This brief commentary returns, yet again, to the subject of bias and deceit in the medical literature. I had not intended to return to this topic so soon. However, bias and deceit is of fundamental and vital relevance to everything that we think is true and every medical action we take as a consequence. Therefore, it is impossible to ignore significant developments on this subject.
Peter Gotzsche, an eminent and respected researcher, has recently made some sensational comments and conclusions concerning misleading medical research findings and role of pharmaceutical companies. When someone of integrity and distinction makes such comments and conclusions it behoves us all to take very close notice of what such a person says.
Peter is an outstanding researcher and was a co-founder of the Cochrane database collaboration. He has published many Scientific papers about research & methodology. Indeed his contributions in these fields are so substantive and extensive that I predict he will be nominated for a Nobel prize. Here are just a few of the papers he has published in the last 12 months, to give an indication of the range of his interests (Gotzsche 2012, Gotzsche 2012, Gotzsche 2012, Gotzsche 2012, Gotzsche 2012, Beller, Glasziou et al. 2013, Bindslev, Schroll et al. 2013, Gotzsche 2013, Gotzsche 2013, Gotzsche 2013).
To summarise very briefly: the research summarized in the video link below
demonstrates clearly that purposeful manipulation of medical data to mislead doctors and increase drug sales continues to be the rule, not the exception, and leads to the conclusion that drug companies operate in a manner that makes them indistinguishable from criminal drug cartels.
In my opinion the most important thing that I can do in the next 12 months is to persuade people to spread the word to as many people as possible concerning what this man is telling us all.
I urge anyone who reads this to send the link to everyone they know. Remember individual actions, your actions, about things like this really do make a difference, so don’t be a bystander, do something to help spread the word.
Watch the presentation now!
Beller, E. M., P. P. Glasziou, D. G. Altman, S. Hopewell, H. Bastian, I. Chalmers, P. C. Gotzsche, T. Lasserson and D. Tovey (2013). "PRISMA for Abstracts: reporting systematic reviews in journal and conference abstracts." PLoS Med 10(4): e1001419.
Bindslev, J. B., J. Schroll, P. C. Gotzsche and A. Lundh (2013). "Underreporting of conflicts of interest in clinical practice guidelines: cross sectional study." BMC Med Ethics 14: 19.
Gotzsche, P. C. (2012). "Big pharma often commits corporate crime, and this must be stopped." BMJ 345: e8462.
Gotzsche, P. C. (2012). "Deficiencies in proposed new EU regulation of clinical trials." BMJ 345: e8522.
Gotzsche, P. C. (2012). "European governments should sue Roche and prescribers should boycott its drugs." BMJ 345: e7689.
Gotzsche, P. C. (2012). "Mammography screening: truth, lies, and controversy." Lancet 380(9838): 218.
Gotzsche, P. C. (2012). "Strengthening and opening up health research by sharing our raw data." Circ Cardiovasc Qual Outcomes 5(2): 236-237.
Gotzsche, P. C. (2013). "Developing a new drug costs less than $100m, not $900m." BMJ 346: f398.
Gotzsche, P. C. (2013). "[Doubtful whether topically administered NSAIDs have any effect]." Ugeskr Laeger 175(6): 377-378.
Gotzsche, P. C. (2013). "Roche continues to drag its feet on access to Tamiflu data." BMJ 346: f3001.