Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Generic Version of Cholesterol Reducer Recalled


India-based Ranbaxy Pharmaceuticals Inc. May have accidentally added an ingredient to their generic version of Pfizer's Lipitor. The intent behind the accident may have been to add an additional ingredient intended to further decrease arterial plaque which can clog arteries and lead to heart attacks.

The accidental ingredient is microscopic shards of glass. The glass shards were inadvertently added to the company's 10, 20, and 40 milligram dose versions of the tablets and include both 90 and 500 capsule bottles of the drug.

Ranbaxy Pharmaceuticals Inc. has issued a recall of the pills. The affected lot numbers are enumerated in a document provided by the company

Ranbaxy, a US subsidiary of the India-based parent company of the same name, is the largest producer of atorvastatin calcium, the generic version of Pfizer's Lipitor. Ranbaxy informed the Food and Drug Administration of the possible contamination and initiated the recall. So far, there have been no injuries or reported cases of ingestion of the tablets. If you use a generic version of the drug, please check your bottles against the list before taking the drug.

This is not Ranbaxy's first foray into the realm of FDA investigations. Since 2008, the company has been in at least 30 previous battles with the FDA and lost approval to import or produce those drugs, largely due to the firm's manufacturing processes.

Due to the recall, prices for the drug may increase for many prescribed the medication. The patients may need to purchase the more expensive Pfizer version of Lipitor. In the meantime, there will still be shortages as Ranbaxy produced a large portion of the market share of the generic atorvastatin calcium.

In the meantime, those who are or know someone at risk of heart attack may wish to read Surviving a Successful Heart Attack (Google Affiliate Ad), a good book to help with a long, happy lifestyle.