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  View the entire May 2018 issue in PDF format

  • Overview of the Antiplatelet Drug Prasugrel (EFFIENT)
    (May 2018)
    Prasugrel is an oral antiplatelet drug that was approved by the FDA in 2009 as an add-on treatment to aspirin to prevent clots from forming that may cause a heart attack or stroke in certain patients with coronary artery disease. Learn why we recommend avoiding this medication.
  • TV Drug Ads Routinely Fail to Comply with FDA Requirements
    (May 2018)
    Pharmaceutical companies spend billions of dollars annually advertising their products directly to consumers on TV. But as Worst Pills, Best Pills News Editor Dr. Michael Carome explains, prescription drug TV ads often fail to fully adhere to FDA regulations governing direct-to-consumer ads.
  • News Brief for May 2018
    (May 2018)
    In this month’s News Brief, we report the sentencing of the former supervisory pharmacist at the now-shuttered New England Compounding Center located in Framingham, Massachusetts to eight years in prison for his role in the deadly nationwide fungal meningitis outbreak in 2012 that had been linked to tainted steroid drugs made by the company.
  • Gout Drug Febuxostat (ULORIC): Risks Outweigh Benefits
    (May 2018)
    When the FDA approved febuxostat in 2009 for treating high uric acid blood levels in patients with gout, we advised readers not to use the drug until at least February 2016 based on our longstanding “Seven-Year Rule.” Read this article to hear results of new research that prompted us to now designate febuxostat as Do Not Use.
  • USPSTF Recommends Against Hormone Therapy to Prevent Chronic Conditions in Postmenopausal Women
    (May 2018)
    This article reviews the recent recommendation issued by the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force, an independent volunteer panel of national experts in disease prevention, against the use of hormone replacement therapy in postmenopausal women in order to prevent chronic conditions such as heart disease, stroke, diabetes, dementia, cancer and osteoporosis.
  • Oral Baclofen Effective Only for Multiple Sclerosis
    (May 2018)
    Find out why the muscle relaxant baclofen is a reasonable choice for treating reversible muscle spasms in patients with multiple sclerosis but should not be used to treat spasticity due to spinal cord injuries or other spinal cord diseases.
  • Public Citizen Urges FDA to Improve Drug Ad Requirements
    (May 2018)
    In 2017, the FDA announced its intention to consider allowing drug companies to reduce the amount of risk information they disclose to consumers in direct-to-consumer prescription drug television or radio ads. This article discusses why the FDA’s proposal would be bad for consumers.

  View the entire April 2018 issue in PDF format

  View the entire March 2018 issue in PDF format

  • 10 Rules for Safer Drug Use
    (March 2018)
    Patients often wonder what steps they can take to minimize their chances of suffering a serious adverse drug reaction. This article reviews 10 simple rules developed by Public Citizen’s Health Research Group for ensuring safer drug use.
  • Big Pharma Rings in New Year with More Price Gouging
    (March 2018)
    In his editor’s column, Dr. Michael Carome highlights the most recent wave of price hikes by major pharmaceutical companies at the start of 2018.
  • Review of Gabapentin
    (March 2018)
    The FDA has approved gabapentin (NEURONTIN) for several conditions, including a type of seizure disorder, shingles pain and restless leg syndrome. Hear our recommendations for who should use gabapentin and who should avoid it.
  • FDA: Drug for Treating High Blood Potassium Levels Should Not Be Combined with Other Medications
    (March 2018)
    Last year, the FDA warned that a drug used to treat high blood potassium levels can interfere with the absorption of many other oral medications. Learn the name of this drug and how to take it safely when using other drugs.
  • Questions & Answers
    (March 2018)
    We respond to readers’ questions about our October 2017 article regarding the use of vitamin E for preventing or treating mild cognitive impairment or Alzheimer’s disease and our December 2017 article regarding the use of desmopressin spray (NOCTIVA) for treating nighttime urination symptoms.
  • Meclizine: A Risky and Possibly Ineffective Drug
    (March 2018)
    Meclizine is a drug that is commonly used to treat symptoms of motion sickness. Find out why we have designated this drug as Do Not Use.

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