July 31 2007

The 10 Dumbest Drugs Ever Invented

By Worker Bee
70 Comments

When Big Pharma and the health care system get together to “treat” our health issues, it’s like a Dumb and Dumber convention. (It’s a treat, all right.) Allow us to present the ten stupidest drugs, ever. Well, at least the ten stupidest drugs, today.

Ah, the golden elixir. Drugs: magically delicious!

Magically Delicious!

10. Avandia

Because why eat right and exercise when you can consume a known toxin (sugar) and then just take a drug for it that will give you a heart attack? Doesn’t that sound like more fun? Go Pharma, it’s your birthday!

The Trouble with Avandia

…But That’s Not Gonna Stop the FDA

9. Alli

Somehow, a drug that carries the warning to wear dark clothing in the unfortunate event of, well, “incidents” just doesn’t inspire a lot of confidence – but maybe we’re just being insecure. The oily spotting and lack of effectiveness are awesome, but seriously, who wants to wear black in summer?

Top 10 Alli Leaks, Oops, Links

8. Zetia

This is a special statin. S-p-e-c-i-a-l. The ad for Zetia proudly explains how Zetia does – wait for it – not work. You see, most statins “work” (and that’s being generous) in the liver, but Zetia absorbs cholesterol from the food you eat. Zetia just works differently: unlike some statins, Zetia has not been shown to prevent heart disease or heart attacks. Well, that’s a comfort!

Zetia: a Different Way to Help Fight Cholesterol!

7. BiDil

You know BiDil: the racist decades-old drug that is less effective than every other heart disease treatment. Obviously, it makes sense to market this golden oldie to African Americans on the basis of fun things like zero scientific evidence! Besides, other medicines work better on everyone (including African Americans). But whatever. It’s so encouraging to know that the federal government now has legal precedent to make medical rulings based upon race. It just makes sense, really. Think about it: giraffes and leopards belong together because they’re spotted. Tigers and zebras are both stripey. Treating humans based upon external appearance is just nature’s way. Hooray for segregation!

Big Pharma’s Benevolent Racism

6. Yaz

Now Yaz has a really cool commercial, and that’s what counts. Oh, you’ve seen it. A glamorous gaggle is hittin’ the club scene, gettin’ some party on, complete with fruity, hip cosmopolitans in every hand. Naturally, the ladies are discussing the hot new birth control pill: Yaz! After recounting recent medical studies and listing all the side effects alphabetically, exactly like a million other women in clubs all across America on any given night, we learn that one of these young lovelies is a real live doctor! With a capital M.D.! A female doctor? How edgy and unusual! Yaz is cool, not just because the actress in the commercial is a “doctor”, but because it’s way more dangerous than other birth control pills. Best of all, Yaz understands that women are just crazy (something men have known all along). Yaz includes a special hormone to help you be less crazy. Isn’t that thoughtful? Poor women, they just need all the help they can get. (Runner up: Serafem. Because only women are affected by hormones, and the more we can numb the little loons, the better!)

Oh, That Yaz!

5. Cox-2’s

It’s just too easy with this one. (Unlike exercise.)

Understand the risks“…of being a sloth.

4. The Pecker Pills (Levitra/Viagra/Cialis)

Hey, not being able to get it up just might be God’s (or Charles’) way of reminding you that you shouldn’t have a shot at passing your genes along so some other poor bastard can share your fate. These are drugs of de-evolution. They reward genetic inferiority. Oh, were you expecting this post to be politically correct?

Viagra Facts

Levitra Facts

Don’t Forget About Cialis!

3. RLS Treatments

Because inventing diseases is fun! Have you heard about PDA Separation Anxiety? Or trafficitis? You may want to consider getting checked for Roll Discomfort Syndrome, as well.

2. GERD treatments: the New Way to Spell GLUTTONY

Gerd your loins for these little purple pills. When Prilosec didn’t work so well, they just renamed it Nexium and that did the trick! Because why exercise and eat vegetables when you can live on free-radical infested, acidic deep fried garbage? Just pop a pill and you can still enjoy all the chili cheese fries and Coca-Cola you’ve always adored! Best of all, this won’t get in the way of your best-laid plans for obesity.

