2005N-0354 Consumer-Directed Promotion of Regulated Medical Products; Part 15 Public Hearing
FDA Comment Number : EC67
Submitter : Ms. Edie Feiste Date & Time: 12/07/2005 06:12:51
Organization : Ms. Edie Feiste
Category : Individual Consumer
Issue Areas/Comments
I am appalled that pharmaceutical companies can advertise their prescription drugs direct to consumers with TV and magazine ads. Many of their ads so glamorize the drugs that they capture the minds of very vulnerable people who may be suffering...and their warnings and side effects are listed very casually so that they won't carry as much weight as the wonderful promises they have spent so much time extolling. Many of the drug ads contain misleading information about "chemical imbalances" that lead people to believe there are scientific tests that have confirmed these specific imbalances, and anyone who does his/her own research knows they are only guessing and experimenting. In fact, imbalances can be caused by the taking of these drugs and we are learning how dire some of the consequences can be. When patients see ads and start asking general practitioners to prescribe for them drugs that can alter brain chemistry, we have been and still are creating some monsters. Many drugs that were once deemed safe have been taken off the market in recent years because they were found to cause serious side effects, including death. Pharmaceutical companies are reaping hugh profits and seem to only be interested in keeping their money machine in operation. I am sure there are dedicated workers in the laboratories with the desire to find a way to cure disease and alleviate suffering, but they are not the decision-makers who get bolder with every passing year. It is imperative that some action be taken to harness the power that has been given to the pharmaceutical companies...and it is imperative that our citizens be given TRUE EDUCATION about prescription drugs. They should never be advertised direct to consumers with ads that glamorize the taking of a pill and promise relief from all suffering. Drugs are drugs. And all drugs have a dangerous aspect to them. I consider the consumer directed promotion of regulated medical products to be grossly unethical and not a wise policy.