This website is dedicated to the history of the drug
'thalidomide' and we explore the various disabilities that the
drug caused to babies worldwide.
Since Thalidomide UK was founded in 1993, against all odds, Diageo
have put additional monies into the trust on three separate
occasions. Payments are being made to provide some facilities
(adaptation of properties/wheelchairs/cars, etc) to alleviate
The thalidomide disabilities was a man-made by a drug, which
could have been
so easily avoided if the manufactures and
suppliers had carried out the adequate testing on the drug.
Those who were responsible for the marketing of the drug did not
have a care for human life.
(Medicines 'Teratogenic' Regulatory Consultant)
President/Founder/Head Consultant of Thalidomide UK
Thalidomide Agency UK
website provides information the use of thalidomide and similar
In 1985 when the world discovered that the drug thalidomide was
being used in the treatment of leprosy and that babies were
still being born in countries like Brazil, our immediate
response was to call for the drug to be banned.
Over the years, most thalidomiders
have come to accept that if it can help people who suffer
from number of illnesses then it must be used but only under the
strictest guidelines such as a risk Management Programme.
In our ideal world, thalidomide would be banned, but we have to
accept that we live in the real world. We believe that the best
way forward is to work on Risk Management Programme like the
European Pregnancy Prevention
Programme and the STEPS Programme in the USA, with the
manufactures and suppliers that would reduce the chances of more
babies being damaged by the drug.
The drug ‘Thalidomide’ was
mainly prescribed to pregnant women for morning sickness in the
late 50s and early 60s. Instead, the drug caused severe
deformities in babies with missing limbs.
Some thalidomide people where
also born with internal deformities. It is estimated that over
3,500 babies died before their first birthday. Thalidomide was
invented in 1954 at the Grünenthal Labs in Germany by the
inventors Dr. W. Kunz (chemical synthesis) and Dr. H. Keller
pharmacological description of sedative properties).
ON THE VIDEO BELOW)
- SOME PEOPLE MAY
FIND THIS DVD
(generic name isotretinoin)
Hundreds of drugs still pose the risk of birth
abnormalities. It is a
meaning it derives from
and is found in small quantities naturally in the body.
or Roaccutane (generic name isotretinoin)
Amnesteem are members of a family of drugs called retinoids
which are known to cause a number of
serious birth defects,
and has been implicated as a possible cause of cleft lip and
cleft palate. Isotretinoin is derived from vitamin A.
Oral isotretinoin is marketed under various trade
names, most commonly Accutane (Roche),
Oratane (Genepharm Australasia) or Roaccutane (Roche),
while topical isotretinoin is most commonly marketed under the
trade names Isotrex or Isotrexin (Stiefel).
What is even more terrifying is that the drugs are aimed at
teenagers for the treatment of ACNE.
and Roaccutane This drug is NOT manufactured by
Celgene the suppliers of Thalidomide or Revlimid, but the
pharmaceutical giants Roche.
however is the owner of the business process patents on
components which will be essential elements of the new
isotretinoin RiskMAP. Celgene is not involved in the
strengthened isotretinoin RiskMAP aside from the patent
U.S. Food and Drug Administration 'FDA or USFDA'
agency of the
United States Department of
Health and Human Services and is responsible for
regulating and supervising the safety of
biological medical products,
devices, veterinary products, and
insisted that the drug has a stronger Risk Management Programme
than used in the past.
Risk Management Programme is called iPLEDGE.
The iPLEDGE program is a mandatory
distribution program in the United States for
(commonly sold under the trade names Accutane,
Amnesteem, Claravis or Sotret), intended to
prevent the use of the drug during pregnancy due to the high
Diageo reaches settlement with the
Australian and New Zealand thalidomide
Drinks giant Diageo has been praised for its compassion after
agreeing a £49 million settlement with more than 100 thalidomide
victims in Australia and New Zealand.
