6.17.2009

F.D.A. Warns Against Use of Popular Cold Remedy

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/06/17/health/policy/17nasal.html?_r=1&hp
http://graphics8.nytimes.com/images/2009/06/17/health/17nasal190.jpg
Federal drug regulators warned consumers to stop using Zicam, a popular homeopathic cold remedy, because it could damage or destroy their sense of smell.
The action is an early indication that the Obama administration is likely to take far more aggressive enforcement actions against drug companies than the Bush administration did.
The Food and Drug Administration received 130 reports from consumers and doctors of people losing their sense of smell after using one of the Zicam nasal products, which include Zicam Cold Remedy and Zicam Cold Remedy Swabs. The reports date to 1999, when Matrixx Initiatives of Scottsdale, Ariz., first introduced the products.
In 2006, Matrixx paid $12 million to settle 340 lawsuits from Zicam users who claimed that the product destroyed their sense of smell, a condition known as anosmia. Hundreds more such suits have since been filed.
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