March 23, 2012
By Dr. Daniel Zagst
What happened to the winter? Spring has started early and with an early bloom comes a long year for seasonal allergy sufferers. If you are one of the millions suffering from springtime allergies already in March, wouldn’t you like to enjoy the summer allergy-free? A simple solution exists that can help you rid the meds and enjoy the outdoors.
There’s no doubt that our country is over-medicated, not to mention broke from paying for expensive medications. On top of this, terrible side effects with allergy medications make them a gamble to take. The side effects of a popular prescription allergy drug includes: fatigue, coughing, sneezing, headache, nausea, sleeplessness, sore throat, dizziness and even severe allergic reactions! Wait, isn’t the medication supposed to prevent allergies and all of these symptoms? What if you could take something safe and natural with no side effects that you don’t need a prescription for and costs well under $20?
For The Full Report Go To Natural News
March 14, 2012
By Ethan A. Huff
“Why are people taking fluoride pills to begin with? That just makes no sense. Who knew there was even such a thing.” –KTRN
More than a dozen families in New Jersey were shocked to learn recently that some of the supposed fluoride pills they had received from a CVS/pharmacy in Chatham were actually tamoxifen pills, a chemotherapy drug used to treat breast cancer. ABC News reports that an unknown error resulted in some of these families administering this chemotherapy medication to their children rather than the fluoride pills, a monumental error that could have life-threatening consequences.
The Chatham CVS/pharmacy in question may have been dispensing an unknown amount of chemotherapy pills in fluoride prescriptions for at least the past two months, which is why the pharmacy is attempting to contact all families that ordered prescriptions for 0.5 milligram (mg) fluoride tablets within the past 60 days to notify them of the potential problem. Meanwhile, an investigation is currently underway to determine the cause of the mixup.
“CVS/pharmacy has industry-leading pharmacy systems and processes designed to enhance the safety of the prescription filling process, including inventory controls that keep similar-looking medications in separate areas, such as fluoride tablets and tamoxifen,” alleged CVS Caremark in a recent statement about the issue. “We are actively investigating this matter to determine how the mistake occurred in order to take corrective actions to prevent this from happening again.”
February 13, 2012
By Anthony Gucciardi
“Antibiotics do way more harm than good. You should only take them if you want a candida overgrowth.” –KTRN
Antibiotics are not only breeding illness among the population, but are also so vastly over-prescribed that it is costing the United Kingdom’s National Health Service (NHS) the equivalent of over 10 and a half million dollars per year. According to new research, doctors are dishing out more than 1.6 million unnecessary antibiotic prescriptions for common ailments such as sinusitis and acute coughs. The result: an unnecessary and massive financial hit.
Conducted by researchers from Cardiff University and led by Professor Chris Butler, the two-year study worked with 68 GP practices in Wales. Finding that antibiotics were needlessly given to patients without effect, doctors were provided data that could limit the massive prescription count. Given data regarding antibiotic prescribing methods and resistance data, the researchers concluded that even a 5.5% reduction in antibiotic prescribing could save over $1,000 per individual practice — and cut over 2 million dollars per year in worthless antibiotic prescriptions.
Widespread Prescriptions, Massive Adverse Reaction < The high volume of antibiotic prescriptions — deemed needless or not — are heavily contributing to the illnesses many individuals are facing on a daily basis. This has to do with how antibiotics impact not only the ‘bad’ bacteria that could be making you sick, but also the ‘good’ bacteria that actually prevent illness and maintain gut health. Of course destroying the bad bacteria is good, but the negative effect on your gut health that results from antibiotics is quite serious. Your gut is a central function of the immune system, and when compromised your body’s “security system” begins to weaken.
January 11, 2012
By Michael Gormley
Following fatal shootings in two New York pharmacy robberies, a U.S. senator is warning that a new batch of “super painkillers” now under review could force repeats of recent violent robberies that left six people dead.