Lawyer Peter Gordon told the Victoria state Supreme Court the
deal, subject to court approval, brought to an end a long battle
for compensation and praised the global firm’s constructive
The drug was given to pregnant women in the 1950s and 1960s as a
treatment for morning sickness, but was pulled from the market
in 1961 after it was linked to birth defects.
Diageo was not itself responsible for the distribution or sale
of the drug.
However the Distillers Company, which distributed it in
Australia, was bought by Guinness in 1986, ahead of the creation
of Diageo 11 years later.
3 December 2013
Speech on the occasion of the inauguration of
Translation of the German speech by Harald F.
Stock, PhD., Chief Executive Officer of the Grünenthal Group, on
the occasion of the Thalidomide-Memorial inauguration upon
invitation by the City of Stolberg on 31st August
2012 in Stolberg/Rhineland
In numerous talks with those affected, but also
for example with the Ministry of Health, Equalities, Care and
Ageing of North Rhine-Westphalia – especially in the last few
months, we learned how much it is publicly desired that we
express our deep regrets to those affected by Thalidomide, and
in particular to their mothers.
We are aware of our responsibility and will
continue to fulfil it in demand-oriented projects and
The fact that I can stand here today and address
a few words to you is nevertheless not a matter of course.
We also apologize for the fact that we have not
found the way to you from person to person for almost 50 years.
Instead, we have been silent and we are very sorry for that.
We ask that you regard our long silence as a sign
of the silent shock that your fate has caused us. We have
learned how important it is that we engage in an open dialogue
with those affected and to talk and to listen to them. We have
begun to mutually develop and implement projects with them, to
improve their living situation and assist in hardship situations
easily and efficiently. We will continue to pursue this path in
(President) Official Statement
We have studied Grünenthal’s speech
made by Harald Stock and recognise words that Grunenthal have
for the fact that they have not found the way to
you from person to person for almost 50 years. Instead, they
have been silent and we are very sorry for that.
We also acknowledge that they have begun to
mutually develop and implement projects with them, to improve
their living situation and assist in hardship situations easily
and efficiently. We will continue to pursue this path in the
are currently 469 registered thalidomide survivors UK through
who desperately needs help in making their lives easier as their
health has deteriorated dramatically over last number of years
and sadly thalidomide survivors will only get worse, because of
the severe of their disabilities
We therefore will be contacting Grunenthal
shortly with the chance of opening discussions.
a new TV
VIA YouTube Thalidomide UK TV
The new channel
shows news clips, documentaries and others on the history of
thalidomide. It is also available via our website. Please click
on link below
radio website (new)
(Please click on the
above to view the
Thalidomide Radio Website NEW)
(Please click on the
above to listen to our commercial)
thalidomide radio information
Thalidomide Radio will be
available in all countries via the website Thalidomide.
You will be able to listen to our new station in various ways
Thalidomide Radio website
(website launch mid 2014) or Thalidomide Radio Facebook (a
public social network site).
Radio will make sure that news,
conversation and interviews on thalidomide and other similar type
medicines is our priority. We however will be introducing
and Comedy programs into our Line-up.
Our aim is to
the younger generation into the History of Thalidomide and
therefore feel that it is in the interest of our people to make
sure that they listen to the
If you have any ideas for
Station then please e-mail: email@example.com
or even if you want to be in interviewee please let us know by
the same method.
Thalidomide victims seeking
Association – 5th June 2014
victims have mounted a new bid for compensation from the drug's
manufacturer and distributor more than 50 years after they were
been filed at the High Court on behalf of eight people whose
mothers took the anti-morning sickness drug when pregnant in the
late 1950s and early 1960s, law firm Slater & Gordon said.
seeking compensation from the drug's German maker Grunenthal and
Diageo, which now owns the drug's UK distributor, Distillers Co
Brian Davies, 53, from Gwynedd, Wales, who was left with
deformed feet, is one of those seeking compensation, having been
refused under a 1970s plan because his arms were not affected.
father-of-two said: "It's a disgrace that so many people have
been denied justice in this way.
