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FDA, What the Hell?

·1633 words·8 mins

Quinine. Yes, quinine.
Turns out that the FDA is going to pull this oldie-but-goodie off of the market. Why you say?

  • No published studies to show that it works for leg cramps
    • There have been deaths related with its use.
      Uh, hello? Quinine has been out since God was a boy. Its only been dispensed bazillions and bazillions of times to people for nocturnal leg cramps. Obviously it works. Do you see any published studies for aspirin? Of course not, but FDA wont get its panties in a bunch about that.
      Deaths with quinine. Since 1969 guess how many deaths there were. 100? No, 1000? No, a billion? No! 93. Thats right, 93 people have died due to quinine since 1969. Hell, pull tylenol off of the market if you’re afraid of killing people. Aspirin has caused more deaths in its lifetime than any drug to this date. But no, the FDA needs to justify its existence by targeting quinine
      FDA, if you’re reading this, get a fucking clue and quit getting sucked off by the drug companies. We’re onto your little scheme. It’ll go like this:
      1. FDA pulls quinine due to lack of evidence of it working for leg cramps
      2. Drug company X does some half-assed study showing it works better than placebo
      3. FDA approves NewQuinine.
      4. Drug company X charges $10/tablet vs $0.04/capsule for the old generic
      5. Profit!
      6. America grabs their ankles.
        The FDA is ran by a bunch of old doctors who haven’t practiced medicine for 30 years. They have no clue what the hell is going on and approves medications to whoever will give them a dollar and a reach-around. They’ll sit on tons of generics in the pipeline to be approved, but will pull a drug that has been around forever and is still in common use. They need to wake the fuck up. Yes, drugs have side effects. Yes, if you take 100 of drug X you will die. Doesnt mean pulling it off the market will fix it.
        Or maybe we just need to slaughter all the lawyers. Hmmmmmmm….

Comments #

Comment by George on 2007-01-25 20:30:50 -0800 #

SO HAPPY to see someone else bitch about this. My partner and I have been fuming over this. How come no one in the news media has covered this. This alone will cost taxpayers MILLIONS just through Medicaid ande Medicare.

Comment by Bench on 2007-01-26 05:51:59 -0800 #

Maybe this will explain why we, who work in retail pharmacies, have such contempt for those bilking our welfare system:
We have a customer named Carter. He is 85 years old, and still in fine health considering his age. (As a matter of fact, Carter was just honored by our President along with other elderly STILL working residents of the other 49 states, with a paid plane ticket, hotel accomodations, and a luncheon in D.C.) Just gets a few RX’s a month .. Quinine being one of them.
Now, what makes this story interesting, is that 85 year old Carter, still works a 40 hour week in a factory. Not because he has to, but because he WANTS to .. says it keeps him young. He says he will work until the day he dies or is no longer able. Carter says that no man is entitled to a free ride on our governments back if he is able to pull his own weight. He says (with a warm smile and a spark in his eyes) he is still able. He chooses to pay his own way … for everything. His few RX’s each month (including Quinine), he pays for. He tells us each month that he is a lucky man, in that as long as he has been taking the meds he takes, the price has stayed the same. He takes Quinine to ease his leg cramps … the ones he gets because he still W A L K S to work each day. And he walks to church every Sunday morning. Now, neither his job nor his church are farther than a 1/2 mile from his home, but that’s beside the point. You try walking .
So, the next time we have someone hand us a fistful of RX’s who are on state/government aid who we all know shouldn’t be (yes, we all know the ones), we think of Carter. Still paying his own way … because he is ABLE. We think of his smiling face.
And each month, when Carter comes to pick up his pills, and pays us in cash as he shakes his head in amazement at his good luck over the cost and the fact that ALL four of his RX’s happen to be on our “price match” list for cash customers, we all just smile. And when he leaves, we all pass around the cup, and dig into our pockets, and pay the balance of Carter’s meds. It isn’t all that much … maybe $50 over what Carter pays in order to meet our cost, so don’t go thinking we are softies.
The point, is that all of us … even the DM and AP, and every single one of us who works in retail pharmacy, has one of these stories.
THIS is why we have contempt for those who ARE bilking the system, for those who ARE still able, but CHOOSE not to do one damn thing but reach out with their grubby hands for whatever freebies they think they are entitled to receive and then some. Because people like Carter are still working because they choose to, and are pumping money into the system so the freeloaders can get it back.
Carter … when the month comes that you no longer bless us with your smiling face … it will be a sad day here in this pharmacy. Yes, you will be missed.

