Tamiflu 'may be tied to abnormal behavior'

Apr 20, 2009 The Yomiuri Shimbun

Influenza patients between ages 10 and 17 who took Tamiflu were 54 percent more likely to exhibit serious abnormal behavior than those who did not take the antiflu drug, according to a final report, released Saturday, from a Japanese Health, Labor and Welfare Ministry research team.

The team, led by Yoshio Hirota, a professor at Osaka City University, studied the cases of about 10,000 children under 18 who had been diagnosed with since fiscal 2006. It will soon submit the report to a safety research committee of the ministry's Pharmaceutical Affairs and Food Sanitation Council. "The link with Tamiflu can't be ruled out," the report said. "New research should be carried out, focusing on serious abnormal behavior."

The ministry suspended the use, in principle, of the drug by 10- to 19-year-olds in 2007 after a number of children behaved abnormally after taking it. Examples of such behavior include one child who started to hop after taking the drug and another who tried to jump from a balcony. The new findings make it unlikely the ministry will lift the ban.

Previous analyses have been unable to establish a link between the drug and abnormal behavior. The committee's main focus regarding the research had been the issue of when to lift the ban.

When the team limited its analysis to children who had displayed serious abnormal behavior that led to injury or death, it found those who had taken Tamiflu were 25 percent more likely to behave unusually. The figure was 54 percent higher among children ages 10 to 17. However, when taking into account all degrees of abnormal behavior, including minor behavioral problems such as incoherent speech, the team found who took the were 38 percent less likely to behave strangely.

___

(c) 2009, The Yomiuri Shimbun.
Visit the Daily Yomiuri Online at www.yomiuri.co.jp/index-e.htm/
Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Information Services.

Explore further: FDA approves vaccine to block meningitis strain (Update)

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Japan struggling with Tamiflu dilemma

Jun 18, 2007

Japanese officials have confirmed hundreds of citizens have displayed abnormal reactions after ingesting the prescription flu medication, Tamiflu.

Tamiflu touted for child use

Nov 16, 2007

The maker of the anti-viral Tamiflu said the drug is effective for treatment and prevention of influenza in young children.

Transplanted coral growing fast in lagoon off Okinawa coast

Feb 07, 2009

Baby coral transplanted in the Sekisei coral-reef lagoon in Japan's Okinawa Prefecture under a coral-reef regeneration program are growing steadily, according to the Environment Ministry and the Tokyo University of Marine ...

Major flu strain resistant to widely used antiviral drug

Jan 15, 2009

One of the major strains of the influenza virus this season has become resistant to Tamiflu - rendering the mainstay antiviral drug all but impotent and creating tough treatment options for patients who come down with the ...

Recommended for you

A new tool in drug overdose prevention

18 hours ago

The Center for Disease Control reported earlier this month that the heroin overdose death rate across 28 states it surveyed doubled between 2010 and 2012. This sharp increase and the chilling statistics that say more than 11 ...

Nasal spray treats heroin overdose

Oct 28, 2014

"Every year, drug overdoses are responsible for roughly 1000 ambulance calls in Oslo," says Arne Skulberg, an anaesthesiologist, a PhD candidate at NTNU and the 2014 winner of Norway's Researcher Grand Prix ...

User comments : 1

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

Ashy
3 / 5 (2) Apr 20, 2009
F*ng Pharmas didn't perform right test of drug and gave it doctors for prescribing. Br-r-r.

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.