Showing posts with label malaria. Show all posts
Showing posts with label malaria. Show all posts

Thursday, December 13, 2018

Navy SEAL sues drug company for all others given Lariam

Navy SEAL Sues Roche over Malaria Drug, Claiming it Left Him Permanently Disabled
By Patricia Kime
12 Dec 2018

According to the Sheetses' lawyer, Kevin Boyle, the case is significant because it could "vindicate the fact that many veterans are suffering from a legitimate condition" and "ensure that those who are responsible for these serious injuries are held accountable."
Mosquito close-up. Getty Images 
A former Navy SEAL has filed a lawsuit against the company that makes the anti-malarial drug Lariam, or mefloquine, alleging that the medication left him permanently disabled after taking it while serving in Afghanistan.

Andrew Sheets and his wife, Kristie, of Cazadero, California, allege that pharmaceutical giant Hoffman-LaRoche, known as Roche, was aware that the drug caused serious neurological and psychiatric side effects and failed to warn patients of the dangers.

Sheets, who served in the U.S. Navy from 2000 to 2006, said he immediately experienced "violent and tragic nightmares" the first time he took Lariam, during a deployment in 2003. He later developed psoriasis, extreme paranoia, hallucinations, anxiety and suicidal thoughts.

"In February 2017, Mr. Sheets was finally described as permanently disabled by his treating physician because of his debilitating, Lariam-related mental disorders," court documents state.

For more than two decades, Lariam, also known by the generic name mefloquine, was distributed to troops to prevent malaria in endemic countries. At the peak of military use in 2003, nearly 50,000 prescriptions for mefloquine were written by military doctors.
read more here

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Canada Veterans Need to Look At US Reports on Mefloquine

In 2008 the VA issued a warning about Mefloquine, and there are other stories on this report going back to 2002.

Senator Dianne Feinstein wanted answers from Donald Rumsfeld in 2003
Veterans, families want answers over Forces' use of Mefloquine
Toronto Sun crime reporter Chris Doucette. (Sun files)
By Chris Doucette, Toronto Sun
Monday, January 23, 2017

The call for accountability over the Canadian Forces’ use of a controversial anti-malaria drug is growing louder and veterans and family members hope Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will hear their cries for help.

A former medic who served in Somalia, the wife of a soldier disgraced in the Somalia Affair, the mother of a soldier who killed himself in Rwanda and a doctor with expertise in the neuropsychiatric effects of Mefloquine toxicity recently submitted written statements to the Standing Committee on Veterans Affairs outlining the drugs’ devastation.

Marj Matchee writes her husband, Clayton, suffered paranoia and hallucinations prior to his 1993 arrest for the deadly beating of a Somali teen.

“You see things when you sleep. You see it in the daytime too,” she recalls him saying.

Many veterans who were forced to take the drug before it was licensed still suffer from side effects that Health Canada and AA Pharma, the Canadian supplier of the drug, quietly added to Mefloquine’s warning label last year.

“We must do more to reach out to these veterans, to acknowledge the harms that Mefloquine has caused them, and commit to funding research to study and ultimately try to reverse these effects,” Matchee writes.

Dr. Remington Nevin, of Johns Hopkins University, says Mefloquine toxicity can cause brain damage that mimics PTSD, so sufferers may receive the wrong treatment and symptoms such as suicidal thoughts persist.
read more here
These may help their case
Lariam Psychiatric and Suicidal Side Effects Research shows the anti-malaria drug mefloquine hydrochloride—formerly sold under the brand name Lariam—might cause psychiatric abnormalities, suicidal ideations and behaviors, and potentially permanent nerve damage. Because of these psychiatric side effects, the drug’s manufacturer, Hoffmann-La Roche, pulled it from the market in 2008. The U.S. Army continued to administer it to soldiers, however, until 2011, when the army ceased prescribing Lariam even for soldiers deployed in malaria-prone regions such as Afghanistan. In July 2013, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) notified the public that mefloquine products’ drug labels would be updated with a black box warning—the agency’s most serious kind—concerning the aforementioned side effects.