1. Reader survey: what’s the worst drug, ever?

Tell us what you think!

Further reading:

Tuesday 10 Posts

Most Popular Posts

Note: this post is pure parody, so please do remember that fun is still allowed even in these days of regulation. If you think today’s been a riot, just wait until tomorrow when Mark posts his eagerly anticipated, guaranteed-to-ruffle-someone’s-feathers Health Care Proposal.

Also on the burner for tomorrow: Mark’s famous daily salad finally debuts at MDA! We’ll share some great salad recipes and we’ll also be posting a helpful guide to summer safety for the whole family.

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70 thoughts on “The 10 Dumbest Drugs Ever Invented”

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    1. Regarding GERD..

      Been an issue for me since the age of 24 afer a miscarriage. I am now 32 and have been taking nexium/prevacid. In addition I have to take Zantac on occasion. So for 8 years I have been a slave to this medication. Other than chronic heartburn, I seem to be healthy. I cook from home and do not eat fast food, I am not overweight. I work out reguarly, do yoga and do not eat fast food ever. I have tried many natural remedies. I have been to a handful of gastrointeroligistds who just suggest I will have to be on these type of medications for the rest of my life. WTF? Why can’t anyone explain why I have the issue to begin with? I am over general medicine..

      1. having chronic heartburn can be caused by what you eat.Depending on your blood type,some foods are too acidic,type o’s do not do well with black pepper,most citrus,vinegar.finding out your blood type is an essential first step to empowering you to manage your health.

      2. I’d suggest going to a Holistic doctor. They specialize in natural medicine, and while your first visit may seem a little kooky, they dedicate their practice to treating the whole iceburg–not just the tip of it.
        Plus, if you find a good one, you won’t be in anything for the long-term. Supplements, maybe. But they generally try really hard to kill the whole problem.

        1. “ice-castle?” I do believe you meant iceberg not iceburg, bub.

      3. Read this series of articles (not mine, I just pass them on) and quit thinking you can eat “safe starches.” I swear, I want to beat every Paleo/Primal writer I see waxing eloquent about those empty calories, labeled “safe” for no other reason than they want to keep birdseed and glue in their diets.

        http://chriskresser.com/heartburn

  1. Methylphenidate – Ritalin – when prescribed for children.

    Because do children really need something that will either turn them into stimulant junkies or depressed zombies and with the added bonus of “increased likelihood of drug abuse and addictions”? Don’t they have enough crap to deal with?

    “The adverse reactions (side effects) for Ritalin include nervousness, insomnia, joint pains, fever, anorexia, nausea, dizziness, palpitations, headache, dyskinesia, drowsiness, increased blood pressure and pulse, rapid heart rate, angina, cardiac arrhythmias, abdominal pain, actual psychosis. And there is a major warning in the Physician’s Desk Reference regarding drug dependency.”

    “One study examined the history of a group of adults who had used cocaine at least once, and found that those who as children had been medically diagnosed with hyperactivity and had received methylphenidate treatment for between one and ten years had a percentage of cocaine abuse twice that of either of two control groups…”

    Sources:
    – Day, Lorraine. “Preventing Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) and ADHD” (http://www.drday.com/attentiondeficit.htm)
    – Schenk, Susan and Davidson, Emily S.. Stimulant Preexposure Sensitizes Rats and Humans to the Rewarding Effects of Cocaine. NIDA Res Monogr. 1998 Mar;169:56-82
    – Wilens, T.E. (2004). “Impact of ADHD and its treatment on substance abuse in adults”. Journal of Clinical Psychiatry, 2004;65 Suppl 3:38-45.
    – Wilens, T.E., Biederman, J. (2006). “Alcohol, drugs, and attention-deficit/ hyperactivity disorder: a model for the study of addictions in youth”. J Psychopharmacol., 2006 Jul;20(4):580-8. Epub 2005 Sep 20.
    – Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. “More students abusing hyperactivity drugs” (http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pittsburghtrib/s_265518.html)

  2. Too many doctors are prescribing too many anti-depressants/anti-anxiety drugs instead of doing their job and figuring out the cause! Nobody has a prozac defiency.

