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Warning: Your Doctor Maybe a Pawn for Drug Companies

Updated on April 11, 2015

Much of What Doctors Know and Do in Medicine is Flat-Out Wrong!

Much of What Doctors Know and Do in Medicine is Flat-Out Wrong were told this by Mount Sinai's David Newman to 5,000 emergency physicians at Scientific Assembly of the American College of Emergency Physicians
Much of What Doctors Know and Do in Medicine is Flat-Out Wrong were told this by Mount Sinai's David Newman to 5,000 emergency physicians at Scientific Assembly of the American College of Emergency Physicians
Mount Sinai's Doctor David Newman believes most of what physicians do daily "has no evidence base."
Mount Sinai's Doctor David Newman believes most of what physicians do daily "has no evidence base."
"Doc-in-a-box" doctors in 70% of cases routinely prescribe antibiotics for sore throat, says Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) even though almost all throat infections are caused by viruses, for which antibiotics are useless.
"Doc-in-a-box" doctors in 70% of cases routinely prescribe antibiotics for sore throat, says Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) even though almost all throat infections are caused by viruses, for which antibiotics are useless.

Much of What Doctors Know and Do in Medicine is Flat-Out Wrong!

Our Perception of “Reality” is Wrong

A recent survey indicated that 65% of us thought most, or nearly all of our health care they received is based upon scientific evidence. Wrong! The reality is shocking… The Institute of Medicine estimates that “well below half” of the procedures doctors before and the decisions they make about surgeries, drugs, and tests have been adequately investigated and shown to be effective. The real world the doctors “practice” in is the rest of the procedures, surgeries, and drugs are based upon a combination of guesswork, theory, and tradition, with a strong dose (pun intended) of marketing by drug and device companies.

The “Guessing Surgery Problem”

Many common surgical techniques are not as effective as doctors believe, says Guy Clifton, a neurosurgeon of the University of Texas Medical School at Houston. Neurologist Peter Rothwell, a researcher at Oxford University and specialist on strokes, has found that 80% of cleaning out the carotid arteries was performed on patients on low-risk without symptoms. The procedure can cause strokes or heart attacks itself. Several large clinical trials, involving thousands of patients with no symptoms (asymptomatic) patients in the United States have shown that a surgical procedure known as carotid endarterectomy can remove the plaques and slightly reduce the risk of a stroke by about 1 to 5 percent over 5 years. 3% of patients suffer strokes during this procedure. The meaningful benefit is only to people who are the highest risk of having a stroke. That would be symptomatic patients, those with a serious blockage of a carotid artery and a history of at least one previous stroke.

Drug Marketing: Sell More Drugs

The FDA currently relies on the drug makers themselves, along with reports from doctors to identify problems once a drug is on the market. The FDA requires only that a drug is by some measure better than nothing. An area of concern is the “placebo” used. Some placebos can “skew,” or alter statistical results. An example is olive oil used as a placebo. There is no defined standard for accepted placebos for given drug trials. The voluntary reporting that is often incomplete is only a fraction of the potential related harms and deaths, that is about 10 to 50 percent end up in FDA databases. Many trivial and unrelated events are mixed in with the serious incidents making, what William Maisal , formerly of Harvard Medical School, now chief scientist at the FDA’s Center for Devices and Radilogical Health, “…making it hard to find the signal amid all of the noise.”

Pfizer drug manufacturer provides an example of profits before patient care and well-being. After a recent publication of a study indicating doctors were not aware of the results about an expensive antihypertensive drug, Pfizer made sure that the doctors stayed that way. Two of Pfizer employees were praised for “sending their key physicians to sightsee” during a presentation at the annual American College of Cardiology conference in California (from public records from FDA.) The Pfizer reps were instructed to provide a copy of the study, only if they were asked.

The Doctor Manipulation by Drug Companies

At a packed lecture hall in the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center where more than 5,000 emergency physicians gathered for the Scientific Assembly of the American College of Emergency Physicians, Mount Sinai’s David Newman told them that much of what they know is flat-out wrong, and the numbers tell the truth.

Newman explained three key concepts:

  1. Number needed to treat (NNT)
  2. Number needed to harm (NNH)
  3. Number of related decrease in symptoms that a given treatment can achieve (Doctors know this and have been trained using this concept).

An example of what number three says and does is when an ad for the anti-cholesterol drug Lipitor claims one-third reduction in the risk of heart attack or stroke, which is a relative risk, devoid of meaning without context. Only by knowing how many patients have to be treated to achieve a given benefit, or how many harmed, can doctors determine whether they are doing their patients any good, Newman says.

In the best-case scenario, 50 men at risk for a heart attack would have to be treated with statins like Lipitor for five years to prevent a single heart attack or stroke. Stated differently, 98 of 100 men treated for five years would receive no benefit from the drug, yet they would be exposed to risk of its potentially serious and fatal side effects.

