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Friday, March 28, 2008

10 Deadliest Drugs Approved by the FDA


10 Deadliest Drugs

Approved by the FDA—but are your meds safe?

By Maia Szalavitz for MSN Health & Fitness

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When the AIDS activist group ACT UP staged a protest in 1988 in which it “seized control of the FDA,” it responded to widespread frustration with the agency. The FDA was seen as slow, bureaucratic and unresponsive to the plight of patients who needed better drugs—immediately.
Shortly afterwards, the drug approval process was streamlined and dying patients without alternatives were given early access to promising medications. For drugs given “priority review,” approval times dropped from just under three years in 1986 to as little as six months in 1995.
Now, however, many wonder if the FDA went too far in speeding up the approval process of drugs. Critics claim tragic failures like the approval of the painkiller Vioxx, which may have caused up to 100,000 heart attack and stroke deaths, are a direct result of prioritizing speed over safety reviews.

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