Health

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FAA Bans Antismoking Drug

May 22, 2008 03:32 PM
by Rachel Balik
The FAA has forbidden pilots and air controllers from using Chantix after a new study linked the antismoking drug to dangerous side effects.

30-Second Summary

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After a recent study provided evidence that the antismoking drug Chantix could cause “loss of consciousness, dizziness, confusion and muscle spasms,” the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has banned pilots and air controllers from using the drug.

The study indicated that such a ban might be wise, stating, “we have immediate safety concerns about the use of [Chantix] among persons operating aircraft, trains, buses and other vehicles, or in other settings where a lapse in alertness or motor control could lead to massive, serious injury.”

Pfizer denies that drug is dangerous, claiming that instances of injury are “rare.” However, sales of Chantix began to slow after previous research linked the drug to serious psychiatric problems. There have been several reported instances of Chantix users falling into deep depression, experiencing strangely vivid dreams or reporting uncharacteristic suicidal impulses.

Headline Link: ‘FAA bans anti-smoking drug Chantix’

Reaction: Pfizer says incidents are ‘rare’

Background: The Chantix approval process and subsequent concerns

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