New Painkiller Warning: What Does It Mean For You?

Ten years ago, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) warned that the widely used nonaspirin painkillers ibuprofen and naproxen — including over-the-counter brands such as Advil, Motrin and Aleve — may increase the risk of heart attack and stroke. But new evidence has convinced the agency that the warning on these nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) needs to be tougher. The FDA is now strengthening the wording to say that NSAIDs increase the chance of a heart attack or stroke, even …

New FDA Warning About Testosterone and Aging Men

The Food and Drug Administration has a message for older men: Just because your testosterone level has dipped as you age doesn’t mean you need to take testosterone replacement drugs. In fact, the drugs could increase your risk of heart problems. In a new statement, the agency warned about overuse of the popular “low T” drugs to relieve symptoms in men who have low testosterone “for no apparent reason other than aging.” The FDA cautioned doctors about prescribing the medications inappropriately …

FDA to Ease Rules for New Alzheimer’s Drugs

Saying there’s “a desperate need” for new Alzheimer’s treatments, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced that it plans to ease the approval rules for experimental drugs in the hopes of slowing or preventing the devastating brain disease in its early stages. Noting that without new medications the number of Americans with Alzheimer’s could nearly triple to 16 million by 2050, the FDA’s Russell Katz, M.D., wrote on the agency’s blog that “it was with a sense of urgency” …

Drug-Research Scandal: Patients Lose Again

Isn’t anyone looking out for patients’ welfare these days? Last week we read about how the U.S. Food and Drug Administration was hampered from investigating problems at the compounding pharmacy accused of supplying tainted drugs linked to the recent meningitis outbreak that sickened nearly 500 and killed 34. Then on Sunday a Washington Post investigation charged that the drug industry’s growing influence over research on new medications has resulted in studies being manipulated to obscure dangerous side effects so the …

First Weekly Diabetes Drug Wins FDA Approval

Well, now we know why celebrity chef Paula Deen was recently hired to promote the daily diabetes drug she takes: That drug is getting some new competition from Bydureon, the first once-a-week treatment for Type 2 diabetes approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. The FDA approved the injectable, extended-release drug last month after several delays due to government concerns that it might cause heart rhythm abnormalities. Manufacturer Amylin Pharmaceuticals expects the drug to be available in pharmacies this …

Juicy News: Citrus May Cut Stroke Risk, But Beware of Grapefruit

Lots of citrusy health news recently: Researchers say a nutrient in vitamin C-rich fruits like oranges, tangerines and grapefruit may help lower women’s risk of stroke, but beware — the Food and Drug Administration also just issued a reminder that fresh grapefruit and grapefruit juice can interfere with some prescription and nonprescription drugs. According to a new study published last week in Stroke: Journal of the American Heart Association, women who ate the most citrus fruit had a 19 percent …