Articles Posted in Dangerous Drugs

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shutterstock_131047082-200x300A new drug is FDA approved and released on the market which is made to solve one medical issue, but also ends up helping in other ways. That’s generally a very good thing. That is, until the marketers get wind of it. One of the most common of these stories is Viagra. Pfizer was working on a drug to help with blood pressure and ended up with the little blue pill that solved men’s bedroom issues. Often these types of incidents end up for the better. However, there are potentially large risks involved when using a drug for something other than its intended use – even when it’s doctor prescribed.

One recent example of off-label drug use is the Low Testosterone therapy (Low T) craze. Low T therapy was first FDA approved as a way to treat men with hypogonadism, which affects the hormones developed in male genitalia. It didn’t take long for the pharmaceutical industry to figure out how to market “Low T” to every man over 40 who was grouchy or had lost a step to their 25 year old self. The resulting boom in the Low T industry (nearly $2B a year!) is now thought by many to be responsible for an increase of men experiencing heart attacks, strokes, and other circulatory problems as their slightly-worn ‘engines’ try to cope with an increased red blood cell count and thicker viscosity blood (known as polycythemia).

Off-label drug use is increasing, leading to more and more complications with prescription drug users. Off-label drug use means a medication is being used for something other than its originally intended purpose, as specified by the FDA. The sole purpose of the Food and Drug Administration is to regulate drug approval and make sure every drug is safe for people to use. However, the FDA has little say over how doctors actually prescribe the drugs.

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Tips-for-Living-with-Rheumatoid-Arthritis-01-1440x810-1024x576When a new remedy for rheumatoid arthritis arrived, ads called it a “unique” breakthrough that would “transform expectations” for patients and doctors.

Treatments for the disabling disease afflicting about 1.5 million Americans can have terrifying side effects, so doctors and patients were excited when Actemra reached the U.S. market in 2010. Unlike competing drugs, it wasn’t associated with heart attacks, heart failure, or life-threatening lung complications.

Since then, more than 760,000 patients have used the drug. The FDA has received 1,128 reports of deaths in patients taking Actemra, yet cannot determine if the drug was the direct cause of the deaths.

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f4494f65e8f1617ce83d871aeb3c61_jumbo-238x300The U.S. Food & Drug Administration told Johnson & Johnson to include new warning labels on its diabetes drug Invokana, as well as variations of the drug sold under the brand Invokamet and Invokamet XR.

This latest requirement from the federal regulatory agency comes on the heels of other legal troubles faced by the corporation. Just two weeks ago, a jury awarded $110 million to a woman in Missouri who claimed that that J&J’s popular talcum powder products cause ovarian cancer.

The new black box warning informs individuals that they could face a higher risk of needing an amputation after taking Invokana (known generically as canagliflozin) or one of its derivatives. This comes from two large clinical trials, both of which demonstrated that the diabetes medication causes a significantly increased risk of leg and foot amputations. Black box warnings are the highest level of required warning for drugs manufactured and sold in the U.S.

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Reyes Law - Dallas Texas

Testosterone replacement products bring in billions for drug companies each year. Some experts say that number could reach $5 billion by 2017.

Critics say drug companies pushed misleading ads to men seeking the fountain of youth.

In 2014, the consumer watchdog group Public Citizen petitioned the FDA to include a black box warning on safety labels. The agency initially responded to the petition by saying the FDA has not concluded that FDA-approved testosterone treatment increases the risk of stroke, heart attack, or death. But in 2015, the FDA reconsidered and ordered drug makers to add stroke and heart attack warnings to labels and safety information.

Now, eight lawsuits that allege testosterone drugs caused heart attacks and blood clots will be heading to trial in 2017, according to court documents.

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Blood Monitor Device Tainted Xarelto Clinical Trials

A new drug’s effectiveness and safety are tested and verified by studies and clinical trials conducted by independent third parties such as universities and scientific labs. From a drug company’s perspective, receiving the endorsement of a successful clinical trial is essential to successfully marketing a new drug. Drug companies and their salesman use the results of these studies and trials as sales tools to market the drug to doctors. A pharmaceutical company can make billions of dollars by developing a drug that is more effective than another, providing doctors with an incentive to buy one to replace the other. In 2015 alone, Johnson and Johnson made $1.9 billion dollars selling Xarelto, an anti-clotting drug used to treat patients who are in danger of having a stroke. The future of this drug is now in question, however, because one of the testing devices used in the clinical trial has been deemed to be defective.

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Are Testosterone Gel's Modest Benefits Worth The Risk?

Testosterone is a hormone produced naturally in the testicles beginning at puberty and gradually decreases after age 30. By the time a male reaches age 65 his testosterone levels are significantly lower, leaving some men feeling tired, lethargic, and with a reduced libido. As a treatment for this condition, doctors have been prescribing testosterone therapy, low-t for short, usually in the form of rubbing a gel on the body. The objective of the therapy is to restore a percentage of the testosterone lost due to aging. Men by the millions have been lured by slick advertising and have started taking the therapy. It has been said that given the frenzy over this new anti-aging treatment, some doctors prescribe the treatments without measuring a man’s testosterone to see if it was low in the first place.

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The benefits of taking the anti-depressant drug Paxil have always been marginal at best and the serious consequences of it’s side effects have been either misrepresented or downplayed. When an initial study of the now-popular antidepressant was conducted on 100 patients with depression-related psychological issues, patients were given 3 different pills and the results of their mood recorded. The first group was given Paxil. The second group was given the existing leading prescription antidepressant, and a third group given a placebo. Results of the study concluded that there was no discernible difference in a standard depression questionnaire given all of the patients. Paxil did rate better on another test of mood measures but this was only on a secondary level.

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While Johnson and Johnson enjoys an excellent reputation as one of America’s leading medical companies, it might surprise some people to discover that over 90% of Johnson and Johnson’s net income is derived from sales of pharmaceutical drugs and medical products and not “shampoo and baby powder” that has branded the company “squeaky clean”. And while you’ll rarely hear this coverage in the local media, Johnson and Johnson is coming under fire and losing lawsuits for the way they have marketed their billion-dollar antipsychotic drug Risperdal.

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Five new and potentially dangerous weight loss drugs have been approved by The U.S Food and Drug Administration after rejecting every single new weight loss drug for the previous 13 years.

In the five weight loss drugs that have been approved, the potentially harmful side effects include suicidal thinking, increased heart rate, increased cancer risks and others. In addition, there is no proof that these FDA-approved diet drugs do anything to improve the health problems that obesity caused in the first place such as a higher risk for heart disease and other cardiovascular issues like high blood pressure, heart attacks and strokes. Below is a list of the five new weight loss drugs recently approved by the USFDA and a brief description of what they are supposed to do and their potentially dangerous side effects.

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nodrugs-300x225Prescription drugs aren’t always safe. In fact, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has recalled a number of prescription drugs and many drugs are under review because research has linked the drugs to dangerous side effects. Here’s a list of 10 potentially dangerous prescription drugs on the U.S. market today.

Low Testosterone Drugs

Research has linked low testosterone drugs to an increased risk of heart attack and stroke. Researchers published their results in November 2013 in the Journal of the American Medical Association as well as in PLOS One in 2014.

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