The Solution…

Part of the solution is better medical evidence based on independent research. More physicians need to include the patients on informed consent. Surgeons do not tell you what they are putting into your body, or what the complications are.

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    • dallas93444 profile image

      Dallas W Thompson 6 years ago from Bakersfield, CA


      Thanks for sharing!

    • dallas93444 profile image

      Dallas W Thompson 6 years ago from Bakersfield, CA

      Millionaire Tips,

      Got a good point! Some doctors have a "business" approach to medicine, rather than a holistic patient's well-being...

    • dallas93444 profile image

      Dallas W Thompson 6 years ago from Bakersfield, CA


      To be informed provides os choices...

    • sandrabusby profile image

      Sandra Busby 6 years ago from Tuscaloosa, Alabama, USA

      Thanks for getting out this information. I see you have many comments -- others out there who have had shocking experiences. I'll share also. Sandra Busby

    • Millionaire Tips profile image

      Shasta Matova 6 years ago from USA

      This is obviously a topic that gets people fired up, judging from the comments, which I don't have time to read. I get fired up too. Every time I go to the doctor, while I am in the waiting room, I see the drug salespeople going in and out. It is clear that the doctor is trying to prescribe me the most expensive, newest medicine, and is happy to prescribe whatever drug I want.

      I had asked about the effectiveness of a surgery to surgeon, and he said it was very effective, but after I had the surgery, he never called to ask me. How would he know if it was effective if he didn't bother to check?

    • Brett.Tesol profile image

      Brett Caulton 6 years ago from Thailand

      Very interesting, although more than a little concerning. Although I agree medicine has its uses, I am trying to use natural remedies where possible. Often they are just as good and what the medicine is based on, with far less or no side effects.

      Thanks for SHARING.

    • dallas93444 profile image

      Dallas W Thompson 6 years ago from Bakersfield, CA


      Doctors must earn money like the rest of us. Not bad, not good, just the way it is...

      A contractor gets his choice of lumber influenced by the lumber salsman who offers a trip to Las Vegas when the contractor makes his large purchase of lumber. The owner has no input or knowledge of the "paid influence" for the product the owner will pay for...

      The fact that this practise happens to doctors does not single them out from the rest of us.

      The BIG difference is our lives are at risk!!! Doctors are under tremendous pressure to get paid. Medicare pays "peanuts." Insurance companies fight each and every claim. The doctor has done their work and fight to get paid.

      When an "oily" salesperson suggest a "bonus" to use a specified product or service, the temptation is too great for many doctors.

      The truth is we all suffer from the status quo... The "truth" must set us free...

      Medicare is a victim of continued fraud in the BILLIONS... notwithstanding constant news of crooked doctors being "busted." There is a treadmill of doctors and associates willing to take the quick buck. Greed is alive and well.

      My hope is indivilually you and I can make an incremental difference. We must question authority. Doctors are not gods... Some make mistakes.

    • frogyfish profile image

      frogyfish 6 years ago from Central United States of America

      You DARE to tell this TRUTH? THANK YOU!

    • dallas93444 profile image

      Dallas W Thompson 6 years ago from Bakersfield, CA

      Benjimester, As you know I have followed your recent series. The series reflected in-depth knowledge and understanding.

      Thanks for your comments!

      Economics drive the medical profession as it does in other careers. I am not suggesting this is bad, but I am conerned of the non-disclosure from our doctors about their being influenced in their recommendations and use of products and procedures...

      Doctors are human: not bad, not good. They are the same as we are. However, the trememdous, life-threatening, or lifestyle decisions made in behalf of medical lobyist... or influence peddlers may have a negative impact on us...

      If I owned a tire store and Firestone offered a $25 rebate for each tire I sold, I would sell more Firestone tires. It could be argued the tire dealer would not tell the public about the "deal." I would agree, the public would not know about the Firestone offer to influence the tire store to sell more tires.

      However, "ethics" would demand (I think/feel) when a human's health, well-being and life is at stake - a higher accountablility is required...

    • Benjimester profile image

      Benji Mester 6 years ago from San Diego, California

      Yeah, you're pretty right on with this one Dallas. It's not even a health care system. It's a sick care system. They don't try and get people to live healthy. They just want to medicate the sick.

    • dallas93444 profile image

      Dallas W Thompson 6 years ago from Bakersfield, CA


      Your comments cast a "reality" beam of light into the dynamics of the pill industry." They are profit driven. doctors exist to heal and assist us. The goals are different for the pill indutry and the doctors.

      As you noted the temptations are great for the doctors to be led down the path of greed... at their patient's expense.

