It’s going to be really hard to figure out how many car crashes are caused by drivers under the influence of marijuana

In the last 3 years, 3 states—Colorado, Washington, and most recently Oregon—legalized the use of recreational marijuana. During a congressional hearing on the potential threat posed by stoned drivers, Jeff Michael, a program administrator for the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), was asked how many crash fatalities are caused by marijuana each year. His… Learn More »

It’s “3D Month” in Oregon

Oregon has proclaimed December “3D Month” in recognition of National Drunk and Drugged Driving Prevention Month. Last December, one-third of the fatal car accidents in Oregon involved an impaired driver.  “Drunk driving has traditionally received most of the attention but we’re seeing more and more instances of impaired driving caused by illegal drugs as well… Learn More »

Loophole puts users of generic drugs at risk

“If you take a generic drug, you have no rights. And most people don’t realize that.” Most of the prescriptions filled in the U.S.—80%— are for the generic version of brand-name drugs. In fact, your insurance probably requires you take the cheaper generic version when it is available. But there is a dangerous safety gap: generic… Learn More »

What Drugs Cause the Most Emergency Hospitalizations for Senior Adults?

An adverse drug event (“ADE”) requiring hospitalization typically occurs when a properly administered drug causes an adverse reaction (such as an allergic reaction), or a patient accidentally overdoses on a drug, or takes the wrong drug. According to a study published in the New England Journal of Medicine, there were approximately 100,000 emergency hospitalizations for… Learn More »

Dangerous Ingredients in Dietary Supplements

Increased risk of heart attack or stroke, kidney failure, liver damage, depression and addiction are just a few of the reported problems caused by tainted products sold openly as dietary supplements. Marketing drugs as supplements is illegal, and can pose very serious health risks. There are two big problems inherent in the dietary supplement industry:… Learn More »

Diabetes Drug Actos May Increase Risk of Cancer

Actos a prescription drug of the class thiazolidinedione that is used to treat type 2 diabetes. This week, the FDA announced that patients taking Actos for more than a year may have an increased risk of bladder cancer. The FDA’s announcement is based on its review of data from a planned five-year interim analysis of… Learn More »

FDA Recommends Reducing Dosage of Popular Cholesterol-Lowering Drug Simvastatin

Simvastatin is a prescription drug used to control elevated cholesterol. Last week, the FDA recommended that doctor not start patients on an 80 mg dose of simvastatin – the highest approved dose of the drug — because of the risk of a condition known as myopathy, characterized by unexplained muscle weakness or pain. The FDA further… Learn More »

Supreme Court Hands Victory to Vaccine Makers in Product Liability Case

    Vaccine makers are celebrating a ruling last month by the Supreme Court that affirms their protection from state court lawsuits.  The case centered on Hannah Bruesewitz, who as an infant in 1993 suffered seizures and permanent brain damage after receiving a diphtheria-tetanus-pertussis (DTP) vaccine, made by Wyeth.      The Supreme Court was tasked with deciding whether… Learn More »

Potentially Tragic Prescription Mix-Up Exposes Pharmacy Fallibility

    A pregnant woman in Colorado was mistakenly given methotrexate when she went to fill a prescription for antibiotics.  Commonly used to treat cancer, the drug is also used to terminate early term pregnancies.  The woman went home and took one dose of the medication and immediately starting feeling nauseous.  That’s when she looked at the… Learn More »

Oregon Sues Johnson & Johnson Over “Phantom Recall”

The State of Oregon has filed a lawsuit against Johnson & Johnson over the company’s efforts to buy back defective products from Oregon store shelves.  Known as a “phantom recall,” Johnson & Johnson allegedly hired private contractors to purchase large quantities of Motrin in 2009 after it discovered the medicine failed to dissolve properly.  Oregon… Learn More »