TEN DEATHS over FORTY YEARS from OTC medication… warrants restricting distribution ?

Diarrhea Drug Imodium Swept Up in Opioid Crisis Under FDA Rules


Boxes of Johnson & Johnson’s popular antidiarrheal drug Imodium could soon contain far fewer caplets, under a U.S. Food and Drug Administration request that seeks to limit access of drug abusers to pills that can produce an opioid-like high.

 The FDA has asked J&J to reduce the number of caplets in over-the-counter retail packages of Imodium to provide for short-term diarrhea treatment, a move would be followed by makers of generic versions of Imodium. 
 FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb called the agency request “fairly unprecedented” in a statement on Tuesday and said those restrictions could constitute a two-day supply, or a maximum of eight two-milligram pills. J&J was noncommittal.
  The steps to limit Imodium are part of a broader FDA effort to stem the tide of overdose deaths. More than 42,000 Americans died from opioid overdoses in 2016, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. 

The FDA is also considering whether it can use packaging to stem access to certain fast-acting opioids such as Vicodin and Percocet that are meant for short-term use, Gottlieb said. For example, doctors may opt to prescribe fewer pills if such opioids were packaged in three- or six-day blister packs, he said.

“Additionally, provided the FDA concluded that there was sufficient scientific support for these shorter durations of use, this could provide the basis for further regulatory action to drive more appropriate prescribing,” Gottlieb said.

The FDA warned in 2016 that people were using high doses of the active ingredient in Imodium, loperamide, to self-treat opioid withdrawal symptoms or to achieve a feeling of euphoria. Taking the drug in large quantities could lead to serious heart problems that could be fatal, according to the agency.

“We’re evaluating the agency’s request and share their goal to prevent misuse and abuse,” Carol Goodrich, a spokeswoman for J&J, said in an e-mail.

On its website, J&J links to sellers who offered Imodium in packages of 24 to 48 caplets. Other stores, including Amazon.com Inc. and Walmart Inc., had generic versions available online in bottles of as much as 200 pills. Gottlieb said packaging restrictions should make it easier to limit sales, and he plans to ask online retailers to address loperamide abuse.

“If you’re selling a drug with the potential for abuse and misuse through an online website, you’re no longer in the business of selling widgets, or books,” Gottlieb said. “You have a social contract to take voluntary steps to help address public health challenges.”

Ten deaths from loperamide use were reported to FDA from its approval in 1976 through Dec. 14, 2015. The agency hasn’t updated those numbers, but it says abuse of the drug is on the rise. 

11 Responses

  1. J & J needs to tell them to F@#* off

  2. LET ME BE VERY CLEAR HERE, SO THAT ALL YOU NAY’ SAYERS THAT ARE “OPIOID-PHOBIC” AND AGREE WITH THIS OPIOID WITCH-HUNT.. could get a real and honest handle on what’s going on here:

    A few people have now died as a result to abusing this OTC Diarrhea med.

    The MAIN STREAM-MEDIA reports on ^this^ issues as if its VALIDATION to the opioid “crisis”. Understand? They are using ^^this^^ issue to further VALIDATE their FALSE CLAIM of an “opioid epidemic”…

    This is one of those….
    “Seeeee, the opioid epidemic is sooo bad that people are using BLANK to get high”

    What they are NOT TELLING YOU (because the truth does NOT SUPPORT THEIR THEME)..

    Is that the “abuse” of this diarrhea drug, did NOT SKY-ROCKET…. UNTIL… THE CDC/DEA peddled their “guidlines” and patients were CUT OFF THEIR MEDS WITHOUT NOTICE by scared pussy doctors (yes, BULLIED BY THE DEA) that were afraid to lose their license..

    The sky-rocket use of ^^this^^ drug.. is a RESULT of decent, honest patients being cut off their much needed meds!!!! Period!!! Look at,the dates. The increase use of this drug, coincides with the MASSIVE cut-offs after the CDC guidlines!!!

