Drug Trials Turn Deadly

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March 28, 2006 | 11,299 views

Two clinical drug trials have had disastrous results for the participants, leaving a number of volunteers either dead or hospitalized.

11 Dead

Japanese drugmaker Eisal announced 11 patients died during a trial for Aricept, a cholinesterase inhibitor, which was being tested as a treatment for vascular dementia. None of the patients who received a placebo, rather than Aricept, suffered any ill effects.

6 Critically Ill

Six men also fell critically ill after a clinical trial of the anti-inflammatory drug TGN1412. Four of them are showing improvement, but two remain in critical condition.

The test marked the first time the drug had been given to human subjects, and the six volunteers it was administered to had to be admitted to intensive care almost immediately.

The Elephant Man

After taking the drug, a once healthy 28-year-old man in critical condition has a face so swollen he looks like the "Elephant Man," according to a loved one. He participated in the trial, which paid $3,500, in order to pay bills.


The results of these unfortunate experiments are not very surprising. Nearly every time you use a drug to treat a chronic health problem you run the risk of causing serious imbalance to very delicately controlled biological systems.

I am perpetually challenged by the consistent effort multi-national drug companies engage in to find new ways they can sell us expensive band-aids with potentially toxic side effects. This just happens to be the latest, but it will by no means be the last.

If we can convince a larger number of people to make these changes then the need for these worthless and toxic solutions will seriously decrease, and the drug companies will need to find some other creative way to get wealthy.

But until that time please understand that Aricept is a near useless drug prescribed for Alzheimer's patients. The fact that it is being tested for other potential uses merely shows just how broken and addicted to ineffective "miracle cures" the conventional health care paradigm truly is.

Does the news of fatalities during and after drug trials make a difference? Or, will the FDA slap on black box labels that few people read, and bring it to market? Or, as in the case of the lethal multiple sclerosis drug Tysabri, will regulators ignore the results and reapprove it for use anyway?

Drugs are not the answer to nearly any health problem. They are convenient short-term fixes for which many of us are grateful. The problem results when we rely on them to solve our health complaints rather than addressing the underlying foundational cause.

If you suffer from illnesses, such as the kind of chronic inflammation problems TGN1412 was supposed to treat, avoid useless and dangerous drugs as much as possible. Instead, do what is necessary to change your health for the better, and look for safe alternatives for symptom relief while your body goes through the healing process.



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