pharmaPHfacts … generics …. outsourcing health …
So just what do you get for four bucks these days? Seems like just yesterday we were demanding the right to purchase cheaper prescription meds from Canada and were told ‘nadda’ since there was no way to ensure their safety. Well, no sooner had the Bush Admin passed Medicare Part B than US Pharmaceuticals began to really run amuk. And the stench is simply nauseating: the mega outsourcing of drug manufacturing to developing countries to cut production costs; gobbling up generic manufacturers around the globe; and, with the complacency of the FDA, rush to market copycat drugs, which under federal law are not subject to adequate clinical trials or guidelines to ensure their efficacy or safety. Read entire diary at DailyKos Health Care Night: Big Pharma is Outsourcing your health
“The generic of Toprol XL 50 mg. tablets. – a retail pharmacy recall that is detailed with recalls of other meds by the Ethex Corporation on lots of sites on the web, including that of Wal-Mart.”
Walmart is heavily promoting a program of 30-day supplies of generic drugs for $4, pointing to the program as an indicator of the company’s leadership on making healthcare more affordable. To profit on $4 dollar prescriptions, Walmart is importing drugs from foreign countries, including India. Walmart competitor Costco went a different direction in late 2006, when it ended its $4 dollar prescription drug plan because it was losing money selling prescription drugs at such a low price. Costco switched to selling 100 pills for $10.
One of Walmart’s Indian drug suppliers, Ranbaxy Laboratories, LTD, has been repeatedly investigated by the Food and Drug Administration and the Department of Justice for “inadequate” safeguards against contamination, falsification of records and submitting false information to the FDA. Eight months before the FDA inspected Ranbaxy’s Paonta Sahib plant and found significant violations, Walmart awarded the company a “Supplier Award” for improving shipping times and performance.
In 2008, the FDA banned importation of drugs manufactured at two of Ranbaxy’s plants, and in 2009, the FDA halted review of applications to import drugs manufactured at the Paonta Sahib plant.  Soon thereafter, Canada followed suit and banned importation of drugs manufactured at that facility. Link to Download the report and read more about Ranbaxy.
What the big pharmaceuticals don’t want you to know.
The US and New Zealand are the two developed countries that allow direct-to-consumer advertising of prescription medications.
A Decade of Direct-to-Consumer Advertising of Prescription Drugs A detailed analysis of the money pharmaceuticals spend on advertising, direct marketing to physicians and distribution of free samples.
- Among the top 20 products in terms of direct-to-consumer advertising in 2005: Sepracor’s Lunesta ($214M), GlaxoSmithKline’s Wellbutrin XL ($108M) and Sanofi-Aventis’ Ambien ($88M)
- In the ten years since DTCP has been legal in the US, spending on pharmaceutical promotion grew from $11.4 billion in 1996 to $29.9 billion in 2005
- The antidepressant market faces a sharp decline in revenues at the end of 2008 as patents expire on many of the top sellers. Effexor, in anticipation of patent expiration, releases Pristiq, pulling all free samples of Effexor and Effexor XR from physicians’ drug chests, mandating that patients who depended on the free samples due to insurance problems, shift immediately to Pristiq. No information on the potential of severe Effexor withdrawal is provided to distributors.
- In the early 1960’s, Lilly tried to have LSD approved by the FDA, claiming that..”a therapeutic dose of LSD is good for children”.
- The USA has 4% of the world’s population and consumes 50% of the world’s prescription drugs. .
Tell Congress: Stop Prescription Drug Ads
Each year, drug executives spend $4 billion on prescription drug ads for pills they say will make you feel happier, sleep better and improve your sex life.
The ads are not educational, and do not promote public health. They can be extremely dangerous, as the Vioxx tragedy shows.
The Public Health Protection Act will stop all direct-to-consumer drug ads. Thirty-nine organizations have endorsed this legislation.
Side Effects & SSRIs
Sie effects: nausea, anorexia, weight gain, insomnia and sexual dysfunction; caused by stimulation of different subtypes of 5-HT receptor.
Dr. Ann Blake Tracy – Executive Director, International Coalition For Drug Awareness, www.drugawareness.org, and author of PROZAC: PANACEA OR PANDORA? warns about the horrendou side effects associated with discontinuation of all SSRIs.
IT SHOULD BE NOTED THAT A GRADUAL TAPERING OFF OF MEDICATIONS IS SAFEST WITHDRAWAL METHOD TO AVOID SERIOUS WITHDRAWAL EFFECTS (Often there is the terrible withdrawal associated with the SSRIs. Unless patients are warned to come very slowly off these drugs by shaving minuscule amounts off their pills each day, as opposed to cutting them in half or taking a pill every other day, they can go into terrible withdrawal which is generally delayed several months. This withdrawal includes bouts of overwhelming depression, terrible insomnia and fatigue, and can include life-threatening physical effects, psychosis, or violent outbursts.)
Note: Keep in mind that these drugs are all serotonergic agents and clones or “copy cat” drugs of Prozac – the first SSRI antidepressant introduced to the market in America. Basically what applies to one, applies to the others. For instance we have more data out on Prozac because it has been around longer, but as the mode of action is the same for all of these meds the effects will be the same for the other drugs on this list as it is for Prozac. If we are discussing one drug, similar effects would be expected from any other company’s version of the drug. In fact it would be more honest to give them the titles of Prozac #1, Prozac #2, Prozac #3, etc. rather than the brand names they have been given, from the second clone, Zoloft, to the latest Prozac clone, Celexa. My concern is that each new SSRI introduced seems to be a little stronger on serotonin reuptake and therefore potentially more dangerous. And the all too common practice of going from one SSRI to another blocks additional receptors and magnifies the harmful effects of these medications.
– – Serotonin and serotonin receptors exist throughout the body, as well as the brain, and every aspect of the body’s physiology is affected by these serotonergic medications. In fact approximately 90% of the body’s serotonin is produced in the intestinal tract. According to Dr. Michael Gershon of New York’s Columbia Presbyterian, this is the reason why Prozac produces so many gastrointestinal side effects. – – March, 1998: Two new studies published – one that shows Prozac so strongly inhibits one particular serotonin receptor that this produces both obesity and seizures and the other discusses the blockage of muscle and neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors indicating interactions between the serotonergic and cholinergic systems in the central nervous system.