The CDC has identified 21 cases of levamisole-tainted cocaine, which have resulted in agranulocytosis. Levamisole is an anti-helminthic drug that is known to cause agranulocytosis. It in unknown how or why the cocaine was tainted with the drug. In patients with new unexplained agranulocytosis and cocaine use, state or local health department should be contacted for levamisole testing (MMWR report)
Dr. Scheurer is a clinical hospitalist and the Medical Director of Quality and Safety at the Medical University of South Carolina in Charleston, South Carolina, and is Assistant Professor of Medicine. She is a graduate of the University of Tennessee College of Medicine, completed her residency at Duke University, and completed her Masters in Clinical Research at the Medical University of South Carolina. She also serves as the Web Editor and Physician Advisor for the Society of Hospital Medicine.