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Pharmacies warned of phenytoin sodium 100mg shortage

Accord's phenytoin sodium 100mg capsules are out of stock until May, the Department of Health and Social Care (DH) has said.

Epilepsy patients who usually take the capsules should “discuss alternative treatment options with their pharmacist or doctor”, the DH advised yesterday (January 15).

An alternative phenytoin sodium 100mg capsule manufactured by Flynn Pharma is available, but switching patients over to a different formulation “requires monitoring” and “may also require specialist support, advice or referral”.

The DH has been “working closely with NHS England and Improvement”, and has “informed epilepsy patient groups”, it told C+D.

The Pharmaceutical Services Negotiating Committee said community pharmacists and prescribers should “work together” to determine clinically appropriate alternatives, following guidance provided in the supply disruption alert.

Regulatory change caused shortage

Accord told C+D that the shortage was caused by a “regulatory change” at Accord’s manufacturing site.

The manufacturer is “working to get re-supply” of the active ingredient from its supplier “as quickly as possible”, following a delay, it said.

A C+D investigation last September found that community pharmacy teams had struggled to obtain medicines in every major medicine category in the previous six months.

Are you worried about managing patients on Accord phenytoin sodium 100mg capsules during the supply disruption? Read our CPD article on the topic for advice on how to best care for this patient group until the drug is back in stock.

Do you have any patients who will be affected by this shortage?

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