The producer of the capable painkiller OxyContin said it will quit marketing opioid drugs to specialists, bowing to a key request of claims that accuse the organization for helping trigger the present medication manhandle pandemic.
OxyContin has for quite some time been the world’s best offering opioid painkiller, getting billions in deals for secretly held Purdue, which additionally offers a more up to date and longer-enduring opioid tranquilize called Hysingla.
The organization declared its unexpected inversion Saturday. Purdue’s announcement said it dispensed with the greater part its business staff a week ago and will never again send deals agents to specialists’ workplaces to talk about opioid drugs. Its residual deals staff of around 200 will center around different prescriptions.
The OxyContin pill, a time-release version of oxycodone, was hailed as a breakthrough treatment for chronic pain when it was approved in late 1995.
It worked over 12 hours to maintain a steady level of oxycodone in patients suffering from a wide range of pain ailments. But some users quickly discovered they could get a heroin-like high by crushing the pills and snorting or injecting the entire dose at once. In 2010, Purdue reformulated OxyContin to make it harder to crush and stopped selling the original form of the drug.
More Than 500,000 people died of drug overdose in 2000
Government cracking down on doctors fraudulently selling Opioids
Purdue eventually acknowledged that its promotions exaggerated the drug’s safety and minimized the risks of addiction. After federal investigations, the company and three executives pleaded guilty in 2007 and agreed to pay more than $600 million for misleading the public about the risks of OxyContin. But the drug continued to rack up blockbuster sales.
Andrew Kolodny, director of opioid policy research at Brandeis University and an advocate for stronger regulation of opioid drug companies, said Purdue’s decision is helpful, but it won’t make a major difference unless other opioid drug companies do the same.
“It is difficult to promote more cautious prescribing to the medical community because opioid manufacturers promote opioid use,” Dr. Kolodny said.
Allergan, which makes three opioid pain medications, said it has not actively marketed those drugs in years, and Janssen Pharmaceuticals, a unit of Johnson & Johnson, said it stopped marketing the medications in 2015.
Both said opioid drugs make up a very small portion of their total revenue. Another drugmaker, Insys, said it was not able to comment immediately, while Teva Pharmaceutical Industries did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Dr. Kolodny said that opioids are useful for cancer patients who are suffering from severe pain, and for people who only need a pain medication for a few days. But he said the companies have promoted them as a treatment for chronic pain, where they are more harmful and less helpful, because it’s more profitable.
“They are still doing this abroad,” Dr. Kolodny added. “They are following the same playbook that they used in the United States.”
Purdue Pharma does business only in the U.S. It is associated with two other companies, Mundipharma and …read more
Source:: Week Facts – Health