    • Corin profile image

      Corin 6 years ago

      An interesting and informative hub. I have friends who are doctors and pharmacists and they often tell me how the drug companies try to bribe them into prescribing their drugs by paying them travel tickets, hotels, restaurants... And though they are doctors, they often tell me that even if they are ill, they wouldn't take the drugs they sometimes prescribe..: their problem is that they also have patients who don't want to understand that they have to live healthier and who want a pill to get rid of their ailment fast. One of them even said that he didn't want to prescribe drugs for a common cold and told his patient to take home remedies: his patient was angry and never came back..

    • dallas93444 profile image

      Dallas W Thompson 6 years ago from Bakersfield, CA


      Thanks! We are conditioned to "instant gratification.' There is a constant barrage of, "Have a headache, take an aspirin." Whatever ails us, there is an immediate "fix." Doctors profit from this thinking... As does the self-serving pharmaceutical industry.

    • eventsyoudesign profile image

      eventsyoudesign 6 years ago from Nashville, Tennessee

      Great article.I agree wholeheartedly with you. My dad was on thirteen medications when he passed away. The nurse from Hospice said he should not have been on that many medications and that the doctors did not communicate with one another. My dad sent a list of side effects from the drugs he was taking and how much better he felt without them. However this did not make a bit of difference.

      I tried to help my dad see that he should turn to natural solutions for help. He was not going to try to help himself in any way at all. I guess he was tired of trying. I don't know.

      Most Americans want a quick fix. They want to pop a pill and presto their pain is gone. I think they are to afraid to go against the medical establishment. I think the first step to all of this mess is for people to eat better, exercise and be happy. I guess I am starting to ramble on. This is a great article. It really makes me think. Thanks for sharing. Teresa

    • dallas93444 profile image

      Dallas W Thompson 7 years ago from Bakersfield, CA

      One must take the responsibility to become informed and read the labels...

      Thanks for your comments.

    • days leaper profile image

      days leaper 7 years ago from england

      Hi, had a few minutes in the early hours to have a quick look here. Glad I did as at least I'm not alone in the great big mushroom feed! -Medicines are the chemicalisation of food but getting it out of them which foods/plants, and what food is best avoided with it is an impossible task. Most doctors seem to promote the false notion that they've conjoured it out of thin air and are about to give out a miracle. With all the usual expectations of wanting themselves to receive some kind of worship! The incidents I could share on this. Water tablets that cause muscle atrophy over time, eg. Bumetanide etc. Especially in the leg, many are needing wheelchairs as a result of long/mid term use of these.

      Calcium resonium, "ooh, lovely chocolate `tasting!" I was told to get me on it. Then further research said it is made from something that sticks the bowel together -to the point that my bowel may need removing someday. Needless to say I stopped taking it.

      Codiene, the pain killer causes constipation, mine was so bad I now have haemorroids, did that stop th A&E doctor prescribing it, of course not, it seems of the medicines at their disposal they have favourite words they like to write! And I think you've covered expertly why this is.

      On the latest treatment, besides the dialysis, I was told "be careful as a removal operation leaves the bowel with balled patches", so I tried an alternative "banding" which caused so much trauma that instead of one oversized pile, I have three or four with one extremity.

      "What a life!"

    • dallas93444 profile image

      Dallas W Thompson 7 years ago from Bakersfield, CA

      Thanks Joe,

      Doctors are human. There are good ones and "bad" ones. We must be aware and ask questions. It is our life.

    • profile image

      Joe 7 years ago

      I agree with the above concerning how doctors and Med reps treat patients (customers)

      I am 43 yrs old and when I was a kid a visit to the doctor took about 20min to 30min, today a visit to the doctor only takes about 5 to 10min and I was told the reason why they are short visits is to get as many patients through in one day, the more patients the more money.

      Also some doctors no longer give advice on eating the rite foods or even taking the vitamin suppliments in order to help recover from sickness, all they do is prescribe, precribe and more prescribe.

      My son had asthma and he would always be sick with fever, after a few visits to the doctor he had a whole bag of medicine prescribed to him and that just made him worse get worse, but I decided to do some research and found out if I changed my sons diet and made sure he ate the rite foods he would be ok, well today my son is more healthier than he has ever been and it wasn't because of the doctor. Why didn't the doctor tell me what I spent hours finding in research. Are doctors againts healthy eating and good quality suppliments.

      Anyway not all doctors are like that but just one being like that is one too many.

      Many of us know all these things but it usually falls on deaf ears, lets hope the patiences are wise enough to do some research concerning the medicine that is prescribed and too ALWAYS look for alternative medicine in the way of food and quality suppliments.

    • dallas93444 profile image

      Dallas W Thompson 7 years ago from Bakersfield, CA


      There is recent findings which indicate people who were raised in a "farm environment" that were exposed to many of the "bad bugs" are now more healthy. There bodies have produced good immune systems...

