There has been an interesting development in the wide, wide, wicked world of modern medicine this month. The Food and Drug Administration has “asked” the drug cartel Endo Pharmaceuticals to immediately stop selling its slow-release tablets of a narcotic painkiller, which has been a serious moneymaker for the company since 2012.
The drug in question – Opana ER – is a reformulation of oxymorphone, which is a synthetic form of morphine. The drug was originally marketed as a nasal spray in 2006. But abusers were finding it easy to snort and thus, overdose. Now there’s a news flash.
And so, to make the drug delivery system safer, they combined the ingredients into an extremely hard tablet – resistant to breaking, crushing, dissolving or chewing. Even so, drug abusers are finding numerous, lethal ways to kill themselves with Opana ER, which is far more powerful than morphine.
“After careful consideration, we are seeking removal based on concern that the benefits of the drug may no longer outweigh its risks. We are facing an opioid epidemic. It is a public health crisis, and we must take all necessary steps to reduce the scope of opioid abuse.” (FDA Commissioner Dr Scott Gottlieb)
This is the first time in history, apparently, that the FDA has moved to ban an already-approved opioid pain medication, due to consequences of abuse.
“We will continue to take regulatory steps when we see situations where an opioid product’s risks outweigh its benefits, not only for its intended patient population but also in regard to its potential for misuse and abuse,” Gottlieb said.
“The abuse and manipulation of reformulated Opana ER by injection has resulted in a serious disease outbreak. When we determined that the product had dangerous unintended consequences, we made a decision to request its withdrawal from the market.” (Janet Woodcock, MD, Director, Center for Drug Evaluation and Research)
So if Endo Pharmaceuticals chooses to obey the FDA “request” – that will result in at least ONE dangerous drug taken out of the public abuse-arsenal. Not to worry. There are still thousands more out there to pop into your goofy and gullible mouth. Just for fun, here’s a list of other, legal drugs that kill just about 300 of us every day of the year: