You want to quit smoking? That’s great bud; we’re proud of you.
But imagine this: you go to your doctor, and they tell you that instead of struggling through that difficult initial quitting process, there is a drug that you can take for just six weeks, and POOF! All your urges to pick up that pack of darts will be gone. It’s called Champix – the answer to all your nicotine-related problems!
That may be the case, but some doctors fail to tell patients about the dangerous side effects that ‘quit smoking fast’ drugs can allegedly have.
So learned an Aussie family, when their son Timothy decided he needed to quit smoking for a new job. He was recommended Champix by a doctor, and eight days later, he committed suicide.
His mum, Phoebe Morwood-Oldham, is adamant that the drug is what caused her son’s passing, and that Timothy had never suffered mental illness or suicidal ideation before. She says that he was aware that the drug was affecting him strangely, saying to Newscorp,
“The last thing he said to me was, ‘Mum do you think the Champix is making me feel strange?’“And I said to him, ‘Timothy, if it’s helping you to give up smoking maybe you keep it up’.
In the United States, the drug (named Chantix in the US) has had nearly 3000 lawsuits regarding side-effects, costing creator Pfizer approximately US$273 million, according to Inside Counsel. The drug now has a black box warning label.
Phoebe has begun a Change.org petition, trying to get a similar warning label on Champix in Australia – it’s currently up to 46,000 signatures. She has also convinced the Queensland Coroner to reopen the investigation into her son’s death.
If you’d like to sign this petition, it’s here: change.org/p/pfizer-stop-ignoring-our-loved-ones-deaths-urgently-put-on-the-box-warning-labels-on-anti-smoking-drug-champix