    But instead no, the media twists the story and acts as if it VALIDATES their bull-shoot opioid crisis!!!

    Let me tell you something, the only people i know that have utilized this drug are pain patients that were CUT OFF and are desperatly trying the make the withdrawl stop! You have NO IDEA WHAT ITS LIKE abd it cruel for drs to do such a thing! Its MALPRACTICE and I advise EVERY PAIN-PATIENT that gas been cut-off.. to file a malpractice law suit.. if we all do it, we clog the whole damn lot and they’ll HAVE TO START LISTENING to us abd stop treating us like animals, drug addicts, deviants!!!!

    Think PUBLIC think. Dont just “take my word for it” and dont just believe everything the media pumps out!!! QUESTION IT! ARE THEY LIEING TO YOU? LIEING TO THE MASSES??!@

    • I have IBS and have never gotten high off Imodium nor does it touch my pain. Im guessing you would have to take BOXES of the stuff to get high. Meanwhile other countries sell codeine over the counter. Unreal

  3. It seems no one can get the chronic pain patients organized!! Maybe everybody is afraid of our communist government.

  4. The 10 people that over dosed were probably 10 people who were abruptly cutoff of their pain meds and were withdrawling so bad they were trying to relieve one of the side effects of withdrawling!!!

  5. What I dont understand is why are not more doctors standing up to this. If doctors continue to let this happen they will no longer be doctors but slaves to insurance companies and restrictions that will not let them pratice what they went to medical school.

  6. If this shows anything is that the drugs are not the problem but what addiction does. Addicts abuse any substance including food. Just look at how many American have diabetes and major weight problems. Does that mean we take everyone food away. The point is there will always be a a substance these people can abuse out there and taking it away does not solve the problem. What about the fact that 15,000 people died last years due to over the counter anti-inflammatory’s shows and proves this is just hype and to pretend like they are doing something about all these death when in fact they are adding to it. Meanwhile what the hell are we suppose to do when our doctor cut us off and need to deal with the side effects. It is obvious that they just want to help the rehab clinic get funded then allowing people to care of themselves. I tired of this shit of people not taking responsibility for there own action and blaming everyone for why a family member died while they did nothing but enable the addict by helping them continue there drug use.

  7. The fact that people are abusing diaherrea medicine now along with all the other things they shoot, snort and smoke to get a buzz just shows what a problem some in our society have with getting high and addiction. It’s not the chronic pain patients.
    I thought it was bad when we had to show ID for sinus medicine due to people abusing it.
    Where are all the so called addiction specialists? Crack down on them and the abusers. Maybe the government would solve this problem If they put their focus on where it belongs.
    This is so out of hand!

  8. How can anyone read this bull and think it’s logical ? Not only this but where do they arrive at such ideas ? If this behavior is allowed to continue, where are the experts? Aren’t they embarrassed ? All of those involved need to receive knowledge about chronic pain. I will bet that they’re searching for Anything available that helps relieve something, then irradiated it. If we started a rumour saying that bananas rubbed on skin relieves muscle pain, I believe bananas would be taken off the shelf. Start a rumour and see what happens.

  9. LMAO! Scott Gottlieb needs to go!

  10. OMG This is so F-ing Stupid!
    Bloomberg and many of these articles don’t have anywhere for us to leave comments so the public can tell them how STUPID they’ve become over this Government made Opioid crisis.
    If Our doctors aren’t going to UNITE to create a coalition to fight back against this War,
    Then when is somebody going to create a site where Americans can donate to hire lobbyist?!
    It’s so Bad that I have No Doubt that Tons of people and doctors would donate non problem.
    This situation has gotten so far out of hand and Went so completely overboard that Common Sense doesn’t exist at All.
    Seems like Pain News Network, National Pain Report or some other very popular pain news organization that reaches the public in all states all over the country could be successful in organizing such a task. Everyone with pain, caregivers and healthcare read that news website.
    Hiring Lobbyist looks like the Only Hope? I mean what else is left?

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