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Originally published August 7 2004

A Public Drug Registry Would Bring Honesty to Pharmaceutical Research, But the Idea Terrifies Drug Companies

by Mike Adams, the Health Ranger, NaturalNews Editor

A new idea has surfaced in the medical community -- to publish the results of all medical studies on a publicly accessible website that would include results from both positive and negative studies. This proposal has been floated in response to the recent discovery by regulatory authorities and various members of the press that drug companies routinely hide or suppress the publication of studies showing undesirable results.

For example, we are now learning that the use of anti-depressant drugs promotes violent behavior among children and can even include suicidal behavior, and that even though there was clear clinical evidence of this link, the drug companies chose to hide this information from the FDA and the public, making sure it never saw the light of day. It only came out in state lawsuits filed by New York State Attorney General Eliot Spitzer, a person I consider a law enforcement hero for his courage and determination in rooting out the corruption of drug companies.

The fact is that for decades, drug companies have been cherry-picking studies that would highlight only the positive, desired outcomes that they wanted to forward to the FDA and share with the public. In this way, drug companies could initiate 100 clinical trials for a particular drug, then throw out all the trials showing negative results, producing only trials for FDA review that showed positive results. This is one of the primary reasons why today's popular pharmaceuticals simply don't work -- the science has all been distorted. There are no people who are made healthier by taking multiple prescription drugs for life, and the vast majority of prescription drugs have undergone this fraudulent process of selective clinical trials that were designed, from the very beginning, to stumble across a few selected studies that might show positive results.

This is all very interesting to me, because I find that defenders of modern medicine and pharmaceuticals often say that only their medicine is "scientifically proven." Everything else, including alternative medicine, medicinal herbs, nutritional therapies, and so on are not scientifically proven according to these people. And yet, their own so-called scientific method is anything but scientific. A scientific method would require looking at all of the study results, and drawing a conclusion from all the available data. What is extremely non-scientific is picking and choosing the data you wish to view, and then forwarding that data to the regulatory officials who will approve drugs for widespread public use based on those selected positive results. That's not science. That's quackery.

Even worse, by designing a study in a certain way, you can take almost any chemical, including highly toxic chemicals, and tweak out some sort of positive claim by using enough people with enough studies and approaching it with a carefully chosen study design. For example, one of the tricks drug companies play with clinical trials is to remove individuals from the trial who aren't showing the desired positive results. A trial might start out with 200 people, but after 3 months, if certain individuals aren't showing the desired results, such as lower cholesterol or stabilized blood sugar levels, they can simply be dismissed from the trial for a variety of reasons. That leaves the 100 people or so who were for some reason showing a positive result, and yet that positive result could be from something completely unrelated to the drug. It could have been lifestyle changes, it could have been the placebo effect, or even new exercise routines taken up by patients who are suddenly interested in their health.

So, the bottom line is that if you initiate a large enough number of studies and you dismiss all the people who don't respond in the way you want them to respond, and then you cherry-pick those few studies that showed precisely the results you want, you end up with a seriously distorted view of what the pharmaceutical or chemical actually causes in the human body. But you also end up with a data set that you can promote to the FDA, the press, and physicians as being "scientifically proven." And this process is precisely what goes on for the vast majority of prescription drugs offered today by pharmaceutical companies that are approved by the FDA, prescribed by physicians, and taken by tens of millions of Americans.

The cold, hard truth about pharmaceuticals is that by and large they are not scientifically proven -- they are based on fraudulent clinical studies, and they simply don't work to make people healthier. In time, the American public will come to realize this, and this idea of having a publicly accessible database of all clinical trials might be one way in which the public begins to learn the truth about prescription drugs. But I doubt that we're going to see such a public database anytime soon. For one thing, the pharmaceutical industry is terrified by the idea. They certainly don't want the actual scientific results of their studies to be made public, because that would quite readily show how ineffective and toxic their prescription drug products really are.

So you can expect Big Pharma to delay this idea for as long as possible, and even if it does become a reality, you can expect there to be loopholes put in place so that not all trials have to be published. That would once again return the system to the cherry-picking protocol, where drug companies could selectively choose which studies they wish to publish, and by doing that, they could of course present a distorted view of the data.

If such a publicly accessible database existed today, you'd be shocked to learn the number of deaths and harmful side effects that have been caused by clinical drug trials conducted over the last 20 years. Without a doubt, the pharmaceutical industry depends on the fact that they can bury negative results and make them disappear. If those results were to suddenly be made public, and if stringent rules were put in place which required all such studies to be made public in the future, you can bet the pharmaceutical industry would experience a meltdown caused by the widespread realization that pharmaceuticals really aren't good for people after all.


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