      Depression has been eradicated in some people who are given "bad bugs' that cause their bodies to produce high immune response. Their brain is bathed in good immune stuff...

      Thanks for the "trophy!"

    • BkCreative profile image

      BkCreative 7 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City

      So true. I think of all the people I know in their 50s and 60s who are forever ill - and all are under a doctor's care. The idea that as we get older we must be on a wide range of drugs is absolutely absurd - but we readily accept it. I do not so I do not have all the ailments like diabetes, high blood pressure, bad cholesterol, glaucoma, - name it. If I had a problem I would seek nutrition and not a synthetic chemical AKA magic pill.

      Why did we stop being responsible for our good health?

      Thanks for the hub- rated up!

    • dallas93444 profile image

      Dallas W Thompson 7 years ago from Bakersfield, CA


      The more we learn, the more we understand what we do not know...

      Thanks for your comments!

    • RunAbstract profile image

      RunAbstract 7 years ago from USA

      This is a very important article. I have been distancing myself from the world of doctors and "pharma medical" practices for over 20 years now, after declining a radical surgery, and going on my first visit to a health food store!

      By reading and reseaching, I have been able to use the bounty of the earth to help maintain my family's health for along time now.

      I said it before, and I'll say it again... The Creator put the first people in a garden, (instead of a drug store), for a reason!

      Thanks for writing this!

    • dallas93444 profile image

      Dallas W Thompson 7 years ago from Bakersfield, CA


      Thanks for your comments.

      I read in yesterday's Wall Street Journal (12/20/2010) an article about doctors targeting Medicare for spine fusion receiving millions (one group 48 million) from Medtronic... for a metal device, for "consultant fees." They get huge kickbacks plus Medicare payments...

    • mulberry1 profile image

      Christine Mulberry 7 years ago

      I worked in healthcare also. I know that although there have been some regulations put in place to stop pharmaceutical companies from basically bribing people, clearly more needs to be done. I'm not really too fond of the fact these drugs are marketed/advertised directly to the public. Pt.s are known to push Dr.s hard for certain drugs. EVERY medication you take is serious in my eyes, I do every thing I can to alter lifestyle before I'll submit to drugs. The medical profession needs to get much better at informing patients about side effects, other potential treament options, and so forth. While patients and loved ones need to take more responsibility for getting the facts and actively participating in their care. Of course, taking responsibility for really looking after your health before things go wrong would be the ideal. We may need to adjust our priorities.

    • dallas93444 profile image

      Dallas W Thompson 7 years ago from Bakersfield, CA


      We must, for our own benefit, educate ourselves... Doctors are mere mortals too...

      Thanks for your comments.

    • toknowinfo profile image

      toknowinfo 7 years ago

      Great hub! You write with such insight and intelligence. I think it is important information that you shared because people trust too much without questioning. We need to stop being manipulated by drug companies and the medical profession because people want an instant answer to their discomfort. Thanks for sharing your knowledge and creating greater awareness. Rated up and awesome.

    • dallas93444 profile image

      Dallas W Thompson 7 years ago from Bakersfield, CA


      We are the master of ourselves... homeopathic actions and natural products do work. One must be aware of the synergy that may occur when taking them.

      Some examples:

      Senna can also interact with different medications, including calcium channel blockers, so it is important to consult your doctor before taking senna. Senna should not be taken for an extended period of time and if any major side effects are experienced.

      One of the known side effects of consuming holy basil in any form is that it can thin the blood. Another side effect is that it can reduce the blood sugar levels and that is of special importance to diabetics. Anyone with diabetes already taking prescription medicines to control their sugar level should monitor their blood glucose if taking holy basil, because otherwise the levels may become dangerously low and can cause even more side effects like fainting, dizziness or even sugar shock. Other side effects of holy basil include decreased fertility and can possibly harm an unborn baby if taken while pregnant.

      One must take the responsibility to educate one's self. One must empower one's self and ask questions. Get second and third opinions... Be informed. It is our life...

      Doctors are only human.. they make decisions and we have choices to accept or reject them...

    • katiem2 profile image

      katiem2 7 years ago from I'm outta here

      I tend to feel doctors are often drug pushers, just saying. I wad up prescriptions and toss them in the trash. I use natural home cures which do work. Just my choice. Great topic and much needed discussion. Thanks :)

    • dallas93444 profile image

      Dallas W Thompson 7 years ago from Bakersfield, CA


      I appreciate your comments! As a former science instructor, I learned the scientific process to solve a problem. The first step was to define the problem. Sometimes this single first step was/is the most difficult part.

      Our healthcare, notwithstanding "ObamaCare" is broken... Since it is obvious, how do we "fix it?" This is a simplistic summary... Others may not agree our health care system is not broken...