    I also have a bone to pick with synthroid.

  3. I think my favorite is Zetia. “Zetia does – wait for it – not work”. You almost have to admire the thought process of introducing a drug that doesn’t work. I’m pretty sure I could work for the pharma industry. I really think I could come up with the “NEXT BIG THING” … that doesn’t work, purposely doesn’t work.

  4. I was astonished, Terry, when I was flipping through a magazine and saw the Zetia ad. “So it doesn’t work? And you’re saying it can’t do anything? So the point is…?” Nuts.

    1. Hmmm, a drug that reduces absorption of dietary cholesterol, and it doesn’t prevent heart disease or risk of heart attack? Really? Funny that!

  5. Cheers, Brian!

    Whether or not ritalin is one of the worst drugs, it is certainly one of the most improperly prescribed. Speaking of ritalin/cocaine. My freshman year at college I had friends who used ritalin to cram for exams. By senior year these were the ones who were reigniting the cocaine craze.

    Okay, now I’ve got some beef with Viagra being on this list. You’re saying people who can’t get it up are just genetically inferior and shouldn’t have kids? Sort of like people with anemia should just freakin’ bleed to death before they have anemic kids? And cancer is God’s way of saying give up and die? Or maybe my friend who became a paraplegic after being hit by a car, has no right to have children (note: doctor’s were doubtful the viagra would work. It did, he now has a two year old son). And most importantly, old people shouldn’t be allowed to have sex.

    Viagra works. I would rank it as one of the 10 best. Tell me I’m wrong.

    1. I am all for family planning but I would rather see women eat healthy (i.e., not starving, not junked out and not vegetarian–sorry, but no) and learn their bodily signals for fertility. Oh, and the guy can start wearing a condom. Going on the Pill coincided with my first major weight gain and while I wasn’t the picture of health before then, I think it was the beginning of the end of my body being anything like normal. I’d take it back if I could.

  6. Rozerem, a.k.a Ramelteon

    Is a sedative, also called a hypnotic. Used to treat insomnia.

    Can cause severe allergic reaction such as hives, difficulty breathing, swelling of the face, lips, tongue, or throat. Stop using if the following occur:
    1. Aggression, agitation, changes in behavior.
    2. Thoughts of hurting yourself.
    3. Hallucinations.
    4. Changes in menstrual periods, discharge from the nipples.

    Keep taking and talk to your doctor if;
    1. Day-time drowsiness, dizziness, hangover feeling.
    2. Depression.
    3. Headache.
    4. Nausea.
    5. Constipation.
    6. Unusual or unpleasant taste in your mouth.
    7. Joint or muscle pain.

    Sleep tight!

    1. I took Rozerem nightly for years. Now I take it once in a while if I am wired and have to get some sleep. I have tried all the folk remedies and none of them work for me.

      As for side effects, maybe a little sleepy the next day. Not nearly as sleepy as if I had been awake all night. I can’t imagine any of those other effects.

  7. Let’s not forget Ambien. People who take it have eaten sticks of butter, packs of cigarettes, and driven for miles without even realizing it.

    1. You may never see this comment, but I’m going to write it anyway. I so TOTALLY vote for Ambien. This is the worst medication EVER. I took in once and woke up the next morning with a gash on my forehead & had no clue as to how it got there. I had vague memories of walking into the mantle in the living room. I flushed the rest of the bottle down the toilet immediately.

      1. Ambien may be bad for a whole lot of people, but it was a lifesaver for me. It is the only drug I’ve ever taken that worked exactly as it should, no side effects in me. (Weird, I know).

