Military pharmacy pulls Chantix from shelves


NEW YORK While the Federal Aviation Administration has banned pilots’ use of the anti-smoking drug Chantix, it remains available at a United States military hospital in Okinawa, Japan, the military newspaper Stars and Stripes reported in an article marked for Tuesday.

Officials at Yokota Air Base, however, have pulled it from the base’s pharmacy.

The restrictions on the drug’s use follow a report by the Institute for Safe Medication Practices linking the drug to seizures, psychosis, muscle spasms, vision disturbances and suicidal thoughts and behaviors.

The Food and Drug Administration wants the drug’s maker, Pfizer, to put new safety labels on it.

Known generically as varenicline, Chantix had sales of $883 million in 2007, according to Pfizer financial data.

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