Again, the stop smoking drug, Chantix, has made the news, and for a very sad reason.
The recent news story we are referring to is a pending lawsuit against Pfizer, Inc.
Parents of a Dallas Musician by the name of Carter Albrecht have filed the suit due to the death of their son who died while on the drug.
The report on CBS 11 stated the suit presses that Pfizer did not disclose the side effects and risks of taking Chantix, nor did they provide the adequate warning of the type of side effects that were known at the time Albrecht began ingesting the drug to quit his smoking habit.
Albrecht’s death occurred only one week after starting Chantix drug therapy. This was back in September 2007. Albrecht began to complain he was having very vivid dreams shortly after beginning the drug. Then, according to a Dallas Morning News report, Albrecht violently lashed out at his girlfriend the night of his death. She told others he was quite confused and terrified, and didn’t seem to know or recognize her, which was something that had never happened before.
Later that evening Albrecht showed up at a neighbors home and began banging on the back door violently, which evidently scared the neighbor. He called 911 and fired a warning shot from his rifle. Unfortunately, the shot accidentally hit Albrecht and killed him.
In the parents lawsuit they claim their son’s use of Chantix played a “direct and proximate” role in his death. One hope is that the attention of this lawsuit might prompt Pfizer to step up its public awareness of the risks associated with this approved drug.
Some of our site’s readers have reported they are on Chantix and doing okay (coping with the side effects). Others have said they understand the Chantix side effects and feel the risk is worth it. Still others have stopped taking the drug completely due to its effects.
At least those who have reportedly taken the drug who have commented at CiggyFree.com have been warned through reports they found on the internet disclosing Chantix may not be as safe they were led to believe. Hopefully, their doctors also stated the warning.
The net is an incredible resource and a person can research views on just about anything. It’s very sad that Carter Albrecht did not receive the proper warnings. Perhaps it would have made a difference in his fate.
Maybe he would have also taken seriously the warning of mixing prescription drugs and alcohol like he did on the night of his death. Pfizer’s attorneys will most likely use this as a strong issue in their defense.
The Albrecht family’s lawsuit is not the first against Pfizer. There are many. The US Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation has a hearing scheduled at the end of September 2009 to view all the federal Chantix lawsuits with the intention to determine if they should be consolidated into one district.
At the beginning of September, Pfizer was hit hard with the largest health care fraud settlement in the history of the Department of Justice. They were asked to pay a 2.3 Billion dollar settlement over the illegal promotion of the painkiller Bextra.
In summary, yes, smoking can kill you. The use and misuse of prescription drugs can also kill you.
We highly support seeking alternative approaches to quit smoking. There are proven herbal stop smoking aids and stop smoking support programs that help address the motivation to smoke. These may be far better choices. Many of the programs CiggyFree.com supports report between a 92 to 96 percent success rate, plus they have guarantees or your money back.
Alternative approaches just may improve the quality of your life versus leading you down a path of unknown fate. That’s our opinion.