Monday, March 14, 2016

Australian Defence Force Face Off With Soldiers Over Lariam

Former soldiers, families face military officials in Townsville over anti-malaria drug side effects
ABC Australia
By Jesse Dorsett
Updated yesterday at 7:28pm

PHOTO: Mefloquine, also known as Lariam, is known to cause mental health problems.
(Flickr: David Davies)

The military's top brass has come face to face with former soldiers and their families suffering depression and anxiety after being given controversial anti-malaria drugs on deployment.
Key points: 2,000 ADF personnel given anti-malaria drug in East Timor over five years
Drug side effects include mood swings and suicidal thoughts
ADF says they did not know drugs would produce chronic problems
A forum has been held in Townsville, in north Queensland, to give former soldiers, ex-service organisations and health professional the chance to discuss the effects of anti-malaria medication Mefloquine, as well as the drug Tafenoquine.
Nearly 2,000 Australian Defence Force (ADF) personnel were prescribed Mefloquine, also known as Lariam, primarily in East Timor, between July 2000 and June 2015.

The drug is known to cause agitation, mood swings, panic attacks, confusion, hallucinations, aggression, psychosis and suicidal thoughts in a small number of patients.

Another 492 took Tafenoquine as part of a trial in 2000 and 2001.
read more here and remember US soldiers took it too!

Thursday, April 16, 2015

UK:Almost 1,000 Personnel Required Psychiatric Treatment After Taking Lariam

Almost 1,000 members of Armed Forces require psychiatric treatment after being given anti-Malaria drug linked to mental health problems
Daily Mail
15 April 2015

Almost 1,000 personnel required psychiatric treatment after taking drug
They were prescribed anti-malarial drug Lariam by the Ministry of Defence
The discredited product's side effects include psychosis and hallucinations
Retired Major General Alastair Duncan is currently in a psychiatric unit
He was prescribed the drug prior to a deployment in Sierra Leone

A retired major general is among 1,000 British service personnel requiring psychiatric treatment after taking an anti-malarial drug issued by the Ministry of Defence.

New figures released by the MoD show that since 2008, 994 personnel have been treated for mental health issues after having been prescribed Lariam.

Despite Lariam - the brand name for the drug mefloquine - being banned by the U.S. military due to concerns over side effects, the MoD has ignored appeals to stop prescribing it in what critics say is an escalating 'scandal'.
Major-General Alastair Duncan (pictured) is currently in a psychiatric unit after having been given the drug prior to a deployment in Sierra Leone

According to The Independent's Jonathan Owen, retired Major General Alastair Duncan is currently in a psychiatric unit following a Post Traumatic Stress Disorder episode four months ago.

Maj-Gen Duncan was given the drug Lariam before a deployment to Sierra Leone.

read more here

We did know about this, but they just stopped talking about it.

Links to medications suspected with non-combat deaths
April 27, 2004 DoD, VA to study malaria drug’s side effects Associated Press

The Department of Defense and the Department of Veterans Affairs will study the side effects of Lariam, a drug given to servicemen to prevent malaria, Pentagon spokesman Jim Turner said.

The use of Lariam came up in investigations of murders and murder-suicides involving Fort Bragg soldiers in the summer of 2002, when four soldiers were accused of killing their wives. Two of those soldiers committed suicide immediately and a third killed himself in jail.

The three soldiers who killed themselves had served in Afghanistan, where Lariam is routinely used by U.S. troops. The fourth, who is still awaiting trial, did not serve there.

A November 2002 report by the office of the Army Surgeon General said two of the four soldiers had taken Lariam, but the Army would not say which. The report said Lariam probably did not factor in the killings.

Turner said a subcommittee of the Armed Forces Epidemiological Board met two weeks ago to consider ways to study the use of Lariam among service members. A Veterans Affairs spokeswoman said the VA will review the issue but has not issued a report on the study.

Lariam, which is also known as mefloquine, is routinely prescribed to soldiers working in countries where malaria is a problem. Some people have blamed it for causing psychotic reactions, including depression, hallucinations and thoughts of suicide.

