Ghosts or medical writers?
October 29, 2010 Ever wondered about the folks who really write some of the biggest papers published in medical journals around the world? A ghostwriter sits down for a pre-Halloween chat about how the scientific sausage is made.
The menu may not have a new diet medicine anytime soon.
October 29, 2010 The Food and Drug Administration has a lot of questions about Qnexa, an experimental diet pill. Are the risks worth a modest improvement in weight loss? That remains the big bugaboo for the field of weight-loss medicines.
October 28, 2010 Britain's National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence is taking new fire. The agency has led the way in evaluating cost-effectiveness of treatments, but its rejection of some has been controversial. It may be relegated to an advisory role.
October 27, 2010 When the government pays for improperly marketed drugs or health services, company insiders sometimes secretly tattle on the fraudsters. If the government follows through, whistleblowers can get a big chunk of the settlements.
Paxil CR tablets.
National Library of Medicine
October 26, 2010 The company pleaded guilty to federal criminal charges and agreed to a civil settlement over the sale of substandard medicines to government health programs. Quality problems at a factory in Puerto Rico lay at the root of the case.
October 20, 2010 The new drug Pradaxa is the first to take on the dominance of warfarin - the blockbuster anti-clotting drug. The market is estimated at $12 billion a year.
October 20, 2010 New information on the increased risk of dying of breast cancer for women taking hormone replacement therapy has women and their doctors once again re-evaluating whether taking a popular drug is worth the risk.
Which way to CVS?
October 15, 2010 The giant drugstore chain became the go-to spot for hordes of shady buyers, called smurfers, who ran around scooping up over-the-counter decongestants under orders from bad guys who cook up methamphetamine.
October 13, 2010 German researchers who analyzed clinical data for the Pfizer drug reboxetine conclude the medicine isn't effective for depression and may be harmful. Much of the information they reviewed hadn't been published.
October 13, 2010 The Food and Drug Administration approved the use of a once-a-month injection that shows promise for weaning some people from heroin and other opiates. Called Vivitrol, the drug blocks the effect of opiates on brain cells.
Should birth control pills be available without co-pays?
October 12, 2010 Planned Parenthood and a leading group of gynecologists are pushing to have prescription birth control covered by insurers without copays. There's a chance it could be added to a list of preventive services required under the health overhaul.
October 8, 2010 The Food and Drug Administration asked the company to take Meridia off the market after recently published results from a study of 10,000 people found the drug raised their odds of heart attacks and strokes.
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October 8, 2010 Boehringer Ingelheim said getting answers to the Food and Drug Administration's questions would be so much work, the task would hurt the prospects of other medicines in the company's pipeline.
October 7, 2010 In a reversal, the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence says Aricept, Razadyne and Exelon are worth the money when it comes to treating people with mild Alzheimer's disease. Four years ago the gatekeeper recommended against them.
Johnson & Johnson CEO William Weldon (left) and Colleen Goggins, chairman of the company's consumer unit, (right) testify at a House Oversight and Government Reform Committee hearing Thursday.
Mark Wilson/Getty Images
September 30, 2010 Executives testified they would handle a recall of Motrin differently, if they had it to do over. A Food and Drug Administration said it wasn't aware of the surreptitious way the recall was carried out until long afterward.
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