OxyContin Makers Guilty Plea To Pay Fine Of $600M

Discussion in 'Current Events' started by rockthecasbah, May 10, 2007.

  1. macrumors 68020


    The maker of the highly addictive narcotic pain killer OxyContin has agreed to pay fines totaling $600 Million for "misbranding" of the drug. The top 3 executives are paying $34.5 Million in fines personally. Purdue Pharma (maker) claimed that because OxyContin was a time-release drug, it had a much lower threat to addiction that "short-acting" competitors such as Percocet.

    The maker, while filing statements with the FDA that OxyContin was "believed to reduce" addiction, nevertheless marketed the drug to doctors as definitively being an option with less dependency rather than in theory.

  2. macrumors 6502a


    Hell ya! That's one of the highest corporate fines yet. And they didn't just settle, they are guilty! We can say they are guilty of scamming the public. That's important.
  3. macrumors 6502

    "But according to federal officials, Purdue sales representatives falsely told doctors that the statement, rather than simply being a theory, meant that OxyContin had a lower potential for addiction or abuse than drugs like Percocet. Among other things, company sales officials were allowed to draw their own fake scientific charts, which they then distributed to doctors, to support that misleading abuse-related claim, federal officials said."

    Sorry, someone in marketing should be going to jail for this part. How is there even any question about this being wrong?
  4. macrumors 68020


  5. macrumors 6502

    That "ad" was funnier before this story came out.

    Now we find out that Rush was one of many victims of the corporate America that he voices support for. Not that he doesn't bear responsibility for the alleged (proven?) "doctor-shopping" and paying his housekeeper or whatever to get some oxycodone for him, but this news does seem to lessen his role in the matter, as it does for many other patients. (I always wondered if his hearing loss was related to his abuse of this drug.)

    After I had surgery a couple of years ago, they prescribed percocet or percodan for pain. I got it in case I needed it, but luckily I didn't.
  6. macrumors 68040


    The funny thing is Drs push them I get over 100 a month and dont use them at all......my stash is over 1200 pills I have a bad back and never use them at all.....
  7. macrumors 65816

    Electro Funk

    Ehrm... What was your address again? :p
  8. macrumors 6502a


    Sell them… $5 a pill. That's $6,000 for you.

    What? I didn't say anything… :D
  9. macrumors 68020


    haha you can make enough to get a new imac with that...hahahha i kid i kid
  10. macrumors 65816


    PayPal payment sent, kthnxbye.
  11. macrumors newbie

    Must must needed !

    One of the most addictive substances you could possibly get. My doctor was prescribing me 2-4 a day.
  12. macrumors 65816


    The fine sounds high. I wonder just how much that punishes the people responsible, though. They should be stripped of their ill-gotten wealth (like other drug dealers) and sent to jail or a work camp considering the damage their decisions caused. Instead, the buck will be passed to the shareholders of the company and ultimately its customers who will likely pay even more for drugs most of them would be better off without.
    Doctors ought to be ashamed at their pill-pushing ways. As many have said before, they are great at emergency medicine but pretty bad overall at treating chronic illness.
  13. macrumors 68020


    Well the idea is that the makers TOLD doctors that it was actually less addictive and therefore they'd write more scripts... though i agree that in general doctors now do "push pills" on people just for the sake of it sometimes which i don't agree with.
  14. macrumors 6502a

    Thanks, but don't tar us all with the same brush. The vast majority of doctors don't 'push' medication on anyone but your abuse is very welcome. I have to admit there have been occasions when I have insisted on patients receiving opiates - the time when I had a four year old boy with a broken arm with obvious deformity and his parents were reluctant to use morphine comes to mind. In fact there have been a few instances when myself or one of my colleagues has insisted that parents consent to stronger analgesia for their children when the child is obviously distressed but irrational fears are making the parents refuse to give consent. Or there are the times when they won't give Calpol (equivalent to kids' tylenol) or ibuprofen at home and then come in reporting pain and fever in their children. So actually yes, we do force medicines down patients. I apologise on behalf of my profession.

    Why do the people who don't need these medicines who have posted earlier in the thread keep filling their prescriptions as opposed to reporting back to their physician. If you want to complain about doctors maybe we should be allowed to complain about patients and the lack of self-responsibility that they exhibit.
  15. macrumors Core


    do you mean 2-4? It's a 12 hour medication. If entirely necessary I've heard of 3 per day being prescribed but not 24.

    Also, those of you who are still filling this medication: Why? It's a CII in the US and not subject to auto-refill at a pharmacy. Hell, it can't even be phoned in. You have to physically pick up a written prescription (because it's written in triplicate, original to pharmacy, one carbon copy stays with the doctor and the other is filed for DEA purposes. At least this is how I understand it) So it's not as if they're handed out like candy.

    I think it's crappy that Purdue "withheld" the information on it's addictive potential but it's not entirely hard to predict. These are the sorts of drugs people abuse, DUH.
    Seems almost unfair to make a powerful painkiller and be sued because it was effective.
    Where is the responsiblity for these prescribing doctors and more importantly, the patients? I don't think they're blamless either. "My doctor gave me these pills and I liked them too much so I manipulated my way into getting more." Wow, lets sue the phamaceutical company. It just seems kind of absurd.

    OxyContin was useful for a lot of people. But then, the bad apples always spoil the bunch, eh?
  16. macrumors 6502a

    You can't say that here, you'll get flamed!
  17. macrumors Core


    "naughty pill poppers" then. :p
  18. macrumors Core

    To be fair, if the doctors knew it was more addictive than they were being told. They would be able to decide whether to prescribe it or not if the patient was at risk to addiction. The patients also may take the drug thinking it was 100% safe and slowly get hooked on it.
  19. macrumors Core


    I can't see how anyone would see a continuous release Oxycodone as harmless. It's a really abused painkiller and I think every doctor on earth knows that, or they should. It's actually dispensed quite carefully (contrary to what many people often state). Sure, it's lousy they (Purdue) understated it's potential for abuse but it wasn't entirely unforeseen. The doctors should have seen that coming and the patients can't be that blind to it either, at least most of them. I always find it difficult to adjust to the "idiots rule" philosophy.

    I'm just shocked that they're being fined enormous amounts for making an effective drug. If they'd have warned properly, it would still be the same outcome I'm sure. Where there are drugs to be had there are people to abuse them. I just think no one is blameless here. It probably shouldn't be completely falling on Purdue's shoulders.
  20. macrumors Core

    They're not being fined for making the drug. They're being fined for lying about how addictive it is.

    Having said that, I agree that doctors need to take more responsibility too. But if the drug reps say, and produce testing results, that the drug is low addiction are the Dr's meant to carry out their own research to double check?
    If the FDA agree said drug is safe too, surely the Dr's are less to blame than the FDA?
  21. macrumors Core


    fair enough, point taken.

    I can see how it works in theory but their outright lying about it is rather low. (I re-read the article) They should have been 'honest' about it, it still would have been a huge success. dumbasses. Pharmaceutical companies are pure evil however sometimes I just have to appreciate what they can bring to the table. I digress.
  22. macrumors Core

    That's the whole deal.
    They could tell the truth and have a sucessful drug that's prescribed in small numbers or they could withhold critical info and have Drs prescribe it in huge numbers.

    It's a shame companies can't see past the Dollars sometimes.

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