    • MyMastiffPuppies profile image

      MyMastiffPuppies 7 years ago

      You know you did something right when you get the response you did. There are so many things wrong with our health care and how it care is administered. I am not sure what the answer is to fix it but bringing issues to the surface has to be one of the first steps. Keep up the good work!

    • dallas93444 profile image

      Dallas W Thompson 7 years ago from Bakersfield, CA

      Enlydia Listener,

      You care: that makes a BIG difference....

      Congratulations listening to your "heart."

    • Enlydia Listener profile image

      Enlydia Listener 7 years ago from trailer in the country

      Dallas, I'm glad you wrote this a nurse I saw meds overused or wrongly my position even when I tried to make a difference I was not able to...I became a certified reflexologist and basically left the field of nursing.

      Yes, maybe SOMETIMES the meds are needed...but all too often, there are too many side effects that can be dangerous.

    • dallas93444 profile image

      Dallas W Thompson 7 years ago from Bakersfield, CA


      I am sure the reps time is cost effective, hence the repeated calls to sell the doctors their wares... We are the "end product." We are the users who pay and grease the skids to enable the system to prosper at our expense. We must become informed and aware...

    • bruzzbuzz profile image

      bruzzbuzz 7 years ago from Texas , USA

      I only go to the doctor once every six months or longer and my visit only takes about an hour yet every time I go I see at least one pharmaceutical rep. I often wondered how many the doctor sees each day and how influential they must be because my doctor is a bit of a pill pusher. Thanks for a truly informative hub.

    • dallas93444 profile image

      Dallas W Thompson 7 years ago from Bakersfield, CA


      Thanks. We must be aware. We must know the facts. We must question, get a second, or third opinion... It is our bodies.

    • fastfreta profile image

      Alfreta Sailor 7 years ago from Southern California

      Whew! dallas93444, what a frightening hub. Makes you want to second guess or at the very least second check your diagnosis and treatment. Truthfully I'm already afraid to go to the doctor, so I stay as healthy as possible. Nevertheless this is a very good hub. I'm going to rate up and Digg this one for sure.

    • dallas93444 profile image

      Dallas W Thompson 7 years ago from Bakersfield, CA


      Your wisdom is showing! As you know, there are good doctors, but, how do we know which ones to trust and can even the "good ones" not be influenced by the drug companies...?

      Your inner beauty transcends cosmetics and applied substances...

    • Nellieanna profile image

      Nellieanna Hay 7 years ago from TEXAS

      I happen to be of the reluctant-to-go-to-a-doctor or totally trust one if I do go ilk.

      I believe that far too often if one goes to the doctor, natural healing that's more than likely to occur never gets a chance. Then one may be better or not with the doctor's help as far as the initial malady goes, but will very likely have acquired some other one - requiring more treatment, etc. etc.

      Of course, in order to decide and let one's body heal itself, one needs to have nurtured some body-awareness in order to make a good judgment in this regard, but the fact is that a human being has a lot better opportunity to KNOW his or her own body and how it is when in a normal mode and how it is when there is something really amiss than a doctor can learn by glancing over a blood pressure figure recorded by the nurse before he finally gets into the room, takes a brief look, decides arbitrarily on a prescription and a follow-up date and leaves by the same door in a few minutes.

      One hears of someone who was advised to have an operation with the result that the pain afterwards continued so severely that the person became an addict to strong pain meds, too. This seems more the case with joint or back surgeries. One wonders if the person was just frightened into rushing to the doctor or became alarmed & afraid of a little discomfort at its first sign, which a cold pack and a little pampering might have quickly assuaged.

      Side effects of drugs are often even admitted up front and would be obviously worse than the problem the meds are to help. And it seems that if the doctor can "give something" to ease the symptoms, no one really questions or cares whether the causes are addressed. It is to the doctor's advantage to create a chronic patient, especially a gullible one.

      Many times if a diagnosis is fairly accurate, the person can examine what he or she is doing to create, agitate or make it chronic and can decide to correct the cause without the meds. It is by far worth the effort rather than being victim of a medical field gone haywire.

      I take selected vitamins and minerals and occasionally ibuprofen for aches but have only estrogen in the way of an Rx, and take that irregularly - and I am 78 years old and my health insurance is paying for others' care, not mine, for the most part.

      My GYN changed the estrogen form from Premarin pills to a topical gel when I finally had to reorder the Rx for the pills and it required his approval.. haha. I'm not sure the gel has any medical effects, but it's more expensive. The Doc did mention that I might try rubbing my face with whatever residue is left on my hand after applying it to my arm; - and I'd almost swear it is helping smooth some fine lines! LOL - So though it's expensive as a med, it's not too bad for a skin-care product. hahahahha Skin care and cosmetics is another gouging area needing exposure, though! I've become disillusioned with the expensive brand I'd used for years and am now using an $8 a jar product from the herb mart - and it may be the reason for improvement and not the estrogen gel! Perhaps I'll conduct my own research on that!

