You know those commercials advertising drugs with inventive medical names like Farxiga and Otezla? What about the ones they tout but never actually mention what they’re for? What’s that all about? I suppose they want us to guess.
Okay, I’ll play along. Let’s see…a couple is strolling through a flowering field, hand in hand on a beautiful spring-like day. Is this a pill for allergies? Doubt it or wouldn’t they just say so?
Well, he’s looking at her lovingly. Maybe it’s a drug for erectile dysfunction (like we need more of those). Hmm…but she’s also looking at him with a twinkle in her eye, so perhaps they’re pushing a pill that enhances female arousal (now we’re talkin’).
But then that twinkle in her eye might simply be the sun reflecting off her corneas, increasing her risk of developing eye disease. Maybe they’re advertising a pill for cataracts when those of us aren’t bright enough to wear UV protection (pun intended).
Well, your guess is as good as mine. I suppose the point of these mystery drug-pushing commercials is that the FDA (Federal Drug Administration) wants us to research the answers. I have yet to do that, have you? I think it should be show and tell, not show and guess.
Don’t get me started on the FDA.
Too late…the dam has burst. I mean really, what’s the deal with them? I question their drug approval process — how they can give the green light to drugs that so often seriously harm us. FDA, how stupid do you think we are?
I’ll tell ya: PRETTY DAMN STUPID.
Take the new drug, Latuda. (Actually, please don’t.) Clinical studies supposedly conclude it treats bi-polar depression. The commercial features a husband and wife enjoying their day together while music softly plays in the background. The husband says he wants his wife (who is bi-polar) “to enjoy everyday moments with the family.” Presumably, Latuda is the answer.
Now don’t get me wrong; I’m not saying Latuda doesn’t help anyone. There must be a couple people out there who saw positive results, right? Although I wonder after hearing about the side effects. One has to question whether it’s worth the risk. I mean, I’d say it’s pretty hard to enjoy everyday moments when you’re dead.
Here’s what might happen should you take Latuda:
Mood changes: (when you’re already moody)
Unusual behaviors: (do you suddenly become interested in golf? Do you giggle uncontrollably when you see frogs? What does unusual mean?)
Suicidal thoughts (when you might already be suicidal)
Increased risk of dementia in elderly patients (they’ve lost their youth, now you want to take their memories?)
Increased risk of stroke, coma or death (not thrilled with my choices here)
Fever, stiff muscles, dizziness, confusion, seizures, increased cholesterol, weight gain, trouble swallowing, high blood sugar, impaired judgement, uncontrollable muscle movements that may be permanent (anything else?)
Decreased white blood cells, which could be fatal (I’m kinda attached to the ones I currently have, so no thanks )
And the clincher…don’t take Latuda with grapefruit juice. (REALLY? What worse thing can possibly happen? Spontaneous combustion?)
Those of us who are not bi-polar can thank our lucky stars, especially when Latuda is what’s offered as hope for the condition. Sadly, I’m not surprised this drug was approved since learning pharmaceutical firms pay fees to the FDA to accelerate their review of new drugs (4.9 BILLION in 2014).
What’s comical to me: hidden in the middle of the commercial is the statement, Latuda is not for everyone. How’s that for an understatement?
Shame on you, FDA.
Originally posted in June, 2016