The Finch Formerly Known As Gold

9 May 2005

One pill makes you larger

And one pill makes you small.

And sometimes I get the feeling that the pharmaceutical industry is counting on me to take both of them. Constant drug advertising, coupled with the tagline "Ask your doctor if Suchandsuchium is right for you." Instant demand, whether it's "right for you" or not.

Bruce expands:

There's no denying that some really good, useful drugs have been developed to deal with some really horrible illnesses. But we are playing with fire when we allow pharmaceutical companies to do direct marketing of their products. A few years ago when we (who?) decided that it might be ok for drug companies to start advertising on TV you just had to know it would come down to what we have now, with wall to wall ads for erectile dysfunction drugs and smiley happy little clouds bouncing along in a cheery haze from a chemical concoction.

Got some sniffles? Ask your doctor for this pill.

Feeling kinda sore? Ask your doctor for this pill.

Feeling a little blue and sad? Ask your doctor for this pill.

And of course, the cost of all this puffery is rolled into the cost of the drug.

Perhaps I was better off with the ones Mother gave me. They didn't do anything at all, but they didn't cost me (or her) a thousand dollars a year either.

Posted at 7:45 AM to Dyssynergy


I agree with Bruce on this more than he might want to accept -- but that's mainly because I am temperamentally averse to medicating every little complaint that occurs to me.

If the medication doesn't work, then I'd have to go back to the doctor and get him to prescribe me something else. And all this paid for by a medical insurance plan that shouldn't have to be subsidizing hypochondria.

Worse, though: If the medication does work, I have one less thing to complain about. And that wouldn't be pretty.

Posted by: McGehee at 8:19 AM on 9 May 2005

I went through half a dozen NSAIDs before finding two that worked for me with a relatively low level of side effects — and one of those, Bextra, was pulled from sale after the COX-2 scares.

Of course, I never have any trouble finding things to complain about.

Posted by: CGHill at 8:42 AM on 9 May 2005