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Dr. Olle Hansson Day
Dr Olle Hansson waged a relentless struggle against companies manufacturing hazardous drugs. May 23 is observed in many parts of the world as Anti-Hazardous Drug Day in memory of the late Dr Olle Hansson.
Subacute myelo-optic neuropathy (SMON) is an iatrogenic disease of the nervous system leading to a disabling paralysis, blindness and even death. Olle Hansson became suspicious in the 1960s that the diarrhoea drug clioquinol could cause severe neuropathies. Searching for additional evidence he became aware that in Japan there were many similar cases. Its defining manifestation was as an epidemic in Japan during the 1960s, affecting an estimated 30,000 people.
At the same time the leading manufacturer of the drug, Ciba Geigy, was denying that its clioquinol drugs Mexaform® and Entero-Vioform® were causing neural damage. The Public Relations (PR) strategies of the company which labelled SMON as a Japanese problem suppressed a discussion about the adverse reactions occurring in the rest of the world.
Hansson became witness in the Japanese litigation and became concerned about the defence strategies of Ciba Geigy which tried to conceal the link between clioquinol and neuropathy. In 1976 Hansson publicly accused Ciba Geigy in Sweden of irresponsible behaviour.On August 3, 1978, the Tokyo District Court ruled that the cause of SMON is Clioquinol. Three manufacturers were found guilty in Japan and had to admit in court that clioquinol can cause SMON. Ciba-Geigy, has publicly stated that "Medical products manufactured and sold by us have been responsible for the occurrence of [SMON] in Japan, we extend our apologies.”
Ollehanson was lecturer at the universities of Uppsala and Göteborg, and became internationally known as an advocate for patients. He passed away at the age of 49 on May 23, 1985
Read the Malayalam article about Dr. Olle Hansson from attachment of this post and see Parishath Wiki
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