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Anti-Smoking Pill Will Not Lead To Suicide: Chantix, Zyban From Pfizer Declared Safe

Update Date: Apr 26, 2016 04:20 AM EDT
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Quitting smoking is something hard for most who have grown accustomed to it though pharmaceuticals have tried to come up with some form of pill help out. Among the well known pills tied up to it include Chantix and Zyban from Pfizer and GlaxoSmithKline respectively.

While the pills aim to help people kick the habit, there are medical concerns such as the side effects they carry. With the lack of study to back them up, they have been categorized under the ‘black box warning’ label which was a result of claims that they pose serious psychiatric side effects.

That was until experts came out to reveal that both pills are safe though it remains to be seen when such would convince the Food and Drug Administration to life the dreaded black box warning.

Both Zyban and Chantix are still available in the market and if the black box label is lifted, a spike in sales could materialize for both that is until other brands start showing up. Chantix has patent protection until 2020 in the U.S. and up to 2021 in Europe.

 “We believe the available scientific information doesn’t support a boxed warning,” Dr. Freda C. Lewis-Hall, a psychiatrist and Pfizer’s chief medical officer via CBS.

For their part, Pfizer plans to sit down with regulators globally to discuss the results. There is no clue on how they plan to go about it though the bottom line here is that the pills have shown that there were no hints of possible suicidal intentions aside from the other noted side effects found. That included nausea, insomnia, abnormal dreams and headaches instead.

“The FDA will review the findings of this study along with additional scientific evidence as we continue to evaluate this issue, as well as take follow-up action and update the public as appropriate,” in a statement issued to the Associated Press.

If successful, doctors may eventually prescribe pills like Chantix to smokers who have been having trouble kicking the habit without worrying about potential psychiatric risks. Chantrix has been singled out as the most effective pill to help quit smoking with about 22% of those taking it found to be no longer smoking after the six months.

It could be a breakthrough of sorts with the known fact of smoking claiming about 440,000 American lives (alone) annually.

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