      By the way - I figured out why the most common estrogen med is named Premain. It's made from Pregnant Mare Urine. Appealing? ugh.

      We are constantly being "soaked" by devious con-games and frightened into conforming to silly things, usually the kinds of things which require constant re-ordering and indefinite usage -usually up until death arrives, - thus providing a steady income for the providers. I have always been a sceptic and now more and more so. Being a gullible lemming is not all that appealing!

    • dallas93444 profile image

      Dallas W Thompson 7 years ago from Bakersfield, CA


      The sickness merchants... preying on our fears and maladies... The doctors of death. Profits before patients. As noted earlier, not all doctors fall within this "category..."

      The challenge is for doctors not to be influenced by commercial interest in their treatments of patients. The well-being of the patient should be the goal of all doctors - not what the doctors get for selling drugs... or how many surgeries they do.

    • World-Traveler profile image

      World-Traveler 7 years ago from USA

      The influence that pharmaceutical manufacturing companies have is fairly extensive in Asia and in Latin and South American countries. My students who are doctors and psychiatrists tell me of the free 3 and 4 day seminars and conventions, all expenses paid including airfare and lodging, that drug companies provide them with in order to get their undying business.

    • dallas93444 profile image

      Dallas W Thompson 7 years ago from Bakersfield, CA

      Dolores Monet

      Unfortunately, SOME doctors view patients as a "widget" in terms of a "commodity" that represents a potential for profit. The process in which they manipulate their "opportunity" time with the patients and how they maximize their bottom-line profits often influence their diagnoses and treatment protocols...

      It has been said and per today's (11/08/2010) Wall Street Journal article, "...the traditional model of doctors hanging up their own shingle is fading fast, as more go to work directly for hospitals that are building themselves into consolidated health-care providers.

      Hospitals often guarantee revenue. "You need patients and the doctors bring in the patients."

      Hospitals are seeking to position themselves for new methods of payment, including an emerging model known as "accountable-care."

      William F. Jessee, chief executive of the medical group association - which has 21,500 members, said he, "...expected to see more physicians selling out to hospitals."

      The new and improved business model of treating patients as a source of income must be balanced with the idea and notion of their patients are human beings....

      We deserve better!

    • Dolores Monet profile image

      Dolores Monet 7 years ago from East Coast, United States

      dalla - thank you for this hub. We are so concerned here in the US with keeping medical treatment as big business, that we often lose sight of what medicine is actually about. I know someone who works for a small firm that has come up with a test to see if a particular form of chemotherapy will work on a person's cancer. That way, you make sure that you get the drugs that you really need and don't suffer the side effects needlessly. Well, doctors have actually asked, what's in it for me? They have explained that they can make a hefty profit off of a chemotherapy treatment whether it works or not. They figure that if it does not work, they will just try another! Does this make sense?

    • dallas93444 profile image

      Dallas W Thompson 7 years ago from Bakersfield, CA


      Life is a process... You learn and then the information becomes out-dated... You learn more and the process continues... Our "knowledge" data pool will double in the next five years... What it took us 10,000 years to learn...

    • prasetio30 profile image

      prasetio30 7 years ago from malang-indonesia

      Good information from you. I never knew about this information before. Very inspiring hub. Thanks for share with us. I learn much from you, my friend. Peace!

    • dallas93444 profile image

      Dallas W Thompson 7 years ago from Bakersfield, CA


      The American Journal of Medicine, a collection of articles and commentaries sheds light on the causes underlying misdiagnoses and demonstrates a nontrivial rate of diagnostic error that ranges from less than 5% in the perceptual specialties (pathology, radiology, dermatology) up to 10% to 15% in many other fields. Physician overconfidence and a lack of feedback following a diagnosis are two important contributors to the problem.

      More facts:

      doctors who see an average of 34 or more patients per day are 20-27% more likely to give antibiotics where they’re not appropriate. The research also showed that for each year a physician is in practice, their rate of inappropriate prescribing increases 4%.

      One in three doctors agree that free drug samples influence prescribing, finds a small but representative US survey published in the Journal of Medical Ethics.

      Physicians may say they would disclose a medical error, but how many actually do? From a survey of faculty physicians, resident physicians and medical students, researchers from the University of Iowa found that while nearly all respondents indicated that they would disclose a hypothetical error, less than half reported having disclosed an actual minor or major medical error.

      The researchers from the University of Georgia examined data on drugs prescribed to 107,000 Georgia Medicaid recipients in 2001. They found that 75% of antidepressant recipients, 80% of anticonvulsant recipients and 64% of antipsychotic recipients received at least one of these medications off-label. Many patients have no idea that this goes on and just assume that the physician is writing a prescription for their indication.