        I had a life-threatening condition in late pregnancy and an extreme case of another disease that prevented sleep (PuPPs, if you want to look it up).

        Ambien allowed me to sleep, and all of us here know the power of sleep. The sleep reduced anxiety and blood pressure, allowing me to safely deliver my baby naturally without complications.

        1. Yep, but you and I both know doctors don’t wait til a patient desperately needs these medications. I was put on an SSRI without anyone ever testing to see if I really did have a serotonin shortage. In fact I have yet to hear of anyone on these drugs who was tested. Irresponsibility at its finest.

  8. I eat packs of cigarettes, sticks of butter, and drive for miles with out realizing it, and I don’t even take any medicine at all!

  9. Oxybeles-Don’t worry about the side effects from Rozerem. There are plenty of drugs to treat those. “Wink”.
    I like to sit in bed and watch Jay Leno. Has anyone else noticed that all the commericials are drug ads? So, every night we are told we have insomnia or need viagra. Yes, sweet dreams.

  10. If that’s the case, Bradford, maybe you should consider taking some.

  11. Maybe people can’t sleep because they’re eating packs of cigarettes. This ambien sleep walking/driving thing amazes me. Out of desperation, I took ambien a couple years ago. No affect what so ever. No sleep, not even drowsy.

  12. Honestly, I think you don’t really have a clue what you’re talking about. GERD is not caused by gluttony – indigestion might be, but GERD is different. And RLS is real. I’m not a fan of Alli, but it works, so what do I care? Ritalin works too – my nephew was suicidal before they put him on it. And no, he wasn’t poorly behaved, he was seriously suffering.

    Yaz is a low-estrogen OC. I really don’t see that problem there. Is it the advertising that’s bothering you? That I’ll agree with.

    1. alli has the same issues that every other drug or fake food targeting fat intake has: it interferes with dietary fat absorption and therefore the absorption of fat-soluble vitamins and, by extension, minerals.

      If you want osteoporosis before you’re fifty, I guess alli “works.”

      GERD, nine times out of ten, is connected with bad diet (not necessarily gluttony) and INSUFFICIENT acid in the stomach, not too much. Unless you have a hiatial (sp?) hernia or an ulcer, try taking betaine HCL and cutting back on junk carbs and see what happens.

  13. I know people who have suffered from RLS for decades. While it is true the advertisements tend to make people think they have RLS when they do not (and, of course, mislead people into thinking that the drug is the best treatment, which often is not the case), this is one case wherein the pharmaceutical company did not “invent” the disease. I worked at a rheumatology and pain clinic for many years also, and the suffering from this ailment was very real. GERD is not caused by gluttony; my mother suffers terribly from GERD, and she is no way “gluttonous.” I have a skinny, highly active nephew who has GERD — not a glutton. In fact, nobody I know with GERD overeats. =/

    I absolutely love the spirit of the list, and I got a good laugh out of it. No offense taken in any way, shape or form. I hate how pharmaceutical companies mislead us, seduce us with “easy” fixes, and invent diseases. But I just disagree with a few of these.

  14. Hangover pills, My guess would be that the dehydrogenase used in the pills may be acetaldehyde dehydrogenase. That might then help people who have too little of it. That’s REALLY giving this company the benefit of the doubt though.

  15. I am a very healthy, active 20-year-old, and I do take Nexium. I do exercise, and I eat vegetables. I take vitamins and don’t eat “deep fried garbage” or drink soda for that matter. I also avoid all the acidic foods known to aggravate GERD (even chili cheese fries). And at 120 pounds, I wouldn’t consider myself obese. All that, and I still have severe GERD. Hence: the Nexium. While a good portion of America may fall into the previously-described, less-than-healthy category, I don’t. So perhaps before suggesting that I’m a glutton who doesn’t need medication, one could first realize the Nexium that I take actually could have been developed for people like me.

