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Case study: Risks of Seroxat

MagazineOctober 1993 (Vol. 4 Issue 7)Case study: Risks of Seroxat

I've just been reading an issue of WDDTY (Vol 2 No 1) about Seroxat, the new anti depressant

I've just been reading an issue of WDDTY (Vol 2 No 1) about Seroxat, the new anti depressant. I was on this medication for about four or five months, but from having IBS with permanent diarrhoea I finished up with a bowel completely non functioning and for several weeks spent most of my days in the bathroom with suppositories and enemas before another consultant helped me.

I wrote to SmithKline as I felt their information literature should carry a warning. I was astounded at the rudeness of the reply, which completely ignores this point. If this is the attitude generally, I'm not surprised so much litigation ensues. C T, Sanderstead.....SmithKline Beecham hid behind the law in Britain against pharmaceutical companies providing information to patients. It is a nonsense. Glaxo have recently written to us saying that pharmaceutical companies can provide the full Datasheet on request. Here's the SmithKline letter, readers, for your interest:

Dear Mrs T

Thank you for your letter regarding the adverse symptoms you experienced during therapy with Seroxat.

I am sorry to hear that you developed these symptoms, but I am afraid that we cannot help you directly. Seroxat is intended for use on a doctor's prescription and we are therefore bound by the code of practice of our professional body, the Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry, not to provide members of the public with advice on personal medical matters. However, I can reassure you that the safety profile of our products is extensively investigated both during clinical trials prior to marketing and in the postmarketing period.

I can only suggest that you return to your doctor and ask for advice on the symptoms experienced. If your doctor would like further information he can contact us directly.

Alternatively, you could, with your doctor's permission of course, let us know his name and address and we will make further enquiries.


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