Why Drug Companies are Naughty and 5 Remedies to Cure the Symptoms
With the hum of the election campaign and the debate of "big business," versus human interest, I decided to do a bit of muckraking into the art and science of the recent removal of Merck's Vioxx. My motivation of course; to look for clues as to the role drug companies play in our health and wellness (or lack thereof).
Here's some symptoms giving me trouble:
Symptom #1: After pulling Vioxx from the shelves, drug company, Merck, (as well as the media) made the "only 7.5 in 1,000 patients could be at risk for heart attack or stroke" sound like a simple omission.
Symptom #2: Prior to the pharmaceutical companies and pharmacies clearing their shelves of Vioxx, studies had shown the drugs destructive effects for over four years (Check out the proof for yourself in this article: http://my.webmd.com/content/Article/95/103442.htm )
Symptom #3: We are given all of this data in a most nonchalant fashion, prior to learning the amount of money Merck was pocketing on the drug: current tally, $2.6 billion (reference article above).
Symptom: #4: We are meant to be comforted by the fact that the drug, Vioxx, was released with only limited clinical testing. And gosh, if no one from the random sample had any cardiovascular consideration to begin with, who knew it would cause heart attacks or stroke (ref. http://my.webmd.com/content/chat_transcripts/1/103031.htm )?
Symptom: #5: (Even if we are to digest this) Perhaps they shouldn't have told us that in 2002, according to a report from the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association ( www.bcbs.com ) over $160 million dollars was spent to advertise Vioxx (which was higher than advertisement dollars for both Pepsi and Nike).
Shall I continue?
Why not... here's more off the cuff musings:
On the other side of the coin, Merck has set off a chain reaction. Each and every day I see advertisements from lawyers on my local upstate New York television asking for Vioxx users to step forward. Yes, if you dial 1-800 they're at your disposal, poised and ready to sue the pants off Merck.
And so I ask you... Do two wrongs make a right?
Here's my assessment of the situation based on clinical experience: When we're sick, we trust our doctor to help us come back to health. We trust the pharmaceutical companies to support research and create drugs to prevent disease and ailments. Yet, in a fear based society (assuming death to be the fear we speak of) we hear precious little about the trust we should place on our bodies own natural ability to heal itself. It's just that simple.
Let's all be honest with each other, drug companies are betting that you are going to get sick ? and if and when you do they will be happy to accommodate you. When doctors prescribe drugs, pharmaceutical companies make money. And when a doctor prescribes a certain "brand" of drug, the doctor receives a kick-back from the company. It's simple supply and demand.
What's more, now their digging a little deeper into your pocket and your psyche. Here's a prime example. Turn on your television set during ? let's say football season just to be timely. You'll notice prime?time advertisements by your favorite (or not so favorite) celebrities promoting Celebrex, Levitra and so on... These advertisements bypass the medical profession placing drugs on the table for commercial consumption.
So this all begs the question - are drugs bad for you? The answer can be both yes and no. All drugs have side effects. Most drugs are created from organic sources but are then chemically manipulated to cause a favorable reaction in the body. When you take a drug, basically, you're putting an inorganic substance into nature.
Therefore, the hullabaloo makes me think ? how do we stay out of the machine? Or better yet, if there are drugs which will help people become well (which I believe there are) how do we keep the money-hungry honest? Here's my 5 remedies:
Remedy One: Educate Yourself
What drugs can do is be a means to wellness. But you need to know the facts. If you walk into your doctor's office with a list of symptoms, you will receive a drug that promises to (on paper) relieve you of your symptoms.
But what if those symptoms are trying to tell you something? And what if the drug your doctor prescribes could make you sicker? Here's what you can do: If you are given a drug, check out the side effects and interactions here, then decide: http://www.pdrhealth.com/drug_info/
Remedy Two: Think Complimentary Medicine
So, Laura, what is complimentary medicine? Complimentary medicine asks you to take a long look at yourself, your body and your beliefs about why an illness has developed. It's not about treating one ailment (joint pain, an injury, an illness) ? it's about looking at the whole picture: your posture, your diet, your lifestyle. Then, creating an exit strategy for your illness.
Complimentary medicine asks you to take a look at your relationship to the affliction and then ? with your doctor's facilitation - developing a treatment program as a means to health (which can include medication). This way you become fully active in your illness and treatment.
Remedy Three: Practice Prevention
The best way to approach wellness is when you are well. Then, if the time should come for you to become a part of your own health care, you can be honest with yourself and how you feel about your body.
