Sunday, July 13, 2008

Reported malfunctions with Twinject auto-injector pose potential health risks

From Health Canada:
Health Canada is advising Canadians of reported malfunctions with the Twinject 0.3 milligram (mg) auto-injector and the Twinject 0.15 mg auto-injector that may pose serious health risks to users.

Twinject is a pre-filled, single-use automatic injector containing an epinephrine solution that is used for the emergency treatment of severe allergic reactions, including anaphylaxis. The product is available in two dosing strengths, 0.3 mg and 0.15 mg. The injector is designed to administer one automatic injection, followed by a second dose by manual injection if necessary.

Since Twinject was first marketed in Canada on August 1, 2005, Health Canada has received 30 reports of malfunctions associated with the use of either the 0.3 mg or the 0.15 mg dosage strength. Most cases were reported to be life threatening and required either emergency room visitation or hospitalization. Twenty eight patients recovered without any major complications, and the outcome of the other two patients remains unknown. ...more

1 comment:

Unknown said...

OK...Does someone want to help me figure out what the is going on. I read the Ottawa Citizen's report on the Twinject auto-injector today. I am SEVERELY allergic to bee, wasp and hornet stings. I called the pharmacy where I had my $120.00 prescription for a 0.3 mg injector filled and asked what to do. I was told that I could purchase an "Epi-Pen" which I am familiar with over the counter, however, they would not substitiute my Twinject prescription for it (which means my insurance won't reimburse me). So I called Verus Pharmaceuticals (the original manufacturer of the Twinject). Once I got through the voice-mail garbage, I got an automated message telling me that Verus had sold the twinject to Scius-labs in March, 2008. So, my husband found Scius and we tried to phone there. Guess what...Scius has since sold Twinject to Paladin Labs (Montreal-based). Haven't had any luck getting though to Paladin as of yet but will re-post once I do. In the meantime, here are a couple of really interesting articles my husband found while we were trying to sort this out, including one wherein Paladin is trying to block the public release of articles about the failed injectors.

I have carried an injector since I was 4, my son carried the Epi-Pen for about 7 years for a peanut allergy (that he has since outgrown) and not once before in my life have I ever heard of a problem with either the Epi-Pen or the former "syringe / tourniquet" system....