“It’s tremendously concerning that at the same time policymakers and law enforcement professionals are waging a war on the growing prescription drug crisis, new super-drugs could well be on their way, flooding the market,” said Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y. “The FDA needs to grab the reins and slow down the stampede to introduce these powerful narcotics.”
A message seeking comment from the Food and Drug Administration was not immediately returned Friday.
The Associated Press reported last month about addiction experts’ fears over four drugs being tested that contain a more powerful version of one of the nation’s most abused painkillers – hydrocodone.
Schumer is particularly concerned about legalizing the drugs for prescriptions because they would be prized commodities in the black market.
Experts say painkiller addiction has been driven partly by a loophole in the 1970 Controlled Substances Act that classified pure hydrocodone – a super painkiller – as a strictly controlled Schedule II drug. But the law put combination products, such as pills containing hydrocodone and acetaminophen, into the less strict Schedule III.
Because of the loophole, patients can refill a prescription for a hydrocodone-acetaminophen drug like Vicodin up to five times. A prescription for a similar oxycodone product, such as Percocet, can be filled only once. Critics say the loophole has flooded American medicine cabinets with hydrocodone.
February 1st, 2011
By: Parija Kavilanz
Recalls of prescription and over the counter drugs are surging, raising questions about the quality of drug manufacturing in the United States.
The Food and Drug Administration reported more than 1,742 recalls last year, skyrocketing from 426 in 2008, according to the Gold Sheet, a trade publication on drug quality that analyzes FDA data.
One company, drug repackager Advantage Dose, accounted for more than 1,000 of those recalls. Even excluding Advantage Dose, which has shut down, recalls jumped 50% last year.
“We’ve seen a trend where the last four years are among the top five for the most number of drug recalls since we began tallying recalls in 1988,” said Bowman Cox, managing editor of the Gold Sheet. “That’s a meaningful development.”
The fast pace of drug recalls seems to be continuing in 2010. Drug recalls totaled 296 from January through June of this year, said Cox. “If we continue at this same rate, we could get 600 or more recalls by the end of the year,” he said. “That’s still a very high rate of recalls.”
High-profile recalls of Tylenol and other products by McNeil Consumer Healthcare, a unit of Johnson & Johnson (JNJ, Fortune 500), have drawn attention to quality concerns in manufacturing.
The mounting problems over recalls have also drawn attention from lawmakers. Two bills introduced this year would impose stricter regulations on the industry and give the FDA authority to mandate recalls.
The spike in recalls, especially of generic and over-the-counter drugs, is being driven by manufacturing lapses, experts say. Some of the biggest culprits: the quality of raw materials, faulty labeling and packaging and contamination.
Increased FDA scrutiny of drug production facilities may also be triggering recalls.
For its part, the FDA maintains that it hasn’t identified any alarming patterns in last year’s recalls.
An FDA official told the Gold Sheet that 2009 saw no increase in recall “incidents” — or recalls involving one product problem at a company — just more recalls per incident.
“Since every recall situation is unique, it would be difficult to assess whether there are any trends or increases in recalls this year,” FDA spokeswoman Elaine Gansz Bobo told CNNMoney. “At this time, however, we have not identified any trends.”
January 27th, 2011
By: Donald L. Barlett and James B. Steele
You wouldn’t think the cities had much in common. Iaşi, with a population of 320,000, lies in the Moldavian region of Romania. Mégrine is a town of 24,000 in northern Tunisia, on the Mediterranean Sea. Tartu, Estonia, with a population of 100,000, is the oldest city in the Baltic States; it is sometimes called “the Athens on the Emajõgi.” Shenyang, in northeastern China, is a major industrial center and transportation hub with a population of 7.2 million.
These places are not on anyone’s Top 10 list of travel destinations. But the advance scouts of the pharmaceutical industry have visited all of them, and scores of similar cities and towns, large and small, in far-flung corners of the planet. They have gone there to find people willing to undergo clinical trials for new drugs, and thereby help persuade the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to declare the drugs safe and effective for Americans. It’s the next big step in globalization, and there’s good reason to wish that it weren’t.
