I think Huey Lewis and the News hit the nail on the head

“I want a new drug” – released in 1984?! – scary huh?

(Follow the link )

I want a new drug

According to the IMS Institute for Healthcare Informatics:

April 20, 2011 — The 10 most prescribed drugs in the U.S. aren’t the drugs on which we spend the most, according to a report from the IMS Institute for Healthcare Informatics.

#1 most prescribed = Hydrocodone (combined with acetaminophen) — 131.2 million prescriptions

Out of the $307 billion we spent on drugs in 2010, we spent most of our money on the following:

  • Lipitor, a cholesterol-lowering statin drug — $7.2 billion
  • Nexium, an antacid drug — $6.3 billion
  • Plavix, a blood thinner — $6.1 billion
  • Advair Diskus, an asthma inhaler — $4.7 billion
  • Abilify, an antipsychotic drug — $4.6 billion
  • Seroquel, an antipsychotic drug — $4.4 billion
  • Singulair, an oral asthma drug — $4.1 billion
  • Crestor, a cholesterol-lowering statin drug — $3.8 billion
  • Actos, a diabetes drug — $3.5 billion
  • Epogen, an injectable anemia drug — $3.3 billion

So what does this information tell you about America?

It seems that a majority of Americans suffer from obesity & sedentary life style which can have a cause & effect relationship to:

  • high cholesterol
  • gastric reflux disease (need for antacids)
  • diabetes type II
  • lung deficiencies and inflammation (asthma and many other diseases)

And this is just me spit-balling here, but the above disease have seem to upset and possibly depress a good majority of the nation as well (need for anti-psychotic drugs = for depression).

Yes, yes, I know this is just scratching the surface of these disease states. No need to debate about the ba-zillion comorbidities that can or cannot be involved with these disease (and many others). I only bring these to light since most of these disease states mentioned above have been argued to be very preventable and/ or controllable without the use of medications.

Just more food for thought.

The 10 Most Prescribed Drugs | Medscape.com

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5 thoughts on “I think Huey Lewis and the News hit the nail on the head

  1. Am I mistaken or out of that top ten, is there not a single one of those drugs available as generics?

      1. What struck me was that with the exception of Epogen and (for certain indications) Plavix, every single one of those drugs is a variant on an older, now generic drug, which works for all intents and purposes just as well.

        Crestor? Really? Nexium? Actos?

        If you wanted to shave a quick $20 billion off the government’s healthcare costs, you could just announce that the VA formulary are now the only drugs Medicare or Medicaid will pay for.

        When “Transformers 3” comes out I will go see it, despite the fact that I’m shelling out money for a slight variation on a winning formula. But when the pharmaceutical industry is making its money off tired knock-offs, that’s more of a problem.

  2. Not to mention the anticoagulant (Plavix) which implies previous significant cardiac history — which again has risk factors related to lifestyle choices.

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