§ Mr. Hinchliffe
To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many adverse reactions and how many fatalities reported to the Medicines Control Agency were associated with the use of anaesthetic propofol since 27 February 1986.
§ Mr. Sackville
[holding answer 3 February I 995]Since 27 February 1986, the Medicines Control Agency has received 1,072 yellow card reports for propofol describing 1,987 suspected adverse reactions, 35 of which were fatal. The large number of suspected adverse reactions is a reflection of the extensive use of this drug as an anaesthetic agent. No anaesthesia is without risks; the adverse reaction profile for propofol is not significantly different from other widely used anaesthetic agents. A report of a suspected reaction to a drug does not necessarily mean that the drug itself caused the reaction.