“…British soldiers are being given a controversial malaria drug that carries a higher risk of depression, anxiety and psychosis compared to its alternatives, an inquiry heard yesterday.
Dr Frances Nichol, of drugs manufacturer Roche, admitted to the Defence Select Committee that the drug Lariam, used by the military, had worse side effects than other common anti-malarials.
She warned that the drug should not be prescribed to soldiers with pre-existing conditions. But another Roche spokesman admitted there was a ‘risk’ that military personnel might not disclose previous mental health problems to officers for fear of damaging their careers…”
Roche’s anti-Malaria drug Mefloquine (which goes under the trade name Lariam) is a Malaria drug which has been dogged by controversy for at least a decade now. Roche were sued in Ireland recently because of the neuro-toxic effects of Lariam (there was an out of court settlement).
In proceedings initiated in 1999, Mr Bryce sued Roche Products (Ireland) Ltd; a medical doctor and Executive Medical Care Ltd, trading as Grafton Street Medical Centre, for damages for allegedly failing to warn him of all of the side-effects of the drug.
Mr Bryce claimed his delay in prosecuting his action was allegedly due to poor health since having taken the drug.
Mr Bryce had claimed he took Lariam prior to his honeymoon in Kenya in 1996.
He claimed he suffered panic attacks and dizziness and his health had deteriorated after returning from his honeymoon….”
The neuro-toxic effects of Roche’s Lariam have been well documented now, however GSK are developing their own anti-Malaria drug (which has yet to be fully licensed) called Tafenoquine.
Tafenoquine is in the same class of drug compounds as Mefloquine and there has been speculation that Tafenoquine could be even more neuro-toxic than Mefloquine (Lariam).
Dr Remington Nevin has been studying the neuro-toxicity of these drugs and there seems to be a lot of concerns raised about GSK’s Tafenoquine…
After the devastation caused by GSK products such as Myodil, Avandia, Seroxat and Pandemrix I think the public have a right to be concerned when GSK claims to have made a breakthrough drug don’t you?…
Seroxat (Paxil) was marketed as a breakthrough wonder drug for the treatment of depression and anxiety in the late 90’s but it wasn’t long after that people began to realize that Seroxat was closer to a killer drug than a wonder drug…
I will be keeping my eye on GSK’s Tafenoquine…
Personally I wouldn’t touch any GSK drug with a barge pole..
“…Through post-trial research, the ADF has confirmed mefloquine can cause side effects likened to that of PTSD, including agitation, mood swings, panic attacks, confusion, hallucinations, aggression, psychosis and suicidal thoughts in a small number of patients.
But Dr Remington Nevin, a leading international expert on mefloquine and tafenoquine, told the audience via Skype that the “information in the ADF consent forms undermined critical manufacturer’s safety information and understated known risks”.
He also said ADF subjects were not given information to allow for fully informed consent, attributing both failures to soldiers “experiencing lasting harm from the drug”.
AVM Smart the forum was a “step in the right direction” and provided important dialogue to inform “the next steps”.
“It was really beneficial to be able to listen and understand the experiences of those who attended so we can work on further reducing the barriers both current and ex serving members might encounter when trying to seek help,” she said.
The Department of Veterans Affairs declined to attend the forum….”
Check out the following links on
GSK’s Tafenoquine And Roche’s Mefloquine: