prescription drugs

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He was in his mid-fifties, quiet and fairly good-looking.  I did suspect he was balding or maybe just plain bald as few men would wear a turn-of-the-last-century newsboy-type cap indoors these days. He sat on my couch and told me he thought he had ADD (attention deficit disorder). I interrupted him right there, as I do everyone who comes into my office thinking they have this disorder. Most people professing this diagnosis who are adults and walk in alone to a psychiatrist’s office are looking for stimulants — the amphetamines and the Ritalins of life. I don’t prescribe these.  I used to — at least as long as it took to get people weaned off them.  But nobody wants to get off them, not ever.  I have seen people who have been on them from earliest childhood through middle age, for no clinical reason I can discern.  Usually they were just being kids and bugging the adults, so they were put on drugs to control them. Read more on The Regular Looking Guy…

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I remember my respected psychopharmacology preceptor always had a pile of a bit out of date copies of the Wall Street Journal sitting around the house.  I asked him why — about the third time I saw them sitting around his living room. He explained to me then it was the thing you really had to read to know what was going on in the pharmaceutical industry.

I remember I rolled my eyes heaven ward.  I was too busy memorizing molecular structures and trying to understand potential mechanisms of drug-drug interactions. I still do a bunch of that sort of thing.  I do it more quickly than I did at that time, but I still do it.  Oh, I will find on line pretty much anything I can in “Newsfeeds” and such, but it is more to condemn than to follow these days, from what I know and can see. Basically, my problem is that they seem to keep making better sounding drugs.  But from what I read, I don’t usually see them as a clear CLINICAL improvement over what I have seen in the past. In other words, I don’t think they are making people “more better” in terms of having more efficacy or less side effects or such.  I just can’t find it in statistics in general, and sometimes even wonder if statistics are not a tad “Gerrymandered.”

Read more on How They Plan To Sell Even More Drugs Next…

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Too many Americans can’t afford to and simply do not–take their medicines as prescribed. That estimate is based on information from the (American!) Centers for Disease Control). I have had patients come into my office who take their medications –in both cases, for life-threatening infectious diseases — only every other day, simply because that is all they can afford. I explained to each one individually the idea of the half-life of a drug. They only stay in your body for a certain length of time, then they leave your body in waste products.  That is why taking a drug every other day is not really effective. They both gave me almost exactly the same response — It was all they could afford, and it was probably better than nothing. Read more on Big Pharma Is Capitalism Out Of Control…

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Chantix is a prescription smoking-cessation aid and has a lovely official website that will give you the information about the drug that the company that makes it provides for patients. This is the package insert a doctor is supposed to read before prescribing.  You will love paragraph 6, about neuropsychiatric side effects. Read more on Drug Companies HAVE To Tell You The Bad News…

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It is only a dim memory for me. Sitting around the black and white television with my folks, watching Alfred Hitchcock walk into his profile, and say things to America in a snarky sort of tone that I could never have used with anybody. Strange, I don’t remember the content of she shows.  Not too surprising — I was only two years old when he came on the air. Read more on Was Alfred Hitchcock the best pharmaceutical rep ever?…

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Okay, those lovable folks at Purdue Pharmaceutical decided to claim that Oxycontin, one of the favorite drugs at least of the street addicts I have seen and treated at an addiction center, is less “addictive” and less “abusable” than similar drugs.

Read more on Can’t They Sell Enough Oxycontin?…

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While I was training in psychiatry 30 years ago, the field was changing around me.  The older psychoanalysts were forced — reluctantly — to add prescription of psychotropics to their practices or else patients would never make it to their door. Of course, they had little to no training in pharmacology and less interest so they didn’t usually know what they were doing. While I was ascending in the ranks of psychiatric trainees, the best and the brightest of us were ushered into special training in pharmacology research.  I was (and probably still am) about as idealist and apolitical an up-and-coming psychiatrist that anyone could have invented. Read more on The Politics of Drug Development…

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My favorite way to put people to sleep is Aromatherapy.  To help a person sleep, the requisite molecules have to get to the brain.  They certainly to not have to drag around the circulation of the entire body. The sense of smell is perhaps the most sensitive of all senses.  You need to smell only a few molecules of something, compared to how much it takes to see and hear, they say. I have heard it said many times, although it does sound a bit like comparing apples and oranges. Read more on A Sweet Way To Go To Sleep…

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I don’t like to give prescription sleeping pills.  They are a great source of disappointment to me.  It is hard to think any of the prescription stuff that is not habituating, requiring higher and higher doses to get the job done.

I have been worrying about patients taking them, literally, for years and years. I remember one of those studies that they release to the media.  It happened shortly after we moved to the San Diego area about 2004 when I heard on the radio that people who used prescription sleeping pills just did not live as long as people who did not. Read more on Sleeping Pills Are Not The Best Things For Sleep…

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You may never have heard of bromelain — but then again, we are in a land where big drug companies get all the publicity (and some say suppress their natural product competition). However this enzyme extracted from pineapple is a very powerful anti-inflammatory, and I say this because I have first-hand experience with it, and not because I read it on the internet somewhere. Best of all, it is readily available in most health food stores and pharmacies.

Read more on My Bromelain Experience…