U.S. Faces Shortage of Childhood Cancer Drug

Teva Pharmaceuticals stopped production of vincristine, which is used to treat multiple forms of childhood cancer.

vincristine shortage / Image: Getty
vincristine shortage / Image: Getty

A recent Forbes article discussed the “critical shortage” of vincristine, a drug that treats various forms of childhood cancer including leukemia and lymphoma. Teva Pharmaceuticals and Pfizer were the only two U.S. manufacturers of the drug, until the former ceased production back in July. Now, physicians could be forced to ration the drug putting the thousands of children who rely on the treatment for cancer in danger.

According to a spokesperson at Pfizer, the lone manufacturer of vincristine is working to increase production 3-4 times its normal input to meet demand.

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