Six Legal Drugs With The Worst Side Effects

Michael Bennett
April 8, 2016 - 645 Views

All drugs have side effects. Pharmaceutical companies are under strict regulations to report these effects and to be completely transparent and open about them. This is why the leaflet that comes with any drug will always include side effects, rare side effects, extremely rare side effects, and so on. Some drugs, however, have very bad side effects that are commonly experienced. Yet, these drugs are completely legal. Let’s take a look at some of these drugs and what you can expect if you take them. Sometimes, the reality is that the cure is actually worse than the disease.

1. Mirapex

Mirapex is a drug used for treating restless leg syndrome. A number of reported side effects include increased urges for sex and gambling, and hallucinations. Various other serious side effects have been reported, and people are told to seek medical attention straight away if they experience them.

“Extreme drowsiness, falling asleep suddenly, even after feeling alert; tremors, twitching or uncontrollable movements of your eyes, lips, tongue, face, arms, or legs.”

The drug also comes with an extensive list of ‘less serious’ side effects. These do not require any medical attention, but can still be incredibly uncomfortable. They include swelling, blurred vision, impotence, vomiting, and more.

2. Abilify

Abilify is a drug that is prescribed to people with schizophrenia or bipolar disorder. The drug has a number of very uncomfortable side effects that are classed as more common by the manufacturer.

“Uncontrolled movements, especially of the face, neck, and back; drooling; shuffling walk.”

While the company encourages people to seek medical advice if they experience these side effects, they are not classed as worrying. Other side effects, which are ‘less’ common, include such things as sticking out the tongue, convulsions, lip smacking, and loss of bladder control. To add to the dangers, it is also very easy to overdose on Abilify. Since it is a drug that is prescribed to people with very serious mental health issues, it should come as no surprise that many physicians are loathe to prescribe it.

3. Flomax

Flomax is a drug prescribed to people who have an enlarged prostate. This means that people with this medical condition experience a frequent need to urinate with some instances of slight incontinence. Considering that these are physical issues that most people would be quite willing to live with, it is surprising that physicians often prescribe a drug that has serious and uncomfortable side effects for treating it.

“Dizziness, lightheadedness, drowsiness, runny/stuffy nose, or ejaculation problems may occur. If any of these effects persist or worsen, tell your doctor or pharmacist promptly.”

4. Alli

Alli is a very popular weight loss aid. It is said to be one of the most effective non-surgical weight loss methods out there. In most countries, although not ours, it is available on prescription only. Because it has been so popular, however, many unregistered manufacturers in other countries have tried to make similar products, thereby further increasing the dangers of taking it. However, even the real and regulated Alli has some significant and uncomfortable side effects.

“The drug’s maker, GlaxoSmithKline, has been up front about the pill’s side effects, suggesting that first timers wear dark pants or bring a change of clothes to work until they get used to the diet pill’s potentially yucky consequences.”

Those who first take the drug will find they are much gassier than normal. The gas will also come with an oily discharge. Furthermore, they can expect to have far more frequent bowel movements and most people are unable to control these movements to some degree.

5. Ortho-Novum

Ortho-Novum is a birth control pill. This is not the first time that a contraceptive pill has been associated with various side effects. Some have led to birth deformities, while others increased the risk of developing breast cancer. While most would believe that this would mean far stricter regulations will exist on new birth control products, this appears to not be the case. In fact, when looking at the side effects of Ortho-Novum, it is surprising that it is legal at all.

“This medication may rarely cause serious (sometimes fatal) problems from blood clots (such as deep vein thrombosis, heart attack, pulmonary embolism, stroke).”

There are also suggestions that it can cause dangerous, while benign, liver tumors. The danger is that these tumors could rupture and this would lead to potentially fatal internal bleeding. Additionally, there are now a number of studies that are suggesting the risk of developing liver cancer is notably increased.

6. Chantix

Chantix is an anti-smoking aid that revolutionized the way people would quit smoking. However, while the drug is still available at present, it didn’t take long for the horror stories to appear and people shifting to other methods to quit smoking. In fact, very few people still turn to Chantix today, no matter how attractive it may sound to slowly but surely wean a person from nicotine addiction automatically. The side effects associated with Chantix are disturbing to say the very least.

“Some people have had changes in behavior, hostility, agitation, depressed mood, suicidal thoughts or actions while using CHANTIX to help them quit smoking. Some people had these symptoms when they began taking CHANTIX, and others developed them after several weeks of treatment or after stopping CHANTIX.”

Interestingly, Chantix has had to reword the way they described their side effects to the one mentioned above. Previously, all they said was that people could expect ‘slight sleep disturbances’. Following many reports of more serious side effects, however, they have had to release the above statement.

Michael Bennett

About Michael Bennett

Michael Bennett is Editor-in-Chief of Consumer Protect.com. Since 1999, he's worked across a multitude of areas of consumer protection including defective products, environmental issues, identity theft, predatory lending and more. His mission with Consumer Protect.com is to promote & support competition in all industries but not at the expense of the consumer. If you find his articles helpful please share them with your readers.