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Pharmasuits Archives | Farah & Farah

Proton Pump Inhibitors- Be Careful of Larry the Cable Guy

By Farah & Farah on February 27, 2017

You might want to think twice before taking medical advice from Larry the Cable Guy.

Larry tells you to take “One pill every morning” of Prilosec OTC (over-the-counter) medication to treat your frequent heartburn by decreasing the amount of acid in the stomach. Go ahead and eat that greasy plate of ribs.   

We are looking at new cases of kidney injury among Americans who take Prilosec and its next generation of Proton Pump Inhibitors (PPIs), Nexium, the little purple pill, both blockbuster drugs for global drug company AstraZeneca.

The kidneys are a pair of organs located in the back of the abdomen. Their job is to filter the blood.  PPIs may damage the kidneys by causing magnesium levels to drop. The use of PPIs may also cause acute kidney inflammation.

Prilosec still doesn’t have a warning about AIN (Acute Interstitial Nephritis), a drug-related kidney disease that can lead to organ failure. Nexium’s label does not have any specific warnings about these side effects even though the first report of Prilosec-induced AIN was published in 1992.

A published study in JAMA (Journal of the American Medical Association) Internal Medicine in February 2016 found using PPIs is associated with a 20-50% higher risk of developing chronic kidney disease, than among nonusers.

The drugs are actually intended for limited use up to 14 days, three times a year, so Larry has it all wrong with his “Pill a Day” prescription.  Still the ads continue.

To make matters worse, AIN can be asymptomatic and permanent leading to acute kidney failure or kidney injury. Stage 5 is the complete loss of kidney function leading to kidney dialysis and/or a kidney transplant.

Anyone taking these drugs long-term who suspects kidney damage might want to consider a series of blood tests which include BUN testing to measure blood nitrogen, used to diagnose kidney function. 

Doctors can measure the amount of blood creatinine, a waste product, to test the kidney function. Calcium tests screen for kidney disease as does a blood phosphorous test. 

Patients with kidney failure may have severe anemia from a lack of red blood cells.

AIN should be diagnosed early to avoid permanent kidney damage.

Besides kidney damage, plaintiffs have named AstraZeneca’s PPIs in defective product lawsuits accusing the company of failing to warn about an increased risk of bone fracture, heart attack, stroke and dementia.

The Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation held a hearing late January 2017 to consider whether the growing number of PPI cases should be consolidated into one federal court for pretrial proceedings.

Questions Arise About Brain Supplements

By Farah & Farah on February 22, 2017

It’s a good idea to ask questions about supplements. After all, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration does not regulate the industry other than to clamp down on outrageous claims of muscle strength, sexual enhancement or heart health.

Brain boosters are the latest type of supplement that promise to keep your brain agile into your later years when Alzheimer’s disease threatens to wipe out memory and cognitive function. But are the benefits believable?

What is believable is that the supplement industry has enjoyed a ten-fold increase in the number of brain-boosting supplements marketed in the U.S. in the last twenty years.

According to Fair Warning, health product retailer GNC lists 354 products on its website with the word “brain.”

Sparked by the claims made by Quincy Bioscience of Madison, Wis. the makers of Prevagen, the Federal Trade Commission and New York State authorities sued the maker alleging the company makes false and unsubstantiated claims. 

New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman believes the aggressive marketing is fraud that targets a vulnerable group – older Americans. A bottle of Prevagen can run as high as $69.

Prevagen’s ads say its key ingredient, the protein apoaequorin, was originally discovered in a rare jelly fish. In truth, the company makes the ingredient in a lab to save the cost of harvesting from jellyfish.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) says a supplement must be a food or all-natural, not made in a lab. Otherwise it is an unapproved drug. 

The Federal Trade Commission, in its complaint, believes there is no scientific truth that Prevagen will improve memory. It points to the company’s own clinical study that “failed to show a statistically significant improvement” in the treatment group when compared to a placebo group.

Quincy says the allegations are unfounded and points to its double-blind placebo-controlled study on brain performance.

The General Accounting Office is exploring whether brain supplement marketing claims are true.

Where does all this leave the consumer?

It may come down to who do you trust? Many consumers see supplements as a low-cost alternatives to drugs with fewer side effects and believe the FDA may be doing the bidding of the pharmaceutical industry which would love to market its own version of Prevagen for profit.

If vulnerable Americans were really being served, our regulators might require further proof of the claims made by the $37 billion a year dietary supplement business, rather than file actions to shut them down. 

Consumers should be suspicious of exaggerated or unrealistic claims whether made by the supplement industry or the pharmaceutical giants.

