A few years ago, a doctor started prescribing Michael Israel painkillers for bad cramps in his gut. Israel had been struggling with Crohn's disease, a chronic digestive disorder, since he was a teenager.
"So he was prescribed, you know, Lortab, or Vicodin or whatever. You know, they would flip-flop it from one to another," says Avi Israel, Michael's father.
Then one day, Michael confessed that something was wrong.
It's been only a few years since Congress granted the federal government the power to approve how tobacco products are made and sold in the U.S.
The Food and Drug Administration's new Center for Tobacco Products, established under a 2009 law that gives the agency jurisdiction over tobacco, must review all new cigarettes or smokeless tobacco, as well as any changes to existing brands.
But the agency has yet to clear any products under the new system, and some cigarette makers are frustrated by the backlog of applications.
Originally published on Fri January 11, 2013 9:29 am
By Scott Hensley
Drugmaker Merck just stuck a fork in a vitamin-based drug to prevent heart disease and stroke.
The company is withdrawing Tredaptive, a long-acting pill combining niacin (No. 3 in the long list of B vitamins) and laropiprant, a chemical that reduces the unpleasant skin flushing caused by high doses of niacin.
An apparent feud between two black market pharmacies has shed light on a shady global industry.
"Rx-Promotion and SpamIt probably are responsible for upward of 50 or 60 percent of spam that you and I got in our inboxes over the last five years," said Brian Krebs, a cyber-security reporter who chronicled the alleged feud on his website. "It's just a ridiculous amount of problems that these two guys cause for everybody."