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FDA announces tougher enforcement policies for homeopathic drugs

Just a few weeks ago, we posted about products found on store or gas station shelves for consumption, which were not approved by the Federal and Drug Administration (FDA.) That post can be found here. Today, the FDA released a statement much aligned with our discussion. However, the target of this new discussion is homeopathic drugs and consumer injuries caused by them.

The practice of homeopathy can be traced back to the 18th century. It was during that time that an idea was introduced claiming that what caused an illness could also cure it, if presented to the body in small doses. This practice has never been scientifically proven, and in fact, has been disproved by numerous studies. In spite of that disproof, homeopathic products have been allowed to remain on shelves over the years. Though subject to the same approval requirements as other drugs, up until now the FDA has been allowed to use "enforcement discretion." Therefore, many harmful products have remained available to consumers, and have indeed caused injuries.

While there is no plan by the FDA to pull all homeopathic products from shelves at this time, scrutiny and enforcement of regulations on those products will be increased.

Some examples of these types of drugs which have already caused damage include homeopathic teething tablets which caused harm, up to and including death, to many babies due to the ingredient belladonna. Another would be nose sprays that contain zinc, which is known to cause permanent loss of smell.

If you or someone you know have been injured by a product marketed as a homeopathic remedy, it may not be a bad idea to speak with a product liability attorney soon to determine if you are eligible for compensation.

Source: The Washington Post, "FDA Takes More Aggressive Stance Towards Homeopathic Drugs," Laurie McGinley, Dec. 18, 2017

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