July 11, 2001
Vol. 2, No. 23
Bruce Maxwell, Editor - email@example.com
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HERBAL PRODUCTS POSE RISK DURING
Herbal supplements can pose numerous risks to people undergoing
surgery, according to a report in the Journal of the American
Medical Association that reviewed numerous studies. The authors
recommend that people facing surgery tell their doctor about any
herbal supplements that they're taking at least several weeks
before their operation.
Source: Reuters Health - July 10, 2001
DRUG COMPANIES CRITICIZED FOR AD SPENDING
Pharmaceutical companies commonly cite huge expenditures on drug
development to justify the high prices of their products. But a
new study has found that they spend nearly twice as much money
advertising their medicines as they do developing them. The
consumer group that performed the study blamed soaring drug
prices on the advertising expenditures.
Source: Associated Press - July 11, 2001
SCIENTISTS STUB OUT CANNABIS
AS WONDER DRUG
Marijuana is no better at treating pain, nausea, and vomiting
than standard drug therapies, according to two studies published
in the British Medical Journal. The studies also reported that
smoking marijuana caused undesirable side effects.
Source: Reuters - July 6, 2001
British Medical Journal study (pain):
British Medical Journal study (nausea and vomiting):
British Medical Journal editorial:
BLUE CROSS TELLS DOCTORS: STRESS CARE,
Now here's a switch: Blue Cross of California plans to give
doctors bonuses based on their patient satisfaction ratings, not
on their cost containment efforts. Experts predict that other
HMOs will adopt similar policies.
Source: Los Angeles Times - July 10, 2001
HOW DO YOU MEASURE 'LIVER FIRE RISING?'
American researchers are increasingly conducting scientific
trials of alternative medicines and techniques such as herbs and
acupuncture. Much of the attention is focusing on practices in
traditional Chinese medicine.
Source: Boston Globe - July 10, 2001
NURSING-HOME INSURANCE MIGHT BECOME
STANDARD FINANCIAL PLAN
Next year, the federal government is expected to start offering
long-term-care insurance to all federal employees, federal
retirees, and military personnel. The government's move is likely
to increase interest in the insurance, which pays for nursing
home care and personal care.
Source: Los Angeles Times - July 9, 2001
SLEEP DISORDER LINKED TO HEADACHES
Do you frequently wake up in the morning with terrible headaches?
If so, a new study says there's a good chance you suffer from
sleep apnea, a disorder in which people repeatedly stop breathing
during sleep. Sleep apnea raises the risk of stroke and heart
attack, besides making it impossible to get a decent night's
Source: Reuters Health - July 6, 2001
REPORTING FINANCIAL CONFLICTS OF INTEREST AND
RELATIONSHIPS BETWEEN INVESTIGATORS AND
In this editorial,the Journal of the American Medical Association
announces tighter requirements for authors to disclose any
financial conflicts of interest involving their research. The
journal also is tightening its requirement for authors to report
any relationships with their research sponsors.
Source: JAMA - July 4, 2001
GOVERNMENT WARNS ABOUT COMFREY HERB
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has sent letters to dietary
supplement manufacturers warning them that the herb comfrey,
which some use in their products, causes liver damage. The letter
is a polite way for the FDA to tell manufacturers they should
stop using comfrey. Any that don't comply could face enforcement
actions by the FDA.
Source: Associated Press - July 6, 2001
A Personal Note from the Editor
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