Start now. Take a long look at your self. Begin by checking your score on the wheel of life: ( http://www.onlinewbc.gov/docs/manage/lifewheel.html ) Are you taking ample time for yourself? Time for exercise, time for play? Are there outside forces instigating stress in your body? By taking the wheel of life exam you'll understand that your personal fulfillment can pay dividends on your health.
Remedy Four: Have Routine Check Ups
This one is easy. Create a relationship with your doctor: Make continuous notes of all your concerns and talk to your doctor about them. Most doctors will only spend a limited time with you, so get your notes together before hand and aim to keep the lines of communication open.
Step Five: Live a Healthy Lifestyle
Be Kind To Yourself: Start by taking a few quiet moments each day to silence the outside world and allow the heart rate to slow. Continue your process to be well by becoming conscious of all that is around you.
Nutrition: Practice becoming aware of what you are putting in your mouth ? try to focus on the naturals: fruits and vegetables and go for lean meats and low fats. Finally, don't forget to drink your 8-oz glasses of water.
Exercise: Be sure to find an exercise program you enjoy and be consistent with your workouts: My philosophy: spend 1 hour per day at least 5 days a week. This is just a guideline. Find what kind of exercise you enjoy most, and be consistent. Your body will thank you.
Learn to get to know your body. Your body and your relationship to it will give you signals as to how to take care of it. You can keep the drug companies honest by asking questions, challenging information and making the most of the time you spend with your doctor. By creating a positive atmosphere and a positive lifestyle you are certain to find yourself betting on wellness and keeping the pharmaceutical monies right where they belong: in you own pocket.
About The Author
Laura Turner is a writer and author. She publishes the bi-weekly New Body News and Wellness Letter, 'The eZine healthy people read!'( http://www.new-body-news.com ) Her latest book: Spiritual Fitness: The 7-Steps to Living Well is currently available. Learn more here: http://www.new-body-news.com/Spiritual_Fitness.htm.
Strong Pain Relief - Powerful & Effective Natural Pain Management Alternative
The recent removal of several high profile and popular prescription pain medications of the same pharmaceutical family, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatories, from the buyer's market has left many people searching for a safer alternative for powerful, fast and effective pain relief. The most recent removal was Pfizer's pulling of Bextra, citing serious skin reactions, sometimes fatal, and two others, Vioxx and Celebrex have been linked to heart related risks. The dangerous side effects of this particular family of medications is definitely cause for alarm, and has many seeking alternatives that will manage their pain effectively, without the serious risks of several pharmaceutical pain killers.
Infants and Acid Reflux
Infant acid reflux is quite common. People of all ages, especially infants because they consume only liquids or soft foods, suffer from mild heartburn or acidic regurgitation on occasion. As in adult cases, infants experience acid reflux when the lower esophageal sphincter (LES) is relaxed. The LES acts as a valve between the esophagus and the stomach. It opens up to allow food into the stomach and then closes in order to protect the esophagus and other organs from acidic reflux. Unfortunately, it is difficult to determine if an infant has developed a chronic form of heartburn called gastroesophageal reflux disease or GERD.
"It's a chemical imbalance." I've heard those words so many times in the last decade, it's becoming routine for Doctors to blame everything on it.
FDA Orders Search Engines to Stop Online Pharmacies
How Does Online Pharmacies Affect Pharmacy Leaders?
Increase Your Risk of Heart Disease With Lipitor and Pravachol
Results of a new study comparing the effectiveness of Pfizer Inc.,'s Lipitor with Pravachol, made by Bristol-Myers Squibb, was recently published in the New York Times. The study details the clinical observation that Lipitor was significantly more effective than Pravachol in lowering patient's LDL cholesterol levels. However, the study did not comment on the overall effect that Statin drugs have on patient health, or the research that indicates Statins may actually increase your risk of heart disease and heart attack.
Are You Suffering From Addiction?
Many researchers believe that addiction is a behavior that can be controlled to some extent and also a brain disease. And since some testing with functional magnetic resonance imaging (FMRI) found that all addictions tend to cause nearly the same reactions inside the brain, there could be one type of control model for addiction health-related issues.
Vioxx Recall leads to Vioxx Lawsuits
Vioxx is a nonsteroidal anti-inflammagory drug (NSAID) that reduces inflammation, pain, fever, osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis stiffness, and menstrual pain. However, Vioxx has been shown to cause blood clots, heart attacks, stroke, Stevens-Johnson Syndrome, kidney damage and other dangerous and potentially deadly side effects.
