Pfizer is going through a scarcity of penicillin resulting from elevated demand and extra diagnoses of syphilis, the corporate stated in a letter to its clients this week.
The corporate stated there may be an “impending inventory out state of affairs” for choose Bicillin L-A and Bicillin C-R prefilled syringes, Pfizer’s model identify of injectable penicillin.
Prefilled Bicillin L-A pediatric syringes are anticipated to start operating low by the top of June, whereas all Bicillin C-R syringes might start diminishing within the third quarter of this yr.
Stock is predicted to begin recovering within the second and third quarters of 2024, Pfizer stated.
Penicillin is an antibiotic used to deal with varied forms of infections, together with sexually transmitted illnesses, corresponding to syphilis and pneumonia.
Syphilis charges have been at a historic low from 2000 to 2001, however have elevated yearly since, with a rise of 28.6% from 2020 to 2021, which was doubtless exacerbated by an interruption in remedy and prevention because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Facilities for Illness Management and Prevention stated.
The shortage of penicillin comes amid a long-term scarcity of pharmaceuticals the U.S. has been experiencing for the final decade, normally because of disruptions within the provide chain, just like the one attributable to the pandemic, Marta Wosińska, a visiting fellow at The Brookings Establishment, told NPR earlier this year.
Different prescriptions, corresponding to Adderall and kids’s flu remedy have additionally been in short supply.