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View Diary: Did GlaxoSmithKline know Avandia could cause heart trouble? (62 comments)

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  •  To it in some perspective (5+ / 0-)

    doctors were writing about 80,000 prescriptions per week for Avandia. Now think about the number of cardiac events in a population that has a very high incidence of heart attack and heart failure. Not to particularly defend GSK, but the problem with drugs has been the very advertising that Pharmaceutical Companies are allowed to do. They have essentially convinced most Americans that drugs are a form of magic. Take a pill and your troubles will just melt away! Let's get one thing clear: ALL DRUGS ARE POISONS! Take any drug and you will experience some kind of "side effect". The difficulty with all drugs is to balance the therapeutic effects with the side effects. Sure Avandia probably causes excess deaths; so do lots of drugs. Aspirin does. This doesn't absolve any drug Company from hiding such information. But I wonder if it's not time to ban drug Companies from advertising to consumers.

    •  Good point (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      VA Breeze, JeffW, earicicle, majii

      If we banned pharmaceutical companies from advertising, perhaps our drugs would be cheaper.  People see a drug advertised and then they ask their doctor to put them on that drug and the doctor usually has plenty of samples in his office to hand over to his patients.

    •  Banning advertisements would be one way to (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      JeffW, bvig

      go - and probably the route of "progressives" who wish to suppress information for the good of the les savvy amongst us (I had this discussion on a different thread earlier today).

      A second - an to me preferable - option would be to increase the ability of the average person out there to evaluate information on his or her own . . .  you know, possibly by teaching basic statistics in high school?

      Nah, that's never going to work in America, March Madness is on the way.  Gotta start thinking about filling out those brackets . . .

    •  I think that's a good idea (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      JeffW, greengemini

      For starters, it is impossible to convey a sufficiently clear warning in a 60 second ad for many drugs.

      Of course, there's always the Internet.

      In theory, there is no difference between theory and practice; but in practice, there always is a difference. - Yogi Berra

      by blue aardvark on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 03:44:27 PM PST

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    •  Years ago, only doctors got the info (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      JeffW, greengemini, majii

      in the various medical magazines. It was much more professional.
      We have to ask ourselves, why advertise to the consumer? WE can't write prescriptions for ourselves. It's  only to have patients pressure their docs for certain drugs.
      I'll bet you more than half of all drugs prescribed aren't even necessary.

      Electing conservatives is like hiring a carpenter who thinks hammers are evil.

      by MA Liberal on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 04:00:11 PM PST

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      •  Yeah, it's a problem (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        MA Liberal, JeffW, majii

        Now, some patients come in and tell their doctors what drug they want before the doctor has even examined them. But this "pharmaceuticalized" cutlre we have asks much too much of drugs. If you are not medically trained, you cannot possibly be in a situation to make a judgement about drugs. And you are so right about people getting unnecessary drugs. A lot of the time, for example, people do not need a diabetes drug - like Avandia - they need to lose weight and exercise more.

    •  I agree wholeheartedly. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      God has no religion. - Gandhi

      by OIL GUY on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 04:18:27 PM PST

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