This is the news archive of Facts are Facts.
You can find our recent articles in the section Latest.

Drug Reactions: Deaths and serious problems triple in 8 years

13 September 2007

The annual rates of serious adverse reactions and deaths from a prescribed drug have almost tripled since 1998.

Just 51 drugs – including painkillers and immune system-modifying agents – were responsible for the vast majority of reactions, new figures reveal.

In 2005 – the most recent year when figures have been made available - 15,107 people in America died as the result of taking a prescription drug, while 89,842 people suffered a serious adverse reaction, which resulted in disability, hospital care or a birth defect.

These reactions – all reported to America’s drug regulator, the Food and Drug Admin istration – represent an increase of 2.7 times on figures produced in 1998.

Overall, the FDA received reports of 467,809 deaths and serious adverse reactions between 1998 and 2005.


  • Archives of Internal Medicine, 2007; 167: 1752-9