Your Kidney Function Really Matters: A Lighter Look at What You Need to Know to Prevent Adverse Dru
When you (or loved ones) are taking prescription or over the counter medications...there is a lot you should be worried about, and a lot that your pharmacist may not be telling you.
Kids and Medication Part II
In continuation of mood enhancement drugs for kids and adolescents, we next discuss the issues of Prozac. Of course there is the other favorite drug Prozac which was approved back in 1987 and was the first anti-depressant aimed at regulating serotomine which is the major chemical contributing in the brain for mood. Side effects yes we have all heard. Insomnia, nervousness, weight loss and mania.
Pharmaceuticals: The Next Frontier in America?s War on Drugs
America's war on drugs, which has been fought in the opium fields of Afghanistan and the cocaine plantations of Columbia, will have to reinvent itself to combat what is set to be America's biggest drug abuse problem, pharmaceuticals. One in five American's, nearly 48 million, have used prescription drugs for non-medical purposes at least once in their lives. The current past month misuse rate among Americans is 6.2 million. According to a recent white paper by Carnevale Associates, this rate of use is already higher than the historical highs of both cocaine and heroin epidemics.
Irritable Bowel Syndrome: Simple Self-Help Tips
If you have been diagnosed with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), you will know how difficult it is to treat. Doctors can be dismissive of IBS symptoms such as diarrhea, constipation and bloating, and when treatment is offered it may only help for a short while before the distressing symptoms return.
?Ooohhh? my aching knee!!!? Insider Secrets on How You Can Get Relief Quickly and Easily!
When your knee hurts, getting relief is all that's on your mind. Getting the right relief, though, depends on knowing what's wrong. The correct diagnosis will lead to the correct treatment.
Pain in the Butt. How to Deal with Hemorrhoids?
This is very sensitive area of your body. Too private. Nobody likes when something is wrong over there. However it happens.
Bextra and Vioxx -- Alternative Medications Have Warnings, Too
At the urging of the Food and Drug Administration, the drugs Vioxx and Bextra have both been voluntarily withdrawn from the market by their manufacturers. Studies show that these drugs, part of a family of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAID) known as COX-2 inhibitors, may be linked to increased chances of heart attack or stroke.
Protopic Cancer Risk Lawyer
The FDA issued a warning in July of 2005 on two skin creams, Elidel (pimecrolimus) and Protopic (tacrolimus) to all ages. Recent animal studies have found that Protopic causes lymphomas and skin cancers in an unknown percentage of users. The FDA recommends that healthcare providers be very careful prescribing and applying these medications.
Although you make a patient feel better, there isn't usually anything tangible to be a reminder of your service. When it comes time for the patient to pay their bills, yours is often at the bottom of the pile. You are competing with other credit grantors that supplied a tangible product, or something they really enjoy like cable or their cell phone and therefore your medical collections problem is more difficult.
Mend Your Arthritis Pain Relief
=====KNOW YOUR ARTHRITIS=====
Flatfeet in Children: When Are They A Problem?
There are high arch feet and low arch feet and many different foot types in between. Many individuals have flatfeet, but do not have foot problems. All of us are born with flatfeet and some of the greatest athletes have flatfeet. But, flatfeet are a problem when the arch completely collapses in combination with excess inward rotation in the foot. This type of flatfoot causes excess stress on the joints, ligaments and tendons in the foot and ankle. If not treated appropriately, tendon and joint problems will develop.
New Company Helps Another Medical Condition Become: ?Acceptable? Dinner Conversation
Recently once taboo subjects like plastic surgery have become acceptable dinner conversation. Medical conditions are no longer whispered to friends, but have instead become part of the dinner table conversation with full blown discussions on Botox, erectile dysfunction and the feared colonoscopy. However recently there is a new kid on the block, well maybe not so new, it's actually plain old heel pain. You might ask why is this happening? Why is it so important now? After all heel pain for the most part won't kill you.
Increasing Patient Care and Reducing Liability in Seven Simple Steps
When an unconscious patient arrives in the ED, every hospital agrees that timely next of kin notification is vital. Not only is it important to have a family member present to comfort the patient, but to make informed decisions for his care and provide the medical history that can make the difference between life and death. From a liability standpoint, as we know all too well, having a family member making medical decisions, often means that if complications do arise, the family will be much less likely to sue, than if they hadn't been in attendance.
|home | site map|