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» LymeNet Flash » Questions and Discussion » Medical Questions » Biaxin/Clarithromycin Shortage

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Author Topic: Biaxin/Clarithromycin Shortage
kj15
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Has anyone else had a problem getting their Clarithromycin/Biaxin filled? Apparently there is a widespread manufacturer shortage. I had to get Zithro instead. I hope they are similar enough.

--------------------
SICK AUG 2010 / DIAGNOSED AUG 2011
LYME IGENEX WB CDC POSITIVE IGM: 31++ 34IND 39+ 41+ 83-93+
CLINICAL DIAGNOSIS: Bartonella and Babesia
REMISSION MAY 2012-DEC 2014
SEVERE RELAPSE JAN 2015
STILL WORKING SLOWLY TOWARD REMISSION AGAIN IN 2019

Posts: 39 | From N. Illinois | Registered: Jun 2011  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Marcie
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biaxin for me is stronger. i have not had a problem
Posts: 323 | From Michigan | Registered: Sep 2006  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
lymeboy
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thats wierd, today my pharmacy sent me hone with a short dose of the only pills they had in store. I will have to go back tommorrow. They gave me the small - 250 pills. I have to take 4 at a time!
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piper
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I live in NYC. Duane Reade Pharmacy has told me Biaxin is on backorder until at least October!

I have enough to get through until my next LLMD appointment this Friday. Will be interesting to see what alternate antibiotic will be prescribed.

Posts: 119 | From New York New York | Registered: May 2010  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
2roads
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Same problem here in Indiana.

I hope that back order doesn't mean recall, and that there's something unsafe going on-

Posts: 2214 | From West Chester, PA | Registered: Aug 2003  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
LymeThyme
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I just refilled my prescription today and had no problem. I was not advised of any shortage.
Posts: 21 | From Virginia | Registered: Sep 2010  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
kj15
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I did a google search and found that there was no recall, but that for some unknown reason all the manufacturers have it on back order. This was supposed to be my first time starting on it, so I called my Dr. and got Zithro instead.

I guess I could call around to other pharmacies and see if anyone has it, but then I'm afraid of just running out and not be able to get anymore. I'll just stick with what I have for now.

--------------------
SICK AUG 2010 / DIAGNOSED AUG 2011
LYME IGENEX WB CDC POSITIVE IGM: 31++ 34IND 39+ 41+ 83-93+
CLINICAL DIAGNOSIS: Bartonella and Babesia
REMISSION MAY 2012-DEC 2014
SEVERE RELAPSE JAN 2015
STILL WORKING SLOWLY TOWARD REMISSION AGAIN IN 2019

Posts: 39 | From N. Illinois | Registered: Jun 2011  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
2roads
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Thanks for looking into it kj15.

I am still suspicious though because I don't understand how this situation could occur. You manufacture what you need. If there is a problem with the drug you stop and investigate, hence shortage. Or perhaps a few bad batches dumped, hence shortage.

I don't know. Maybe I'm thinking too far outside the box.

We are on it, but I am nervous now. Don't trust people as much as I used to and maybe they are trying to avoid a panic scare.

ugh

Posts: 2214 | From West Chester, PA | Registered: Aug 2003  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Beth22
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just got mine filled 350 bucks. i said no way, it was 37.00 last time. she said huge price increase. I said I'll pass. she said can get it from another manufacturer for 98.00 WTF
Posts: 236 | From Zionsville IN | Registered: Jan 2011  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
2roads
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Was that generic Beth?

If so, wow! I guess itsa reminder of the effects of supply and demand.

I looked into the shortage as well. Two companies (one from India and one from Canada, I believe) were FDA banned due to not meeting certain factory production codes, but the drug itself was not recalled.

The other Pharmaceutical companies are on back order, but we don't know why. Apparently, they do not have to tell the FDA why, info is voluntary. I don't know if they would be because they have to supply more due to the ban on the other labs, or what.

Anyone else hear of anything?

Posts: 2214 | From West Chester, PA | Registered: Aug 2003  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
2roads
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Was that generic Beth?

If so, wow! I guess itsa reminder of the effects of supply and demand.

I looked into the shortage as well. Two companies (one from India and one from Canada, I believe) were FDA banned due to not meeting certain factory production codes, but the drug itself was not recalled.

