Despite warning, doctors stick with patch

August 28, 2007

Many doctors are overlooking Food and Drug Administration warnings about delivering the painkiller fentanyl through a skin patch.

In 2005, after the opium-like drug killed a number of patients, the FDA issued a warning that said the painkiller in patch form should be prescribed in low doses and was not be used for patients recovering from surgery, the Los Angeles Times reported Monday.

But since then hundreds of patients have died because healthcare providers have not gotten the message, and prescriptions of the patch did not decrease after the warning was issued.

The problem is even more pressing because a number of other drugs are beginning to be available in patch form, the newspaper said. Though patches can be an easier way to administer drugs, it is more difficult to make sure patients with widely varying body chemistry get the right amount at the right time.

Ortho-McNeil, which makes the brand name form of the drug, called Duragesic, told the Times it would support efforts to make sure the product is used safely.

Copyright 2007 by United Press International

Explore further: Radioactive skin patch can treat cancer

Related Stories

Radioactive skin patch can treat cancer

June 15, 2009

A new study shows that a radioactive skin patch can safely and successfully treat basal cell carcinoma, one of the most common types of skin cancers, according to researchers at the SNM's 56th Annual Meeting. The skin patch, ...

Painkiller patch creates addiction

May 17, 2009

Morphine patches are supposed to reduce use of painkillers, and provide more control over their use in chronic pain conditions. But researchers at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) and St. Olavs Hospital ...

New 'electronic skin' patches monitor health wirelessly

March 27, 2012

Like the colorful temporary tattoos that children stick to their arms for fun, people may one day put thin "electronic skin" patches onto their arms to wirelessly diagnose health problems or deliver treatments. A scientist ...

A heartbeat away? Hybrid 'patch' could replace transplants

September 30, 2014

Because heart cells cannot multiply and cardiac muscles contain few stem cells, heart tissue is unable to repair itself after a heart attack. Now Tel Aviv University researchers are literally setting a new gold standard in ...

Recommended for you

How the finch changes its tune

August 3, 2015

Like top musicians, songbirds train from a young age to weed out errors and trim variability from their songs, ultimately becoming consistent and reliable performers. But as with human musicians, even the best are not machines. ...

Machine Translates Thoughts into Speech in Real Time

December 21, 2009

( -- By implanting an electrode into the brain of a person with locked-in syndrome, scientists have demonstrated how to wirelessly transmit neural signals to a speech synthesizer. The "thought-to-speech" process ...


Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.