(photo credit: Wikimedia Commons)
The Health Ministry decided to bar the sale of a well-known oral drug for fungal infections after the European
Medicines Agency’s Committee on Medicinal Products for Human Use banned its most
The use of Nizoral tablets containing the active
substance ketoconazole will be prohibited, the ministry announced on Friday,
following the decision by the European committee. Ketoconazole is believed to
pose the possibility of serious damage to the liver – even to require a liver
transplant – and death.
Other drugs considered less toxic and generally
more effective are triazole antifungal agents such as fluconazole and
itraconazole, which are usually preferred for internal use.
and shampoo whose active ingredient is not ingested will be permitted however,
the ministry said, because the amount that reaches body systems is
The Europeans said that “no use of the oral drug justifies the
dangers of taking it.”
However, in the United States the FDA did not
prohibit the marketing and prescription of the drug, but merely restricted it
with the exception of treating severe conditions for which there is no effective
Patients in Israel who have been prescribed oral
medications with ketoconazole should consult with their doctors about finding a
“There are numerous other drugs for the same medical
complaints,” the ministry said. Only in rare cases and severe conditions can
ketoconazole drugs be allowed, but it will require special approval from the
authorities, the ministry said.