Tambocor (Flecainide) out of stock is this ... - AF Association

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Tambocor (Flecainide) out of stock is this a warning for 29/03/19?

pottypete1 profile image

I never got on with generic Flecainide so have had the branded version Tambocor prescribed for more years than I care to mention.

Last week my local pharmacy was out of stock and I have now discovered that all the wholesalers are also out of stock.

I finally managed to track some down at a branch of Asda but this incident has made me wonder if this might be a sample of what we have in store if and when the UK leaves the EU in March.

Might be worth being very sure that you don’t leave your prescription requests until the last moment from now on.


16 Replies

Yes, I’ve been very concerned about this and have been quietly creeping my repeat dates forward for the last 9 months. I was also very worried about some guidelines which aim to give pharmacists the power to override doctors’ prescribed amounts and brands to cope with shortages.

Honestly, makes me wonder what century we are living in.

Scarey ennit!!…..I'm doing much the same as Finvola and awaiting a call from the surgery to find out if I'm selling them on the black market....hopefully they are so busy they wont notice!!

BobD profile image

This sort of scare story comes up every so often.

Last time , I think about two or three years ago, despite not using this drug I discussed it with my tame pharmacist and his comment was that most drugs go through distribution probems from time to time and that this was no exception. The manufacturer was still making it but logistics ( fancy modern word for road transport distribution ) was out of sinc with demand.

If anybody blames B****t I will scweeam and scweem till I'm sick.

pottypete1 profile image
pottypete1 in reply to BobD

Now Bob

Remember you haven’t been too well lately take it easy.


CHRISAF18 profile image
CHRISAF18 in reply to BobD

I think it's a bit like when the snow comes and alot if people buy up all the bread .....why!

CDreamer profile image
CDreamer in reply to CHRISAF18

No, I think it is a lot more complex. Listening to the ins and outs regarding changes of law regarding parallel imports and the logistics of how meds are transported and accounted for (unbelievable computer tracking technology) and the fact that most of the heart meds are produced in Europe, not UK. B****. B***** is only one of the factors of things to come.

I believe yes, I have difficult in obtaining Dispyramide and also now Pradaxa so it is quite a worry, currently have Prescriptions to Homes but thinking of changing pharmacies but would that help???

I am ok on all brands of flecainide but have always stockpiled as much as possible with our surgeries system. We can order 3 weeks after last precription is filled approx, depending on number of pills in pack. Now have a month and half in hand with long expiry dates and intend to continue. They will get used so not wasteful just a safety net. If this is to be an issue with a specific drug, helpful to order a day apart so it is on a separate script to tote round pharmacies while other meds already obtained. Agree with Bob, it happens from time to time thus my " I'm alright Jack" attitude

pottypete1 profile image
pottypete1 in reply to Bagrat

What a good idea Bagrat.

It took the pharmacy 5 days to tell me they couldn’t get my Tambocor and that as it was on a multi item prescription I would have to go back to my doctor to get another to take elsewhere.

This is a right performance. Luckily I didn’t leave it right to the last minute so not a major crisis.


I also share Finvola concerns, fired by my step-son, a biochemist working the industry who says the whole industry is very, very concerned.

Personally I went through something similar with a medication called Pyridostigamine which is essential for Myasthenics if we want to get out of bed a few years ago. It is manufactured in the UK but all of the manufacturers stopped producing at the same time, leaving a mass shortage and there was no system in place for parallel imports or for Pharmacists to issue branded versions of the meds without them being specified on the prescription which thankfully my GP was happy to do but many were not. It took a lot of pressure by the charity which represents us at Ministirial level to get changes so that Pharmacists could issue the branded version until the generics came back on line.

Since then I have hoarded and try to keep at least a few weeks worth secreted away.

Personally I think we should all write to our MPs with our experiences and concerns.

Tambocor is made by 3M which is a large US company. Having worked for American pharmaceutical companies I don’t Brexit would cause them problems - they will already have contingency plans for all sorts of scenarios.

That is no longer the case. In the UK until recently the product was supplied by MEDA Pharmaceuticals. I have just received an email from them stating that the licence to produce Flecainide has been acquired by TEVA Europe. TEVA are a major manufacturer of medications and seem to specialise in generic drugs.

I have written to TEVA and asked for clarification.

Need I say more?


Just had an email from Meda whose name is on my Tambocor box.

The product licence for Tambocor was taken over by a company called TEVA however we are led to believe that they have now discontinued this product.

I am now waiting for a reply from TEVA. Very big organisation so it may take a while. Don't hold your breath.


Bagrat profile image
Bagrat in reply to pottypete1

Just aaargh. It may well be the " fillers that don't suit and reduce efficacy but still aaargh

CDreamer profile image
CDreamer in reply to pottypete1

Takeovers and licenses - another complexity.

When I first came to Spain in July I went to a pharmacy to buy some Apixaban and Flecainide. The (very helpful and nice) pharmacist looked at my UK prescribed box of Flecainide and pulled a real face, 'Ooh this is a complicated drug, we don't have any of this in Spain'. I have since been asking my partner (who is still in the UK for the next year) to be getting my prescription from the UK GP and posting or bringing it over when he visits.

I have no healthcare here due to being refused insurance because of AF and can't 'buy' into the public system until I've been here a year. And then I may not be able to cos of Brexit.

So I'm using my Flec sparingly! Its a pity you can't suck half then save the rest for later cos they taste so bad haha :o)

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