TED Talk – What doctor’s don’t know about the drugs they prescribe.

TED Talks are a gift to humanity. My mind has enriched itself in a variety of contributions to existing fields, along with new thoughts and emerging ideas.

I think many of us have encountered countless stories on how doctors prescribe drugs with warm promises based on scientific research, but how some lead to serious problems. Chatting with a friend who holds medical credentials, stated that most doctors simply enter a patient’s symptoms into a diagnosing database and prescribe whatever is recommended. This can be a gamble and can lead to a sleuth of misdiagnosing. 

This is slightly unrelated, but as I sat through my General Biology lectures, nearly half the class was sleeping, Facebooking, watching a movie on laptop, or just didn’t show up. Many among them were students that were aspiring to be doctors, who passed the course with a C or D. Though they were wonderful individuals, will they become the type of doctors who rely on databases or scientific research to heal your child?

On the first day of my statistics class, the professor told us that “…numbers can be manipulated to serve whatever agenda.” Something similar can be said of the pharmaceutical industry. They can manipulate scientific studies to favor whatever drug they are peddling. They can include scientific research that shines their product when marketing and omit the handful of other research that prove its dangers.

This is a huge problem.

British physician Ben Goldacre did a fantastic TED Talk describing the dangers of this problem and what can be done about it. He also has written a book on the issue: Bad Pharma: How Drug Companies Mislead Doctors and Harm Patients. Video: