Chantix, the smoking cessation drug from manufacturers Pfizer, was recently reported as a preferred and more adequate method for smokers to quit their tobacco-induced addictions. The results of the study were released in the medical journal, Thorax, and stated that of nearly 746 smokers who took Chantix for 12 weeks, 56 percent of those remained cigarette free. The study compared this to information researched as to how many of these individuals remained cigarette free while using the nicotine patch, and the number remained at 43 percent.
The study was paid for by the drug's makers and was conducted by Dr. Henri-Jean Aubin of the French Hospital Emile-Roux. The study reported that during the study, which took place for more than a year, individuals were randomly given either nicotine patches of prescriptions of Chantix. Researchers found that the drug was 6 percent more successful in keeping smokers abstinent from cigarettes than nicotine patches after a year.
Chantix Risks Still Prevalent
In November 2007, reports began to surface of severe psychological risks among several Chantix patients. The side effects included depression, suicidal thoughts and behaviors as well as suicidal tendencies. At that time, more than 30 individuals had allegedly commit suicide because of the drug's side effects with nearly 400 additional individuals reporting similar adverse symptoms.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) began an investigation into the drug's use and found evidence of the associated risks. In February 2008, the FDA issued a Public Health Advisory claiming the drug did have an effect on the serious neuropsychiatric symptoms of Chantix patients, but the drug remains on the market and has not yet been subject to a recall for these dangers. Additionally, nearly 37 percent of Chantix patients have reported severe nausea while taking the drug. Other Chantix side effects:
* vomiting and nausea (most prevalent side effect)
* sleeping disorders, including unusual/strange dreams, inability to sleep, etc.
According to information made available from Pfizer, patients who are taking other medications such as herbal supplements, vitamins, insulin, blood thinners and asthma medications may be at risk for complications and should consult a doctor about their previous and current drug prescription consumption.
Smoking Cessation Treatments
According to a Reuters Health news report Dr. Paul Aveyard of the University of Birmingham who wrote an editorial that accompanied the study claimed that the results of the study may not necessarily mean that Chantix is the most adequate smoking cessation drug on the market. Aveyard explained that these drugs commonly depend on the individual patient, as one drug may work sufficiently for one patient, but do nothing for another patient.
Additional smoking cessation drugs that are available to patients include the following, according to the National Cancer Institute (NCI):
* nicotine gum
* nicotine inhalers
* nicotine lozenges
* nicotine patches
* nicotine nasal spray
* varenicline pills
* bupropion SR pills
While the inhalers, gum, patches, sprays and lozenges contain nicotine and are used to slowly decrease consumption of nicotine use, buproprion and varenicline contain no nicotine. These medications are for individuals with the following disorders:
* pregnant or nursing women
* individuals suffering from seizures
* those with eating disorders
* individuals consuming a heavy amount of alcohol
It is advisable for a patient looking to quit smoking to always consult a physician especially if they have shown signs and symptoms of mood swings, behavioral disorders, suicidal thoughts and tendencies as well as depression while taking Chantix.
Overcoming Chantix Side Effects
The Chantix dangers may be difficult to overcome as they can cause a severe depression disorder among patients. Because of this and the damages that have been incurred while consuming Chantix, a Chantix victim may have the potential for developing a lawsuit. Consulting with a pharmaceutical law firm can provide insight into the potential for a Chantix lawsuit, which may be able to afford a victim with monetary compensation for potential harm caused to a patient and their families.