Medical Progress Today
mpt home | sign up

Volume 3, Number 4
January 27, 2006


PRINTER FRIENDLY

In the Spotlight

The Pain Medicines: Another Chapter is Written
But will it allow us to answer questions about their cardiovascular risks?

Michael Weber, M.D., Medical Progress Today, 1-27-06

It is now well over a year since Merck & Co. took their pain medication Vioxx (rofecoxib) off the market after an ongoing long-term clinical trial raised concerns that it might increase the risk of heart attacks and other cardiovascular events. Vioxx was a widely used drug of a class called COX-2 (cyclo-oxygenase-2) inhibitors.
Continue reading . . .

News

An About Face on Hormone Therapy
Wall Street Journal, 1-24-06

Editor’s Notes:

In 2002, a study warning that hormone-replacement therapy “increases [a woman’s] risk for heart attack and stroke” received enormous media attention. Since then, about 3,600 lawsuits have been filed against pharmaceutical companies over various hormone treatments used to alleviate the symptoms of menopause. This week, however, a new, study challenged the science underlying the earlier warning.
Continue reading . . .

Plaintiff’s paradise waits for latest Vioxx trial
The San Francisco Chronicle, 1-23-06

Editor’s Notes:

What do product liability suits and real estate markets have in common? In both cases, the value of the underlying commodity is determined by location, location, location.
Continue reading . . .

Alzheimer’s drugs policy reviewed
, 1-23-06

Editor’s Notes:

Britain’s National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE) has proposed draft rules on the use of several Alzheimer’s drugs that are stirring anger and controversy among doctors and patient advocates in the UK.
Continue reading . . .

A weapon against stroke; Until now, only medicine could open fragile brain passages
Chicago Tribune, 1-22-06

Editor’s Notes:

Blood thinners are one of the primary treatments for transient ischemic strokes, but they also can cause dangerous bleeding in the brain. Unfortunately, stents that are regularly used to clear blockages in arteries leading to the heart are too inflexible to be used to clear the convoluted arteries leading to the brain. Researchers, however, have designed a new stent that may be useful in a certain subset of stroke victims.
Continue reading . . .

'Vioxx like' drugs may still be best option for arthritis write scientists
Imperial College, 1-18-06

This article complements our Spotlight article. Experts in the U.K. argue that, given the paucity of evidence on the cardiovascular risks surrounding older pain medicines, it would be a mistake to restrict access to all COX-2 inhibitors. In reality, pulling COX-2 drugs could expose patients to unknown risks from older medicines that have been poorly studied up to now.

In a Nature Reviews of Drug Discovery article this month the researchers from Imperial College London and Queen Mary, University of London examine the use of selective inhibitors of cyclo-oxygenase-2 (COX-2).

Continue reading . . .

Commentary

Under an Avalanche
Grace-Marie Turner, Galen Institute, 1-26-06

Turner returns to an issue we addressed last week, the passage of a “Wal Mart” bill in Maryland that penalizes employers who don’t spend a fixed minimum (8% of payroll) on employee health care. Turner argues that
Continue reading . . .

Health Coverage Chaos
Deroy Murdock, Washington Times, 1-23-06

Murdock endorses an idea that we have long admired: creating a national health insurance market where consumers could shop for health care coverage as they now shop for mortgages.
Continue reading . . .

Californians Should Reject Drug Importation
Tommy G. Thompson, The San Diego Union-Tribune, 1-19-06

Thompson, former HHS secretary, argues that California politicians who endorse drug importation as a way to help contain health care costs are ignoring the advent of Medicare Part D—and important safety concerns.
Continue reading . . .

Health of the Union
David Gratzer, Wall Street Journal, 1-26-05

David Gratzer, a Senior Fellow at the Manhattan Institute, advises President Bush to take up Medicare reform in his upcoming State of the Union address. While this may seem like a daunting task, Gratzer reminds us that bipartisan reforms have been advanced in the past that could revolutionize the program without relying on self-destructive wage and price controls.
Continue reading . . .


Medical Progress Today is published by the Center for Medical Progress at the Manhattan Institute for Policy Research.

For more information about Medical Progress Today, please contact the managing editor, Paul Howard, at phoward@manhattan-institute.org, or via telephone at 212.599.7000.

Press inquiries regarding Medical Progress Today can be directed to the Communications Department, at communications@manhattan-institute.org, or via telephone at 212.599.7000.

If you would like to unsubscribe, please reply to us and type "Unsubscribe" in the subject line.

In this week's issue:

SPOTLIGHT

The Pain Medicines: Another Chapter is Written

NEWS

An About Face on Hormone Therapy
Plaintiff’s paradise waits for latest Vioxx trial
Alzheimer’s drugs policy reviewed
A weapon against stroke; Until now, only medicine could open fragile brain passages
'Vioxx like' drugs may still be best option for arthritis write scientists

COMMENTARY

Under an Avalanche
Health Coverage Chaos
Californians Should Reject Drug Importation
Health of the Union
Center for Medical Progress 
Copyright Manhattan Institute for Policy Research
52 Vanderbilt Avenue
New York, NY 10017
(212) 599-7000
mpt@manhattan-institute.org