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I just have a second to post this one.  The Washington Post reports a major study finding that when a pharmaceutical company funds a study, over 90% of the time, the study comes out in their favor.  When drugs go head-to-head, the winner is nearly always whoever funded the study.

A former editor of the New England Journal of Medicine explains several ways of skewing the results: choosing placebos with high side effects to mask the drug's side effects (have you ever looked at what the placebos are for your vaccines or hormonal contraception?), studying young adults when the drug is for the elderly, present only the part of the date that benefits you, or outright suppressing negative results. 

The article also discusses how the drug industry has its hands deep in the halls of academia, mentioning Columbia and Harvard by name.

I have some family and friends who are drug reps.  I've learned from them that while they can't directly give doctors kickbacks for prescribing a certain quantity of their drugs, they can wine and dine them all they like before and after the prescription, as long as there is no direct reward.  Of course, the drug rep CAN and does go to the pharmacies and find out which doctors prescribe how much of their drugs.  

Just do your research.  When you are prescribed a medicine, check the PDR, the major research available online by the NIH, and alternative, especially nutritional, changes.  Be your own advocate - no one else will!



( 1 comment — Comment )
Dec. 18th, 2008 01:34 pm (UTC)
Yeah, isn't that a surprise?
Anyway, I am bookmarking this article for when I need to prove to people that I am not completely paranoid.
( 1 comment — Comment )


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