Monday, April 20, 2009

Protecting the Incredibly Stupid

Have you noticed the warnings that accompany every single medicine that is advertised on TV?

Ok, why medicines advertise on TV is another issue altogether. I'd like to think my doctor already knows about the proper medication for me and also would think that he or she already knows what meds I'm taking, so when I make my recommendations to the doctor, they are aware of deadly interactions.

The possible side effects usually sound worse than the disease they are treating as many have death as one of them. That is often much more serious than any disease, and harder to treat. Anal leakage is another biggie, and short of death, is probably the worst possible side effect.

So what new commercials have me so concerned? Two of them, actually.

Yaz and Astepro.

The newest Yaz commercial mentions that they need to clear up all the confusion from the last commercial.

The other Yaz
The newest commercial did nothing to clear up anything for me, but since it's probably got something to do with lady naughty bits, no need for further inquiry on my part.

But the other commercial is of much more concern to me. It is for Astepro, a medication for allergies. Here's the disclaimer (and I quote): "If you are allergic to Astepro, don't use it."

Let me get this straight--if one is allergic to an anti-allergy medication, don't use it. Isn't that sort of, erm, moronic? Who would use something that is making them worse?
And, how would you tell if you are allergic to allergy meds? By all the conditions of the allergy that already were present?

But my favorite of all comes right from the Astepro website: Do not drive a car, operate heavy machinery, or do dangerous activities after using Astepro.
Be safe: Take Astepro after your ride

These precautions aren't for you, they are for the dumb folks. What makes anyone think they are smart enough to heed them?


Gianetta said...

I'll give you 20 bucks for the Yaz baseball card.

Unknown said...

I love it....FDA's pathetic isn't it ?

Adullamite said...

'Pop Tarts,' an item popped into toasters (which makes them very hot, warns folk that product can be hot.
Some complained the jam inside burnt them after being toasted!

A Sainsburys pudding had a warning 'keep upright' on the bottom of the product!

Jan from BetterSpines said...

That's as necessary as "coffee may be hot" or similar. Where's informed consent and freedom to be stupid and similar garbage? Why do we have to protect the incredibly stupid from survival of the fittest? Or at least the ones who can read?

Unknown said...

I'm always amazed at the list of side effects myself, especially when the list takes up more than half of the commercial.

I saw that ad for Astepro and found myself shaking my head.

Unknown said...

All meds are scary. I think the cure is often worse than the disease and the warnings should be enough to make you well don't you think?

ReformingGeek said...

I love the anit-depressants that might make you depressed.

shyne said...

The legal system is now an integral part of our health care.

It seems our society likes to have its thinking done for it, too.
******double sigh*******

Mary@Holy Mackerel said...

Yeah, anal leakage can't be good. Glad they warn people about that.

Jenn Thorson said...

Because they're terrified of lawsuits, we are getting some of the most interesting warnings from companies, aren't we?

Like the jar of peanuts that reads, "May contain peanuts."

I mean "MAY"??!

Donnie said...

I seem to always hear, "If condition worsens after taking..." Do I need to be told what to do? Damn lawyers and lawsuits!

Shawn said...

These prescription drugs are out of control. You've got patients coming in and telling the doctor what they need based on some TV commercial. Meanwhile, the doctor's getting freebies from the pharm salesman and is only too happy to oblige.

Da Old Man said...

@ MA: I don't own the card. I own nothing with any Red Sox player.

@ Dani: Yup

@ Adullamite: It's sad, isn't it. No idea it would be hot after toasting.

@ Jan: We protect the dumbest from themselves, part of the nanny nation.

@ The side effects are pretty scary. One med I used to take listed sudden death as a possible side effect.

@ Etta: I wish I didn't have to take any meds. I have gotten off some, and need to get off the rest.

@ Reforming: It's pretty common, too.

@ Shyne: So true

@ Mary: It's one of my biggest fears.

@ Jenn: I prefer peanut free peanuts. Slightly less peanuty tasting.

@ Don: Yeah, who would know what to do if the med made them worse? That is on the label because someone didn't know and probably died.
A lawyer says it is a tragedy, we say it s Darwinism.

Da Old Man said...

@ Shawn: Go to a doctor's office around 11, when the pushers, erm, drug reps, show up. They pull up in Beamers or some other very nice car, wear expensive suits and then bribe, I mean buy lunch for, the office staff.

Sandee said...

Good grief. Are people really this stupid? Wait, I know there are some that are. Bwahahahahaha.

