US agency sees low risk in contaminated blood pressure drugs

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. health officials are trying to reassure patients that they face very low risks from ongoing contamination issues with blood pressure drugs.

Drugmakers have issued more than 50 recalls since last July linked to low levels of a probable cancer-causing chemical found in generic drugs taken by millions of Americans.

On Wednesday, a Food and Drug Administration official said the actual risk to patients is likely lower than originally stated by the agency.

The FDA said last year that if 8,000 patients took the maximum dose of the drugs for four years, the contamination could cause one extra case of cancer.

The agency now says most patients have probably absorbed lower levels of the likely carcinogens than this “worst case scenario.”

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