2005N-0354 Consumer-Directed Promotion of Regulated Medical Products; Part 15 Public Hearing
FDA Comment Number : EC248
Submitter : Mr. Michael Gable Date & Time: 12/07/2005 06:12:31
Organization : Mr. Michael Gable
Category : Individual Consumer
Issue Areas/Comments
I am dismayed and disgusted by the constant bombardment of ads promoting drugs in every imaginable medium, but especially on television and especially those promoting psychotropic drugs and the conditions they supposedly correct or alleviate. The self-serving pharmaceutical giants exploit the media to maximize profits and people know there is no other reason. This seriously compromises their basic responsibility to provide a proven workable and safe remedy.

I recall the commercial with the hapless little cartoon character who shuffled along hopelessly until he was given some anti-depressant and then flitted about carefree and happy. This is dangerous and misleading advertising. The ad even admitted that depression "may" be caused by a "chemical imbalance" and that the advertised drug "may" help "correct the imbalance." There is no scientific evidence that such a chemical imbalance exists. That fact is not even disputed by its promoters.

So why is it allowed into the media? The conflict of interest is glaringly evident. It amounts to drug-pushing for profit.

Americans are the most over-medicated people on the planet. People reach for pills like food. Medicine cabinets are stocked like cupboards. Now I find out that drug companies like to use ex-cheerleaders as representatives to sway the good judgement of doctors with all manner of incentives to prescribe their drugs to patients. The profit motive is reprehensible and completely unethical. It's sickening and disheartening to observe.

The FDA should re-examine it's true charter and main purpose of ensuring the public health and safety and rein in the runaway drug-company practice of using advertisements to lure an increasingly drugged and complacent public into eventual dependency, the most egregious dependency and complacency being ensured by the increasingly widespread practice of advertising mind-altering drugs to an under-informed and susceptible public.

Thank you for your attention.