Zithromax May Cause Sudden Death. Azithromycin, an antibiotic sold under the brand name Zithromax and known popularly as “Z-Pak,” may be associated with an increased risk of sudden heart-related deaths. In May 2012, a study published in the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM) found that people taking ‘Zithromax’ were two times more likely to die of a sudden heart problem than people taking amoxicillin. Those with pre-existing heart disease faced the highest risk of sudden death from ‘Zithromax’. The defective drug lawyers at Parker Waichman LLP are investigating cases of Zithromax sudden death. If someone you loved died of a sudden heart problem while using ‘Zithromax’, you may be entitled to file a wrongful death lawsuit seeking compensation for your loss. Our firm is currently offering free lawsuit consultations to victims of ‘Zithromax’. If you believe ‘Zithromax’ caused the death of someone you care about, we urge you to contact us immediately.
Zithromax Sudden Death
Zithromax, or Z-Pak, has been on the market for more than two decades, and ranks as one of the top-selling antibiotics in the U.S. While ‘Zithromax’ is generally more expensive than other antibiotics, many patients and doctors prefer it because the drug is only taken once per day for five days, versus 10 days for amoxicillin and some other antibiotics.
The NEJM study looked at Medicaid patients who received 348,000 Zithromax prescriptions from 1992 to 2006. Compared to patients who took no antibiotics, those taking ‘Zithromax’ had about a threefold higher risk of heart death. Compared to patients with infections treated with amoxicillin, those taking azithromycin had twice the risk of heart death. This means that per 1 million courses of Zithromax, 85 patients would experience sudden death. For amoxicillin, there would 32 deaths per one million courses, and 30 among those on no antibiotics. The highest risks were in ‘Zithromax’ patients with existing heart problems. In that group, there were 245 extra heart deaths per million courses of azithromycin. The study’s findings indicate doctors should think twice before prescribing ‘Zithromax’ to people with pre-existing heart disease.