Shortage of Popular Cancer Drug for Children Sparks Crisis

There are children all over the planet fighting forms of cancer and they should not lose their battle because companies are not manufacturing the drugs fast enough.  The latest plant closings has caused other companies to amp up production to try to fulfill the shortage, but parents fear that it will not last.

According to the Washington Post, the most common form of childhood cancer is acute lymphoblastic leukemia also known as ALL.  The most popular drug to treat and in most cases cure children of this cancer is a preservative-free drug called methotrexate.

Ben Venue Laboratories Inc., recently shut down its four factories in Bedford, Ohio, because of “serious quality problems.”  So, other companies are scrambling to make up for the loss, but many fear that it will not be enough and/or it will not last.

The FDA has been warned by hospitals that the shortage or stalled deliveries of the drug could be the difference between life and death for some patients.  The three companies working to fulfill the shortage— Mylan Inc., Hospira Inc. and Sandoz Inc. — aren’t completely certain on how to remedy the situation:

“Mylan says it’s working on increasing manufacturing capacity, which includes getting approval for that from the FDA. The company has an emergency supply of small vials of methotrexate, and plans to ship larger vials at the end of the month.”

Read here to see the other ideas on avoiding what has become a crisis.

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