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Docs often write off patient side-effect concerns
Key Excerpts from Article on Website of MSNBC

MSNBC, August 28, 2007
Posted: November 2nd, 2007

When patients feel they might be having an adverse drug effect, doctors will very often dismiss their concerns, a new study shows. In a survey of 650 patients taking cholesterol-lowering drugs called statins, who reported having adverse drug reactions, many said their physicians denied that the drug could be connected to their symptoms, Dr. Beatrice A. Golomb of the University of California at San Diego ... found. Physicians seem to commonly dismiss the possibility of a connection, Golomb [said]. This seems to occur even for the best-supported adverse effects of the most widely prescribed class of drugs. Clearly there is a need for better physician education about adverse effects, and there is a strong need for patient involvement in adverse event reporting. The best-known side effects of statins ... are liver damage and muscle problems, although statins have also been tied to changes in memory, concentration and mood. Physician reaction to a potential side effect is crucial because the muscle problems can progress to a rare but potentially fatal condition called rhabdomyolysis if the drug isnt discontinued. The researchers investigated the response of doctors to statin patients who believed they were having adverse drug reactions. In the great majority of cases, the patient, not the doctor, initiated the discussion. Forty-seven percent of patients with muscle problems or cognitive problems said their doctors dismissed the possibility that their symptoms were statin-related, while 51 percent of patients with peripheral neuropathy, a type of nerve pain affecting the extremities, said their doctors denied a possible connection with statins.

Note: For a hard-hitting overview of medical corruption, click here.

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