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FDA Finally Seizes Milllions of Defective Pills

The FDA finally had enough. After warning GlaxoSmithKline for the last two years about quality control issues that were never addressed, they used armed federal marshals to seize millions of tablets of two medicines from facilities in Tennessee and Puerto Rico.

The drugs are the antidepressant Paxil CR, which had $725 million in sales last year and is used by some 450,000 patients in the United States each month; and Avandamet, a diabetes medicine, whose sales are undisclosed but are far smaller. The problems were detected when inspections revealed that Paxil CR tablets tended to split, leaving patients with half a tablet with no medicine and another half with no buffering substance.

Great. Bad enough that the drug works only slight better than placebo but they really are getting placebo half the time. This might be a blessing in disguise though as there is serious concern that the drug increases the risk of suicide.

Just wonder how much this action was prompted by the terrible PR the FDA has recently been getting. Tough to get any lower then their recent conflict of interest scandal

New York Times March 5, 2005

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