    1. I am relieved to read the Nexium comments. I suffer from horrible acid reflux and take Nexium to ease the pain. I exercise, am not an ounce overweight and have spent my life monitoring what I eat and drink: no alcohol, no fried foods, no processed foods, no water with meals, avoid sodium etc., etc. I’ve tried EVERYTHING: apple cider vinegar, aloe vera juice, digestive enzymes, probiotics, etc. NOTHING but Nexium has worked. I do not like taking a daily drug but, without it, I probably wouldn’t sleep at night. If ANYONE knows of an effective alternative, I will try it within the next 5 minutes. But, until I find an alternative that works, I just want to say that I live according to the rules and I STILL suffer from acid reflux. And, so far, Nexium has been my only comfort.

    2. Have you bothered going in and getting checked for a hiatial hernia? Someone on my blog’s fan page remarked that of course she’s going to get acid reflux when her organs are being pushed up above her diaphragm.

      The other possibility is that you just aren’t making enough stomach acid. Bacterial overgrowth can cause that, also a diet too high in carbs (which can feed those bacteria too).

      Chris Kresser has a heartburn series on his blog that you might check out, just to make sure you have all your bases covered. Nobody wants to be on pharmaceuticals for the rest of their lives; I’m sure you’d rather spend your money on something else if you could.

      Trust me, pharmaceutical companies do not come up with these drugs to be benevolent. They’re trying to make a living just like anyone else. And if their living depends on you believing you need their drug, they will allow the status quo to stand rather than make suggestions to you to possibly solve your health issue without them. And doctors don’t have time to do all that research, I guess. So I’m not trying to say you’re wrong, I’m just trying to help you. Up to you whether you investigate further.

  16. I suffer from GERD in the extreme. When I have an attack I will be in bed in agony for weeks. My stomach will bloat so that I look pregnant.
    I didnt want to take medication so I went on a very restrictive diet. I ate nothing acidic – no soft drink, no caffine, no chocolate, no tomato or chilli, not even much meat. I basically lived on lightly steamed vegetables with a little apple cider vinegar for taste (And becaue it apparently is healing for the stomach). I only drank water. I walked a lot. I lost weight on this diet and kept it up for nearly 9 months. I still had GERD attacks. I now take Nexium but only when I feel an attack coming on.

    What would you recommend I try instead? The doctors don’t seem to have any other ideas. What would cure me of my GERD?

    1. Best best approach for GERD is like you did avoiding combining protein/meat with starchy carbs, following primal diet helps.
      But often there is Helicobactor pylori bacterium in the stomach this causes low stomach acid levels and holes in the stomach lining. MASTIC GUM will kill the bacterium take last thing at night 1500mg for 6 weeks.
      HCL supplememtation maybe of use also. Proton pump inhibitors will tend only help symptoms. Go kind a chiro or someone who does AK (applied kinesiology) these techniques can be very good at sussing out what is going on.

      1. P.s HCL I refer to is betaine HCL capsules 1-2 before meal, I would not advise grabbing HCL from the chemistry lab and sloshing it back! Apple cider vinegar I believe can be helpful.
        CHew chew chew food well ‘stomach got no teeth’
        And get of those antacids they make the situation worse even is help symptom.
        * Also emotional stress I often key, could try stuff like EFT(emotional freedom technique) to help heal emotional stuff.

  17. I’m just fed up with the medical industry as a whole! They don’t look for the source of a problem…they just mask it. Most health problems these days can be fixed with a proper diet. Antibiotics should not be used for every single sniffle, they weaken the immune system. Not to mention create antibiotic resistant strains.

    However, I do realize that there is a place for modern medicine. There are some illnesses that need to be treated with antibiotics every time. I agree with the person that people these days are too impatient and need that quick fix pill.

    My husband’s co-worker said to him one day “I just don’t know about those herbs. You don’t know what their effect is on you. I take some decongestants when I’m sick and I feel all better!” I just rolled my eyes when I heard this. I firmly believe in holistic healing and am an amateur herbalist, I use goldenseal, thyme, catnip, and a couple of other herbs. They don’t mask the symptom or force your body into a chemical reaction. Herbs support your body to help it heal itself.
    lol. Sorry for my rant…the medical industry is one of my pet peeves.