      Off-label use of central nervous system drugs can account from anywhere from 25 to 80% of a drug’s annual sales. In the case of the Neurontin (gabapentin) nearly all – 98% – of patients received the drug off label in 2001.

    • Benjimester profile image

      Benji Mester 7 years ago from San Diego, California

      I couldn't agree more. A Hospital is a business, plain and simple. No one goes to a mechanic and just accepts all of their recommendations for work on their car. But we go into hospitals and let doctors prescribe whatever drugs they think we need and all the tests they can think of. I hadn't heard that about surgery. Very good to know. Thanks for spreading the word. Awesome hub. Voted up.

    • dallas93444 profile image

      Dallas W Thompson 7 years ago from Bakersfield, CA


      Agreed... We all need to be "educated," including the doctors...

    • ExpandYourMind profile image

      ExpandYourMind 7 years ago from Midwest USA

      Great hub, dallas. You're shedding light on an important issue. Far too many drugs are prescribed . . . far too many unnecessary surgeries are performed. Everyone should get a 2nd and third opinion.

    • dallas93444 profile image

      Dallas W Thompson 7 years ago from Bakersfield, CA

      Debby Bruck,

      Thanks! It is our life that is being "experimented" on.. by mis-informed, or uninformed doctors and we exacerbate the problem by our on ignorance...

    • Debby Bruck profile image

      Debby Bruck 7 years ago

      Great images. Telling the truth to people may often not be stomached. I shall tweet and share with others. Hope they don't puke.

    • dallas93444 profile image

      Dallas W Thompson 7 years ago from Bakersfield, CA


      Amen! Perhaps if enough "patients" start to insist on being fully informed and they too take responsibility of their own bodies and investigate the "side effects," they may make a difference in their own lives.

      It is a "triangle" of the drug companies, the doctors and the patients. Each need the other... The status quo is many times stacked against the patient...

      Perhaps many "unneeded" surgeries would be eliminated. The "C-Sections always performed on Fridays to free-up the weekends for the doctors would be eliminated...

    • onegoodwoman profile image

      onegoodwoman 7 years ago from A small southern town

      I am singing in your choir on this one!

      If the surgeon doesn't operate, he has no income. If the first pill doesn't cure you, back to the doctor you go, and he gets paid AGAIN!

      My Granddad used to say that the "script" is code for the pharmacist, it says, " I got mine, now get yours".

      Our society needs to take a closer look, many times we need a medical professional, and other times we do not. The human body is remarkably capable of healing itself.

    • dallas93444 profile image

      Dallas W Thompson 7 years ago from Bakersfield, CA


      I agree! I too have a similar statement. My concern are those that are not informed and do not question their doctors. As stated above in prior comments; there are "good doctors" and bad doctors as there are good and bad people in any activities. It reflects life. When we have a need for a doctor, we need to know they are informed and we are informed of the pertinent facts. We patients need to be able to make life and death decisions, based on being informed. This includes the doctors who SHOULD make decisions predicated on what is best for the patient; not what their "drug salesperson" has recommended, or provided "incentives" to prescribe...

    • dahoglund profile image

      Don A. Hoglund 7 years ago from Wisconsin Rapids

      Like any profession there are good and bad doctors. When I have been dissatisfied with a doctor I have sought another.On the other hand I would not be alive now if it were not for a couple of pretty good cancer surgeons.

    • dallas93444 profile image

      Dallas W Thompson 7 years ago from Bakersfield, CA


      You are fortunate. I was raised in a very strict Pentecost religion that did not "believe" in doctors (most have relented/changed). I too did not receive any medical treatment, or medicines. However as a former science instructor, I can tell you there is a place for doctors and medicines. The key is to take charge of your body and ask many questions. Be informed.

      Unfortunately, most of us do not know what questions to ask...

    • Jeremey profile image

      Jeremey 7 years ago from Arizona

      Great article, I myself never take medicine,(not even for a headache), I refused surgery for a back injury(and pain meds as well), and can't understand the people who keep using up all the advertised "drugs" on TV with all those warnings of side-effects greater than the problem they are medicating to resolve! Hopefully more people come to realize the wackiness of the pharmacutical industry you've brought attention to here!

    • dallas93444 profile image

      Dallas W Thompson 7 years ago from Bakersfield, CA

      Kaie Arwen,

      You have the right idea: question the doctor. Research their answers. Empower yourself. Get more than one opinion...

    • dallas93444 profile image

      Dallas W Thompson 7 years ago from Bakersfield, CA


      Always glad to read your comments. Most of the time, the unscrupulous business does not flourish long term. If they do not learn from their "mistakes," they usually succumb to their "live by the sword, die by the sword," business is warfare business tactics and do not survive in their present business model...

