In late August 20th, 2018, a popular blood pressure medication containing valsartan was issued recalled. Now, nearly four months later, the recall is expanding after heart medications with similar properties are now being linked to cancer.
The drug responsible for the recall is known as valsartan. The recall was discovered after the active ingredient, valsartan, was found to have an impurity: N-nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA).
According to the FDA, “NDMA is classified as a probable human carcinogen (a substance that could cause cancer) based on results from laboratory tests.” NDMA has been known to cause cancer.
However, the FDA also states that “Not all valsartan products contain NDMA, so pharmacists may be able to provide a refill of valsartan medication not affected by the recall, or doctors may prescribe a different medication that treats the same condition." To get a full list of the affected medications, click here.
Now, the newest drug company causing the expanded recall is called Mylan. The FDA shared that “Mylan Expands Its Voluntary Nationwide Recall of Valsartan Tablets, USP, Amlodipine and Valsartan Tablets, USP, and Valsartan and Hydrochlorothiazide Tablets, USP, to all Lots Within Expiry Due to The Detection of Trace Amounts of NDEA (N-Nitrosodiethylamine) Impurity Found in the Active Pharmaceutical Ingredient.”
The FDA shares that Valsartan “is used for the treatment of high blood pressure for the treatment of heart failure, and to reduce cardiovascular mortality following myocardial infarction. Valsartan in combination with amlodipine or hydrochlorothiazide is used for the treatment of high blood pressure.”
While the number of drugs affected is growing every day, it is essential to reach out to your doctor if you are currently using any medication with this Valsartan. Please consult your doctor.