The other Pharmaceutical companies are on back order, but we don't know why. Apparently, they do not have to tell the FDA why, info is voluntary. I don't know if they would be because they have to supply more due to the ban on the other labs, or what.

Anyone else hear of anything?

Posts: 2214 | From West Chester, PA | Registered: Aug 2003  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
lymeboy
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I just read about a class action lawsuit against the makers of Biaxin in Quebec.
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Beth22
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yes, generic. unbelievable.
Posts: 236 | From Zionsville IN | Registered: Jan 2011  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
2roads
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OH MY Beth [Eek!]

Did you read what it was about Lymeboy?

Posts: 2214 | From West Chester, PA | Registered: Aug 2003  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Pam08
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This is what I just found online...

"Class action againt antibiotic authorized
Posted By: Trudie Mason [email protected] 7/28/2011 7:30:00 AM

Quebec Superior Court has authorized a class action lawsuit against the makers of of the antibiotic Biaxin. The drug is made by Abbott Laboratories in St. Laurent.

The lawsuit alleges serious psychological side effects. The woman at the heart of the class action took Biaxin in 2005 for pneumonia. She developed a psychosis and ended up mistaking her hand for a tomato, badly mutilating her thumb with a knife.

About twenty other people have asked to be part of the lawsuit."

--------------------
Sick since 10/2001. Tested CDC positive for Lyme 10/2008 through Quest and Igenex. Started treatment 1/2009 with LLMD. Lyme, Erichilosis, Chlamydophila Pneumoniae, Q Fever, Strep Syndrome and probably a few others I am forgetting.

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Pam08
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Here is another...

"Certification of the "BIAXIN" class action

Lack of disclosure of risk and secondary effects related to the Biaxin antibiotic
- Consumer protection / Manufacturer Liability -

MONTREAL, July 28, 2011 /CNW Telbec/ - The Superior Court of Qubec (the Honourable Suzanne Hardy-Lemieux) authorized Angle Brosseau et Jean-Claude to act as representative in a class action against ABBOTT Ltd on behalf of all natural persons (Qubec) and who have sustained damages resulting from secondary effects of psychiatric troubles induced by BIAXIN medicine manufactured commercialized and distributed by ABBOTT Laboratory. Damages are estimated up 10 Millions dollars for this class action lawsuit.

Cases of psychosis, hallucinations, depersonalization and suicidal behaviour were reported to happen to adults and children who have taken Biaxin.

All person who have taken BIAXIN in Canada and has suffer of similar problems are invited to contact BGA Barristers & Solicitors LLP: [email protected], 1-866-523-4222.

For more information on this class action, please see the French Certification Judgment at: www.bga-law.com/biaxin-autorisation "

--------------------
Sick since 10/2001. Tested CDC positive for Lyme 10/2008 through Quest and Igenex. Started treatment 1/2009 with LLMD. Lyme, Erichilosis, Chlamydophila Pneumoniae, Q Fever, Strep Syndrome and probably a few others I am forgetting.

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lymeboy
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Now I am wondering if my psych issues (suicidal, rages, psychotic) are not Bart at all.

Been taking Biaxin for 2.5 months

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Kudzuslipper
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wow. I just switched to generic biaxin and have not felt this good since i started on ABX three months ago. it's only been 10 days. I really hope I can refill it. right before I switched I found this site...kind of interesting how varied the reviews are...

http://www.askapatient.com/viewrating.asp?drug=50662&name=BIAXIN

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2roads
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Okay, now I'm freaking out.
Posts: 2214 | From West Chester, PA | Registered: Aug 2003  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
2roads
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What does this mean to us who have taken it?
Posts: 2214 | From West Chester, PA | Registered: Aug 2003  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
erikjh1972
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ok, so a few people freaked out. doesnt happen to the majority of people just like leaquin doesnt rupture everybody's tendons.

--------------------
3 months Doxy
8 months of Tetra
7 months of Biaxin/Plaq.
4 months Doxy/Biaxin/Plaq.
5 months Biaxin/Plaq.
Back on Doxy/Biax/Plaq
On the road to recovery.
Trying to make people Lyme Aware.......

Posts: 289 | From R.I. | Registered: Jun 2009  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Pam08
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Yeah...I think the good thing about is that so far not too many people are a part of the lawsuit. There are only about 20 so far. Hopefully there won't be a lot more people joining in.

