Big Pharma Responsible For More Deaths Than Illegal Drug Trade

JUL 23 by J HERMAN

According to the CDC, prescription medications put consumers at a much greater risk than illegal drugs. They estimate the death toll related to pharmaceutical drugs at 23,000 for the year 2013 alone. That puts prescription drugs such as oxycontin and tricyclic antidepressants at a much higher likelihood for causing death than drugs commonly seen as ‘killers’ such as heroin and cocaine.

So why are these prescription drugs not illegal? Well, thanks to massive advertising campaigns and the availability of information regarding the benefits but not the risks, many people don’t see prescription medications as quite on the same page as illicit substances.

And then there’s the honest fact that there is far much more money and power involved in funding drug wars while shoving toxic poison with minimal benefits down the throats of everyone from teenagers to senior citizens.

How can we solve this issue? The same CDC report that broke the statistics suggests that campaigns must be put together that inform both adults and children about the risks associated with prescription drugs and the likelihood of abuse, which stands much higher than many people believe.

But it’ll be hard to make that happen while our government is still fully supporting the interests of large pharmaceutical companies around the world and launching misleading campaigns against a drug trade who’s products kill less people than their so-called cures.

Source: http://www.realfarmacy.com/big-pharma-responsible-for-more-deaths-than-illegal-drug-trade/

Are statin drugs the cause of widespread decline in brain function?

Diseases of the brain are rampant in America today, and evidence suggests that a popular class of pharmaceutical drugs may be largely to blame. They’re known as statins, and the science behind how they function in the body reveals that these powerful drugs gradually degrade the brain by depriving it of cholesterol, leading to memory problems, dementia and other similar conditions.

In his book Lipitor: Thief of Memory, Dr. Duanne Graveline, M.D., wrote about his horrific experience with statins, and how they caused him to suffer two transient global amnesia events as well as chronic neuropathy. The former astronaut and aerospace medical research scientist explains how these traumatic events were the direct result of statins altering his brain.

Learn more: http://www.naturalnews.com/048213_statin_drugs_brain_function_memory_problems.html#ixzz3O82q3aI1

Japan to file criminal complaint against Novartis

Wednesday, Jan 08, 2014
AFP

TOKYO – Japan’s health ministry plans to file a criminal complaint against the local arm of Swiss pharmaceutical giant Novartis over alleged exaggerated advertising for a popular blood-pressure drug.Novartis Pharma KK has been under fire since a university said the data in clinical studies might have been skewed to promote Valsartan.

A ministry panel of experts concluded in September that Novartis Pharma KK should be held responsible for studies at various universities that used manipulated data on the drug.

The firm used data from the studies to market its drug, playing up its supposed additional benefits.

Tokyo’s Jikei University School of Medicine has retracted research that appeared in respected medical journal The Lancet six years ago due to data fabrication.

Kyoto Prefectural University of Medicine also concluded that its studies on the drug used incomplete clinical data.

Chiba University said in December it could not find intentional data fabrication but researchers failed to disclose 91 million yen ($880,000) in scholarship donations from the pharmaceutical company in the three years from 2007 to 2009.

Read more: http://yourhealth.asiaone.com/content/japan-file-criminal-complaint-against-novartis

Major Pharmaceutical Company Wants To Block Access To Clinical Trial Data Of Their Drugs In Fear of Profit Loss

AbbVie (recently split off from Abbott Laboratories), maker of Humira, and InterMune, maker of Esbriet, have filed a lawsuit against the European Medicines Agency (the European equivalent of the FDA) to block access to clinical trial data on the benefits and harms of their drugs, claiming that these vital facts are “trade secrets” whose release would harm their profits. Medical researches have been denied to clinical trial information.

Of course, when a drug causes cancer, release of clinical data information could potentially harm the profits of the company that makes it. Humira, a drug that is quickly becoming one of the best-selling drugs in the world causes cancer.

The FDA warning label on Humira warns of increased risk of “Lymphoma and other malignancies” including “a rare type of cancer called hepatosplenic T-cell lymphoma” that “often results in death,” along with “increased risk of serious infections leading to hospitalization or death, including tuberculosis (TB), bacterial sepsis, invasive fungal infections (such as histoplasmosis) and infections due to other opportunistic pathogens.

In addition to Lymphoma, TB and other infections, Humira is also linked to the following:

  • Leukemia
  • Skin Cancer
  • Candidiasis
  • Kaposi’s Sarcoma
  • Histoplasmosis Cryptosporidium

All of which can lead to death.

Read more: http://www.collective-evolution.com/2013/09/04/major-pharmaceutical-company-wants-to-block-access-to-clinical-trial-data-of-their-drugs-in-fear-of-profit-loss/#_

 

Glaxo chief: Our drugs do not work on most patients

A senior executive with Britain’s biggest drugs company has admitted that most prescription medicines do not work on most people who take them.

Allen Roses, worldwide vice-president of genetics at GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), said fewer than half of the patients prescribed some of the most expensive drugs actually derived any benefit from them.

