Limbrel FDA Alerts
The FDA Alert(s) below may be specifically about Limbrel or relate to a group or class of drugs which include Limbrel (bioflavonoids).
MedWatch Safety Alerts are distributed by the FDA and published by Drugs.com. Following is a list of possible medication recalls, market withdrawals, alerts and warnings. For the latest FDA MedWatch alerts, go here.
Recent FDA Alert(s) for bioflavonoids
Primus Announces a Voluntary Nationwide Recall of All Lots Within Expiry of Prescription Medical Food Limbrel® Due to Rare But Serious and Reversible Adverse Events
Apr 13, 2020
Audience: Consumer, Health Professional, Pharmacy
FDA Publish Date:April 13, 2020 Company Announcement Date: January 25, 2018 -- Primus Pharmaceuticals, Inc. of Scottsdale, Arizona is voluntarily recalling all unexpired lots of Limbrel products to the patient (user/consumer) level at FDA's request. FDA has requested a recall of Limbrel due to rare but serious and reversible side effects associated with Limbrel.
Between January 1, 2007, and November 9, 2017, FDA received 30 adverse event reports of elevated liver function tests or acute hypersensitivity pneumonitis associated with the use of Limbrel products. These conditions present in rare cases with varying degrees of severity in patients taking Limbrel for the first time in the initial weeks of exposure, and may go unnoticed by the patient until they consult with their physician or until symptoms develop that require hospitalization. There have been no deaths reported with the use of Limbrel, and in all reported cases adverse effects resolved without residual effects after discontinuing use of the product.
Primus retained independent medical and former senior FDA safety experts to conduct a further investigation of these cases and the ingredients in Limbrel. It is the opinion of these experts based on a thorough review of the medical literature, adverse event reports to FDA, and FDA's health hazard evaluation that there is no basis on which to conclude that Limbrel potentially causes life-threatening adverse effects, and that none of the reported adverse events show liver failure or respiratory failure. Nonetheless, in an effort to cooperate with FDA, Primus voluntarily ceased its promotion and distribution of Limbrel on December 21, 2017, and is now recalling Limbrel as FDA has requested.
All lots within expiry of the following products are included in this recall:
- Limbrel (flavocoxid) 250 mg capsules, Product Identity Number 68040-601-16
- Limbrel250 (250 mg flavocoxid with 50 mg citrated zinc bisglycinate) capsules, Product Identity Number 68040-605-16
- Limbrel (flavocoxid) 500 mg capsules, Product Identity Number 68040-602-16
- Limbrel500 (500 mg flavocoxid with 50 mg citrated zinc bisglycinate) capsules, Product Identity Number 68040-606-16
Limbrel has been marketed since 2004 as a medical food available only by prescription for patients under active and ongoing supervision of a physician for the dietary management of osteoarthritis (OA), a degenerative disease of the joints and the most common form of arthritis. Prior to marketing, Primus conducted clinical studies that support the efficacy and safety of Limbrel and compiled an extensive dossier providing an analysis of published data to support the medical food status of Limbrel and to establish how the product meets the distinctive nutritional requirements of OA. Primus stands by the legal status of Limbrel as a medical food. Limbrel products have been distributed nationwide in the USA to wholesalers, pharmacies, and physicians as medical foods without challenge from FDA for over 13 years, with approximately 2 million prescriptions and physician samples dispensed to an estimated 450,000 patients.
Primus is notifying its distributors by emailed letter and is arranging for the return of all recalled products. Retail pharmacies that have Limbrel products should return them to the wholesale distributor. FDA has recommended that patients who have the Limbrel products that are being recalled should stop use.
Patients who wish to return unopened bottles or who have questions regarding this recall should go to Limbrel.com or contact Primus by calling (480-483-1410) on Monday through Friday, 9 AM to 5 PM Mountain Time. Patients should contact their physician or healthcare provider if they have experienced any adverse event that may be related to taking Limbrel.
Physicians with extensive experience with Limbrel have provided written testimony to FDA confirming the benefits and safety of Limbrel for managing OA and to establish the medical necessity of Limbrel for elderly patients with comorbidities who cannot use NSAIDs and have a strong desire to avoid opioid use if possible. For these and other patients and their medical professionals who have stated their desire for continued access to Limbrel, Primus will seek to work with FDA to return Limbrel to the market as quickly as possible. For updates about access to Limbrel go to Limbrel.com.
Adverse reactions or quality problems experienced with the use of this product may be reported to the FDA's MedWatch Adverse Event Reporting program either online, by regular mail or by fax.
- Complete and submit the report Online
- Regular Mail or Fax: Download form or call 1- 800-332-1088 to request a reporting form, then complete and return to the address on the pre-addressed form, or submit by fax to 1-800-FDA-0178
This recall is being conducted with the knowledge of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
Limbrel Capsules by Primus Pharmaceuticals: FDA Advisory - Linked to Potentially Life-Threatening Health Problems
Nov 21, 2017
Audience: Consumer, Health Professional
ISSUE: The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is investigating serious adverse events involving Limbrel, a product in capsule form currently being marketed as a medical food to manage the metabolic processes associated with osteoarthritis. While a range of adverse events have been reported, two serious and potentially life-threatening medical conditions are among them: drug-induced liver injury and hypersensitivity pneumonitis. In total, the FDA has received 194 adverse event reports regarding Limbrel, of those, 57 of the cases contained sufficient information to analyze in detail whether Limbrel was associated with an adverse event; 30 of these contained sufficient information to use the Council for International Organizations of Medical Sciences (CIOMS) causality assessment method to determine the likelihood that an association between the consumption of Limbrel and the adverse events reported exists.
BACKGROUND: Limbrel is marketed by Primus Pharmaceuticals Inc., Scottsdale, AZ. Limbrel is available in capsule form in two dosages: Limbrel250 and Limbrel500. The labeling states that the products contain two types of flavonoids: baicalin (from Scutellaria baicalensis) and catechin (from Acacia catechu). Both dosages also contain zinc. Claims made on the product label and in labeling indicate that Limbrel is intended to manage the metabolic processes associated with osteoarthritis.
On November 8, 2017, the FDA contacted Primus Pharmaceuticals regarding the adverse events and requested information about the formula for Limbrel. The formula is being reviewed by the FDA. In the interim, the agency is alerting consumers and health care providers about the potential impact to health and advising consumers not to use Limbrel.
The FDA is continuing to investigate Primus Pharmaceuticals and the manufacturing process for Limbrel, and will share updates as they become available.
- For Consumers: If you are taking Limbrel, immediately stop taking it and contact your health care provider. If you have experienced any of the above-mentioned symptoms or other health problems while taking Limbrel, work with your health care provider to report your symptoms to the FDA through MedWatch.
- For Health Professionals: Health care providers who are aware that their patients are taking Limbrel should advise them to immediately stop taking the product. If your patients have experienced any of the above-mentioned symptoms or other health problems while taking Limbrel, the FDA encourages you to work with them to provide clinical information through MedWatch.
Healthcare professionals and patients are encouraged to report adverse events or side effects related to the use of these products to the FDA's MedWatch Safety Information and Adverse Event Reporting Program:
- Complete and submit the report Online: www.accessdata.fda.gov/scripts/medwatch/index.cfm
- Download form or call 1-800-332-1088 to request a reporting form, then complete and return to the address on the pre-addressed form, or submit by fax to 1-800-FDA-0178.
[11/21/2017 - Advisory - FDA]