8 Worrying Drug Side Effects

FDA-approved medications pass clinical trials, but the real world uncovers more
By Harry Kimball,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 7, 2008 7:14 PM CST
GlaxoSmithKline's alli, the first over-the-counter diet pill approved by the Food and Drug Administration. (AP Photo/Richard Drew)   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – Despite rigorous testing, some drugs have side effects that only rear their ugly heads when introduced to the general population. Forbes catalogs some of the weirdest:

  1. Anti-smoking drug Chantix can cause insomnia and nightmares.
  2. Diet drug Alli can have unforeseen gastrointestinal side-effects; these can be counteracted by eating a low-fat diet, of all things.
  3. Mirapex, prescribed for Parkinson's and restless-leg-syndrome patients, can lead to compulsive-eating and gambling urges.

  1. Who can forget Ambien, the sleeping aid shown to cause sleep-walking and -driving?
  2. Cholesterol drug Zolcor can pose serious health risks if combined with ... grapefruit?
  3. Vasotec, used to combat high blood pressure, can also stunt your sense of taste.
  4. Antihistamine Allegra may clear up your nose, but it can also give you a backache, and a headache and a cold.
  5. Anti-malaria drug Lariam can cause nightmares, hallucinations, and paranoia.