It is an open secret within the drugs industry that most of its products are ineffective in most patients but this is the first time that such a senior drugs boss has gone public.

“The vast majority of drugs – more than 90 per cent – only work in 30 or 50 per cent of the people,” Dr Roses said. “I wouldn’t say that most drugs don’t work. I would say that most drugs work in 30 to 50 per cent of people. Drugs out there on the market work, but they don’t work in everybody.”

Some industry analysts said Dr Roses’s comments were reminiscent of the 1991 gaffe by Gerald Ratner, the jewellery boss, who famously said that his high street shops are successful because they sold “total crap”. But others believe Dr Roses deserves credit for being honest about a little-publicised fact known to the drugs industry for many years.

Dr Roses said doctors treating patients routinely applied the trial-and-error approach which says that if one drug does not work there is always another one. “I think everybody has it in their experience that multiple drugs have been used for their headache or multiple drugs have been used for their backache or whatever.

“It’s in their experience, but they don’t quite understand why. The reason why is because they have different susceptibilities to the effect of that drug and that’s genetic,” he said.

“Neither those who pay for medical care nor patients want drugs to be prescribed that do not benefit the recipient. Pharmacogenetics has the promise of removing much of the uncertainty.”

Response rates

Therapeutic area: drug efficacy rate in per cent

  • Alzheimer’s: 30
  • Analgesics (Cox-2): 80
  • Asthma: 60
  • Cardiac Arrythmias: 60
  • Depression (SSRI): 62
  • Diabetes: 57
  • Hepatits C (HCV): 47
  • Incontinence: 40
  • Migraine (acute): 52
  • Migraine (prophylaxis)50
  • Oncology: 25

  • Rheumatoid arthritis50
  • Schizophrenia: 60

Read more:  http://www.independent.co.uk/news/science/glaxo-chief-our-drugs-do-not-work-on-most-patients-575942.html

Perilous Approach: Avastin and Sutent Promote Growth of Breast Cancer Stem Cells

 

Avastin

 

(Note: Many patients in Malaysia have been treated with this very expensive drug)

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration recently revoked approval of Avastin for treating breast cancer. The reversal was in response to clinical trials showing that the drug’s benefit was short-lived, with breast cancer patients quickly relapsing and the cancer becoming more invasive and metastatic.

Cancer treatments designed to block the growth of blood vessels were found to increase the number of cancer stem cells in breast tumors in mice, suggesting a possible explanation for why these drugs don’t lead to longer survival, according to a study by researchers at the University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center.

While anti-angiogenic drugs do shrink tumors and slow the time until the cancer progresses, the effect does not last, and the cancer eventually regrows and spreads.

The researchers treated mice with breast cancer using the anti-angiogenesis drugs Avastin (bevacizumab) and Sutent (sunitinib). The researchers found that tumors treated with these drugs developed more cancer stem cells, which fuel a cancer’s growth and spread and are often resistant to standard treatment.

Read more: http://www.med.umich.edu/cic/2012-spring/perilous-approach.html

 

Painkillers That Kill

The New York Times , 25 January 2013 has this heading: F.D.A. Likely to Add Limits on Painkillers

  • Painkillers like Vicodin that contain hydrocodone, the most widely prescribed drugs in the country. Oxycodone is another highly abused painkiller and the main ingredient in OxyContin.
  • Painkillers now take the lives of more Americans than heroin and cocaine combined.
  • And since 2008, drug-induced deaths have outstripped those from traffic accidents.
  • Prescription drugs account for about three-quarters of all drug overdose deaths in the United States, with the number of deaths from painkillers quadrupling since 1999.

The F.D.A. convened the panel, made up of scientists, pain doctors and other experts, which contends that the drugs are among the most frequently abused painkillers and should be more tightly controlled.

The change would have sweeping consequences for doctors, pharmacists and patients. Refills without a new prescription would be forbidden, as would faxed prescriptions and those called in by phone. Only written prescriptions from a doctor would be allowed.

Distributors would be required to store the drugs in special vaults.

While hydrocodone products are the most widely prescribed painkillers, they make up a minority of deaths, because there is less medication in each tablet than some of the other more restricted drugs, like extended-release oxycodone products, said Dr. Nathaniel Katz, assistant professor of anesthesia at Tufts University School of Medicine in Boston.

Oxycodone and methadone products account for about two-thirds of drug overdose deaths, he said.

Dr. Andrew Kolodny, chairman of psychiatry at Maimonides Medical Center in New York and president of Physicians for Responsible Opioid Prescribing, a New York-based advocacy group said: “This is about correcting a mistake made 40 years ago that’s had disastrous consequences.”

Note: Some years ago, the painkiller Vioxx – which were reported to have killed thousands and thousands have been withdrawn.

Do you ever wonder: What kind of science and what kind of a word are we living in now, that drugs which are once been prescribed like peanuts have now suggested to be kept in special vaults in the pharmacies?

Read more: http://www.nytimes.com/2013/01/26/health/fda-vote-on-restricting-hydrocodone-products-vicodin.html?nl=todaysheadlines&emc=edit_th_20130126&_r=0