After receiving several reports of side effects of a Swiss-based drug maker's cancer drug, two Indian states have reportedly stopped its sales.
Roche's drug, Avastin has said to have hampered vision loss in 15 patients at a hospital in Ahmedabad. The patients underwent surgery after they reported swelling and pain in their eyes after being administered with the drug.
‘Roches drug, Avastin has reportedly hampered vision loss in 15 patients at a hospital in Ahmedabad. Gujarat and Telangana have now halted its sales.’
The drug was approved by the USFDA for the treatment of cancer but some doctors have been prescribing it to reduce eye pain and swelling.
Gujarat and Telangana have ordered a freeze on all batches of Avastin being sold in the states. The drug has been used to treat age-related macular degeneration (AMD), a leading cause of vision loss.
Telangana drug control official Suredranath Sai said, "We are stopping other batches also till the dust settles. We will release only if declared standard and safe for use."
Roche's India unit said, "It does not promote the use of Avastin or any of its drugs in an indication for which they are not approved. But patient safety is always Roche's primary concern, and as such we are taking the events in India very seriously and will co-operate fully with any investigations undertaken by the authorities."