Tag Archives: side effects

(Cough) One in seven patients experiencing negative side effects, study finds

Coughs cost the UK economy nearly £1bn a year in lost productivity and sick days, with a further £100m bill for the NHS in seeing patients who will get better on their own.

There is no evidence that medicines for persistent coughs have any benefit, and one in seven patients actually experience negative side effects, a study has found.

Swiss researchers comparing the medications against a placebo found no examples where they significantly sped up recovery or improved patient wellbeing in any of the other areas tested.

https://www.independent.co.uk/news/health/cough-medicine-work-help-persistent-symptoms-weeks-asthma-a8531286.html

Take a look at “Yellow Card Scheme”

The Yellow Card Scheme is vital in helping the MHRA monitor the safety of all healthcare products in the UK to ensure they are acceptably safe for patients and those that use them. Reports can be made for all medicines including vaccines, blood factors and immunoglobulins, herbal medicines and homeopathic remedies, and all medical devices available on the UK market. From the 20th of May 2016, the MHRA is also collecting reports of safety concerns associated with e-cigarette products through the Yellow Card Scheme.

The Scheme collects information on suspected problems or incidents involving

  1. side effects (also known as adverse drug reactions or ADRs)
  2. medical device adverse incidents
  3. defective medicines (those that are not of an acceptable quality)
  4. counterfeit or fake medicines or medical devices
  5. safety concerns for e-cigarettes or their refill containers (e-liquids)

It is important for people to report problems experienced with medicines or medical devices as these are used to identify issues which might not have been previously known about. The MHRA will review the product if necessary, and take action to minimise risk and maximise benefit to the patients. The MHRA is also able to investigate counterfeit or fake medicines or devices and if necessary take action to protect public health.

Side effects to a medicine, vaccine, herbal or complementary remedy

All medicines can cause side effects (commonly referred to as adverse drug reactions or ADRs by healthcare professionals).

Side effects reported on Yellow Card are evaluated, together with additional sources of information such as clinical trial data, medical literature or data from international medicines regulators, to identify previously unknown safety issues. These reports are assessed by a team of medicine safety experts made up of doctors, pharmacists and scientists who study the benefits and risks of medicines. If a new side effect is identified, the safety profile of the medicine in question is carefully looked at, as well as the side effects of other medicines used to treat the same condition. The MHRA takes action, whenever necessary, to ensure that medicines are used in a way that minimises risk, while maximising patient benefit.

See our animation below, developed as part of an EU wide social media campaign from the Strengthening Collaborations to Operate Pharmacovigilance in Europe (SCOPE) Joint Action project. It can also be viewed on MHRA’s YouTube channel here: https://youtu.be/3et5LdYLc8M.

Visit Page

Android App

https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=uk.org.mhra.yellowcard

Adverse drug reactions – (NICE)

Assessment

  • Assess the nature and severity of the reaction.
  • This will determine whether urgent action is required or whether the person can be managed in primary care. For example, a cough due to an angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitor can be troublesome but not life threatening, but an anaphylactic reaction is a medical emergency.
  • The nature of the presenting condition may strongly suggest that it is an adverse drug reaction (ADR). For example, the following conditions are often ADRs:
  • Acute dystonias
  • Blood dyscrasias
  • Skin reactions, such as Stevens–Johnson syndrome and toxic epidermal necrolysis
  • Neuroleptic malignant syndrome
  • Take a history of the presenting symptoms, including:
  • When it started:
  • The time from when use of the drug was started to when the reaction develops may be characteristic of the reaction (for example anaphylaxis usually develops within a few minutes of parenteral drug administration).
  • If the drug was stopped, the time it took for the reaction to abate will often be related to the known duration of action of the drug.
  • Relationship to dose:
  • ADRs are often dose related and may be minimized by reducing the dose of the drug.
  • If the symptoms resolve when the drug is withdrawn, they may have been associated with the drug, although it could still have been coincidental.
  • If a drug is reintroduced and symptoms recur, the drug is most probably responsible for the adverse reaction. However, deliberate re-challenge is only very rarely justified (clinically and ethically) after serious ADRs, because of the risks involved.
  • Other possible causes:
  • The symptoms may be a manifestation of the person’s underlying illness or another disease.
  • Other medications (including self-medication and herbal remedies) could be responsible.
  • Consider the possibility of drug interactions (including with food and drinks).
  • Consider the drug history, and review any history of allergy or previous ADRs.
  • Take a complete drug history, including when the drug was started, what dose is being taken, what other drugs are being taken, and whether the person is also taking over-the-counter (OTC) or herbal medicines.
  • Check whether the person has ever had similar symptoms or presentation in the past with other drugs (from the same or a different drug class) or has a history of atopy or of ADRs with different presentation(s).
  • Be aware that even if a drug was stopped some time before the ADR, it may have been responsible if it has a very long duration of action (for example amiodarone).
  • Review the adverse effect profile of the drug and consider:
  • Whether the signs and symptoms are in keeping with the documented adverse effect profile of the drug.
  • Whether the ADR been reported before. This can be checked in the readily available sources of information, including:
  • The British National Formulary (BNF).
  • The electronic Medicines Compendium (www.medicines.org.uk).
  • Interactive Drug Analysis Profiles(iDAPs) — a complete listing of suspected ADRs for individual drugs that have been reported to the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) through the Yellow Card scheme by health care professionals, members of the public, and pharmaceutical companies.
  • Regional and district medicine information services. Details of regional centres and other useful contacts can be found in the front of the BNF and BNF for Children (or online). Local services can found by contacting the medicines information department or the hospital pharmacy in major hospitals.
  • How common the suspected adverse reaction is.

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A Prescription for Murder

Is it possible that a pill prescribed by your doctor can turn you into a killer?

Over 40 million prescriptions for SSRI anti-depressants were handed out by doctors last year in the UK. Panorama reveals the devastating side effects on a tiny minority that can lead to psychosis, violence, possibly even murder.

With exclusive access to psychiatric reports, court footage and drug company data, reporter Shelley Jofre investigates the mass killings at the 2012 midnight premiere of a Batman movie in Aurora, Colorado. Twenty-four-year-old PhD student James Holmes, who had no record of violence or gun ownership, murdered 12 and injured 70.

Did the SSRI anti-depressant he had been prescribed play a part in the killings?

Panorama has uncovered other cases of murder and extreme violence which could be linked to psychosis developed after the taking of SSRIs – including a father who strangled his 11-year-old son.

Panorama asks if enough is known about this rare side effect, and if doctors are unwittingly prescribing what could be a prescription for murder.

See the video here

https://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b08zjyp1/sign/panorama-a-prescription-for-murder