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Medication and Pharmaceutical Information


Featured  Websites:

Debate Over Drugs For ADHD Reignites - New data from a large federal study paint a very different picture than the study's positive initial results, reported in 1999. The latest data show that medications for ADHD, including Adderall and Concerta, are useful in the short term but ineffective long-term. The study also indicated that children who took the drugs for 36 months were about an inch shorter and six pounds lighter than those who did not.


Warning Given on Use of 4 Popular Asthma Drugs, but Debate Remains - Two federal drug officials have concluded that asthma sufferers risk death if they continue to use four hugely popular asthma drugs — Advair, Symbicort, Serevent and Foradil. But the officials’ views are not universally shared within the government.


Talk Therapy, Antidepressants Help Children's Anxiety - A government-funded study of nearly 500 patients showed that combining cognitive-behavior therapy with an antidepressant drug was better than either treatment on its own in helping 7- to 17-year-old patients with chronic anxiety. "It's surprising that they found such a dramatic difference between combined treatment and the others," said Dr. Sanjiv Kumra, director of the University of Minnesota's child and adolescent psychiatry program. "I think this should be reassuring for parents interested in finding good treatment for a child."


Pfizer Launches Site Weighing Drug Risks, Benefits - The world's biggest drug company is taking a crack at making that easier with a new Web site on medication safety -- unusual in an industry often criticized as using marketing practices that oversell drug benefits and downplay risks.

The Impact of Prescribed Psychotropics on Youth (PDF) - Many psychotropics prescribed to children are unlicensed or off-label. This article uses the two most prescribed psychotropics (MPH and SSRIs) to illustrate various concerns about their impact on youth.


Psychiatrists, Children and Drug Industry’s Role - When Anya Bailey developed an eating disorder after her 12th birthday, her mother took her to a psychiatrist at the University of Minnesota who prescribed a powerful antipsychotic drug called Risperdal. Isabella Bailey, Anya’s mother, said she had no idea that children might be especially susceptible to Risperdal’s side effects. Nor did she know that Risperdal and similar medicines were not approved at the time to treat children.

MI Phase-Out Pharmaceutical Use of Lindane (PDF) - Lindane is the active ingredient in some products used to treat head lice and scabies. Health professional organizations throughout Michigan have supported action to ban pharmaceutical use of lindane in Michigan. HB 4569 has been introduced to phase out lindane in pharmaceutical products in Michigan.


Debate Over Children and Psychiatric Drugs - Early on the morning of Dec. 13, police officers responding to a 911 call arrived at a house in Hull, Mass. and found a 4-year-old girl on the floor of her parents’ bedroom, dead. She was lying on her side, in a pink diaper, sprawled across some discarded magazines and a stuffed brown bear. Last week, prosecutors in Plymouth County charged the parents with deliberately poisoning their daughter by giving her overdoses of prescription drugs to sedate her.

25 Deaths Linked to ADHD Drugs - Twenty-five persons died and 54 more suffered serious cardiovascular problems after taking drugs to treat attention-deficit (hyperactivity) disorder between 1999 and 2003, the government says.


Abuse of the Stimulant Adderall is Prevalent Among Students, Who Use it as a Study Aid - Ron Woodall began taking Adderall when he was 11 years old. He had already been diagnosed with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and had the usual signs: His attention was everywhere and his grades were lousy. When he got to college, he found out there was a lot of interest in his pills. Friends began asking for them.


Small Study Ties Ritalin to Higher Cancer Risk - In a small but potentially alarming new study, local scientists have linked the most popular drug used to treat attention-deficit problems with increased risks of cancer.


FDA Orders Strong Antidepressant Warnings - All antidepressants must carry a "black box" warning, the government's strongest safety alert, linking the drugs to increased suicidal thoughts and behavior among children and teens taking them, the Food and Drug Administration said Friday.


Drug Maker Acknowledges Misleading Claims - The maker of a popular medicine for schizophrenia has notified doctors that it minimized potentially fatal safety risks and made misleading claims about the drug in promotional materials.


Tragic Teen Suicides Inspire Idea That Invites More - In heart-wrenching testimony before federal drug regulators last February, parent after parent related how their teens had committed suicide after taking prescription antidepressants.


Process Makes Swallowing Bitter Pills a Bit Easier - Victoria Dunbar used to have her hands full making sure that her two children, both diagnosed with autism, took all of the medicines their doctors prescribed for them. Then she discovered that some local pharmacies can make those medicines with flavors and textures that her children are happy to take.


