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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I heard on the radio that the drug Accutane was associated with 66 deaths from suicide. It seems that Accutane, which is used to treat acne, causes severe depression. Accuatne has not taken off the market, but you now have to sign a conset form from your doctor. Next time someone complains about 7 deaths from Lotronex, ask them why Accutane is still on the market, or why we can't sign a wavier like accutane.Tom
 
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Tom, I heard this, too and was/am astonished! Especially since Accutane is most likey prescribed to teens more often than adults. Acne can cause a person alot of emotional troubles, insecurities, etc..., BUT I think most people get through it. IBS, on the other hand is debilitating to most sufferers. Its just all too frustrating- I feel I am becoming obsessed about Lotronex. How else could I feel after having a real life for 6 months?!
 
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I forgot to mention that Accutane has been on the market since 1982-it took along time for anyone to get worried about it. There are many reasons for that. I still can't help to wonder why Lotronex didn't get the chance. It was a new drug drug and there were problems for some people, but I think this must be the case with any new medication. I just feel theres alot more to this than we've been led to believe. I'm just not sure what, though.
 

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I know, I know... they are being so tough on Lotronex! Aspirin would have had a really hard time getting FDA approval now, but many elderly folks take it daily to reduce the risk of a heart attack. (I don't touch the stuff since it can irritate your stomach...don't need any more of that!)I think there has been some argument that the Accutane suicides might not have been worsened by the drug...there are a lot of teen suicides, and a lot of teens on Accutane... but perhaps it does make problemsa little worse.To take Accutane, you have to have 2 negative pregnancy tests first, and keep going back for pregnancy tests every 3 or 6 weeks, I forget which, and I think also to make sure your liver is functioning fine.You'd think extra restrictions wouldn't deter profits for Lotronex, since so many people would take it, and keep taking it.I sure would be fine with extra restrictions if I could have near normal bowel function again!!I guess society and the FDA and Glaxo don't realize how more more embarassing and debilitating IBS-D can be!!! Lucky me, I didn't have bad acne, for which I could have taken many meds, but I do have IBS-D!
 

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Well it could be that the makers of Accutane were willing to live with the FDA restrictions.FDA didn't pull the drug. FDA said you can market it, but with the following restrictions. Glaxo said fine we won't sell it then.FDA can't force a company to sell a drug. Now that the merger thing with Glaxo and SmithKline is complete, maybe they'd be more willing to take the risk. I think part of the pull off the market had to do with getting the best deal out of the merger as possible. Having a big negative in the press does funny things to the value of your stocks.K.
 
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K. you bring up some very interesting points. Perhaps there would not have been a merger with the threat of more lawsuits, etc...! Aggravating how we have to suffer so a CEO can make a ton of $$$
 

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I have IBS and have been devastated by the withdrawal of Lotronex from the market. I have written, emailed, petitioned, etc., and agree with everyone that it should be made available to those of us for whom it was a Godsend. Having said this, I simply have to respond to the discussions regarding Accutane. In your distress over the removal of Lotronex, please do not point the finger at Accutane. Dr. Sidney Wolfe and Public Citizen have been trying to do to Accutane for years what they have successfully done to Lotronex. Severe cystic acne (I am not talking about "pimples" but large, puss filled cysts)is a horrible disease. Not only is it disfiguring, but it can be extremely painful in cases of extreme, nodular acne. The disease itself can cause depression in those who have it. The after effects of severe acne - facial and body scarring that last a lifetime - can also be psychologically devastating.I am a 51 year old woman who had severe cystic acne until the age of 35 when I took Accutane. Because I was unable to take any acne medications (specifically tetracycline) during my first pregnancy in 1979 at the age of 30 (before Accutane was available), I experienced the second worse case of acne that my dermatologist had ever seen. I have serious scarring on my face as a result of this. After taking Accutane my acne completely disappeared. I was able to go through a second pregnancy at age 40 with no acne whatsoever. My scarring, however, will be with me for the rest of my life. My family has a strong history of severe, cystic acne. Several of my family members have taken Accutane with excellent results. I have two children who have yet to go through puberty, and I am concerned that Accutane will not be available when they need it. Accutane is a very strong drug, which should only be taken under the close supervision of a specialist when less aggressive measures have not been effective. However, I strongly believe that it should remain available as an option for those for whom other treatments fail. The same can be said for Lotronex.
 

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I dunno if anyone is pointing the finger and saying take if off the market.What I see is frustration that drugs for other diseases that won't kill you, but can make death look a much better option than living, that have more deaths and/or serious side effects linked to them than Lotronex had linked to it are still available. I think they feel like for some reason the rules are different for Lotronex than have been used for other things, and they would like for Lotronex to be held to the same standard other things are rather than a much tougher one. K.
 

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I agree that everyone is frustrated, but I just don't want to see Public Citizen and the FDA do to Accutane what they have done to Lotronex.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
The question is not whether Accutane should be taken off the market, but rather why are the two drugs being treated differently. Why weren't Lotronex users given the same option of siging a release before taking the medication. I believe the difference is twofold. One, Accutane has been on the market for some time and the FDA was probably reluctant to remove it and in doing so maybe admitting that they missed something. Two, I believe the FDA action is related to the fact that IBS is looked at as a "minor" illness, mostly in one's head, so why put people at risk. I just wish that Lotronex users would have been given the same options as Accutane users.Tom
 
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