Our Daily Meds

Our Daily Meds

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In the last thirty years, the big pharmaceutical companies have transformed themselves into marketing machines selling dangerous medicines as if they were Coca-Cola or Cadillacs. They pitch drugs with video games and soft cuddly toys for children; promote them in churches and subways, at NASCAR races and state fairs. They've become experts at promoting fear of disease, just so they can sell us hope. No question: drugs can save lives. But the relentless marketing that has enriched corporate executives and sent stock prices soaring has come with a dark side. Prescription pills taken as directed by physicians are estimated to kill one American every five minutes. And that figure doesn't reflect the damage done as the overmedicated take to the roads. Our Daily Meds connects the dots for the first time to show how corporate salesmanship has triumphed over science inside the biggest pharmaceutical companies and, in turn, how this promotion driven industry has taken over the practice of medicine and is changing American life. It is an ageless story of the battle between good and evil, with potentially life-changing consequences for everyone, not just the 65 percent of Americans who unscrew a prescription cap every day. An industry with the promise to help so many is now leaving a legacy of needless harm.... were a possible factor in an estimated 26 percent of the truck crashes that caused death or injury between 2001 and 2003. ... A Mack semitruck became airborne and landed on top of a Chevrolet Silverado pickup, parked in the driveway of a house in Pine Bluff, Arkansas, in 1997. ... as well as Flomax, for prostate problems, and dyphenhydramine, the active ingredient in both Benadryl and Tylenol PM.

Title:Our Daily Meds
Author:Melody Petersen
Publisher:Macmillan - 2010-07-01


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