A drug that was put on suspension after being linked with thousands of deaths is finally being pulled from the shelves. Earlier this week, Bayer HealthCare Pharmaceuticals Inc. announced to the FDA and consumer groups that it plans to recover any Trasylol that is still left in the market.
Trasylol is a drug used to control bleeding during heart surgery. But last year, a Canadian study linked Trasylol to kidney problems, heart attacks, and strokes that can cause death. The company says that most remaining Trasylol is in storage or in doctors’ offices. Trasylol had been marketed aggressively by Bayer before it was finally taken off the market last fall.
In fact, part of what caused the drug to be removed in October was the previously mentioned Canadian study. The study was actually suspended in the middle of research because it became clear that patients taking Trasylol were at an increased risk for death.
While Bayer is taking Trasylol back, it will still be allowed for a limited number of patients who have no options for safe alternative treatments because of their specific conditions. However, doctors will have to document that the risk of not taking Trasylol is greater than the risk the drug itself presents.