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Friday, December 19 2014 @ 11:54 PM CST

‘Bad Pharma’ says we’re all victims of drug industry

Capitalism

You should read it because behind the anodyne cover lurks a tale of horrific fascination that affects us all. Bad Pharma is the story of the ways in which the pharmaceutical industry, with the help of regulators, doctors and academics, seeks to pervert and obfuscate the research done to test new medicines. It may be rather technical in content, but from more or less page one Goldacre is clear about who are the primary victims in his sorry story: all of us. Happily, we might also be part of the solution.

‘Bad Pharma’ says we’re all victims of drug industry

By Stephen Curry, The Guardian
Monday, December 24, 2012

You should read it because behind the anodyne cover lurks a tale of horrific fascination that affects us all. Bad Pharma is the story of the ways in which the pharmaceutical industry, with the help of regulators, doctors and academics, seeks to pervert and obfuscate the research done to test new medicines. It may be rather technical in content, but from more or less page one Goldacre is clear about who are the primary victims in his sorry story: all of us. Happily, we might also be part of the solution.

It seems hard to credit that the situation could be so bad. The scale of the problem is rendered starkly in the preface:

“Drugs are tested by the people who manufacture them, in poorly designed trials, on hopelessly small numbers of weird, unrepresentative patients, and analysed using techniques which are flawed by design, in such a way that they exaggerate the benefits of treatments. Unsurprisingly, these trials tend to produce results that favour the manufacturer. When trials produce results that companies don’t like, they are perfectly entitled to hide them from doctors and patients, so we only ever see a distorted picture of any drug’s true effects.”

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