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Ten Drugs Doctors Should Consider De-Prescribing

Physicians use the word polypharmacy when a patient is taking five or more prescription drugs daily. A recent survey showed that half of women Medicare recipients were taking five or more drugs daily, and 12% of them were taking ten (!) or more. New patients frequently arrive at WholeHealth Chicago carrying bags stuffed like piñatas […]

How To Outsmart Big Pharma

A couple of weeks ago I wrote about the fact that many of us are encountering serious sticker shock at our local pharmacies. This is most apparent when a low-cost generic you’ve taken for years suddenly skyrockets in price, not uncommonly on the order of several hundred percent. I’ve written about the machinations behind this […]

Sticker Shock At Your Pharmacy

It makes little difference if you’re a Democrat or Republican. Every year Big Pharma buys off Washington to the tune of $310 million plus change. Moreover, virtually each Big Pharma company separately makes its own smaller but still significant PAC (political action committee) contribution. Your sticker shock at Walgreen’s or CVS starts with these political […]

Avoiding Antidepressants: A Provocative Clinical Study

Swallowing prescription drugs is our new reality. You, as patients, confront endless magazine, web, and TV ads from Big Pharma. I see these same ads tweaked gently to encourage me, the prescriber. But beyond what we all see, I get a lot more. My mailbox is crammed with Big Pharma junk. My office waiting room […]

More Serious Questions About Prescription Drugs

Let me start with some statistics that both patients and health care professionals would probably prefer not to ponder: Nearly 70% of all Americans are taking one or more prescription drugs, the most commonly prescribed being antibiotics (17%), antidepressants (13%), and opioids (13%). The usefulness and safety of prescription drugs are supposed to be controlled by […]

Big Pharma Kicks Us In The Teeth (Again)

One day last week, the top five most-read stories in the New York Times were all about Mylan, the generic drug manufacturer and owner of the EpiPen, a pre-filled syringe of epinephrine used for severe allergic reactions. Mylan didn’t invent the EpiPen. It just bought the company that developed it. For years, EpiPens were $100 […]

Addyi: Big Pharma Botches a Viagra for Women

I hardly know where to begin. This is all too bizarre for me. If you’re a regular scanner of cash register magazines, you’ll be reading about Addyi, released by Big Pharma and approved for something called female hypoactive sexual desire disorder (HSDD), which is essentially no or low sex drive. This story is about a […]

A Personal Experience With Side Effects

We’d prefer not to know that all drugs (all of them) are potentially poisonous. Check this out by reading the “overdose” section of the lengthy version of the package insert accompanying your prescription. We don’t set out to intentionally overdose ourselves on common pharmacologic selections–meds for blood pressure, diabetes, birth control, anxiety, sleep, and so […]

Fox News (Wait, I Mean Frontline) On Nutritional Supplements

Not being a TV watcher, I’d never actually seen PBS Frontline until I received some emails from patients and medical colleagues asking for my reaction to what sounded like a Fox News rant against the nutritional supplement industry. Since it’s my belief that such exposé-type shows exist mainly to enhance ratings, I wasn’t enthusiastic. If […]

Behind The Scenes In Healthcare: Your Med Is Denied

Your insurance company sent me a 17-page fax with your name on it. Yes, really, 17 pages, eviscerating my paper tray, guzzling my toner. In its ads, your insurance company cynically crows about its concern for the environment, so I doubt a hard copy will ever arrive in the mail. Your name is on page […]