Recall Issued on Common Blood Pressure Medication

Time to check your medicine cabinet.

1200 WOAI news reports the FDA has issued a recall of one of the most commonly prescribed hyper tension and high blood pressure medicines in use in the US.

Dr. Steven Kalter, an oncologist at San Antonio's START Center, says Valsartan, known often by its trade name 'Diovan' is a common treatment for a very common physical condition.

"This is a blood pressure medication that is used by a lot of internal medicine and cardiology doctors to control people's blood pressure," he said.

Dr. Kalter says the FDA reclal is for a very good reason."There was a question about a contaminant within the Valsartan that makes it potentially a carcinogen."

He says if you see the words 'Valsartan' or 'Diovan' on your prescription bottle, your best course of action is to call your doctor to see if you need a prescription for another drug.  If the names are not on the bottle, contact the pharmacy where the prescription was filled.

"Valsartan, either by itself or in combination with other drugs is a very common hypertensive."

The FDA says patients should not stop taking their Valsartan until they have been prescribed a replacement by their attending physician.  The FDA stresses not all Valsartan products were affected by this recall.  It says the carcinogen may have gotten into the drugs through changes in the manufacturing process.

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