So at the moment it doesn't look like this is a very common side effect.

Also from reading the link of reviews it does look like it seems to happen pretty soon after starting the drug. Also it looks like once they stopped it they were ok after that. There was only one girl on that reviews thread who was having longer term problems. BUT she did say that after 8 months she was finally starting to get back to normal.

So it doesn't look like there was permanent damage done to people but I don't know if that is the case for the people participating in the lawsuit or not.

I think we need to wait and hear more about the lawsuit.

I just wanted people to know that the shortage of the drug is due to a lawsuit/side effects.

--------------------
Sick since 10/2001. Tested CDC positive for Lyme 10/2008 through Quest and Igenex. Started treatment 1/2009 with LLMD. Lyme, Erichilosis, Chlamydophila Pneumoniae, Q Fever, Strep Syndrome and probably a few others I am forgetting.

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2roads
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I don't know erikjh. I agree with the concept of what you are saying, but the playing field is different. I mean, we all know there's side effects that may or may not occur with any drug. We have to outweigh the risks vs the benefits.

But, assuming we are in that small group, I'd much rather take a ruptured tendon then loosing more marbles then I've already lost.

That is a side effect I wouldn't want to gamble with.

The other thing is, it's not really clear the timeframe on this secondary effect, or the mental/physical state of the patients joining this Class Action Suit. So, it's hard to put boundaries on the effect, making it more foreboding. It's also not clear to me if this is due to the chemical structure of the Biaxin, or maybe impurities found at a specific lab.

I'm just thinking out loud. Everyone has to do what they have to do. Maybe if it was me I was worried about it wouldn't matter as much.

Best to all.

Any new info anyone finds on the subject, please post.

kj15, I think the two drugs are interchangeable. They are in the same antibiotic class. Thanks for posting this.

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thomasx
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I was told by pharmacist that the price just spiked. Used to be about $40 for Rx, now it's $160-180 here in PA.

Not that we want unsafe drugs, but lawsuits are just going to kill the manufacturers of these and all drugs. You can't keep heaping on these guys and expect them to survive. Where will you be when there are no more pharma companies?

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one4islands
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Tried for 3 weeks here home various pharmacies for Biaxin XL-none at all.

Had to get a new rx for Biaxin and got the generic Clarithromycin.

I can only imagine being a chemo patient and not being able to get those meds. Very sad/scary situation.

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Lymedin2010
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Same here in Orange county, NY.

No regular Biaxin in Rite Aid, but I was lucky enough to be able to get Biaxin XL.

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twicebitten
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I just filled 2 rx's (mine and dd) for clarithromycin a couple days ago. LLMD always writes that rather than biaxin. I had no problems or issues. They just didn't have enough pills so it took an extra day. No increase in price from before.
The one rx that was WAY more than ever before was singulair for dd. It was over $100 with my insurance.
Also, the don't sell prescription allegra (fexofenadine) anymore she said. Have to buy it OTC which is WAY more expensive and they didn't have dd's dose.
So, I decided to switch her to claritan for a while and picked up OTC version @ wally world for under $8..

--------------------
One day at a time

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erikjh1972
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well looks like the shortage hit R.I. now, luckily got the Biaxin XL's. wth.

--------------------
3 months Doxy
8 months of Tetra
7 months of Biaxin/Plaq.
4 months Doxy/Biaxin/Plaq.
5 months Biaxin/Plaq.
Back on Doxy/Biax/Plaq
On the road to recovery.
Trying to make people Lyme Aware.......

Posts: 289 | From R.I. | Registered: Jun 2009  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
erikjh1972
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well looks like the shortage hit R.I. now, luckily got the Biaxin XL's. wth.

--------------------
3 months Doxy
8 months of Tetra
7 months of Biaxin/Plaq.
4 months Doxy/Biaxin/Plaq.
5 months Biaxin/Plaq.
Back on Doxy/Biax/Plaq
On the road to recovery.
Trying to make people Lyme Aware.......

Posts: 289 | From R.I. | Registered: Jun 2009  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
miklizro
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We can only get the extended release version, everything else is on backorder.
Posts: 21 | From Cape Cod, Ma | Registered: Aug 2011  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
   

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