discussion of the issue.
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