Have you suffered serious self-inflicted injury as a result of taking Chantix? Has a loved one committed suicide as a result of taking Chantix? If this is the case, you really should contact a personal injury attorney and request a free consultation to have the circumstances surrounding a potential claim evaluated.
Chantix (varenicline) is a prescription medication that is used to treat smoking addiction. Varenicline is a nicotinic receptor partial agonist. What this means is that it stimulates nicotine receptors more weakly than nicotine itself does. In this respect, Chantix is similar to cytisine.
Cytisine, which is also known as baptitoxine and sophorine, is a toxic alkaloid that occurs naturally in several plant genera, such as Labumum and Cytisus of the family Fabaceae. In spite of its toxicity, cytosine has been used medically to help stop smoking. Cytosine is not as effective but much cheaper than similar stop smoking products.
Chantix is different from other stop smoking products, such as the nicotinic antagonist, bupropion, and other nicotine replacement therapies (NRTs) like nicotine gum and nicotine patches. As a partial agonist, Chantix reduces the cravings for and decreases the pleasurable effects of cigarettes and other tobacco products. Chantix has proven to be effective in the cessation of smoking.
Varenicline was discovered at Pfizer through research that was aimed at modifying the structure of cytisine. Varenicline, marketed in the United States by Pfizer as Chantix, received a "priority review" by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in February 2006. This shortened the usual 10-month review period to 6 months because of its demonstrated effectiveness in clinical trials and a perceived lack of safety issues. Chantix was approved for use in the United States by the FDA on May 11, 2006, and was made available for sale on August 1, 2006.
FDA Reports about Chantix
However, between May 2006 and December 2007, the FDA received these following adverse event reports that were associated with the use of Chantix. They were:
- 227 reports of suicidal acts, thoughts or behavior
- 397 cases of possible psychosis
- 525 reports of hostility or aggression
In February 2008, the FDA issued an alert that highlighted important changes that were made to the Chantix warning label concerning potential psychiatric side effects. These included severe changes in behavior and mood and information about suicides and suicide attempts. Since the release of Chantix in 2006, there have been hundreds of reports of suicides and serious suicidal thoughts that have been linked to the medication.
Side Effects of Chantix
There are other side effects that are associated with the use of Chantix. Some of these are:
- Abnormal dreams
- Problems sleeping
- Abdominal pain
- Cardiovascular disease
It has been alleged that Pfizer failed to adequately warn users concerning the risk of Chantix suicide side effects. In doing so, it is alleged that this prevented people from recognizing the thoughts that may be caused by Chantix before it resulted in serious physical injury or death.
Again, if you have suffered serious self-inflicted injury or a loved one has committed suicide as a result of taking Chantix, you really ought to let a personal injury attorney evaluate your case.