Thursday, February 4, 2010

Misleading Ads

I have to tell you that the impetus for this post is an article that you can read yourself at which includes the photo ads of ten separate drugs whose makers received warning letters from the FDA in 2009-2010. I will also link you to the FDA website where you can see advertising warning letters. They are sorted by company not by drug.

The Forbes article addresses the issue of direct to consumer advertising which is, in my opinion, only harmful. There were news stories last year about this same issue and that the companies were getting warnings because they are at times over emphasizing benefits, and almost always, minimizing side effects. The Forbes article points out even more blatant examples of this. Funny thing was that they started off talking about the advertisement for an eyelash thickener that Brooke Shields presents. The company,Allergan, got a warning because they were not clear about the side effects of use. I thought, "what?" every time I hear that commercial I cringe and wonder who in the world would take that kind of risk. Alas, the company CHANGED the ad after getting into trouble last year and I am hearing the new one.

The real thing to do, (I know it is a pain), if you want to take a medication because you believe you have the condition advertised then go to the FDA website and get the real story and the whole story. Do not rely on your physician to have done this. Unfortunately, the physician is often getting the same false or misleading information that you are and from the same source, the drug company.

But even so, if you are intrigued by an ad, pay attention to it. I told you before that the Nutrisystem D commercial got my dander up and was misleading in that it says based on years of clinical science and such, but does NOT say that it is clinically proven to work. There is a big difference. But it gets better. I caught some more of the advertisement recently (they play it ALL morning on CNBC for some reason), it says that the people on the Nutri System D program for X amount of weeks lost 16 times more weight and had blood sugars 5 times lower and an A1C a point or so lower than - are you ready? " than people who attended a diabetes education and support group." SO, people who went on a diet lost more weight than people who did not! And the people who lost weight had lower blood sugars.... Well, my friends, I would bet my last dollar that the changes in weight and blood sugar had everything to do with calorie control and if I matched a group with the same calories and REAL food, the results would be the same.... (also they never say how many people, two?, ten? 100?)

Save your money or better yet, spend it at weight watchers.........
(or watch my videos on You Tube and cook the Volumetrics way)

but I digress - here are the links I promised,%20Advertising,%20and%20Communications

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