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Possible Side Effects Include

2010 January 21

How many drug commercials do you see a day?  One of the drawbacks I face due to working at home is I either have to sit at my dining room table (or office as I call it) in silence and work, or have the TV on as back ground noise.  When did the networks start selling every second of daytime advertising to the drug companies?  I can not turn around without hearing how horrible my life is and how much better it would be if I just took their pill.  I often find myself wishing I could sit in lawn chairs with my buddies and watch a football game on a small TV plugged into an extension cord on my front lawn!  MAN – how HAPPY would I be?  Oh, and who doesn’t wish they could kayak with their dog … seriously, there are three people making BANK off of this movement.  The networks that are charging the drug companies, the agencies the drug companies hire to make those horrible and painful commercials and THE DRUG COMPANIES!  Lets not forget folks, drug companies are not in the business of helping people or healing people – they are in the business of making shareholders richer.

Did you know … Bristol-Myers Squibb (one of the top ten largest pharmaceutical companies) reported 2008 revenues of $20.8 Billion and 81% of that is net sales from pharmaceuticals!

My buddy Eric at wrote a post about antidepressants and how its easier to take one than actually deal with life issues.  The story from Reuters talks about how antidepressant usage has doubled between 1996 and 2005 – NINE years friends!  How on earth does a product that can not be purchased without the consent of a 12 year trained professional we call “Doctor” happen?  Maybe this quote will shed some light:

“Although there was little change in total promotional spending for antidepressants between 1999 ($0.98 billion) and 2005 ($1.02 billion), there was a marked increase in the percentage of this spending that was devoted to direct-to consumer advertising, from 3.3 percent ($32 million) to 12 percent ($122.00 million)”

Lets do the math … that is a 381% increase between ’96 and ’05 … drug companies increased spending NOT in Research and Development … not in Studies to further advance the medical field in cures to cancer, aids, *insert whatever disease here* … they increased spending 381% in “direct-to consumer advertising” … $122 Million dollars was spent by a company that can not sell their product to you … on advertising their product to you!

But wait … in case you thought they cared … their products are known to cause – Aggression, Agitation, Anxiety, Confusion, Depression, Hallucinations, Hostile, Hyperactive, Impulsive, Irritable, Panicky, Personality disorder, Overly excited, Severely restless, Sleeplessness, Suicide, Weakness, Abdominal pain, Bone pain, Breast pain, Chest pain, Headache, Heartburn, Joint pain, Leg cramps, Painful menstruation, Diabetes mellitus, Hair loss, Frequent urination, Hyperglycemia, Ketoacidosis, Loss of appetite, Pancreatitis, Urinary tract infection, Weight gain, Weight loss, Amnesia, Dizziness, Seizures, Speech disorder, Stroke, Transient ischemic atychosis, Worsening of epilepsy …

… but seriously, ask your doctor if you want to ride a bicycle through your neighborhood and laugh at the kid jumping through the sprinkler while your wife chuckles quietly at you because you can now hold your pee.

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