Non-Drug Approaches to Hepatitis C Ignored by "Awareness" Campaign

Its all about money over anything

A Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is examining documents uncovered by The Washington Post, which reported that drug maker Schering-Plough was waging an aggressive campaign to raise awareness of hepatitis in an effort to boost sales of the company's drug, Rebetron. The company's actions may violate FDA regulations.

The drug is considered to be the "gold standard" for treating Hepatitis C, and may violate FDA rules, the Post said. Rebetron treatment costs $18,000 a year.

While regulators encourage companies to support educational campaigns, FDA officials want to know the extent of Schering-Plough's influence and control over information provided by coalitions that were billed as grass-roots organizations, the Washington Post said.

They also report that FDA officials are looking into whether the Madison, NJ - based company may have violated federal advertising rules by billing a marketing campaign as an educational effort.

The Newspaper reported that Schering-Plough paid public relations executives to recruit volunteers, package educational materials and lobby state legislatures to spend more money to treat hepatitis C and raise awareness.

The Washington Post - October 31 2000

Dr. Mercola's Comments:

No surprise that drug companies would pursue self-serving interests. The only thing that seems to change is that the drugs just keep getting more and more expensive. $18,000 per year is no small piece of change.

What the drug companies will not tell you is that the same amount of money ($18,000) would likely treat far more than 50 people if they used nutritional supplements as an alternative. What would you rather spend $300 in one year or $18,000?

Well, what are the supplements? Lipoic acid at 200 mg three times a day and selenium 200-600 mcg per day seem to be the nearly magic duo. One can also use silmaryin or other herbal products that seem to help the liver.

I first became aware of this regimen by Dr. Burt Berkson. He is an internist and during his training was given several patients who were expected to die from hepatitis C. His job was to merely baby sit them in the ICU and watch them die. He did not do that, but rather called his associate at the National Institutes of Health and used the lipoic acid and these two patients with hepatitis C who were not expected to live more than a few weeks, completely recovered. Dr. Berkson has been lecturing all over the world on this topic since that time. He published a study on this last year.

Related Articles:

Hepatitis C Reconsidered

Hepatitis C Virus Infects At Least 2.7Million Americans

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