Losartan: New batch withdrawn, what side effects?

Losartan, alone or in combination with hydrochlorothiazide, is a medicine for high blood pressure. Several batches were withdrawn from the market in 2021 and one batch in 2022 (printing error on the blister). What side effects does this treatment have? behavior and alternatives.

Definition: What is losartan?

Losartan, alone or in combination withhydrochlorothiazide (a diuretic used to treat high blood pressure) is a antihypertensive drug. It belongs to the family of receptor antagonists angiotensin IIa substance present in the body that can cause a contraction of the arteries and increase blood pressure, which ultimately tired heart.

What are the indications for Losartan?

Losartan drugs (alone or in combination) are commonly used for:

  • The treatment ofhigh blood pressure (Hypertension)
  • The treatment ofheart defect
  • Prevention of kidney failure associated with type 2 diabetes
  • Prevention of cardiovascular morbidity after myocardial infarction.

What are the side effects and risks of these drugs?

The investigations are still ongoing. However, as a precautionary measure, several batches of drugs affected by this contamination have been the subject of a so-called precautionary recall. “there is no immediate risk related to the presence of this contaminantis the ANSM. On the other hand, the risks of stopping treatment suddenly are real: hypertensive flare-ups (significant increase in diastolic blood pressure)Destabilization of cardiovascular diseases.“Investigations are currently being carried out to assess whether the impurity is present in these drugs mutagenic or not. A mutagenic substance can cause hereditary genetic defects or increase their frequency, defines ANSES.

>> You can report any suspected side effect of a medicine to your regional pharmacovigilance center or on www.signalement-sante.gouv.fr.

Which drugs are affected by the recall?

Since October 2021, Losartan medicationshown in treatment of high blood pressurewere the subject ofa preventative reminderwhich leads to significant supply voltages (sold out), the Medicines Agency (ANSM) reported in a press release. Several laboratories, in agreement with the ANSM and as a precautionary measure, have recalled batches of the specialties listed below:

What is the process like for patients?

The ANSM has issued a set of recommendations that apply in this context of tension and pending a return to satisfactory levels of losartan supply, possibly in 2022.

  • You should not stop your treatment without medical advice. If you have leftover losartan tablets, you can use up the pack before taking the other sartan medicine given to you by your pharmacist.
  • When your prescription is renewed, if the treatment originally prescribed is no longer available, the pharmacist can prescribe you directly another drug of the same family (sartan) without having to see your doctor straight away. There are 5 different sartans: losartan, irbesartan, candesartan, telmisartan and valsartan. This replacement will be made exceptionally and temporarilyuntil your next doctor visit. The pharmacist should inform the doctor.
  • Consult your doctor as part of your usual medical follow-up or beforehand if you think it is necessary.
  • If you are allergic or intolerant to sartan, consult your doctor. The latter will offer you another sartan that you can tolerate well. There are actually 4 alternatives to losartan: irbesartan, candesartan, telmisartan and valsartan.

What alternatives are there to losartan?

Only the sartan and its dosage may change when these drugs are substituted.

As a replacement for losartan and hydrochlorothiazide drugs, the dose of hydrochlorothiazide should remain the same. Only the sartan and its dosage may change when these drugs are substituted. The ANSM recalls that these are losartan/hydrochlorothiazide-based specialties only indicated in arterial hypertension.

Alternatives to losartan: dosage and indications © ANSM

What are the generic drugs of Losartan?

Some examples of Losartan-based generics: Losartan Accord, Losartan Arrow, Losartan Biogaran, Losartan Cristers, Losartan EG, Losartan Sandoz, Losartan Evolugen…

Sources: Medicines with losartan (alone or in combination): what to do in the event of a supply shortage, ANSM, 27.10.2021 / Public Medicines Database

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