The manufacturer of Linezilid (Zyvox)® has written to clinicians to inform them of an update to the Summary of Product Characteristics to include an additional safety warning.
The new warning has been made in response to post marketing surveillance data collected that linked use of the drug to peripheral neuropathy and optic nerve neuropathy potentially leading to loss of vision. These effects primarily occurred in patients using the drug for longer than maximum recommended duration of 28 days.
This drug is mainly used in hospital settings however some areas have explored the possibility of providing this drug under a shared care arrangements with clinicians in primary care. Linezolid already requires weekly monitoring of full blood count.
Action: In light of this new safety warning linezolid appears to be unsuitable for shared care. Clinicians are reminded that the recommended treatment duration is 10-14 days with a maximum duration of 28 days.