Generically known as varenicline, Chantix is a pill that, by blocking the brain’s ability to crave and derive pleasure from nicotine, helps people stop smoking. Chantix was first approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in May 2006 and is currently produced by Pfizer. Throughout Europe, Chantix is sold under the brand name Champix.
It’s vital that patients take Chantix only as directed to minimize the risk of developing potentially serious side effects. To properly take this 12-week prescription medication, patients should:
- Take 1 white pill daily for the 1st through 3rd days
- Take 2 white pills (one in the morning and one at night) for days 4 to 7
- Take 2 blue pills daily (one in the morning and one at night) for the remaining 11 weeks
Currently, clinical trials indicate that Chantix is among the most effective medications for smoking cessation.
Chantix Side Effects
Chantix patients typically only develop minor, if any, side effects. The most common side effect of Chantix is nausea. Other mild Chantix side effects may include:
- Abdominal pain
- Abnormal dreams
Rarely, however, Chantix has been reported to cause a number of severe symptoms, including:
- Aggression and/or hostility
- Severe allergic reaction
- Suicidal thoughts and/or behaviors
Some research has indicated that Chantix may also play a role in causing:
- Epilepsy and/or abnormal muscle spasms
- Loss of glycemic control, thereby increasing the likelihood of developing diabetes
To avoid the life-threatening side effects associated with taking Chantix, patients should discuss their complete medical history with their doctor before starting a course of this medication. Additionally, it’s also essential that patients are aware of the symptoms of Chantix side effects so they know when they need to seek emergency medical treatment.
FDA Warnings About Chantix
In June 2009, the FDA announced that it would be conducting its own studies on Chantix side effects. A month later, the FDA mandated that Pfizer include “Black Box” warnings on all Chantix packaging in order to clarify the dangers associated with this medication. Black box warnings are the most serious FDA warning as they highlight a medication’s potential to cause fatality.
If you or a loved one has been injured by taking Chantix (or a loved one has died from Chantix complications), you will likely be entitled to a settlement for your medical bills, permanent disabilities, lost wages and pain and suffering. For more information about your legal rights, contact our dangerous drug lawyers today.