Angry Doctor

Friday, October 06, 2006

Who needs diabetes medicines?

Prompted by a comment in the previous post, angry doc googled up the DREAM study.

It'll occupy angry doc for the weekend, but so far one line has stood out and made him laugh:

'One patient in the rosiglitazone (Avandia) group and three in the placebo group stopped (withdrew from the trial) because of hypoglycaemia (low blood sugar level).'

With a placebo like that, who needs real medicines?

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6 Comments:

  • "angry" doc laughs, I laugh. ;p

    By Anonymous Anonymous, At October 07, 2006 9:16 am  

  • kinda like the whole alternative medicine thing, isn't it? I mean, some argue that the whole field is just about placebos. if they work, they work. question is, do we have the right to charge for them?

    By Blogger The Angry Medic, At October 08, 2006 8:47 am  

  • The right to charge for placebos is one of the questions.

    Other questions are:

    1. Is there any point in learning or studying alternative medicine if it is all placebo and there is no system behind it?

    2. Is it wrong or dangerous to allow systems of therapy which are placebos based on pseudoscience to be practised or promoted, if this will lead people into thinking that the same systems of therapy will work for other illnesses less responsive to the placebo effect?

    Western medicine utilises placebos all the time, most often 'verbal placebo' (and we charge the patients for that too...).

    But it is not the *only* mode of therapy we have, or the only mode of therapy we learn in medical school.

    And we do not deny that we are using a placebo when we are.

    I am still fascinated by the fact that a placebo alone can induce hypoglycaemia in 3 out of 2600 people.

    By Blogger angry doc, At October 08, 2006 9:22 am  

  • What was the placebo used?

    By Blogger Dr Oz bloke, At October 13, 2006 11:05 pm  

  • The papers I have read do not specify, but there is one each for rampiril and avandia.

    Not sugar pills, I hope.

    By Blogger angry doc, At October 14, 2006 3:05 pm  

  • I can't remember but they used to use certain vitamine pills as placebos in some studies.

    Another one used omega 3 fatty acid capsules as placebos.

    Interesting results those produced :wink:

    By Blogger Dr Oz bloke, At October 14, 2006 10:32 pm  

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