Drug safety may be underestimated for chronic-use drugs.  The FDA has placed more resources and requirements in evaluating drugs premarket than it does in monitoring what happens to patients after years of taking a medication.  Drugs that have recently underscored the potential dangers of chronic use are Avandia (diabetes; enhanced cardiovascular risk) and bisphosphonates (e.g., Fosamax, Actonel, and Boniva;  enhanced bone fracture/degeneration risks).  Although one proposed solution is the development of a national database that would track drug use and complications, this does not necessarily address duration of use, presence/duration of concomitant medications/supplements, patient age and medical history, genetic predisposition, etc.   Predominant trends will likely be noted using the proposed methodology, but a more multifaceted analysis will still be necessary to optimize the risk/benefit for individual patients.

Source: FairWarning

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2 Responses to “How to ensure the long-term safety of chronic use drugs?”

  1. Maryse Picher Says:

    Long-term drug efficacy should also be a concern for the FDA. Dr. Beest recently published a 3-year study for inhaled drugs in COPD patients (Respiratory Medicine 2010, in press). Their findings were staggering! The persistence rates of all long-acting drugs tested were less than 20% after three years.

  2. cdavenport Says:

    Excellent point Maryse! Thanks for contributing!

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