      Bottom line:

      If we empower ourselves, we will question authority. If enough of "us," question the doctors, they in turn will find the answers.. Or simply switch to another doctor...

      There ae a few good doctors out there...

    • dallas93444 profile image

      Dallas W Thompson 7 years ago from Bakersfield, CA


      Thanks for questioning the doctor. Most of us do not "question authority."

    • Kaie Arwen profile image

      Kaie Arwen 7 years ago

      I take nothing except the occasional Aleve (generic of course). HRT has been pushed on me for a few years now.......... no thank you. I will deal. What you've written here is great information.

    • World-Traveler profile image

      World-Traveler 7 years ago from USA

      One of my English language students works for a well known international pharmaceutical company. I am sure she works under great pressure and is aware of some things that the company would prefer that she was not aware of. Thanks for an informative post.

    • travel_man1971 profile image

      Ireno Alcala 7 years ago from Bicol, Philippines

      And to add with that: doctors will prescribe a certain antibiotics and other drugs for a certain week. I don't follow it. If I felt that there's a negative reaction after taking in a pill, I immediately discontinue using it.

    • dallas93444 profile image

      Dallas W Thompson 7 years ago from Bakersfield, CA


      It must be frustrating to be treated like a mushroom, "kept in the dark and fed "fertilizer." The truth is, the doctor is not educated as noted in the above article. It is almost treatment by "anecdotal medicine," where "stories" as told by the drug companies and rubber stamped by the FDA are accepted as the proper protocol for a wide-ranging variety of patients who are being treated with drugs that may be good for "jock rash," but the good doctor takes the drug company's suggestion based on "stories" they have heard from other doctors, or drug companies...they are not utilizing a basic research tool:

      Knowing how many patients have to be treated to achieve a given benefit, or how many harmed, can doctors determine whether they are doing their patients any good

    • dallas93444 profile image

      Dallas W Thompson 7 years ago from Bakersfield, CA


      Perhaps when there is a"voice of reason" raised to reverberate across world, where dissent, divergent views are discussed a consensus will be achieved where obviously the needs of the individual is not being met. History being our best teacher indicates the abuse will be corrected only when the abused stand up and yell, "I am madder than hell, and I am not going to take it anymore..."

      Complacency breeds contempt. The giant drug companies must be made an offer they cannot refuse...

      Our doctors, although over-worked hospitals, and medical schools need to re-focus on the patient. The patient is why they exist...

    • profile image

      4youreyes 7 years ago

      Thank-you for writing this important and informative hub.Needing to see a Dr. every month for pain management as a result of two back surgeries I have seen the drug company spokesmen come in hands full of perks coffee doughnuts,pen mugs and those are just the small things you can see at Christmas time they had a party for all the drug reps.When you bring up the subject to he Dr. about the kick backs and other perks they receive from the drug companies they get very defensive.You all almost have to be a Dr. today to know what questions to ask a one to make sure you are getting the proper care,test and medications you need today to take care of yourself.

    • LillyGrillzit profile image

      Lori J Latimer 7 years ago from The River Valley, Arkansas

      THANK YOU FOR SPEAKING THE TRUTH! I am sorry, I just had to yell it!

      Physicians and Pharmacieans shall never the Twain meet - as they do ~ a set of Conjurers align: Attorneys and Government Agencies helping "trade one illness for another", and so many gritty hands profit.

      This diversion[sp]of efforts;health vs. wealth, cause humans to suffer and be irreparably harmed. Write On!

    • dallas93444 profile image

      Dallas W Thompson 7 years ago from Bakersfield, CA


      I am sorry in regard to your fiancé... Wow. Many people do not question doctors. Doctors are HUMAN! Most doctors are good people as are most of us. No better, no worse. We need to empower ourselves and question them. Learn to communicate. If you cannot understand your doctor, if the doctor is "too" busy, get another doctor.

      Get second, third, if need be a fourth opinion. It is your life. As far as I know, we have ONE life to lose...

    • profile image

      linsm76 7 years ago

      Let me add to this one. It makes me furious. I worked in the medical field for years. As a secretary, we never paid for lunch. Why? Because the drug companies provided catered lunches, gifts, etc, while they pushed the Drug of the week. Doctors only know what the drug company tells them. You know when a new antibiotic is out, because every doctor in town is using it. Drugs is big business. Doctors flat out do not care. For 3 years my fiancé, after left paralyzed and on life support due to a wrong diagnosis, died on April 2010. He was given medications which do serious damage to the liver, and he already had liver disease. Not once, did any doctor review his medications, and say, hey, he has been on this for a long time, so lets start looking at alternatives for him. No, he was a bother to them. As one doctor told us, Michael was not a profit making patient.


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