UK Exam Fears Driving Teenagers to Prozac - Education: The number of teenagers relying on drugs such as Prozac to see them through GCSEs and A-levels has soared, with prescriptions reaching 140,000.


High-tech Tools Focus on ADHD - The 9-year-old girl stares at a bird on a computer screen and focuses hard to make it fly. As her attention locks onto the bird, it wings its way across the screen, going higher and higher. When the bird slows or drops a few inches, the psychologist at her side makes her aware that she is tapping her hand and fidgeting. When she stops moving, she regains her focus on the bird and it soars once again.


Maker to Pull Antidepressant Off Market - The maker of Serzone will pull the controversial antidepressant off the U.S. market next month, blaming a decline in sales rather than concern about a risk of liver failure. The end to U.S. sales comes after Serzone was pulled off the market in many other countries, and as maker Bristol-Myers Squibb was under mounting pressure from lawsuits. Serzone has been linked to dozens of cases of liver failure and injury, including at least 20 deaths.


Bigger Than Depression? - Once associated mainly with hyper kids, attention deficit disorder is now widely diagnosed in adults. But drugs aren't the only answer. A teacher for more than three decades, Terri Mangravite, 56, has seen her share of attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in students. She has also seen it at home. Her husband and two adopted children were diagnosed with it. So when her primary-care physician told her she had it as well, she could hardly believe it. "I laughed when he told me," she remembers.


Featured Website: The Vitamins and Nutrition Center - The Vitamins and Nutrition Center provides factual information on vitamins and nutrition, reports on the latest vitamin research and explains just how vitamins prevent disease.


U.S. FDA Issues Warning on Antidepressants - Possible Suicide, Severe Depression, Anxiety, Panic Attacks in Children and Adults; The FDA is issuing a warning about the possibility of worsening depression or suicidal thoughts in people, particularly children, who take any of 10 popular antidepressants, especially at the beginning of treatment or when the doses are increased or decreased.


New Doubts About Medicating Kids - Personal tragedies and scientific evidence are combining to call into question the use of powerful antidepressant drugs on children and teens. Pressure has been building for months to ban or curtail their use. Recent scientific studies have found a link between the use of these drugs and suicidal tendencies among children. In December, Britain banned the use of some antidepressants on patients under 18. The fallout from a hearing called by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) this week is ratcheting up the pressure for some kind of action on this side of the Atlantic.


U.S. Parents: Kids Face Antidepressants Risk - Parents pleaded with the Food and Drug Administration on Monday to end the use of popular adult antidepressants in children, saying the drugs can increase youths' risk of suicide and violence. "To die in this violent, unusual fashion without making a sound ... Paxil must have put her over the edge," said Sara Bostock, describing how her daughter Cecily stabbed herself in the chest with a kitchen knife shortly after graduating from Stanford University and two weeks after starting the drug.


UK Risk of New Anti-depressants Outweighs Benefit - British drug regulators Wednesday recommended against the use of all but one of a new generation of anti-depressants in the treatment of depressed children under 18.


U.S. Bill Seeks Right Dose For Kids - The government could require drug companies to test medicines to assure that dosages are appropriate for children under legislation given final congressional approval Wednesday.


Debate Resumes on the Safety of Depression's Wonder Drugs - Warnings by drug regulators about the safety of Paxil, one of the world's most prescribed antidepressants, are reopening seemingly settled questions about a whole class of drugs that also includes Prozac and Zoloft.

UK 50,000 Children Taking Antidepressants - An antidepressant which GPs [General Practitioners] have been prescribing to thousands of children, in spite of the fact that it is not recommended for their use, can cause youngsters to want to kill themselves, the government's regulatory agency warned yesterday.


UK Paxil Banned in UK for under-18s - Mood drug Seroxat banned for under-18s (Seroxat is the non-U.S. name for Paxil)


Needy Meds

This website provides an alphabetical listing of all drugs (both name brand and generic) currently on the market.



Clinical Trials

The U.S. National Institutes of Health, through its National Library of Medicine, has developed to provide patients, family members and members of the public current information about clinical research studies. Before searching, you may want to learn more about clinical trials and more about this Web site. Check often for regular updates to website:


Free Medication Available - Patient Assistance Program Applications - The companies set their own criteria for qualifying. Some require only that you state your income, while others may require copies of income tax, Social Security, W-2, check stubs, etc. to prove income.  Follow the link and click where applicable for more information.


Medication: Pediatric Drug Testing Struck Down by Court


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