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Prescribing changes following fluoroquinolone safety warning

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Key learning points

  • Fluoroquinolone adverse effects have led to restrictions on their use, label changes and communications to healthcare professionals.

  • Changes in fluoroquinolone prescribing do not appear to correspond temporally to intervention from the medicines regulator.

  • Further work is needed to address fluoroquinolone prescribing practices across several countries.

Regulatory interventions to restrict fluoroquinolone prescribing in Europe had no consistent or clear temporal effect on prescribing practices in primary care.1


In 2018, the European Medicines Agency (EMA) reported that fluoroquinolone antibiotics were associated with serious, disabling and potentially permanent adverse effects.2 The EMA subsequently issued information to healthcare professionals highlighting the risks. A retrospective population-based cohort study evaluated the impact of the regulatory interventions on prescribing rates of fluoroquinolones across six European countries. The authors …

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  • Contributors DTB Team.

  • Provenance and peer review Commissioned; internally peer reviewed.