"In my eyes
it was simply the drug companies looking to save money and
ignoring the duty of care they have to people whose lives they
I was a child I have missed out on everyday pleasures, like
playing football with friends or swimming, things other people
take for granted.
am in pain and every day is a struggle. I hope that now we
finally get the justice that we have been demanding for so many
and 1961 the drug Thalidomide was used by expectant mothers to
control symptoms of morning sickness.
originally prescribed as a "wonder drug'' for morning sickness,
headaches, coughs, insomnia and colds.
babies often suffered missing or deformed limbs and extreme
shortening of arms and legs, but the drug also caused
malformations of the eyes and ears, genitals, heart, kidneys and
By the time
safety fears led to it being pulled from sale thousands of
babies worldwide had been affected.
survivors' charity Thalidomide UK there are still 455 victims in
the UK but it is estimated around 40% of victims died before
their first birthday.
Grunenthal apologised for the drug for the first time, with
chief executive Harald Stock saying "we have been silent and we
are very sorry for that".
Diageo paid 89 million Australian dollars (£49 million) to just
over 100 further Australians damaged by the drug, in a deal
which led to a claim against Grunenthal being discontinued.
Gordon lawyer Fraser Whitehead said: "Grunenthal and Distillers
have always claimed that the thalidomide disaster was an
unavoidable tragedy and that they did everything expected of
drug companies at the time. Our research has demonstrated that
companies knew their drug was causing severe nerve damage and
both were explicitly warned of the possibility thalidomide might
cause severe malformations. Yet the drug was left on the market
for many months afterwards.
"It is time
those responsible are finally held to account for the mistakes
of the past. Grunenthal, in particular, has done little make
good the immense damage that it has done and it has to accept
responsibility for those affected in the UK."
spokesman said: "Grunenthal confirms that the company received
an email from Slater & Gordon today, announcing that they have
been instructed to bring proceedings on behalf of eight
has not seen the claims to which they refer and is, therefore,
not in a position to comment further."
Severely ill patients and
those with rare debilitating
conditions could be given
new medicines years before
they are licensed, under new
The Early Access to
Medicines scheme would
enable a small number of
promising medicines to be
The idea is to help patients
in England with severe
illnesses who have no other
The Medicines and Healthcare
Products Regulatory Agency
(MHRA) will oversee the
scheme, being launched in
Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt
said: "What patients want is
sometimes to try medicines
that may not be clinically
proven to be effective but
are clinically safe.
"We are streamlining the
process so these medicines
can be used much earlier -
particularly if they have
early promise - and that is
something which will bring
hope to a lot of patients."
Freddie Astbury President of
Thalidomide UK said: this is very good news for terminally ill
patients, who have tried all medicines and it were desperate to
get treatment that could prolonged life or in even in a small
number of cases would cure their diseases.
People must remember that
unfortunately in many cases this can often be life threatening
disease and that they have no alternative but to try new
medicines. We are sure, after working with the MHRA that they
have taken all necessary precautions in making sure that
these medicines are safe.
If you consider that you have been
damaged as a result of your parent taking the drug thalidomide
during pregnancy, which was supplied by a doctor in the UK.
Important: please remember you must have been born between 1958
and 1962 to the Trust.
By post: The Thalidomide
Cambs PE 19
By telephone: 01480 474074
victims of the morning sickness drug Thalidomide said
they have been awarded compensation after fighting against a
pharmaceutical company for decades.
The court has recognized 23 victims, who will receive a minimum
of $807,900 from the company, Grünenthal, The chairman of the
Thalidomide victims' association, AVITE, said the verdict is
historic. "We have regained some of the dignity which we should
never have had to have lost, but which we lost before we were
born," Chairman Jose Riquelme said. Thalidomide, first
prescribed in 1957 as a morning sickness drug, caused a range of
deformities in the infants, including missing fingers, elbows
Thousands of babies were affected, and many victims had to
undergo amputations as a result of the deformities. Although
only 23 victims were awarded compensation, those who feel they
have a valid claim should attend court for a medical examination
to certify their condition.
Thursday 21st November, 2013