by Nancy Walsh Primary care patients prescribed an antibiotic for a urinary tract or respiratory infection consistently developed resistance to that antibiotic lasting as long as one year, a British meta-analysis revealed. In five studies that included 14,348 patients treated for urinary tract infections, within one month of receiving an antibiotic an individual patient's odds ratio having a resistant pathogen was 4.40 (95% CI 3.78 to 5.12), according to Céire Costelloe, PhD, ...

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As someone deeply immersed in pharma communications, and especially the newer realm of social networking, I’ve been closely following the ongoing process of the industry/FDA dance, trying to figure out how social media/web 2.0 approaches “fit” with pharmaceutical manufacturers and their various audiences. And I keep wondering if we’re going about the whole thing the wrong way. Think about the fine print PI (Product Information) you see in a magazine, accompanying a ...

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It’s hard to look at the mug-shot of the 60-year-old woman charged with tampering with forensic drug evidence (basically, stealing police-confiscated cocaine) without wondering how things got to this point. I mean, surely they weed out the felons, and the known addicts, and do a background check, and then make you pee in a cup before they even hire you for a job like this. Right? So just exactly how can ...

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by John Gever A new FDA program seeks to enlist healthcare professionals in flagging improper sales tactics for prescription drugs. Although the agency calls the program "Bad Ad," its interest goes beyond broadcast and print advertisements to include misleading in-person presentations. Housed within the Division of Drug Marketing, Advertising, and Communication (DDMAC), the program is intended to increase the number of eyes and ears available to monitor pharmaceutical companies' promotional activities -- especially ...

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by Charles Bankhead Proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) significantly increased the risk of both fracture and recurrent infection with Clostridium difficile, investigators in separate studies reported. PPI use increased the odds of spine, forearm/wrist, and total fractures by 25% to 50% over three years, but had no effect on the risk of hip fracture. Overall, the acid-fighters had a modest effect on bone mineral density (BMD), Seattle researchers reported in the May 10 ...

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As reported in MedPage Today, the FDA announced the end for CFC-propelled inhalers. Of the seven inhalers with deadlines for removal, only three are still being made: Flunisolide (Aerobid Inhaler System) on June 30, 2011 Albuterol and ipratropium combination (Combivent Inhalation Aerosol) on Dec. 31, 2013 Pirbuterol (Maxair Autohaler) on Dec. 31, 2013 The reason for this is because CFC's are harmful for the environment, and the newer inhalers have to be replaced ...

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In April 2010 the American Society of Anesthesiologists (ASA) published updated guidelines for the management of chronic pain. The guidelines were based on a review of recent scientific evidence as well as a survey of expert opinion. As I read through the guidelines, summarizing the efficacy of various therapies for chronic pain ranging from epidural injection to medication management, some of my most challenging clinical cases involving pain management ...

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by Michael Smith It's a classic good-news, bad-news story. The vaccine against shingles, already shown to be effective, is both safe and well-tolerated, researchers found after following more than 38,000 participants in the randomized trial that led to the 2006 approval of the vaccine. On the other hand, few people are getting the vaccine, and for a variety of reasons -- including its cost -- researchers noted in a separate study. Both analyses ...

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While I was still the editor of JAMA, I was in Boston in January, 1997, to do my regular teaching at Harvard. I dropped in to see my friend Jerry Kassirer, the editor of the New England Journal of Medicine. Little did I know that Jerry was in the midst of a firestorm of protest for his just-published editorial called "Federal Foolishness and Marijuana." Jerry told me that he received ...

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I watched 60 Minutes on CBS recently, and was surprised to hear how many college students are using stimulants like methylphenidate (Ritalin)  and amphetamine/dextroamphetamine (Adderall) to get better grades. These drugs are amphetamines, and Schedule 2 drugs that require a written prescription, cannot be faxed or called into pharmacies, and are considered to have high abuse and addiction potential by the FDA.   They have the same type of effect on the ...

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