The Food and Drug Administration is warning that azithromycin (sold as Zithromax or Zmax), also commonly called a Z-Pack, could cause irregular heart rhythms in patients. The medication can cause abnormal changes in the heart’s electrical activity that may result in a fatal heart rhythm.
Zithromax or a “Z-Pack” is an antibiotic typically prescribed to treat bacterial infections such as bronchitis, pneumonia, or ear infections. Patients who are the greatest risk for abnormal and potentially dangerous heart rhythms are those who already have known risk factors such as existing QT interval prolongation, low blood levels of potassium or magnesium, a slower than normal heart rate, or those who use certain drugs to treat abnormal heart rhythms, or arrhythmias.
Patients who have been prescribed a Z-Pack should talk to their physician or a qualified health care professional to discuss their individual risks associated with the use of azithromycin. The FDA had advised that health care professionals consider the patient’s risk of fatal heart rhythms when considering treatment options, especially for patients who have a known risk of “cardiovascular events.”
Results from a study released in May 2012 suggested there would be 47 extra heart-related deaths per 1 million courses of treatment with Zithromax, compared with another antibiotic, amoxicillin. In many cases, Zithromax is the preferred treatment by patients because the treatment course is only five days, half the time for amoxicillin and other antibiotics. The FDA says more than 40 million patients in the U.S. received a prescription for Zithromax in 2011.
The Philadelphia personal injury lawyers at Messa & Associates are experienced at handling cases involving pharmaceutical and drug product injuries. Our extremely skilled team of personal injury lawyers and medical experts is dedicated to ensuring you receive proper compensation for your personal injuries. If you have suffered an injury as a result of azithromycin, a z-pack, another pharmaceutical drug, or any other type of personal injury, contact the personal injury lawyers of Messa & Associates for a free consultation. Call toll free at 1-877-MessaLaw, or submit a free online inquiry.
Joseph L. Messa, Jr. is the founding partner of Messa & Associates, P.C. He is an AV-rated attorney (highest rating available), listed in the Bar Register of Preeminent Lawyers. Read More