Pfizer Halts Shipping of Chantix Due to Nitrosamine Contamination
Pfizer has pushed the pause button on its worldwide distribution of Chantix (varenicline) after elevated levels of the suspected carcinogen, nitrosamine, were found in some batches of the pills.
It is not yet known how the contamination occurred or how many lots of Chantix were contaminated. Nitrosamines, which are commonly found in water, cured meats and dairy products, may increase the risk of cancer when levels are too high or consumed for long periods.
Pfizer said that the pause in distribution of Chantix is out of an abundance of caution and that the drug’s benefits outweigh the very low potential risks posed by nitrosamines.