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Lariam Side Effects Lawsuits | Side Effects: Suicidal Ideation, Suicide, Acute Anxiety, Depression, Confusion

Lariam Side Effects Could Result In Suicidal Ideation Lawsuits

On July 29, 2013, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) started advising the public that warnings regarding the neurologic and psychiatric side effects associated with the antimalarial drug Lariam (generic: mefloquine hydrochloride) have been updated to highlight the fact that some of the drug’s side effects may persist or even become permanent. Neurologic side effects can include dizziness, loss of balance, or ringing in the ears. Psychiatric side effects can include anxiety, feeling mistrustful or depressed, or having hallucinations. A Black Box warning, the most serious kind of warning about potential side effect problems, has been added to the drug’s label.

Previously, Lariam had been linked to serious psychiatric side effects, including suicide. Still, the drug is prescribed to thousands of U.S. travelers and military personnel.

Roche, the manufacturer of Lariam, started taking steps before the recent FDA effort. The company sent notices to doctors and other health-care professionals warning of the risk of suicide. The warnings came after new questions were raised about Lariam when army investigators said that they would examine whether the drug was a factor in a series of widely publicized murders and suicides by soldiers in Fort Bragg, North Carolina.

Roche also changed the drug's label and official product information to acknowledge that rare cases of suicidal ideation and suicide have been reported. If symptoms of acute anxiety, depression and confusion occur, the new label said, they could lead to a more serious event. In such cases, patients should quit the drug and take another malaria medicine.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends Lariam as the drug standard in 79 countries where malaria is resistant to other drugs. Developed by the U.S. army and later licensed to Roche, the drug was first tested and used primarily among the military. But it has grown popular with many U.S. tourists traveling to increasingly trendy Third World destinations, as well as with Peace Corps volunteers and aid workers. Since its introduction in 1985, Lariam has been prescribed to an estimated 25 million people worldwide.


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Hallucinations Linked To Drug Given To Troops

Feb 14, 2005 | AP
As a volunteer firefighter, Georg-Andreas Pogany had seen disfigured bodies pulled from wrecked cars. But something very different happened when the Army interrogator saw the mangled remains of an Iraqi soldier.He became panicked, disoriented and that night reached for both his loaded pistol and rifle as he thought he saw the enemy bursting into his room. Pogany asked his superiors for help; the Army packed him home to face charges of cowardice the first such case since Vietnam.None of it made...

Australian Troops Claim They Were Used As Guinea Pigs

Oct 25, 2004 |
The Australian Defence Force (ADF) said yesterday only five soldiers had suffered adverse reactions in defence trials of a widely used anti-malarial drug, rejecting claims of widespread side-effects including psychosis. The ADF was responding to a report that hundreds of Australian soldiers serving in East Timor were ordered to take the drug Lariam as part of tests to observe side-effects, which can also include depression and paranoia. An ADF spokeswoman said Defence's preferred anti-malarial...

Army Braces For Suit On Malaria Drug

Oct 25, 2004 | The Age, Australia
A Brisbane law firm plans to launch a class action on behalf of Australian soldiers who say they have suffered severe psychotic side effects from a common malaria pill they were issued during service in East Timor.The firm had been contacted by several defence force members who said they were not fully informed of possible side effects of the drug, Lariam or mefloquine.It is understood that up to 400 soldiers had been given Lariam and some blamed it for side effects, including deep depression...

Mother Questions Reasons For Son's Death

Oct 9, 2004 | Dekalb Daily Chronicle
When Barbara Torok of Kingston thinks about her 23-year-old son, Michael, she recalls a quiet boy who wore size 13 shoes at the age of 12 and told his mom he didn't want to be referred to as "cute" but rather as "handsome."She remembers an intelligent, conscientious boy who enjoyed the outdoors and spending time with his friends and family.But now her memories of Mikey are marred with questions surrounding his death, such as whether he took his own life and, if so, why.He was found dead Sept....

Malaria Drug Blamed For US Soldier Suicides

Sep 9, 2004 |
A startling pattern of suicides by the most elite American soldiers has followed their use of a controversial anti-malaria drug, an investigation by UPI and CNN has found. contempt  Six Special Forces soldiers who took their lives are all believed to have taken the drug, according to the investigation. Senator Dianne Feinstein, a California Democrat, voiced concern about Lariam and the Special Forces suicides. "I have long been concerned about the use of the drug Lariam for service members...

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