Doctor: Anti-malarial drug may be harmful
Army Times

In the past six weeks, Dr. Michael Hoffer has treated nine service members who returned from Iraq or Afghanistan unable to walk a straight line or stand still without staggering. Some said objects appeared to spin around them for more than an hour at a time.

A Navy commander and director of the Department of Defense Spatial Orientation Center at Naval Medical Center, San Diego, Hoffer believes the problems are linked to a drug called Lariam "known generically as mefloquine" that the military gives to troops to prevent malaria.

Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., has urged the Pentagon to set a timeline for a Defense Department study, announced in March, of negative effects from Lariam and other anti-malarial drugs.

And then there were more

VA Warns Doctors About Lariam, United Press International, 25 June 2004

And even more on Wounded Times for Lariam

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Military Marriages, Strained By War, Beginning To Heal

Military Marriages, Strained By War, Beginning To Heal
Huffington Post
David Wood
Posted: 07/03/2013

HATTERAS, N.C. -- Staff Sgt. Joe Payne, an Army combat engineer, survived Afghanistan. It was coming home seven years ago that shattered his marriage and nearly killed him.

"When he got home safe we thought it was the end of the biggest battle," Joe's wife Mary, now 31, told The Huffington Post. "We didn't realize that the biggest battles were still ahead."

A decade of war has taken a toll on the nation's military families. For years they have been lauded for their resilience, for enduring frequent deployments and the physical and mental wounds that often accompany their loved ones when they return. But now, with the pace of deployments easing, with combat troops retiring from the familiar structure of military service and trying to adjust to civilian life, marital strains are emerging.

A grinning, easy-going teenager, Joe Payne had enlisted in 1997 right out of high school in Asheville, N.C. He loved military life, including a 2003 deployment to Iraq. He and Mary were married in 2004. During his second tour, in 2005-2006, he traveled Afghanistan's roads to hunt down hidden improvised explosive devices, the deadly homemade explosives that have killed thousands of American troops and Afghans. These "route clearance" missions are among the military's most dangerous. Death was everywhere. Payne himself was shaken and stunned by dozens of blasts and was knocked unconscious twice.
read more here

Monday, April 19, 2010

Navy looks for answers after Seabee dies from malaria

Navy looks for answers after Seabee dies from malaria
By Nancy Montgomery, Stars and Stripes
European edition, Monday, April 19, 2010

HEIDELBERG, Germany — By the time he got to Landstuhl, Joshua Dae Ho Carrell was more dead than alive.

The Seabee was unconscious, with a tube stuck down his throat to help him breathe. His kidneys, liver and lungs were failing, and he was in shock, with his blood pressure falling.

Carrell, 23, was suffering from severe falciparum malaria, an infection of red blood cells acquired from mosquito bites that had sent parasites coursing through his bloodstream, sticking to capillaries, obstructing blood flow, damaging organs and, worst of all, causing his brain to swell.

It was three days before last Christmas. Carrell had been infected during a deployment to Liberia. He and 24 other Seabees from Naval Mobile Construction Battalion 3 were in the fourth month of a goodwill mission to renovate a hospital.
read more here
Navy looks for answers after Seabee dies from malaria

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Army dropped Lariam finally!!

Army scales back use of anti-malaria drug

Concerns centered on soldiers with brain injury, anxiety
By Kelly Kennedy - Staff writer
Posted : Sunday Mar 22, 2009 14:53:47 EDT

The Army has dropped Lariam — the drug linked to side effects including suicidal tendencies, anxiety, aggression and paranoia — as its preferred protection against malaria because doctors had inadvertently prescribed it to people who should not take it.

Lariam, the brand name for mefloquine, should not be given to anyone with symptoms of a brain injury, depression or anxiety disorder, which describes many troops who have deployed to Iraq or Afghanistan.

The Army’s new choice for anti-malarial protection is doxycycline, a generic antibiotic.