We’ve seen far too many examples of the FDA as a toothless tiger that has not done its due diligence to make sure that products on the shelf, whether a drug or supplement, are safe and effective.

The Link Between Cancer and Talcum Powder

By Farah & Farah on October 7, 2016

Manufactured by many different companies, talcum powder is one of the most famous products in existence. Commonly labeled as “baby powder,” by the company Johnson & Johnson, the product contains an ingredient, known as talc, that has been linked to cases of cancer. Despite frequent claims of safety being pushed forth by manufacturers, several claims have been filed by women who believe that their ovarian cancer was caused by talcum powder. If you are a former or current user of talcum powder, you may find the following information to be immensely important. Read the rest »

Posted in: Pharmasuits

Understanding the Risks of Viagra

By Farah & Farah on October 4, 2016

Erectile dysfunction is a condition that prevents a male from maintaining an erection when stimulated. Over the past few years, several prescription solutions to this problem have been introduced to the market, but few have been as popular as Viagra. Viagra, also known as Sildenafil, is a prescription drug that helps a male to maintain an erection when he is sexually aroused. The drug is also used to treat a condition known as pulmonary arterial hypertension in both men and women. Despite its immense popularity, there have been many adverse side effects associated with the drug. Read the rest »

Posted in: Pharmasuits

The Link Between Invokana and Ketoacidosis

By on September 30, 2016

Invokana is a popular drug that is often prescribed to individuals suffering from type-2 diabetes. Renowned for its ability to lower blood sugar and marketed heavily by its maker, Janssen, the drug has recently come under fire for its ability to cause a condition known as ketoacidosis in patients. If you or a loved one was prescribed Invokana and experienced ketoacidosis, please contact the law office of Farah & Farah in Jacksonville, Florida to better understand your rights. Read the rest »

Posted in: Pharmasuits

Talcum Powder Poisoning: The Hidden Danger of Baby Powder

By on September 27, 2016

There have been studies conducted on talcum powder over the last several decades, with many drawing a link between the powdery, white substance and cancer. Despite the attention given to ovarian cancer, few people know that talcum powder can actually be poisonous if ingested or inhaled in large amounts. Small children and babies are at an increased risk for these issues, especially if they suffer from certain heart and respiratory conditions. To learn more about this often overlooked threat, read the information below. Read the rest »

Posted in: Pharmasuits

Melanoma – The Unforeseen Side Effect of Viagra

By on September 23, 2016

For over two decades, Viagra has been seen as an effective treatment for erectile dysfunction. Prescribed to millions of men worldwide, Viagra and its generic equivalent, Sildenafil, remains the standard for individuals suffering from sexual dysfunction. In recent years, however, many studies have suggested a link between Viagra and melanoma, a severe and potentially deadly form of skin cancer. If you or a loved has taken Viagra in the past, you will find the following information to be extremely relevant. Read the rest »

Posted in: Pharmasuits

What You Need to Know About the Side Effects of Invokana

By on September 20, 2016

Invokana is a popular drug that is frequently prescribed to patients suffering from type-2 diabetes. These patients often experience considerable spikes in blood sugar levels, especially after meals, and Invokana is usually prescribed in order to prevent this from occurring. The drug is produced by Janssen, and it is now believed to be capable of causing a variety of life-threatening side effects in patients. Over time, some of these side effects have been added to the drug’s warning label, but there are still many individuals who believe that they have been harmed by Invokana. If you are currently suffering from health problems, and you were prescribed Invokana in the past, the information below will be immensely helpful to you. Read the rest »

Posted in: Pharmasuits

Important News for Viagra Patients

By on September 16, 2016

Viagra, also marketed as Sildenafil, is used to combat erectile dysfunction and pulmonary arterial hypertension in millions of patients worldwide. Unfortunately, the drug has been linked to a series of potentially lethal side effects in some patients. Viagra has been studied extensively, and many of these studies have produced alarming results. If you or someone you know has taken Viagra or its generic equivalent in the past, the following information may be useful. Read the rest »

Posted in: Pharmasuits

Important Information for All Invokana Patients

By on September 13, 2016

Invokana has been championed as an effective solution for patients who struggle with type-2 diabetes, a condition in which the body has difficulty producing insulin. The drug belongs to a class of drugs called sodium glucose co-transporters 2 (SGLT2s), which also includes popular drugs such as Jardiance and Farxiga as well. Recently, there has been a massive debate about the potential for these drugs to cause life-threatening side effects in patients, and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has even forced the maker of Invokana to change the warning label to reflect this. Read the rest »

Posted in: Pharmasuits

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