cialis online

Fewer Vytorin Prescriptions after ENHANCE

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

Vytorin prescriptions are down nearly 10 percent since news broke last week that the expensive cholesterol-lowering drug is not as effective as a plain old statin. The release of the long awaited ENHANCE study results caused many in the medical community to question the wisdom of prescribing Vytorin, which costs about $3/pill, rather than high dose of a less expensive statin at about $1.00 per pill.

One of those now questioning Vytorin is Dr. Steven Nissen, chairman of cardiology at the Cleveland Clinic. Dr. Nissen told CBS News that he would advise doctors to quit prescribing Vytorin, since it was not shown to be more effective than Zocor. “My advice to physicians is not to use this drug Vytorin nor to use Zetia as first line agents any more. These should be really relegated to drugs of last resort until we have some evidence that they produce a health outcomes benefit,” he said. “Right now, five years into this, with nearly 1 million prescriptions per week being written, there is no evidence that the drugs actually produce any benefit for patients.”

Vytorin is a combination of cholesterol lowering Zetia and the statin Zocor. The point of the ENHANCE study was to determine how well Vytorin prevented clogged arteries by reducing the formation of plaque. ENHANCE focused on a group of 720 patients with a rare condition predisposing them to high cholesterol. The patients were given either Vytorin or a high dose of simvastatin, the generic form of Zocor. Vytorin did not provide any significant benefit versus the statin drug Zocor in slowing down clogging of the arteries. Overall, the study failed to meet its primary goal, which was to show whether Vytorin was more effective than Zocor alone in preventing progression of atherosclerosis in the carotid artery, which is in the neck.

Such plaque buildup is a major risk factor for heart attacks and stroke. Many doctors had been prescribing Vytorin on the theory that the drug would reduce this risk in people with high cholesterol. The ENHANCE study is a serious blow to this theory.

Now it seems that the advice of doctors like Dr. Nissen and others seems to be sinking in. According to the Wall Street Journal, total U.S. prescriptions written for Vytorin in the week ended Jan. 18 fell about 9.5% to 359,659 from 397,533 in the week ended Jan. 11. If that trend continues, Merck and Schering-Plough could take a big hit, as Vytorin racked up $5 billion in sales annually before ENHANCE was released.

Those Vytorin sales are vital to Merck and Schering-Plough’s bottom line, and it does appear that the company’s tried to mitigate the effect ENHANCE would have on Vytorin sales. They knew the results of ENHANCE in April 2006, but delayed releasing the findings twice. The drug makers also tried to change the ENHANCE study’s endpoint – the main medical result the study was meant to measure. It is generally accepted that for a clinical trial to be effective, a study’s endpoint must be set at its beginning and remain unchanged. In December 2007, in response to the ENHANCE delays and the attempt by Merck and Schering-Plough to change the endpoint, Congress initiated an investigation of the ENHANCE study. The outcry over the attempted change led Merck and Schering-Plough to abandon the endpoint change.

« »

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.

NEWS CATEGORIES

GOVERNMENT NOTICES

ARCHIVES


Defective Johnson & Johnson Depuy ASR Hip Implants

The Johnson & Johnson Depuy ASR Hip Implant is suppose to last 15 years, but can fail in only a few years after surgery. Victims with faulty hip implants endure excruciating pain, pain in the groin, death of tissue in the hip joint and loss of surrounding bone. GET ALL THE FACTS NOW! CLICK HERE!
defective-hip-replacement.com

CAT Scans Radiation Exposure

If you had a CT or CAT scan and now have a band of missing hair, skin reddening or any other problems possibly related to a radiation overdose, you may have been exposed to much radiation due to incorrect settings on these machines. CONTACT US TODAY!
CAT-Scans-Radiation-Exposure.com

Water Contamination From Fracking

Hydraulic Fracturing of Fracking a way to extract natural gas from shale is contaminating water supplies across the country. Get the facts to keep your drinking water safe for your family.
WaterContaminationFrom Fracking.com

Overexposure to PCBs

Many people unknowingly have been exposed to high levels of PCBs. Recently 3 schools in NY City were found to have dangerous levels of PCBs throughout. Many workers for Monsanto, General Electric, and Westinghouse were exposed to high levels of PCBs. PCBs are a dangerous toxic substance that doesn't break down easily and can cause chloracne, bleeding and neurological disorders, liver damage, spontaneous abortions, malformed babies, cancer, and death. GET THE FACTS!
Overexposure to PCBs.com

Great Photography

Tallis Photo, the number one photographer for great corporate, wedding, and special occasion photos. CONTACT US TODAY!
TallisPhoto.com

Poligrip Lawsuit

Super Poligrip or Fixodent May Cause Nerve Damage. 800-LAW-INFO
Poligrip-Lawsuit.com

Personal Injury Lawyer Nassau County

If you or someone you love was injured CONTACT US TODAY!
Nassau-Personal-Injury-Lawyer-Online.com

Nursing Home Blog

When a loved one is abused at a nursing home, it is time to take action. STOP nursing home abuse!
nursing-home-blog.com

Car Accident Lawyer Nassau County

If you or someone you love was injured in an auto accident CONTACT US TODAY!
www.nassau-car-accident-lawyer-online.com

Suffolk County Auto Accident Lawyer

If you or someone you love was injured in an auto accident in Suffolk County, NY CONTACT US TODAY!
www.suffolk-car-accident-lawyer-online.com

Don't Be Denied Veterans Benefits

If you or someone you love was denied veterans benefits CONTACT US TODAY!
www.veterans-benefits-denial.com

Oil Rig Spills Lawyer

Oil Rig Spills harm the environment and cause heavy losses to coastal game and fishing industries, as well as a loss of waterway usage, resulting in a loss of income to individuals and businesses, and a loss of beach front usage. Don't let a spill cause you harm, CONTACT US TODAY!
www.oil-rig-spills.com

Whistle Blower

Stand up and say what you think is right. See something, say something.
whistlebloweradvisor.com