“Whatever an expert panel decides today about the diabetes drug Avandia, the way that drug trials were carried out represent a fundamental violation of the social compact between patients and drug companies.”
Another day, another drug company covering up deadly side effects caused by its precription drug.
An FDA panel (comprised of doctors and researchers, many of whom have financial ties to drug companies) is deciding today on whether to pull the diabetes drug, Avandia off the market due to concerns that it causes heart attacks. Avandia is not a new drug – it has been on the market for decades (its patent will expire in a few years). In fact this isn’t a case of drug manufacturers rushing the drug untested to market, or promoting off-label, untested uses for it. Avandia has undergone numerous human clinical trials. In this case, its maker, GlaxoSmithKline, knew that it increased the risk of heart disease but they covered up the data. Documents released by a Senate Financial Committee include several emails that record GlaxoSmithKline officials suggesting that certain unfavorable studies concerning the drug “never see the light of day to anyone outside of GSK.”
Avandia’s safety was first publically called into question in 2007 when an analysis by Nissen found that those on the drug had a 43 percent higher risk of heart attacks and a 64 percent higher risk of dying from heart disease. Though the drug has lost more than half of its sales since the 2007 study (as doctors try to switch to other “safer” medications), it still generated more than $1 billion in revenue and was prescribed to 2.6 million Americans in 2009.
While this story isn’t new, it’s just another example of why better health through better chemistry doesn’t work! Type II diabetes is a completely preventable disease. No one has to get it and no one needs to subject themselves or their loved ones to the risk of taking these medications. If you are currently taking this or any other medication that is for a lifestyle disease please talk to us about how to make a change so you can get off these medications. You have the power to be health, you are born with it, you just have to do something about it. Remember, if we don’t change our behaviors we can’t expect our lives to change. Start today!!!