Aug 5, 2009 | 29
Pens and clipboards are so 1997. Attractive sales reps are so 2001. They might both still be commonplace, but pharmaceutical companies have also been sinking cash into a more obscured vehicle of persuasion: peer-reviewed medical journals.
One drug company—Wyeth, maker of the hormone therapy drugs Premarin and Prempro—paid for substantial ghostwriting of 26 medical research papers published in major scientific journals between 1998 and 2005, according to The New York Times. And these writers weren’t just polishing prose. They shaped the articles from start to finish.
Dec 15, 2008 | 1
Post menopausal women who take hormones for more than five years to relieve symptoms such as hot flashes have twice the risk of developing breast cancer as women who do not take estrogen and progestin to replace their own dwindling supplies, according to a new analysis of over 16,000 post-menopausal woman. The women were all in a 15-year study that was halted more than three years early in 2002 because of a clear link between the hormone replacement therapy (HRT) and the disease.
Researchers reported Saturday at the San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium in Texas that taking HRT for just two years also hikes the odds of developing the disease. But the good news is that the risk dips when the women go off the drugs. The new data comes from a the Women's Health Initiative, a study launched by the National Institutes of Health in 1991 to gauge the effects of the hormone therapy and other factors on heart disease, bone fractures, and breast and colorectal cancer. There had been earlier studies showing that HRT might prevent osteoporosis (bone-thinning ) and protect the heart. Researchers, however, abruptly stopped the study after finding that it did not guard against heart disease and that there was a 26 percent higher risk of breast cancer among the women taking hormones.
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