Articles Posted in Pharmacy

IMG_0264-1-300x200Dr. Patrick Ifediba, 60, and his sister, Ngozi Ozuligbo, were convicted for health care fraud, unlawful drug distribution, and money laundering revolving around a massive scheme that garnered nearly $8 million in fraudulent funds.

According to the Department of Justice, Ifediba was operating as a doctor of internal medicine and the owner of Care Complete Medical Clinic (CCMC). Evidence presented at trial showed that Ifediba used the facility as a “pill mill”, regularly prescribing a range of highly addictive opioids with the goal of creating repeat office visits for their renewal. The trial found that Ifediba not only overprescribed the drugs intentionally but also offered dangerous combinations of the drugs. One of these combinations was referred to as “the holy trinity” and was known for creating a high similar to that of heroin. The high risk of overdose using this cocktail was well-known, yet continued to be prescribed by Ifediba routinely.

In total, 85% of Ifediba’s patients were written prescriptions for opioids, despite the fact that Ifediba was not a pain specialist and CCMC was not operating as a pain management facility.

sunscreen-chemicals-300x169According to a new study published by the JAMA Network, many of the chemicals found in sunscreen are absorbed into the bloodstream after just one day of use. The study also found that the concentration of these chemicals in the bloodstream continued to rise with each day of use. The bloodstream was found to be clear of these ingredients after a full twenty-four hours of discontinued use of the sunscreen.

The chemicals that were found to be absorbed into the bloodstream were identified as avobenzone, oxybenzone, ecamsule, and octocrylene, which are all compounds that the FDA has stated require further testing and research to verify their safety. However, even with these questionable compounds being absorbed at high levels into the bloodstream, experts state that individuals should still continue to use sunscreen regularly.

While the FDA and other researchers have confirmed the need to perform further tests on the ingredients found in most sunscreens, the complications that can arise from avoiding sunscreen use can be deadly. According to the Skin Cancer Foundation, skin cancer is diagnosed among Americans more than every type of cancer combined. As one of the most common types of cancers, melanoma should still be actively prevented despite the possible complications of sunscreen.

class action lawsuitDrugmaker giant, AbbVie, is facing a putative class-action lawsuit for its use of 136 patents on its drug Humira, which effectively protects it from competition until 2023. This complaint followed harsh criticism of AbbVie CEO, Richard Gonzalez, for the company’s strategic use of patents and high drug prices by the Senate Finance Committee just a month prior.

The complaint against AbbVie was filed in early March in a U.S District Court of Illinois. The plaintiff of the case is Local 1500 of the United Food and Commercial Workers, a union that represents employees of grocery store chains in New York. Meanwhile, the complaint lists numerous defendants, including AbbVie and seven additional manufacturers for their role in patent settlements with AbbVie.

The complaint states, AbbVie has erected significant barriers to entry to block biosimilar competition,”, and adds, “Specifically, AbbVie has created and employed an exclusionary ‘patent thicket’ —an unlawful scheme whereby it secured over 100 patents designed solely to insulate Humira from any biosimilar competition in the U.S. for years to come.”.

pill ingredients Brigham and Women’s Hospital and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology have invested their time and effort into researching the pills patients commonly take. Their findings show that the majority of orally-taken pills may be detrimental to a patient’s health due to certain inactive ingredients.

The research shows that the team discovered a vast majority of common medications prescribed in the United States contain at least one ingredient that could lead to adverse health effects. Such ingredients include lactose, peanut oil, gluten, and chemical dyes, which have been found in 90 percent of all oral medications tested. These are clearly all high-risk items when it comes to allergic reactions and gastrointestinal symptoms.

The inspiration for this mission came from a real-life incident involving a patient with celiac disease. This patient was prescribed a pill that contained gluten which caused adverse effects.