  18. i would say antiacids are the worst because 95 percent of the time people actually have low stomach acid… further supressing stomach acid can cause issues for the rest of you life…b12 deficiency rheumatoid arthritis…hypothyroidism and a bunch of other nonsense

  19. It’s interesting to see that Yaz made your top-ten worst drugs list way back in 2007. My sister died of a heart attack last year (at 35) and we’re convinced that Yaz caused it. When they warn about “blood clots” in their ads, they mean “you could die”.

  20. Good collection! I think the worst kinds of drugs are those for chemo patients and patients who’ve just had organ transplants (drugs force them to accept the new transplant).

    1. Yeah, except without those drugs, we’d be dead…I had a double-lung transplant, and I’ll take my immuno-suppressants any day of the week and twice on Sunday over being dead at 23.
      As for Nexium: Yeah, I have GERD, have had it since I weight 90 pounds and I was sixteen, so it was definitely not a cause of being overweight.

  21. Lamictal

    It was originally developed for seizure disorders, but has been gaining traction as a treatment for bipolar disorder and manic depression. Fun side effects include: “rash, dizziness, headache, somnolence, impaired coordination, difficulty with walking (ataxia), and gastrointestinal symptoms, including nausea, vomiting, and abdominal cramping. The incidence of rash associated with Lamictal is approximately 10%, but the risk may significantly increase when Lamictal is dosed too rapidly or administered in combination with Depakote or other valproate derivatives. Of greater concern is the rare occasion in which the patient receiving Lamictal develops a rash that progresses to life-threatening systemic symptoms.”

    Yep you read that right, lethal rash!

  22. Mark, what you said about people who take “pecker pills” was disgusting and downright evil. Implying that the “genetically inferior” shouldn’t reproduce is just despicable. Shame on you.

    1. The Greek never would have.
      In fact, a lot of cultures pick(ed) the strongest and most capable to reproduce.

      But, it’s 2011 and we’re so overpopulated that it’s okay to let Korg reproduce with his less than perfect health status. Now everybody is encouraged to have kids, even the mongoloids.

      Korg on!

    2. I happen to agree. I feel at odds with this article because on one hand I believe a lot of pharmaceuticals are really bad for us and even if my hubby had ”pecker” problems I still would abhor the pills. But to say that those with the problems are genetically inferior is horrid. This is where Planned Parenthood and Hitler stemmed a lot of their ideology from. They just took it a step further. Sick.

  23. I consider myself lucky that I only heard about Yaz and the viagras.
    BTW, I hope not all birth control pills are that bad. Im on Cilest for the second month now and I dont feel any bad side effects so far.

  24. Oops. Somebody didn’t do their homework. If severe, restless legs can be a tortuous horror. I went for over a week trying to sleep while standing or sleep while pacing. Compresses, Mirapex and other drugs didn’t help. I have suffered with insomnia due to RLS since childhood.

    No doubt, the RX giants loved the opportunity to expand their smallish Parkinson disease market to a broader population. But that does not mean the disease is some frivolous construct dreamed up by creative marketers.

    It’s important to note that in my case, RLS was exacerbated by Cymbalta. Some people with dopamine issues have it even worse.

    Trust me. At its worse, you would welcome death. It’s not a joke. If you had it, you’d be begging for Mirapex.

  25. Chantix

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmedhealth/PMH0000351/

    It removes your ability to get a good dose of dopamine for ANYTHING. Music, food, sleep, sex, exercise, all of these things just seem bland and meaningless. Then, the depression sets in. Then the suicidal thoughts.

    I’m a thanatophobe. Taking this drug is the only time in my life I’ve considered harming myself.

    My boyfriend also insists I was just more angry, hateful, and generally crazy the longer I went on it.

    Thankfully I just stopped taking it and quit smoking cold turkey about a year later.

