Commentary on medical news by a practicing physician.

  • Epocrates MedSearch Drug Lookup


    "When many cures are offered for a disease, it means the disease is not curable" -Anton Chekhov

    ''Once you tell people there's a cure for something, the more likely they are to pressure doctors to prescribe it.''
    -Robert Ehrlich, drug advertising executive.

    "Opinions are like sphincters, everyone has one." - Chris Rangel

    email: medpundit-at-ameritech.net

    or if that doesn't work try:


    Medpundit RSS

    Quirky Museums and Fun Stuff

    Who is medpundit?

    Tech Central Station Columns

    Book Reviews:
    Read the Review

    Read the Review

    Read the Review

    More Reviews

    Second Hand Book Reviews


    Medical Blogs


    DB's Medical Rants

    Family Medicine Notes

    Grunt Doc




    Code Blog: Tales of a Nurse

    Feet First

    Tales of Hoffman

    The Eyes Have It


    SOAP Notes


    Cut-to -Cure

    Black Triangle



    Kevin, M.D

    The Lingual Nerve

    Galen's Log



    Doctor Mental



    Finestkind Clinic and Fish Market

    The Examining Room of Dr. Charles

    Chronicles of a Medical Mad House



    Health Facts and Fears

    Health Policy Blogs

    The Health Care Blog

    HealthLawProf Blog

    Facts & Fears

    Personal Favorites

    The Glittering Eye

    Day by Day


    The Business Word Inc.

    Point of Law

    In the Pipeline


    Tim Blair

    Jane Galt

    The Truth Laid Bear

    Jim Miller

    No Watermelons Allowed

    Winds of Change

    Science Blog

    A Chequer-Board of Night and Days

    Arts & Letters Daily

    Tech Central Station





    The Skeptic's Dictionary

    Recommended Reading

    The Doctor Stories by William Carlos Williams

    Pox Americana: The Great Smallpox Epidemic of 1775-82 by Elizabeth Fenn

    Intoxicated by My Illness by Anatole Broyard

    Raising the Dead by Richard Selzer

    Autobiography of a Face by Lucy Grealy

    The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat by Oliver Sacks

    The Sea and Poison by Shusaku Endo

    A Midwife's Tale by Laurel Thatcher Ulrich



    American Academy of Pediatrics

    General Health Info

    Travel Advice from the CDC

    NIH Medical Library Info



    Thursday, August 10, 2006

    Another Coup for Lipitor: That miracle drug, Lipitor, is in the news again. Already a drug of choice in preventing heart disease, it's now being touted as preventative for strokes:

    High doses of a cholesterol-lowering drug may help some stroke survivors avoid a second stroke and future heart problems, according to a new study.

    Experts said medical guidelines would probably be changed to recommend high doses of statin drugs as a routine part of stroke care for certain patients.

    The study found that for every 100 people given high doses of the statin Lipitor, there were about two fewer strokes and three to four fewer major heart problems than among those given dummy pills. There was one more case of hemorrhagic stroke - bleeding into the brain.

    Evidently, whether or not you think the drug is worth taking depends on whether you're a glass-half-empty or glass-half-full kind of person. But don't worry, my profession will take the choice away from you by making incorporating it into a guideline and thus making it standard of care, and thus an issue of "quality." And it will only cost you (or your insurance company, or the government) about a hundred dollars a month.

    The study, funded by Lipitor-maker Pfizer, is here. Some things to note: 1) They used only the highest (and most expensive) dose of Lipitor 2) The study was only for five years, so it's impossible to comment on the long term side effects of taking high dose Lipitor. 3) The patients taking Lipitor had higher rates of liver inflammation. 4) Patients on the high dose of Lipitor died at the same rate as those taking placebo.

    posted by Sydney on 8/10/2006 08:44:00 AM 2 comments


    The CV literature is rife with info that has not be proven yet but already has become part of guidelines. First they said lower is better....but the truth is their is not enough data to support it yet. Next they said raising HDl will decrease morbidity and mortality...agian no data. Now high dose statins prevent stroke....yet people die at the same rate. What happen to evidence based medicine? I'll tell you what...money, politics, and influence. Science?...not so important

    By Blogger Jordan, at 10:01 AM  

    The August 10 WSJ has a different take with the article Lipitor Shows Limited Benefit for Stroke. Co-author Justin A. Zivin notes that 'The (beneficial) effect is about what you get from aspirin..."

    It is important to note that all 11 study co-authors had financial ties to Pfizer. "Some co-authors said they were nevertheless able to make independent judgments."

    I don't think so.

    Steve Lucas

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 6:16 PM  

    Post a Comment

    This page is powered by Blogger, the easy way to update your web site.

    Main Page


    Home   |   Archives

    Copyright 2006