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We’re Not the Only Ones! Cleveland Clinic Cardiologist Concerned About Generic Metoprolol

We’re Not the Only Ones! Cleveland Clinic Cardiologist Conce...

Last week the FDA announced another metoprolol succinate recall. This time it was from the Indian generic drug company Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories. The 25 mg metoprolol pills failed a dissolution test. In other words, they didn’t dissolve according to specifications. This is the fourth generic drug company to have problems with metoprolol succinate.This is a very big deal. Nearly 40 million prescriptions were written for metoprolol last year.

We have been receiving complaints about generic formulations of this beta blocker heart medicine since 2007, not long after the brand name Toprol-XL lost its exclusive patent. We used to think we were the only ones who cared about this issue. But a New York Times article published on Tuesday, June 24th, 2014, suggests that there are others who share our concerns.

To read about Cleveland Clinic cardiologist Harry Lever’s experience with patients on generic metoprolol, click on this link.

Here are some recent posts from visitors to our website:

“I have been hospitalized 3 times in the last two years with A-Fib, then DVTs/PEs [deep vein thrombosis & pulmonary embolism caused by blood clots] and then severe iron deficient anemia. The last 2 were also with A-Fib as well. I have been on metoprol XL since prior to the first A-Fib hospitalization. I remember being changed from round to diamond shaped tablets a short time before that episode and feeling the arrhythmia followed by GI problems.

Admission diagnosis was dehydration induced A-Fib. Now I wonder…. Being an RN it is hard to face patients and say check what your pills look like and if they change shape, color size, do not trust them. We are responsible for teaching side effects, and now this as well. Hard to build patient trust in light of this new info.” Emma

“I was put on Metoprol Succinate E.R., 50 mg Tab 1 tab 2 times a day when I had to be admitted into the hospital for tachycardia [rapid heart rate]. I was found to have supra ventricular arrhythmias as well as mild hypertension and migraines. I noticed right away that I have to take this on time or even early or else I get weak, very rapid heart rate and high BP. If I miss one, which I cannot do, I am sick for hours. Is this normal?

“This medicine scares me! I think it caused my blood pressure to elevate when it runs out. I would give anything to be able to quit this and the many other dangerous medications I’m on for multiple illnesses.. The FDA is not doing their job in our favor it seems.” B.T.

Share your own experience with generic metoprolol succinate below. Has one manufacturer worked better than another for you?

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About the Author
Joe Graedon is a pharmacologist who has dedicated his career to making drug information understandable to consumers. His best-selling book, The People’s Pharmacy, was published in 1976 and led to a syndicated newspaper column, syndicated public radio show and web site. In 2006, Long Island University awarded him an honorary doctorate as “one of the country's leading drug experts for the consumer.” .
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