Will FTC Censorship Increase the Incidence of Adverse Effects from Prescription Drugs?

Lots of people have adverse reactions to drugs. A friend of mine had reacted badly to so many drugs she would often take the first one in a prescription while in the doctor’s office or a hospital ER. She knew that if she had a reaction to it, at least she’d be in a place where they could do something about it so she wouldn’t die. If she’d known the truth – that adverse drug reactions cause injuries or death in 1 of 5 hospital patients – she might have decided to forget the drugs altogether and find a safer solution. An option she may not have if FTC censorship of natural supplements continues.

Adverse drug reactions include side effects, allergic reactions and medication errors.

If you’ve ever seen TV ads on drugs, you’ve heard about the possible side effects and allergic reactions. Those are the words rattled off in dulcet tones as you watch women smiling now that they have their drugs to make them feel better. And if you’re reading a drug ad in a magazine, the pretty pictures of happy people, you can find the possible side effects and allergic reactions on the flip side of the ad – an entire page of little tiny print that, for many, will require a magnifying glass.

As for medication errors, they generally include having the wrong drug prescribed by the doctor, the patient taking the wrong drug, taking too much of a drug, or some type of medication error during surgery or a medical procedure.

What are the facts on adverse reactions to drugs?

  • Approximately 450,000 preventable adverse reactions to drugs occur in the U.S. every year. Note that these are preventable. In other words, these aren’t the side effects or allergic reactions that might be expected when someone is given the right drug in the right dosage; someone made a mistake.
  • 20% of all hospital patients – that’s one in five – are injured or die due to adverse drug reactions. To give you an idea of how many people we’re talking about, there are more than 37 million people admitted to U.S. hospitals every year.
  • An analysis of 62 million death certificates from 1976 to 2006 revealed that about 250,000 had occurred as a result of a medication error in a hospital.
  • Adverse drug reactions cost the U.S. taxpayer $136 billion every year.
  • Children under 12 account for approximately 150,000 adverse drug event visits to emergency rooms every year.
  • One out of 180 two-year-olds go to the emergency department of hospitals every year because of drug overdoses.

Aren’t these statistics enough to warrant at least considering the possibility that natural supplements might work? And aren’t these statistics enough to consider natural supplements innocent until proven guilty?

Apparently not. No one’s putting the drug companies out of business – unless they go broke because of paying out 100s of millions of dollars every year settling lawsuits for damages. Why are people who offer safe alternatives under attack?

FTC censorship just doesn’t make sense. Should we follow the money?

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