updated 11/2/2005 6:25:43 PM ET 2005-11-02T23:25:43

The Food and Drug Administration on Wednesday began requiring drug makers to submit electronic versions of their product labels for use in a government-run database of medicines.

  1. Don't miss these Health stories
    1. Splash News
      More women opting for preventive mastectomy - but should they be?

      Rates of women who are opting for preventive mastectomies, such as Angeline Jolie, have increased by an estimated 50 percent in recent years, experts say. But many doctors are puzzled because the operation doesn't carry a 100 percent guarantee, it's major surgery -- and women have other options, from a once-a-day pill to careful monitoring.

    2. Larry Page's damaged vocal cords: Treatment comes with trade-offs
    3. Report questioning salt guidelines riles heart experts
    4. CDC: 2012 was deadliest year for West Nile in US
    5. What stresses moms most? Themselves, survey says

The labels contain extensive information about the benefits, risks and chemistry of a given drug, and may include specific safety warnings.

The government expects to have labels for most of the available prescription drugs posted on the Web site of the National Library of Medicine — http://dailymed.nlm.nih.gov — within a year. As of Wednesday, the information for a single drug was posted.

The labels for vaccines, medical devices, veterinary drugs and some food products will be added later, the FDA said.

Unlike the printed labels that patients receive when they are prescribed a drug, each the labels on the Web site will be updated as new information, such as additional warnings, is added to the label.

© 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Discuss:

Discussion comments

,

Most active discussions

  1. votes comments
  2. votes comments
  3. votes comments
  4. votes comments