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CVS Pulls Popular Cold Medicines From Store Shelves

Nature

CVS said Thursday that it was voluntarily removing some common cough and cold products after a Food and Drug Administration (FDA) advisory committee determined last month that its active ingredient did not work.

“We are voluntarily removing certain oral cough and cold products that contain phenylephrine as the sole active ingredient from CVS Pharmacy stores,” a CVS spokesperson said. “Other oral cough and cold products will continue to be offered to meet consumer needs. »

“We are aware of the position of the FDA Advisory Committee on Oral Phenylephrine (PE) and will follow FDA guidelines to ensure that the products we sell comply with all laws and regulations,” the spokesperson continued. word.

The move comes just a month after the FDA’s 16-member Over-the-Counter Drug Advisory Committee (NDAC) agreed that oral phenylephrine, found in common versions of Sudafed, Mucinex, Vicks, Allegra and Dayquil, is not effective in relieving nasal congestion. .

CVS states that they are voluntarily removing certain oral cough and cold products that contain phenylephrine as the only active ingredient.
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The FDA clarified that neither the agency nor the committee raised concerns about safety issues related to the use of oral phenylephrine at the recommended dose.

The committee’s goal is to provide independent advice and recommendations to the FDA, but the government agency makes final decisions.

Although the FDA has not made any determination regarding the product’s effectiveness, CVS has decided to recall the products.

CVS released a statement saying it will follow FDA guidance to ensure products sold comply with all laws and regulations.
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A Walgreens spokesperson told FOX Business it is “closely monitoring the situation and actively collaborating with the Walgreens Office of Clinical Integrity and suppliers on appropriate next steps.”

Representatives for Rite Aid did not immediately respond to FOX Business’ request for comment.

Following the panel’s discussion, the FDA issued a notice alerting consumers that there are a range of effective products to treat symptoms other than congestion.

The committee’s recommendations also only addressed orally administered phenylephrine and not the nasal spray form, according to the FDA.

Since CVS’s announcement, the FDA has not made any decisions regarding the product’s effectiveness.
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While some products contain only phenylephrine, others contain phenylephrine and another active ingredient like acetaminophen or ibuprofen, which treats symptoms like headaches or muscle pain.

“The presence of phenylephrine in these products does not affect how the other active ingredients work to treat these symptoms,” the FDA said in a September statement.

Because a variety of different pharmaceutical products may be sold under the same brand, “consumers should always read the drug label to determine what ingredients a drug contains, as well as important warnings and directions for use,” warned the agency.

If the entire agency determines that oral phenylephrine is not effective, which would be a lengthy process and involve public input, it said it would “work closely with manufacturers to reformulate the products as necessary to help ensure the availability of safe and effective products to treat symptoms of oral phenylephrine.” colds or allergies.

Nature

New York Post

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