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Home Industry News MHRA cracks down on false advertising

MHRA cracks down on false advertising

2nd February 2006

The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) has taken action against a number of misleading medicine adverts aimed at health professionals.

The agency has moved to force two firms to change their advertising and issue corrective statements to ensure prescribers are aware of the facts.

Action was taken against a promotional brochure for Venofer (intravenous iron
sucrose) given by Syner-Med (Pharmaceutical Products).

It was found that the firm failed to indicate the potential of Venofer to cause allergic or other serious adverse reactions, as well as including important messages about the safe administration of this product.

UCB Pharma also had to withdrawal an advertisement and promotional material for Kentera (oxybutynin), a skin patch to control the symptoms of urge incontinence.

It was claimed that the side effect of a dry mouth was less than in other similar products, but the MHRA found the claim was not supported.

MHRA senior policy manger Jeremy Mean said: “Timely and effective action on misleading advertising is essential to ensure that health professional advertisements support appropriate prescribing of medicines for patients.

“These cases demonstrate the MHRA is delivering that action.

“The MHRA will not tolerate medicines advertising that creates unrealistic expectations in prescribers and patients or is misleading.”

Meanwhile in the US Pfizer has also come under fire from regulators for its advertising of the heartburn medication Zantac 150.

The National Advertising Division of the Council of Better Business Bureaus found adverts suggested the drug worked immediately, although noted that it did take effect quickly.

Pfizer stated that it “respectfully disagrees with the NAD’s conclusion on the implied messages of the ad”.

It added it would take the NAD’s views into account in future advertising for Zantac.

Competitor Johnson & Johnson brought the advert to the attention of the NAD.

track© Adfero Ltd

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