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Worst Pills, Best Pills Newsletter Articles

  View the entire May 2016 issue in PDF format

  • A Guide to Drugs for Uncomplicated Urinary Tract Infections
    (May 2016)
    Urinary tract infections (UTIs) are very common, accounting for more than 10 million visits to doctors’ offices and 2 million to 3 million emergency department visits in the U.S. in 2007. Hear our take on which antibiotics are safest for treating these infections.
  • FDA to Investigate Effect of Using Cartoon Characters to Peddle Drugs
    (May 2016)
    Animated characters are a feature of an increasing number of TV ads for prescription drugs. Find out why the FDA is concerned that these characters may mislead consumers about the risks and benefits of the medications being promoted and what the agency intends to do about this.
  • Memantine: Still a Poor Choice for Alzheimer’s Disease
    (May 2016)
    Memantine (NAMENDA) recently has been one of the drugs for Alzheimer’s disease most heavily promoted through direct-to-consumer advertising. Learn why we have designated memantine as Do Not Use.
  • Questions & Answers
    (May 2016)
    In this month’s Question & Answer feature, we respond to a reader’s request to explain why we recommend use of bisphosphonates for certain patients with osteoporosis despite our warnings about their risks.
  • Another Look at First-Generation Antihistamines
    (May 2016)
    Last month, we discussed the risks and benefits of second- and third-generation antihistamines for treatment of nasal allergies. In this second of a two-part series, we explain why first-generation or "sedating" antihistamines are not a safe option for managing nasal allergies.
  • Responsible Disposal of Prescription Drugs
    (May 2016)
    For various reasons, many prescribed medications go unused. Such leftover medications can pose a hazard to family members, especially young children, and the environment. Find out the best ways to safely dispose of unused prescription medications.

  View the entire April 2016 issue in PDF format

  • New FDA Commissioner: Unfit for Duty
    (April 2016)
    Worst Pills, Best Pills News editor Dr. Michael Carome explains why the new FDA Commissioner, who was confirmed by the Senate in February, was a poor choice to lead such a critically important agency of the U.S. Public Health Service.
  • Is XARELTO Really the 'Right Move' for Patients With Blood Clots or Risk for Stroke?
    (April 2016)
    If you watch TV, you likely have seen ads touting the advantages of the new oral antico-agulant (blood thinner) rivaroxaban (XARELTO). Learn why we have designated this drug as Do Not Use for Seven Years (until at least July 2018).
  • Treatment for Nasal Allergies: An Updated Review
    (April 2016)
    With spring time pollen counts soaring, many patients with seasonal nasal allergies will be looking for relief from allergy medications. Learn the best available treatments to stay safe and relatively symptom-free during allergy season and throughout the year.
  • The Best Drug for Severe Acute Low Back Pain
    (April 2016)
    Low back pain is the fifth most common reason for outpatient doc¬tor visits and leads to 2.6 million emergency room visits in the U.S. every year. This article reviews results of the newest research on which pain relievers are safest and most effective for managing severe low back pain.
  • Fluoroquinolones Linked to Life-Threatening Blood Vessel Complications
    (April 2016)
    In this article, we discuss results of new research linking the widely overused fluoroquinolone antibiotics to an increased risk of life-threatening damage to the body’s largest blood vessel, the aorta.

  View the entire March 2016 issue in PDF format

  • Year in Review: Troubling New Drug Approvals in 2015
    (March 2016)
    Learn about six new drugs approved by the FDA in 2015 that Worst Pills, Best Pills News has identified as dangerous or ineffective. The drugs include two for lowering high cholesterol levels, one for removing excess fat below the chin, and another for treating gout, among others.
  • CDC Seeks to Rein In Overprescribing of Opioids for Chronic Pain
    (March 2016)
    Since 1999, more than 140,000 people in the U.S. have died from overdoses related to opioid pain medication. Worst Pills, Best Pills News editor Dr. Michael Carome applauds a new proposal from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to rein in the overprescribing of opioids and reverse this rising death toll.
  • News Brief for March 2016
    (March 2016)
    In this month’s news brief, we report on the Department of Justice taking long-overdue action against a Dallas-area compounding pharmacy for making contaminated drugs and for unsanitary production conditions.
  • Feds Finally Crack Down on Illegal Dietary Supplement Makers
    (March 2016)
    Too often, consumers are exposed to dietary supplements that have been spiked illegally with hidden drug ingredients or contaminated with other potentially dangerous substances. In this article, we report on recent legal actions taken by the FDA, the Department of Justice, and the Federal Trade Commission to stem the flow of these dangerous products.
  • Some SNRIs Useful for Depression; Avoid Others
    (March 2016)
    This article explores one of the newer classes of drugs for treating depression: serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs). Find out which SNRIs are safe for treating depression and which should be avoided.
  • New Biologic Drugs for Rheumatoid Arthritis: Which Are Safe?
    (March 2016)
    Patients with rheumatoid arthritis have a wide array of medication choices for reducing joint pain and inflammation and slowing the progression of joint damage. The most potent such drugs are a group of medications known as disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs (DMARDs). Learn about the serious risks posed by these drugs and when they should be used.

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