Quit smoking drug linked to depression and suicide
Posted Nov 27 2008 10:55am
Champix, a stop smoking wonder drug prescribed to nearly 400,000 people in the UK to help them give up nicotine has been linked to severe depression and suicidal thoughts.
Launched two years ago, scientists and researchers claimed Champix (known clinically as Varenicline) was more effective than alternative therapies in helping people give up smoking.
Across the world, 9 million people are said to use the drug which mimics the effects of nicotine to help reduce the desire to smoke and aids nicotine withdrawal.
However, stories are now emerging in the media about people who are taking the drug suffering with depression while some people are attempting to take their own life, and succeeding.
In Britain alone, 3,000 people have complained about the drug’s effects with nearly 300 reporting suicidal thoughts. 10 people taking the drug have killed themselves.
In the US, court cases have been filed against Pfizer, the company who make the drug. The company have been quick to point out that the drug does come with a warning about possible side-effects but there is no proof about a risk of suicide.
The European body for licensing pharmaceutical drugs is monitoring Champix but currently feels the benefits of the drug outweigh any possible risks.
While the powers that be monitor that situation, smokers do have a choice to avoid drug treatment when trying to quit and take a natural approach that has no adverse side-effects.