HC Deb 30 March 1993 vol 222 c179W
Ms Estelle Morris

To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) what are the known side-effects of the drug azapropazone; and what steps are taken to draw the attention of patients for whom this drug is prescribed to these side-effects;

(2) whether she will direct that the known side-effects of the drug azapropazone are drawn to the personal attention of the patients for whom this drug is prescribed.

Dr. Mawhinney

Information on the side effects of azapropazone is given in the British National Formulary, which the Department issues free of charge to all prescribers, and in the data sheet for the product, which is produced by the manufacturer and authorised by the licensing authority. The side effects include photosensitive skin rashes, gastrointestinal bleeding and perforation of peptic ulcers. Blood disorders and kidney damage have been reported rarely. It is for doctors to use their clinical judgment in discussing with the patient the likely benefits and possible side effects associated with their treatment.

New legislation will make it mandatory to provide information to patients on the likely side effects of a medicine either by means of the label or package leaflet. This is intended to supplement the information given to the patient by their doctor.