For the second week in a row, Mayo Clinic diabetes experts have an editorial in a major medical journal. Today the British Medical Journal posted an editorial by Victor Montori, M.D., and Nilay Shah, Ph.D., on the continuing findings stacking up against the drug rosiglitazone. The editorial - What have we learnt from the rosiglitazone saga? - accompanies a research article by Loke et al that adds to the data on the heart risk to patients from the drug. The fact that the drug is still available and prescribed in some areas of the country led the Mayo authors to be blunt:
"The rosiglitazone story says much about how healthcare has become less about promoting patients’ interests, alleviating illness, promoting function and independence, and curing disease, and much more about promoting other interests, including those of the drug industry." They contend there is plenty of evidence to make the health risks of the drug obvious -- and beyond any reasonable debate as to what should be done. Their final sentence leaves no ambiguity:
"Has the corruption of healthcare advanced so far that it is unreasonable, even naive, to expect responsible drug companies, enlightened regulators, and thoughtful prescribers?"
Dr. Montori is a professor of medicine and Dr. Shah an assistant professor of health science research at Mayo. Dr. Montori is also the co-leader of the Decade of Discovery, the diabetes research initiative of the Minnesota Partnership for Biotechnology and Medical Genomics.