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Prices For Toxic Pain Killers, Prescriptions Rise With Vioxx's Departure

It was distressing to review a new Consumer Union report (see free link below) that found prices for some three dozen prescription pain relievers have climbed along with the number of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) prescriptions since Vioxx exited the U.S. market nearly a year ago.

By the numbers:

  • Overall, prices rose on 36 painkillers by as much as 15 percent.
  • Motrin (McNeil-PPC) increased 13.3 percent from $30 to $34.
  • Prescriptions for Mobic (Boehringer Ingelheim) more than doubled to almost 750,000, just during the time Vioxx left the market.
  • Lodinem (Wyeth) prices climbed 13.3 percent to $170.
  • Relafen (GlaxoSmithKline) prices jumped 10.6 percent.

Boehringer Ingelheim officials say Mobic sales increased 44 percent making it the company's second leading seller. That fact was not lost on the Consumer Union analyst who wrote the report and pointed out how much Boehringer's marketing clout in promoting Mobic greatly influenced doctors and patients.

Where the report went wrong, however, was when it reminded consumers about cheaper options, meaning over-the-counter drugs, including ibuprofen, naproxen and salsalate, that can be just as toxic to your health.

If you're looking for safer and saner alternatives to toxic drugs that promote better health and healing, I strongly urge you review my seven anti-inflammatory alternatives that can also protect your heart.

Consumer Reports June 2, 2005 Free Full-Text Article

Yahoo News June 3, 2005

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