Medicine: Against the Bottle

About the time disulfiram (Antabuse) was hailed by Danish doctors as a wonder drug for alcoholism, plant physicians began hearing complaints that workers recently exposed to dust in the manufacture of calcium cyanamide*could not take a drink—it made them sick. Disulfiram proved a disappointment: it was too dangerous for widespread use, required a doctor's close supervision. But last week a medicinal variant of cyanamide was released in Canada for prescription sale, on the strength of researchers' reports that it is almost as potent as disulfiram and far safer.

Trade-named Temposil by Lederle Laboratories, it is citrated calcium carbimide (CCC). A single tablet...

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