Once upon a time, the drugs Americans took to treat chronic diseases, clear up infections, improve their state of mind, and enhance their sexual vitality were tested primarily either in the United States (the vast majority of cases) or in Europe. No longer. As recently as 1990, according to the inspector general of the Department of Health and Human Services, a mere 271 trials were being conducted in foreign countries of drugs intended for American use. By 2008, the number had risen to 6,485—an increase of more than 2,000 percent. A database being compiled by the National Institutes of Health has identified 58,788 such trials in 173 countries outside the United States since 2000. In 2008 alone, according to the inspector general’s report, 80 percent of the applications submitted to the F.D.A. for new drugs contained data from foreign clinical trials. Increasingly, companies are doing 100 percent of their testing offshore. The inspector general found that the 20 largest U.S.-based pharmaceutical companies now conducted “one-third of their clinical trials exclusively at foreign sites.” All of this is taking place when more drugs than ever—some 2,900 different drugs for some 4,600 different conditions—are undergoing clinical testing and vying to come to market.
Some medical researchers question whether the results of clinical trials conducted in certain other countries are relevant to Americans in the first place. They point out that people in impoverished parts of the world, for a variety of reasons, may metabolize drugs differently from the way Americans do. They note that the prevailing diseases in other countries, such as malaria and tuberculosis, can skew the outcome of clinical trials. But from the point of view of the drug companies, it’s easy to see why moving clinical trials overseas is so appealing. For one thing, it’s cheaper to run trials in places where the local population survives on only a few dollars a day. It’s also easier to recruit patients, who often believe they are being treated for a disease rather than, as may be the case, just getting a placebo as part of an experiment. And it’s easier to find what the industry calls “drug-naïve” patients: people who are not being treated for any disease and are not currently taking any drugs, and indeed may never have taken any—the sort of people who will almost certainly yield better test results. (For some subjects overseas, participation in a clinical trial may be their first significant exposure to a doctor.) Regulations in many foreign countries are also less stringent, if there are any regulations at all. The risk of litigation is negligible, in some places nonexistent. Ethical concerns are a figure of speech. Finally—a significant plus for the drug companies—the F.D.A. does so little monitoring that the companies can pretty much do and say what they want.
January 13th, 2011
By: Steven Hoffer
The Food and Drug Administration said Thursday that it will ask combination prescription drug manufacturers to limit the content of the common pain reliever acetaminophen in their products.
The new stipulation, which also requires companies to warn consumers of “the potential risk for severe liver injury” associated with the drug, will limit acetaminophen levels to 325 milligrams per dose.
“FDA is taking this action to make prescription combination pain medications containing acetaminophen safer for patients to use,” Dr. Sandra Kweder, deputy director of the Office of New Drugs in FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, said in the statement.
“Overdose from prescription combination products containing acetaminophen account for nearly half of all cases of acetaminophen-related liver failure in the United States; many of which result in liver transplant or death.”
Acetaminophen is often combined with other pain relievers and is found in many prescription and over-the-counter medicines including Tylenol with Codeine, Percocet, and Vicodin.
“There is no immediate danger to patients who take these combination pain medications and they should continue to take them as directed by their health care provider,” added Kweder. “The risk of liver injury primarily occurs when patients take multiple products containing acetaminophen at one time and exceed the current maximum dose of 4,000 milligrams within a 24-hour period.”
December 28th, 2010
The Wall Street Journal
By: Anna Wilde Mathews
Gage Martindale, who is 8 years old, has been taking a blood-pressure drug since he was a toddler. “I want to be healthy, and I don’t want things in my heart to go wrong,” he says.
And, of course, his mom is always there to check Gage’s blood pressure regularly with a home monitor, and to make sure the second-grader doesn’t skip a dose of his once-a-day enalapril.
These days, the medicine cabinet is truly a family affair. More than a quarter of U.S. kids and teens are taking a medication on a chronic basis, according to Medco Health Solutions Inc., the biggest U.S. pharmacy-benefit manager with around 65 million members. Nearly 7% are on two or more such drugs, based on the company’s database figures for 2009.
