According to recent US reports, despite GlaxoSmithKline being the top advertiser in the pharmaceutical industry the risk attached to their controversial diabetes drug Avandia were never publicised, despite a phenomenal health risk to diabetes patients.
Questions are now being asked, and diabetics and healthcare professionals throughout the world should be demanding answers. How long have Glaxo known about this risk? Did the Food and Drug Administration pass this drug in full knowledge of the risks? How many people have died as a result of Avandia? Without a New England Journal of Medicine report highlighting the risk, it is possible that the drug would have continued unnecessarily risking the life of diabetics throughout the world.
Glaxo are the second largest international drugmaker after Pfizer Inc. Their consumer advertising budget last year stood at around $849 million. One wonders how dangers of Avandia escaped attention until now. Glaxo have leapt to the defence of Avandia. The chief executive, Jean-Pierre Garnier, reportedly commented: “Why would you publicize it? We don’t publicize every submission we make to the Food and Drug Administration.”

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