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CIBA-GEIGY ISSUES STATEMENT ON LITHOBID DISCONTINUATION

 SUMMIT, N.J., May 27 /PRNewswire/ -- The Pharmaceuticals Division of Ciba-Geigy Corporation made the following announcement today:
 Due to production process problems, we have discontinued the distribution of Lithobid(R) (lithium carbonate USP) 300 mg slow-release tablets. Lithobid is used in the treatment of manic-depressive illness.
 We have decided to no longer manufacturer or supply Lithobid because we have been unable to ensure product consistency under current FDA manufacturing standards. We have no evidence to suggest a safety or efficacy concern with the Lithobid available on the market as this product has met quality control standards. However, since we have not been able to resolve the production process problem, we believe that discontinuing the product is prudent.
 We have discussed the matter with the Food and Drug Administration and have notified physicians, retail and hospital pharmacies and wholesalers via first class mail.
 There are several other forms of lithium available on the market(A). We recommend that patients currently taking Lithobid consult their physicians about switching to one of these and that physicians refer to the prescribing information on various lithium formulations. For those physicians who require Lithobid for individual patients during their transition, we have a limited supply of the product which we can make available to physicians who call Ciba at 1-800-842-2422.
 (A) -- Lithium formulations as published in "Facts & Comparisons," Facts & Comparisons, Inc., St. Louis, MO, May 1993. Supplement, p.268f:


Lithium Carbonate (Roxane); Lithium Carbonate (generic formulations are Balan, Dixon-Shane, Geneva, Goldline, Major, Moore, Roxane, Rugby, Schein, URL) Eskalith(R) and Eskalith CR(R) (SKF); Lithonate(R) (Solvay); Lithane(R) (Miles); Lithotabs(TM) (Solvay); Lithium Citrate (generic formations are Balan, Geneva, Major, PBI, Raway, Roxane, Schein, Xactdose).
 -0- 5/27/93
 /CONTACT: Laurie Ostroff of Ciba-Geigy, 908-277-7109/


CO: Ciba-Geigy Corporation ST: New Jersey IN: MTC SU:

SB-SM -- NY052 -- 2956 05/27/93 12:22 EDT
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Date:May 27, 1993
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