Sell the drugs, they pay you. Criticize the drugs, they sue you.

via Wall Street Journal Health Blog:

GavelFor a while now, the FDA and other regulators have been looking at safety risks associated with a few drugs patients sometimes take before getting MRI scans.

While it's common for new risks to crop up with established drugs, the Times of London this weekend highlighted an interesting twist in this case: GE has filed a libel suit in Britain against a Danish radiologist who gave a talk about the risks associated with Omniscan, a GE drug that's one of the medicines regulators have been looking at.

The doctor, Henrik Thomsen, gave a presentation to about 30 people two years ago in Oxford, the article says. He described a cluster of cases at his hospital in Copenhagen where kidney patients who received Omniscan developed a rare disorder called nephrogenic systemic fibrosis. One of the patients died.

GE Healthcare told the Times that the presentation was defamatory because it accused the company of suppressing information and marketing the drug when it was aware of possible problems, according to the article. Thomsen told the Times: "I believe that the lawsuit is an attempt to silence me."

So a company, angry at being accused of trying to suppress information, responds by ... sueing the guy who released the information.

Posted via web from David Dobbs's Somatic Marker

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