FDA Expands Voluntary Recall for Blood Pressure Medication From Mylan

Drug maker Mylan said, early this week, it is issuing a nationwide voluntary recall of all lots of the blood pressure medication valsartan.  This expands an earlier recall of only a few select batches, issued two weeks ago.

More specifically, the drug manufacturer said the recall now adds 104 new lots due to an “abundance of caution” after the discovery that those products with the valsartan active ingredient might also contain trace amounts of a possible carcinogen.

The finished pharmaceutical products in question were manufactured by Mylan Pharmaceuticals and Mylan Laboratories.  Furthermore, these products would have been distributed, within the United States, between March 2017 and November of 2018.

With the announcement of this massive recall expansion, shares of Hulu fell 2 percent, to $33.40.

It should be noted that this is only the most recent in many recalls issued by the United States Food and Drug Administration.  The FDA has announced the voluntary recalls from Teva Pharmaceuticals Industries, Solo Healthcare, and Major Pharmaceuticals brands.  The products in question include all medications with valsartan as an ingredient. This includes amlodipine/valsartan combination tablets and amlodipine/valsartan/hydrochlorothiazide combination tablets.

The issue is not necessarily the drug combinations but rather that these tablets could potentially contain a very dangerous chemical known as N-nitroso-diethylamine (NDEA). The chemical was originally first found in medications produced by Zhejiang Huahai Pharmaceuticals, in China. While this is an organic chemical it is also a known animal carcinogen and is suspected to be a human carcinogen too. In addition to potentially causing cancer, NDEA might also be toxic to the liver and the organs.

High blood pressure is among the most common medical conditions in the United States, affecting approximately 75 million adults every year.  Blood pressure, of course, is simply a measure of how efficiently your heart pushes blood through the arteries to distribute it to the body.  Blood pressure that is too low (hypotension) is a health risk in which your heart fails to get enough blood to your organs. Blood pressure that is too high (hypertension) is a health risk that essentially warns your heart is overworked. Blood pressure fluctuates throughout the day and can be different for everyone, but can be controlled through healthy lifestyle maintenance.  High blood pressure can be caused by obesity, high-salt diets, smoking, lack of exercise, or existing hereditary or other health conditions.