Holy crap. My medication did not arrive today. How can this possible be happening?  Do they not know this medication is not optional? Let me recap.  I called over a week ago for a refill.  I am only allowed (by my insurance) to use the (non-local) specialty pharmacy that they own for this medication.  They told me my medication would arrive yesterday, which was the day after I’d use my last ...

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Genomics promises to fundamentally change much of medical care.  But the ultimate value of this new understanding of basic human biology will in many cases come with fits and starts. The saga of belimumab (Benlysta) and Human Genome Sciences (HGS) is illustrative. Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) occurs in somewhere between 300,000 and 4 million Americans according to the ...

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Actually I’ll take a Ford Shelby GT500 Convertible, thank you very much ... Today’s stream of socially conscious thinking comes to you after having feasted on a tasty lunch paid for by a drug company (and no, it wasn’t Pfizer). It has spurred me to contemplate the ever increasing scrutiny paid to the relationship between the pharmaceutical industry (a.k.a. Big ...

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There’s been a lot of talk in the past year about how we need to re-think the role and profile of the pharmaceutical/biotech sales rep. This dialogue needs to happen, given the trends that are rapidly shrinking the size of sales forces. Of course, when you poll the doctors, they are going to focus on the need for greater depth of clinical knowledge. ...

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The Wall Street Journal reported that a study of prescription patterns in 2009, conducted by IMS Health, showed that 25% of children in the US were on regular medication. IMS Health is a firm that provides "marketing intelligence" to pharmaceutical companies. The firm’s job is to keep the $800 billion per year global pharmaceutical industry on a continued pattern of growth.  Hopefully these consultants accomplished something quite different this week. Hopefully they ...

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A guest column by the American Society of Anesthesiologists, exclusive to KevinMD.com. by Mark A. Warner, MD Drug shortages of a number of drugs, including anesthetics, continue to impact anesthesiologists and patients each day. Throughout the shortages, anesthesiologists will be committed to ensuring patients remain safe and receive ...

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Little more than a decade ago, most people had never heard of the word genomics; today it is used frequently. It is indeed a revolutionary science that is and will transform medical research and medical care. To better understand how this new science will markedly change medicine, it is convenient to consider it through a few categories:

  • Pharmacogenomics
  • Nutragenomics
  • Disease classification
  • Disease ...

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Pharmaceuticals are amazing stuff. You can bitch and moan about their costs, side effects, or the number of them you're taking, but what they've done to extend life and improve its quality is truly remarkable. And for all the bad raps they get, I salute the pharmaceutical industry, and those who work anonymously in labs around the world, to bring us these miracles. But ...

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by Patrick Fitzgerald, MPH Health advocacy organizations (HAOs) are typically organizations of prominent, trusted stakeholders who conduct campaigns to promote disease awareness, update members to new diagnostic tests and drugs, facilitate physician referrals, deliver health care services, and advocate for policies believed to be in their member’s best interest. They range in size from national organizations with many thousands of members focused on widespread disease to smaller ...

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Recently, the FDA has rejected another anti-obesity drug, Contrave, because of concerns that it might cause heart attacks in patients who take it for years. FDA's excessive caution was motivated by its experience having been burned by the Fen-Phen fiasco. This was a weight loss drug widely prescribed in the 90s that was pulled from the market after studies showed it caused fatal ...

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