U.S. Pays 10 Times More for Prescription Drugs than Other Countries
Reported in Rheum Now, prescription drugs may cost up to 10 times more in the United States than they do in other countries, according to a 2013 Comparative Price Report was released last month by the International Federation of Health Plans (IFHP). Results are based on surveys of the prices of prescription drugs from member plans.
The US has the highest drug prices and costs associated with medical care that bears no relation to health outcomes.
Comment: Drug costs are out of control. The U.S. is supporting the rest of the world. Between pharmaceutical companies and insurance companies, the average consumer is taking a beating.
Electricity… it’s not just for breakfast anymore… next
NIH, pharmaceutical companies fund research on “electroceuticals”
Sharon Begley writing in the Boston Globe reported that scientists across the world “are exploring the potential of devices dubbed electroceuticals to treat conditions from heart failure and asthma to diabetes, incontinence, and arthritis.” The first of the new class of devices, “to treat obesity, reached the market this year, and the US government and drug companies are pouring tens of millions of dollars into further research.” This fall, the National Institutes of Health will announce “the first funding from its $248 million Stimulating Peripheral Activity to Relieve Conditions, or SPARC, program.”
Comment: Looks like we’ve come full circle. Electricity has been touted for its healing powers since the days of the medicine show charlatans.
The mind in patients with rheumatoid arthritis is a power thing… next
Depression and Anxiety Predict Treatment Response and Health Outcomes in Rheumatoid Arthritis
Daniela Samedo writing in rheumatoid Arthritis News reported depression and anxiety are highly prevalent RA patients, with a recent meta-analysis reporting a 16.8% prevalence of depression, diagnosed via clinical interview. There is evidence to suggest a downstream relationship between distress and disease outcomes, with depression increasing pain and disease activity and decreasing short- and long-term treatment efficacy in RA.
Findings from a recent study published in the journal Rheumatology revealed that baseline and persistent symptoms of depression/anxiety predict several subjective and objective rheumatological outcome measures.
To examine the impact of symptoms of depression/anxiety on treatment response, long-term disease activity and physical disability in RA, Faith Matcham and colleagues from the Department of Psychological Medicine, Institute of Psychiatry, King’s College London in the United Kingdom and colleagues, performed an analysis of an existing randomized controlled trial in patients with early RA. Results revealed that in a population of 379 patients, early RA baseline depression/anxiety symptoms were associated with increased disease activity.
Cholesterol lowering drugs reduce mortality in rheumatoid arthritis? The answer next.
Statins lower mortality in rheumatoid arthritis patients
Amy Karon writing in rheumatology News reported that a study in the Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases showed that there was a 21% reduced risk of dying in rheumatoid arthritis patients who were on statin therapy. The study was conducted in the United Kingdom using a general practice medical database.
Arthritis drug salsalate ‘may help treat Alzheimer’s’
Salsalate was found to inhibit a chemical process called tau acetylation
An “old” drug used to treat rheumatoid arthritis may offer new hope in the fight against Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia, say scientists.
von Radowitz writing in the Belfast Telegraph reported in laboratory mice the anti-inflammatory drug, salsalate, prevented damage to the brain associated with the diseases and reversed memory loss.
The early research points towards an as-yet untried treatment strategy that could be effective in combating the devastating effects of Alzheimer’s, it is claimed.
One of the hallmarks of dementia is the formation of so-called tau tangles, toxic twisted knots of protein within nerve cells.
Salsalate was found to inhibit a chemical process called tau acetylation that appears to drive tangle generation.
The drug was tested on genetically engineered mice with frontotemporial dementia (FTD), a form of dementia affecting the frontal lobes of the brain. Tau tangles are a feature of both this disease and Alzheimer’s.
Dr Li Gan, from the Gladstone Institute of Neurological Disease in San Francisco, US, who co-led the research, said: “We identified for the first time a pharmacological approach that reverses all aspects of tau toxicity.
Comment: salsalate is an old old drug, a salicylate we used to use for its anti-inflammatory effects. Very Interesting.