    Moral of the story: Yes, suicide will make you quit smoking, but that’s sort of throwing the baby out with the bathwater, no?

  26. Dig Dis Sci. 2006 Aug;51(8):1307-12. Epub 2006 Jul 27.
    A very low-carbohydrate diet improves gastroesophageal reflux and its symptoms.
    Austin GL, Thiny MT, Westman EC, Yancy WS Jr, Shaheen NJ.
    SourceDivision of Gastroenterology and Hepatology and the Center for Esophageal Diseases and Swallowing, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, North Carolina, USA. gaustin@unch.unc.edu

    Abstract
    Obese patients with gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) may experience resolution of symptoms utilizing a very low-carbohydrate diet. The mechanism of this improvement is unknown. This studied aimed to prospectively assess changes in distal esophageal acid exposure and GERD symptoms among obese adults initiating a very low-carbohydrate diet. We studied obese individuals with GERD initiating a diet containing less than 20 g/day of carbohydrates. Symptom severity was assessed using the GERD Symptom Assessment Scale–Distress Subscale (GSAS-ds). Participants underwent 24-hr esophageal pH probe testing and initiated the diet upon its completion. Within 6 days, a second pH probe test was performed. Outcomes included changes in the Johnson-DeMeester score, percentage total time with a pH<4 in the distal esophagus, and GSAS-ds scores. Eight participants were enrolled. Mean Johnson-DeMeester score decreased from 34.7 to 14.0 (P=0.023). Percentage time with pH<4 decreased from 5.1% to 2.5% (P=0.022). Mean GSAS-ds score decreased from 1.28 to 0.72 (P=0.0004). These data suggest that a very low-carbohydrate diet in obese individuals with GERD significantly reduces distal esophageal acid exposure and improves symptoms.

    PMID: 16871438 [PubMed – indexed for MEDLINE]

  27. I vote for Lipitor. Hooray for the drug most effective at keeping firemen away from the fire!

  28. I know this will be controversial but I think antidepressants can go on this list for the vast majority of people who are taking them.

    I was reading a book about depression, by a Harvard professor of psychiatry. He stated that a study was done on a prisoner population where they did a physical exam on prisoners who were being treated for depression, also on a control population who wasn’t. They found that the depressed prisoners were several times more likely to have underlying physical problems than the ones from the general prison population.

    I have found that changing my fatty acid intake to be sourced more from animals and from coconut is a lot better for my brain function than taking Lexapro ever was. I am still depressed but some of that is situational, and I believe it will improve when I am finally able to change my situation (right now, I really can’t).

    Also, no one ever tested my serotonin to see if I was really low on it. They just took my word that I was depressed, made an assumption about me, and put me on a drug. This is irresponsibility to an incredible degree. They are also allowing pregnant women to be on these drugs with no examination of the woman’s diet and no thought to what the drug will do to the baby.

    I believe that as with obesity, most cases of depression are actually cases of malnutrition. They are also failures of society to help individuals improve their situation. Even doctors are in on this to some degree. I used to work at an internal medicine practice and overheard the head physician telling a drug sales rep that he’d rather put a patient on an SSRI than send them to counseling. Excuse me???

    I know, I’m about to be chewed out by everyone who reads this blog and “needs” to be on a psych med. I am sorry that you are in this kind of situation and I know it’s really hard to cope. But I don’t blame you. I blame the system that will not give you real help, choosing instead to resort to “better living through chemistry.” The irony being that improving diet is the best kind of such “chemistry” there is. And no MD-type doctor resorts to that in a way that would work. Not one. Even if you could never get off the drugs, being able to normalize on a lower dose has got to be better than half-normalizing on a higher one. You would think.

    1. I know this is a late reply, but I feel I must agree 100%! The irresponsibility of just prescribing drugs which effect people’s BRAIN, with no tests is outrageous. I have a friend who has an alcohol problem. She was court ordered to see a counselor. She took a 30 question test and saw a counselor for – I kid you not – 10 minutes. And then they put her on FIVE different serious medications and said she was schizophrenic. She NEVER saw a doctor or saw more then 1 person for 10 minutes. Oh, an she HAS TO take these medications by court order. It is horrendous!