“In areas where doxycycline and mefloquine are equally efficacious in preventing malaria, doxycycline is the drug of choice,” Army Surgeon General Lt. Gen. Eric Schoomaker said in a memo dated Feb. 2.
go here for more

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

General physical health of veterans from Iraq and Afghanistan

The General Physical Health of Iraq and Afghanistan War Veterans
Wednesday July 2, 2008
Soldiers returning from Iraq and Afghanistan are showing high rates of PTSD, alcohol use, depression and difficulties with anger. Returning soldiers may also be at a heightened risk for physical health problems.
The experience of a traumatic event has been linked to a number of physical health problems as well as unhealthy behaviors, such as smoking and alcohol use. Obviously, being deployed in a war zone, such as Iraq or Afghanistan, increases the likelihood that a person will experience a traumatic event and thus be at a greater risk for developing PTSD and potential physical health problems. Soldiers deployed to a war zone, however, also face additional risk factors for physical health problems, including sustaining a physical injury and being exposed to environmental contaminants (dangerous chemicals).
Therefore, a study by researchers at the Seattle VA Hospital examined what factors (the experience of PTSD symptoms, physical injury, exposure to environmental contaminants) may be connected to physical health problems among Iraq and Afghanistan War veterans. You can read about their interesting findings here.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Firm 'misled' over malaria drug

Firm 'misled' over malaria drug

Malaria is spread by mosquitoes

Cosmetics chain Neal's Yard has dropped the sale of a homeopathic drug after watchdogs said customers were being misled that it could treat malaria.

The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) said the product was "clearly intended to be viewed as a treatment or preventive".

Neal's yard accepted that there was no clinical proof that Malaria Officinalis 30c worked.

The move follows a BBC Inside Out investigation in Devon.

All homeopathic remedies are classed as medicines and require prior authorisation by the MHRA, but Malaria Officinalis 30c has none.

The presenter of Inside Out South West, Janine Jansen, was sold the homeopathic remedy by Neal's Yard in Exeter and was advised that she could use it to help deal with malaria.

David Carter, head of the borderline team at the MHRA, said: "This product was clearly intended to be viewed as a treatment or preventive for malaria, which is a serious and potentially life-threatening disease.

"We regard the promotion of an unauthorised, self-medicating product for such a serious condition to be potentially harmful to public health and misleading."
go here for more

Thursday, March 27, 2008

IRAQ: Fever Named After Blackwater

IRAQ: Fever Named After Blackwater
By Ali al-Fadhily and Dahr Jamail*

FALLUJAH, Mar 26 (IPS) - Iraqi doctors in al-Anbar province warn of a new disease they call "Blackwater" that threatens the lives of thousands. The disease is named after Blackwater Worldwide, the U.S. mercenary company operating in Iraq.

"This disease is a severe form of malarial infection caused by the parasite plasmodium falciparum, which is considered the worst type of malarial infection," Dr. Ali Hakki from Fallujah told IPS. "It is one of the complications of that infection, and not the ordinary picture of the disease. Because of its frequent and severe complications, such as Blackwater fever, and its resistance to treatment, P. falciparum can cause death within 24 hours."

What Iraqis now call Blackwater fever is really a well-known medical condition, and while it has nothing to do with Blackwater Worldwide, Iraqis in al-Anbar province have decided to make the connection between the disease and the lethal U.S.-based company which has been responsible for the death of countless Iraqis.

The disease is most prevalent in Africa and Asia. The patient suffers severe intravascular haemolysis -- the destruction of red blood cells leading to kidney and liver failure. It also leads to black or red urination, and hence perhaps the new name 'Blackwater'.

The deadly disease, never before seen in Iraq on at least this scale, seems to be spreading across the country. And Iraq lacks medicines, hospitals, and doctors to lead a campaign to fight the disease.

"We informed the ministry of the disease, but it seems that they are not in a mood to listen," a doctor from the al-Anbar Health Office in Ramadi told IPS, speaking on condition of anonymity. "We are making personal contacts with NGOs in an attempt to get the necessary medicines."
go here for the rest
linked from RawStory