Doctors and parents warn that prescribing medications to children can be problematic. There is limited research available about many drugs’ effects in kids. And health-care providers and families need to be vigilant to assess the medicines’ impact, both intended and not. Although the effects of some medications, like cholesterol-lowering statins, have been extensively researched in adults, the consequences of using such drugs for the bulk of a patient’s lifespan are little understood.
Many medications kids take on a regular basis are well known, including treatments for asthma and attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder.
But children and teens are also taking a wide variety of other medications once considered only to be for adults, from statins to diabetes pills and sleep drugs, according to figures provided to The Wall Street Journal by IMS Health, a research firm. Prescriptions for antihypertensives in people age 19 and younger could hit 5.5 million this year if the trend though September continues, according to IMS. That would be up 17% from 2007, the earliest year available.
Researchers attribute the wide usage in part to doctors and parents becoming more aware of drugs as an option for kids. Unhealthy diets and lack of exercise among children, which lead to too much weight gain and obesity, also fuel the use of some treatments, such as those for hypertension. And some conditions are likely caught and treated earlier as screening and diagnosis efforts improve.
Gage, who isn’t overweight, has been on hypertension drugs since he had surgery to fix a heart defect as a toddler, says his mother, Stefanie Martindale, a Conway, Ark., marketing-company manager.
Most medications that could be prescribed to children on a chronic basis haven’t been tested specifically in kids, says Danny Benjamin, a Duke University pediatrics professor. And older drugs rarely get examined, since pharmaceutical firms have little incentive to test medicines once they are no longer under patent protection.
Still, a growing number of studies have been done under a Food and Drug Administration program that rewards drug companies for testing medications in children. In more than a third of these studies, there have been surprising side effects, or results that suggested a smaller or larger dose was needed than had been expected, Dr. Benjamin says. Those findings underscore that children’s reactions to medicines can be very different than those of adults. Long-term effects of drugs in kids are almost never known, since pediatric studies, like those in adults, tend to be relatively short.
“We know we’re making errors in dosing and safety,” says Dr. Benjamin, who is leading a new National Institutes of Health initiative to study drugs in children. He suggests that parents should do as much research as they can to understand the evidence for the medicine, confirm the diagnosis, and identify side effects. Among the places to check: drug labels and other resources on the FDA’s website, published research at www.pubmed.gov, and clinical guidelines from groups like the American Academy of Pediatrics.
When a child psychiatrist diagnosed their then 8-year-old daughter with bipolar disorder four years ago, Ken and Joy Lewis, of Chapel Hill, N.C., sought a second opinion from another child psychiatrist.
They also worked with a psychologist. Dr. Lewis, who leads a company that does early-stage drug studies, reads all the available research on each medication suggested for the girl, now 12, who has taken antipsychotics and other psychiatric medications including Risperdal and Haldol.
“If your child has a chronic problem, then you have to invest the time as a parent,” he says.
Parents and doctors also say nondrug alternatives should be explored where possible. Tom Wells, a professor of pediatrics at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences who sees patients at Arkansas Children’s Hospital in Little Rock, frequently pushes diet and exercise changes before drugs for hypertensive kids. “Obesity is really the biggest cause I see for high blood pressure in adolescents,” he says. But only about 10% of families adhere to his diet and exercise recommendations, he says.
Beverly Pizzano, a psychologist who lives in Palm Harbor, Fla., spent years struggling with behavioral therapies for her son Steven, 10, who showed symptoms of ADHD at a young age. She worked with a counselor on a system of rewards for good behavior, and even had a research team watch him and suggest interventions. But she turned to medications after he struggled in kindergarten. “We tried everything before I would get to that,” she says.
After a drug is prescribed, children must be closely monitored, doctors say. They may not recognize or communicate a possible side effect, or whether their symptoms are improving. They also don’t always follow prescription instructions.
Robert Lemanske, a professor at the University of Wisconsin in Madison, says patients at his pediatric asthma clinic are checked regularly for side effects such as slowed rates of growth. He quizzes parents and young patients on details like where they keep their inhalers to make sure they’re taking their prescribed medicine.