  29. I’ve found about 99% of the information on this site to be reliable but to be frank this post isn’t one of them. You are generalizing your experiences to everyone in the population. I.e., just because you don’t have erectile issues does that mean that someone who does (and has tried other healthy means of correcting the issue) doesn’t deserve a fulfilling sex life.

  30. I know this is an older post, but I had to add Halcyon. I was given this pill by my dentist when I needed a lot of dental work, and he wanted to just spend the whole day on me. The Halcyon was to knock me out. I took one before arriving at the dentist’s office, and I believe he gave me one or two more during the day. I was so out of it that I recall only a few short incidents between my trip home and when I finally went to bed. After that, I have no recollection of anything whatsoever for the following three days. During the trip home from the dentist also, I discovered the drug had given me superhuman strength, when I handily ripped the visor right off my brother’s truck with one hand and not even realizing I had done it (I was trying to fold the visor down to use the mirror on the other side to check my teeth). I also hallucinated, dribbled food on myself, peed on the bathroom floor having missed the toilet unknowingly and, according to my poor brother who was my caretaker during that recuperation, I did some other crazy things.

    Now, I will say that I was out and had no pain during my dental work AND I had far less subsequent pain than would be normal – my dentist believes that this drug reduces post-operative pain.

    My dentist later told me that Halcyon was originally developed as a mental illness drug, and was quickly taken off the market because it was causing people to commit suicide, kill others, and do the sorts of insane things one would imagine such a drug would do.

  31. I’ve been on a statin for 1 year now and 2 bp meds with excellent results. I’m an old fart (41 years old) and my cholesterol was dangerously high according to my doctor. My bp was also way to high at 138/66. My doctor told me that left untreated I may not see my 50th birthday!!!!! Thats scarey! very very scarey! My cholesterol is now normal and my bp is 110/51! My doctor is really happy at how well the meds have cured me of getting heart disease. The only bummer is that I feel tired and achy but my doctor says its my age. Anyone who doubts there doctor or science base medicine better think twice because you dont want to be dead from a heart attack or stroke before your 50!

  32. Will the paleo diet eliminate my need for an Omeprazole prescription. I greatly prefer the curative medicine of diet and exercise to the symptom covering “medicine” of prescription drugs. Any foods which will help to cure my silent reflux?

  33. Chronic heartburn/acid reflux can be a serious cause for alarm, since it can lead to throat and esophageal cancer. My father never smoked but he suffered from untreated GERD for many years which ultimately lead to him being diagnosed with stage 3 throat cancer when he was 51. He had a large part of his larynx removed, did radiation and chemo, but he died a year and a half later.

    If you suffer from GERD see your doctor about it. It also wouldn’t hurt seeing an ENT specialist as well to check for any growths in your throat.

  34. Erectile disfunction has nothing to do with “genetic inferiority”, idiot. However, I do agree that most other drugs are border line, if not totally, immoral.

  35. This list is absolutely spectacular. I haven’t laughed this hard in a while. I’ve always been stupified bu the names and side effects from the big pharma companies. Thank you

  36. I’ve been prescribed Lipitor since I was 31 due to high cholesterol and a family history of heart disease. I’m 52 now and doing great. My doc says my cholesterol is within a normal range, but I need to stay on a statin regime and watch my diet; no saturated fats, no high cholesterol foods which means I don’t eat eggs anymore ( I used to when I was young), no red meats. I eat a diet rich in whole grains, fruits, nuts and lots of salads. I give credit to a dietician my doc recommended I see for a healthy diet. I do not believe any of the conspiory theories regarding the alleged dangers of station medications. Statins are not for everyone, but many people benefit from them greatly. Just remember that doctors didn’t spend 15 years of rigorous medical training to be wrong and deliberately deceive their patients. That’s just plain stupid to think otherwise.