Have a terrific day Crotchety. :)

Anonymous said...

One advert that doesn't mention side effects is Pro-Active acne solution.

I'm happy to report I've been drinking it for a week now, with no ill effects.

Marie said...

People are SOOOO stupid. That is why I hate them.

I'm a nurse and I still wouldn't presume to tell my doctors what to prescribe for me. I can keep my fingers crossed and think good thoughts ("Percocet, come on, Percocet, make it Percocet...YESSSSSSS!!)

But I have to say what I REALLY hate is when the doctor dismisses the side effects.

This summer, I started falling asleep uncontrollably at very inconvenient times. LIKE WHILE DRIVING. Called the neurologist, he wanted testing, ordered meds, blah, blah, blah.

I coincidentally went on line to check on the maximum dosage for another med he had ordered for my RLS. The number one adverse side effect was uncontrollably falling asleep.Hmmmmmmmm.

I called him and he tells me "Oh, that hardly ever happens.


Well, it's happening to me, Skippy.

Sigh. You can't win.

A New Yorker said...

Yeah, I heard the asterpro commercial the other day and even in my completely sleep deprived state I thought the same as you. How dumb have we gotten?

Lola said...

That Yaz commercial only confused me more. Nothing was cleared up.

I saw a commercial for some other drug (I should have paid closer attention, I promise to if I see it again) and they were listing the possible side effects. The side effects were heinous. Why would you possibly even consider taking a drug whose side effects sound worse than dealing with the problem you are trying to rid yourself of in the first place?

Kirsten said...

Wait a minute! You mean anal leakage is bad?

brokenteepee said...

The doctors put me on one medication that made me gain 80 lbs in a month. They said it had nothing to do with the medication. I kept saying that my eating habits had not changed. They all nodded their heads and said, uh huh. Took me off the medication and I dropped 80lbs in about a month.

Uh huh.

Hate doctors. Hate pills. Hate ads on TV for pills. Perhaps pills wouldn't cost so much if they didn't spend so much advertising pill on TV!
Sorry, rant over....

CowboyJoe said...

Who was the drug company exec who thought it was a great idea to market a drug named after an obscure 80s band?

Da Old Man said...

@ Sandee: Yes, they are

@ Tiggy: Good to know. Is you skin now clear?

@ Marie: You are just one of the lucky ones

@ Lauren: Unbelievably dumb. We need someone to think for us

@ Lola: I have to tune it out as it made me dizzy to try to figure it out

@ Kirsten: Usually, unless one is into that

@ Pricilla: I read how much they spend to advertise, tens of millions of dollars. It's crazy

@ Cowboy Joe: Someone who makes tons of money, I'm sure.

Jen said...

I like to think that my doctor knows what I need better than me. That's why he gets paid. I can't think of anything more insulting than a patient coming to my office (if I were a doctor) and suggesting that because they saw a stupid commercial that they know more than all my years of medical school. Now I know doctors push the drugs of whoever gives them the most and best samples, though I hear that is ending, but still I'd rather trust my doctor not me.

And death is a really crappy side effect.

Crabby Blogging Lady said...

Holy cow, Joe. I did a similar post today. Our crotchety waves are moving in the same direction today!!

The Self-Deprechaun said...

Eww.. i don't want to know how Carl Y. helps woman control birth. yaz yaz yaz!

Phillipia said...

I supposedly have tendonitis in my shoulder; doc insisted I take 800 mg ibuprofen 3 x a day until inflammation was down and pain was gone. This from the same doc who treated my bleeding ulcer a few months earlier and told me it was caused from the ibuprofen I was taking for my bp induced headaches. I decided I would look for some online remedies.

Da Old Man said...

@ Jen: I hope my doctor knows better than some TV ad exec. And death is the worst side effect.

@ Crabby Blogging lady: I saw that. Some weird cosmic stuff.

@ Self: I have no idea, but I can't help but think of him whenever I see the commercial.

@ Phillipia: I'd look for another doctor, too. Hope you feel better.

jahanzaib said...

Yeah, I heard the asterpro commercial the other day and even in my completely sleep deprived state I thought the same as you. How dumb have we gotten?

Anonymous said...

very nice

Jude said...

Bill cracks up when he hears all the side effects, makes you wonder why anyone would even bother.

Isolated Existence. said...

I laugh every time I hear the side effects!! The Viagra, Cialis commercials bug the hell out of me though. I'm watching TV and all of the sudden I hear if you experience an erection for more than 3 hours seek medical help!