The Worst Pills To Take

The information below was taken from Public Citizen at Consumers can use the recommendations found in Worst Pills, Best Pills News and to inform themselves about medications, which would help counterbalance the effects of direct-to-consumer drug advertising.

The research provided by the doctors, pharmacists and pharmacologist on staff at Public Citizen can help consumers make better decisions, which can translate into a positive health and economic impact for consumers.

For example, of the 24 drugs included in this advertising study, seven are listed as "Do Not Use" in "Worst Pills", Best Pills News publications. Ten are listed as "Limited Use" drugs, meaning that there may be safer, more effective or less expensive alternatives available to consumers. Three of the drugs should not be used until seven years after the date it came into the market, according to Public Citizen.  The seven Do Not Use drugs accounting for almost 83 million prescriptions in 2005, at a cost of more than $9.6 billion.
Brand Name Generic Name Advertised Use Prescriptions (2005) Dollar Sale (2005) Public Citizen's Recommendation
ACTONOL Risedronate Osteoporosis 9,660,000 $792,582,000 Do No Use Until 2007
ALLEGRA Fexofenadine Allergy 12,796,000 $957,152,000 Limited Use
AMBIEN Zolpidem Insomnia 23,145,000 $1,932,940,000 Limited Use
CELEBREX Celecoxib Arthritis 10,965,000 $1,241,574,000 Do Not Use
CIALIS Tadalafil Erectile Dysfunction 3,847,000 $295,191,000 Do Not Use Until 2011
CRESTOR Rosuvastatin High Cholesterol 7,797,000 $676,848,000 Do Not Use
DETROL. LA Tolterodine Overactive Bladder 5,163,000 $534,795,000 Limited Use
DIOVAN Valsartan High Blood Pressure 12,595,000 $810,581,000 Limited Use
DIOVAN HTC Valsartan with Hydrochlorothiazide High Blood Pressure 10,292,000 $723,998,000 Limited Use
ENBREL Etanercept Rheumatoid Arthritis Not Available $1,130,642,00 Limited Use
FOSAMAX Alendronate Osteoporosis 17,915,000 $1,484,088,000 Limited Use
LAMISIL Terbinafine Nail Fungus 2,192,000 $608,718,000 Limited Use
LEVITRA Vardenafil Erectile Dysfunction 1,987,000 $141,573,000 Do Not Use Until 2011
LIPITOR Atorvastatin High Cholesterol 63,219,000 $6,320,522,000  
LOTREL Amlodipine with Benazepril High Blood Pressure 12,863,000 $1,109,867,000 Do Not Use
NEXIUM Esomeprazole Heart Burn 22,883,000 $3,436,794,000 Do Not Use
PLAVIX Clopidogrel ACS 18,823,000 $2,480,042,000 Limited Use
PREVACID Lansoprazole Allergy 22,152,000 $3,327,919,000 Limited Use
PROCRIT Epoetin Alfa Anemia Not Available $393,527,000 Do Not Use
SINGULAR Montelukast Allergy 22,167,000 $2,089,348,000  
VALTREX Valacyclovir Genital Herpes 6,988,000 $978,443,000 Do Not Use
ZELNORM* Tegaserod Irritable Bowel Syndrome 2,127,000 $318,220,000  
ZOCOR Simvastatin High Cholesterol 22,325,000 $3,106,628,000 Limited Use
ZOLOFT Sertraline Depression 26,976,000 $2,561,069,000  
Total  338,877,000 $37,453,061,000
* Tegaserod (ZELNORM) was taken off the market March 30, 2007.
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