Nichole Ramsey, a preschool teacher whose 9-year-old son Antwone is a patient at the clinic, watches her son’s basketball practices so she can head off any wheezing or other symptoms. She also makes sure she’s around when he gets his regular Advair dose. If Antwone stays at a friend’s house overnight, she asks the parents to watch that he takes steps like rinsing out his mouth to avoid a fungal infection that can be a side effect of the inhaled drug.
“You’re still the best monitor of what’s going on with them,” she says of a parent’s role.
Ms. Ramsey is particularly concerned about Advair, which has been tied to rare instances of asthma-related death, but says it works better than a previous drug he was using. Before he started the medications, Antwone was hospitalized several times for asthma attacks.
As children’s bodies change and grow, they often need different drugs or doses, says Greg Kearns, chairman of medical research at Children’s Mercy Hospital in Kansas City, Mo.
Jennifer Flory, a homemaker in Baldwin City, Kan., says that after her daughter Cassandra, now 16, started taking a higher dose of the asthma drug Singulair a few years ago, she became more moody and sad. Ms. Flory didn’t connect the change to the drug, but when she eventually mentioned it to a nurse practitioner at the girl’s asthma clinic, the nurse suggested stopping Singulair, which currently has a precaution in its label about possible psychiatric side effects. Cassandra, who continued taking Advair, became far more cheerful and didn’t have any increase in asthma symptoms, Ms. Flory says.
A spokesman for Merck & Co., which makes Singulair, said in a statement that the company is “confident in the efficacy and safety of Singulair,” which is “an important treatment option for appropriate patients.”
Today, Kevin reveals the top four things happening right now that have been designed to keep you fearful and alter your perception of what you consider ‘normal.’
290,000 Eggs Recalled Due To Salmonella At Ohio Egg Farm
Drug Company Money Affects Doctors’ Prescriptions
Cancer Patients Radioactive!
Drug Companies Hire Troubled Doctors As Experts
Cancer Is Purely Man Made Say Scientists
Amino Acids In Watermelon Lower Blood Pressure
Abbott Labs Sold Bug Tainted Baby Formula
Why Technology Is Really Bad For Your Health
Take Trudeau on the Go! Click here to download this show to your iPod, mp3 player, or PC through iTunes!
September 6th, 2010
L.A. News Monitor
The study involved some 80,000 patients monitored for over seven years on average, and came out with deduction that patients on long-term use of oral bisphosphonate drugs might be more prone to cancer development, reports ABC News.
“Our study … had the potential to include people with longer durations of bisphosphonate use and also had greater statistical power,” Green and colleagues said.
Green and colleagues tracked medical records of 2,954 esophageal cancer patients, 2,018 stomach cancer patients, and 10,641 patients suffering from colon cancer, in addition to controls for each case matched with age, sex, pre-diagnosis observation time, and practice location.
While earlier studies had not found any links between cancer and oral bisphosphonates, Dr. Green reported that esophageal cancer patients were 1.93 times likely to have taken at least ten prescriptions for these drugs.
Diane Wysowski, an epidemiologist with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, also mentioned in her editorial that links between esophageal cancer and oral bisphosphonates had been suggested for over 15 years.
Though systematic research in the context of the proposed links has been prompted, the FDA has not ordered label warnings as yet.
About 3.1 percent of the esophageal cancer patients had received at least one bisphosphonate prescription before diagnosis, compared with 2.4 percent of the controls over a similar period. The analysis showed similarity of rates in bisphosphonate use in the patients of stomach and colon cancer, relative to controls.
Though, in the esophageal cancer patients, the relationship with bisphosphonate use appeared to increase with the number of prescriptions and with long-term use.
But the researchers have pointed out that while the links between the drug and cancer is likely, there is a possibility “that the associations observed reflect other, unknown, factors that are linked to prolonged use of bisphosphonates and that also increase the risk of esophageal cancer.”