Deadly Medicines and Organised Crime: How Big Pharma Has Corrupted Healthcare

Deadly Medicines and Organised Crime: How Big Pharma Has Corrupted Healthcare


By (author) Peter Gotzsche


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  • Publisher: Radcliffe Publishing Ltd
  • Format: Paperback | 322 pages
  • Dimensions: 155mm x 231mm x 23mm | 544g
  • Publication date: 31 August 2013
  • Publication City/Country: Oxford
  • ISBN 10: 1846198844
  • ISBN 13: 9781846198847
  • Edition: 1, New edition
  • Edition statement: 1st New edition
  • Illustrations note: illustrations (black and white), graphs
  • Sales rank: 13,173

Product description

PRESCRIPTION DRUGS ARE THE THIRD LEADING CAUSE OF DEATH AFTER HEART DISEASE AND CANCER. In his latest ground-breaking book, Peter C Gotzsche exposes the pharmaceutical industries and their charade of fraudulent behaviour, both in research and marketing where the morally repugnant disregard for human lives is the norm. He convincingly draws close comparisons with the tobacco conglomerates, revealing the extraordinary truth behind efforts to confuse and distract the public and their politicians. The book addresses, in evidence-based detail, an extraordinary system failure caused by widespread crime, corruption, bribery and impotent drug regulation in need of radical reforms. "The main reason we take so many drugs is that drug companies don't sell drugs, they sell lies about drugs. This is what makes drugs so different from anything else in life...Virtually everything we know about drugs is what the companies have chosen to tell us and our doctors...the reason patients trust their medicine is that they extrapolate the trust they have in their doctors into the medicines they prescribe. The patients don't realise that, although their doctors may know a lot about diseases and human physiology and psychology, they know very, very little about drugs that hasn't been carefully concocted and dressed up by the drug industry...If you don't think the system is out of control, please email me and explain why drugs are the third leading cause of death...If such a hugely lethal epidemic had been caused by a new bacterium or a virus, or even one-hundredth of it, we would have done everything we could to get it under control." FROM THE INTRODUCTION

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Author information

Professor Peter C Gotzsche graduated as a Master of Science in biology and chemistry in 1974 and as a physician in 1984. He is a specialist in internal medicine; he worked with clinical trials and regulatory affairs in the drug industry 1975-83, and at hospitals in Copenhagen 1984-95. He co- founded The Cochrane Collaboration in 1993 and established The Nordic Cochrane Centre the same year. He became professor of Clinical Research Design and Analysis in 2010 at the University of Copenhagen. Peter Gotzsche has published more than 50 papers in 'the big fi ve' (BMJ, Lancet, JAMA, Annals of Internal Medicine and New England Journal of Medicine) and his scientifi c works have been cited over 10 000 times. Peter Gotzsche has an interest in statistics and research methodology. He is a member of several groups publishing guidelines for good reporting of research and has co- authored CONSORT for randomised trials (www.consort- statement. org), STROBE for observational studies (www.strobe-, PRISMA for systematic reviews and meta- analyses (www.prisma-, and SPIRIT for trial protocols (www.spirit- Peter Gotzsche is an editor in the Cochrane Methodology Review Group.

Table of contents

Foreword by Richard Smith vi Foreword by Drummond Rennie x About the author xii 1 Introduction 1 2 Confessions from an insider 5 Asthma deaths were caused by asthma inhalers 11 Shady marketing and research 13 3 Organised crime, the business model of big pharma 22 Hoffman- La Roche, the biggest drug pusher 24 Hall of Shame for big pharma 25 The crimes are repetitive 32 It's organised crime 37 4 Very few patients benefi t from the drugs they take 43 5 Clinical trials, a broken social contract with patients 51 6 Confl icts of interest at medical journals 64 7 The corruptive infl uence of easy money 70 8 What do thousands of doctors on industry payroll do? 74 Seeding trials 76 Rent a key opinion leader to 'give advice' 77 Rent a key opinion leader to 'educate' 80 9 Hard sell 87 Clinical trials are marketing in disguise 87 Ghostwriting 89 The marketing machine 91 Hard sell ad nauseam 95 Highly expensive drugs 98 Excesses in hypertension 99 Patient organisations 101 NovoSeven for bleeding soldiers 101 10 Impotent drug regulation 107 Confl icts of interest at drug agencies 108 Corruption at drug agencies 110 The unbearable lightness of politicians 114 Drug regulation builds on trust 119 Inadequate testing of new drugs 122 Too many warnings and too many drugs 128 11 Public access to data at drug agencies 137 Our breakthrough at the EMA in 2010 139 Access to data at other drug agencies 142 Deadly slimming pills 144 12 Neurontin, an epilepsy drug for everything 151 13 Merck, where the patients die fi rst 155 14 Fraudulent celecoxib trial and other lies 164 Marketing is harmful 168 15 Switching cheap drugs to expensive ones in the same patients 171 Novo Nordisk switches patients to expensive insulin 171 AstraZeneca switches patients to expensive me- again omeprazole 172 16 Blood glucose was fi ne but the patients died 176 Novo Nordisk interferes with an academic publication 187 17 Psychiatry, the drug industry's paradise 191 Are we all crazy or what? 191 Psychiatrists as drug pushers 197 The chemical imbalance hoax 199 Screening for psychiatric disorders 201 Unhappy pills 201 Prozac, a terrible Eli Lilly drug turned into a blockbuster 202 Exercise is a good intervention 207 Further lies about happy pills 208 18 Pushing children into suicide with happy pills 217 Glaxo study 329 217 Concealing suicides and suicide attempts in clinical trials 220 Lundbeck's evergreening of citalopram 224 Antipsychotic drugs 229 Zyprexa, another terrible Eli Lilly drug turned into a blockbuster 230 The bottom line of psychotropic drugs 232 19 Intimidation, threats and violence to protect sales 236 20 Busting the industry myths 249 21 General system failure calls for a revolution 259 Our drugs kill us 259 How much medicine do we really need and at what cost? 262 For- profi t is the wrong model 264 Clinical trials 265 Drug regulatory agencies 268 Drug formulary and guideline committees 273 Drug marketing 275 Doctors and their organisations 277 Patients and their organisations 280 Medical journals 282 Journalists 283 22 Having the last laugh at big pharma 290 Money doesn't smell 293 Creating diseases 295 Index 301