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Midodrine hydrochloride: FDA Proposes Withdrawal of Low Blood Pressure Drug

Audience: Cardiology and Nephrology

ISSUE: FDA proposed to withdraw approval of the drug midodrine hydrochloride, used to treat the low blood pressure condition, orthostatic hypotension, because required post-approval studies that verify the clinical benefit of the drug have not been done. To date, neither the original manufacturer nor any generic manufacturer has demonstrated the drug’s clinical benefit, for example, by showing that use of the drug improved a patient’s ability to perform life activities.
BACKGROUND: The drug, marketed as ProAmatine by Shire Development Inc. and as a generic by others, was approved in 1996 under the FDA’s accelerated approval regulations for drugs that treat serious or life-threatening diseases. That approval required that the manufacturer verify clinical benefit to patients through post-approval studies.
RECOMMENDATION: Patients who currently take this medication should not stop taking it and should consult their health care professional about other treatment options.

[08/16/2010- News Release - FDA]