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Ethical breach with bone-loss drugs?

Marketplace Staff Jan 18, 2008


Doug Krizner: Drugs used to prevent osteoporosis have blossomed into a multi-billion-dollar industry. But an article in The British Medical Journal is raising a red flag, as Stacey Vanek Smith reports.

Stacey Vanek Smith: The British Medical Journal says drugs used to prevent osteoporosis have been wildly over-prescribed, so a lot of women maybe risking the side-effects of these drugs when they don’t need them.

The journal points out that much of the literature on these drugs has involved personal conflicts of interest.

James Unland: The credibility gap in the pharmaceutical industry is growing.

James Unland is the editor of the Journal of Healthcare Finance. He says we’re seeing more incidents of drug companies hiding bad results or intentionally marketing drugs on patients who don’t need them.

Unland: It’s stunningly poor business judgment to hide negative results — because in this day and age, they come out.

And when they do, says Unland, the damage they inflict on drug companies cannot be easily undone. I’m Stacey Vanek Smith for Marketplace.

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