Comment by nate on 2007-01-26 06:13:35 -0800 #

Actually, its not even “approved” for leg cramps. Just malaria.

Comment by A’mee on 2007-01-26 11:24:53 -0800 #

I had an interesting thought not so long ago. It was after they pulled vioxx and co for apparently causing people heart trouble, yet saved many people from having debilitating pain. Yet they keep coming up with new ways to keep accutane on the market even though retarded people manage to keep having deformed babies on it, and apparently it causes kids to commit suicide too. But Accutane is on the markiet and Vioxx isn’t. Clearly our values in this country our so fucked up that it is more important for our young people to have less zits, than it is for our old people to have less pain.

Comment by Jackie Krynski on 2007-01-26 15:57:41 -0800 #

New quinine is already ou and in my pharmacy. I am a pharmacy tech and it just came in this past week.

Comment by Chris on 2007-02-27 18:46:01 -0800 #

Yeah, now they’re all rejecting Qualaquin because it’s not being given for malaria. We have to recommend MagOx or something equally as ineffective..
Or uh, there’s Lyrica? Assuming they haven’t already taken out a second mortgage..

Comment by Nalee on 2007-05-13 23:09:28 -0700 #

My nephrology patients are fuming at this ruling. Right now some are even trying to get it shipped from Mexico or Canada. Pretty sad IMO.

Comment by DrRx on 2007-06-11 08:19:28 -0700 #

The FDA needs to stop wasting time with DESI drugs and go after the highly unregulated supplement and ‘natural’ products market… People taking Hoodia and ‘shadaboogray (sp?)’ and there’s absolutely no guarantee that there isn’t cat shit in that bottle instead Hoodia…and hell, where’s the safety profile of that shit? Just cause it’s natural, doesn’t mean it’s safe! Snake venom is natural, botulinum toxin is natural, but both can kill you! Damn people, get a clue! And pharmacists, for the love of God (or Allah, or whoever), don’t just sit behind the counter (if you work in retail) and moan and groan all day about adjudication…. Get the word out to those patients that we’re NOT just pill counters! I’m sick of mind-numbed pharmacists draggin’ the rest of us down! Elevate your profession already! Hell, I went to school as long as a damn physician AND did a residency, there isn’t any reason that I/We shouldn’t be able to PRESCRIBE the drugs (after physician diagnosis made)! That’s the way it should work…. Why is the person with the MOST drug knowledge relegated to ringing out groceries and takin’ shit from grumpy dickheads (patients, nurses, physicians included)? Because we LET THEM!!!! We all need to change that perception and quickly!

Comment by Walker Baird on 2007-08-02 14:04:56 -0700 #

I emailed the FDA and stated that there certainly something amiss in their decision on Quinine and stated that my prayers would be that every one who made this decision would cry with leg cramps so severe that they would scream.I also sent copies to my senators. Heard back from one.
When I mention what has happened to my Doctors they roll their eyes and shake their head.
Please pray with me that leg cramps will make all that were involved have severe leg cramps.

Comment by Dixie Cook on 2011-07-02 13:46:47 -0700 #

Great letter. Our government at work again. Sticking their noses in where it don’t belong. I presume some drug company has developed something that really doesn’t work as well but costs a lot more is the real reason it was taken off. It can be bought in several foreign countries–that is until our government, once again, sticks it’s nose in and stops us from buying out of country. If we could just get rid of our crooked government we would be better off. We will go down, just like all great empires before us.