Confidential drug maker “Consortium” document made public

You’ve probably heard about drug manufacturers suppressing information about their products if that information shed a bad light on those products. Here’s another example pertaining to a confidential document released by a Swedish court of just such suppression. A Consortium of drug manufacturers in the European Union: Novartis, Johnson & Johnson, Shire, Medice and Laboratorios Rubió have conspired to deceive the public while delaying or halting any studies of the long term effects of their psychiatric drugs. The specific drugs in question here are the methylphenidate-containing products used in the treatment of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder.

We get this in an article from the TransWorldNews business section, Confidential report reveals: Big Pharma trying to stop long-term studies of ADHD drugs (Ritalin, Concerta).

The document can only be characterised as an aggressive effort to explain why long-term studies about adverse psychiatric outcomes of methylphenidate treatment could not and should not be done, together with distorted facts about the beneficial long-term outcomes of drug treatment. The intention with the feasibility assessment study is clearly to stop or delay needed safety actions for methylphenidate drugs.

The main method used by the Consortium to prevent the safety studies is the “comorbidity trick”. This means that any and all adverse reactions from the drugs are explained away as signs of a “co-occuring disease”. As the Consortium says: “It is well established that ADHD co-occurs with other psychiatric disorders.” The list that follows is long: “disruptive behavioral disorders such as oppositional defiant disorder, conduct disorder; and mood disorders such as depression, bipolar disorder; and anxiety disorders.”

The idea is to blame known effects of the drugs used to treat ADHD on other diseases. You suppress this evidence, and then you have additional diseases for which additional drugs may be prescribed.

It has taken many years to get the warnings out about these harmful effects. Many children have been considered psychotic and put on antipsychotic drugs – with even more harm produced – when the actual fact was that they experienced toxic effects from methylphenidate drugs. Many children have experienced new or exacerbated aggressiveness as a result of taking stimulant drugs, which in turn have put them and people around them in danger.

It would seem that these drug companies still aren’t managing to put ‘people over profits’ as a Barack O’Bama campaign slogan once ran. As many of these psychiatric drugs can cause a great deal of harm, we may be dealing with the consequences of these deceptions for many years to come. Need I add, not a good move.