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Consumers beware of TV drug ads

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An article from the WorstPills.org newsletter (http://www.worstpills.org/member/newsletter_pdf.cfm?n_id=528) this month warns consumers to be wary of television drug ads funded by big pharmaceutical companies.

Many of these ads introduce new drugs to consumers and ask them to speak to their physicians about the benefits of using them. The ads for these medications mean big money to pharmaceutical companies, but can sometimes harm consumers.

The article reports that in 2005, the drugs promoted in these ads accounted for $37 billion dollars in sales to pharmaceutical companies.

There are plenty of defective drugs out there, with side effects that can cause injury or death to patients who use them. A new study says that these “direct-to-consumer” ads oversell the benefits of certain drugs and can harm the patients who use them.