What to do if your Pfizer blood pressure medicine was recalled

Published: Mar. 24, 2022 at 1:31 PM CDT|Updated: Mar. 24, 2022 at 1:44 PM CDT
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(CNN) - Pfizer voluntarily recalled three blood pressure medications this week due to concern over an organic compound called nitrosamine that’s found in them, which could pose a cancer risk over time.

”This is not the first time medications have been taken off the market because of this type of chemical reaction,” Dr. Laxmi Mehta, cardiologist at The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center, said.

According to the Food and Drug Administration, nitrosamines are commonly found in low levels in meat, vegetables, dairy and water, but being exposed to excessive levels may increase the risk of cancer over long periods of time.

While Pfizer said it is not aware of any reports of adverse effects from the use of the medication, the company has voluntarily recalled ACCURETIC tablets, as well as two authorized generics distributed by Greenstone.

If you are on these medications, Mehta said the first thing to do is call your pharmacist.

“See if you have received the batch or lot that has been recalled,” she said.

If you have the recalled lot, talk to your doctor about alternative medications you can take.

Mehta said not to stop taking the medicine until you get a replacement.

“Untreated high blood pressure has its own ramifications including heart attacks, strokes, and heart failure,” she said.

While you should not delay a call to your pharmacy, Mehta said this is not cause for immediate concern.

”You don’t want to wait forever, but you also don’t want to panic,” she said.

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