Good morning! Here are the week’s top stories:
- Topamax: Johnson & Johnson will pay over $81 million (articles here and here in criminal and civil fines for illegally promoting Topamax. That’s a mere 0.070% of 2009’s $1.15 billion in sales, and 0.039% of 2008’s 2.7 billion in sales (quite the deterrent, eh?). Nevertheless, this compounds J&J’s woes in light of the current Tylenol recall.
- Topamax Whistleblowers: Here’s an article about the courageous Michigan whistleblowers who made it all happen.
- Vaccines & Autism: Dr. Andrew Wakefield, the British physician who wrote the initial Lancet article linking autism to vaccines, has been disbarred from the practice of medicine. He did not offer evidence on his behalf, and he has about a month to appeal.
- BPA—now in cans?: USA Today and Dr. Gupta report on the presence of BPA in cans, and discuss whether pregnant women, in particular, should be concerned. For more on BPA, see our prior blog posts.
- St. Jude Medical: The FDA recently issued a warning letter to St. Jude Medical about the overpromotion of its Epicor Ablation System, used to treat atrial fibrillation. See the Forbes article and the FDA’s warning letter.
- Las Vegas Hepatitis Punitives: See one reactionist and alarmist article, “Health Cost Hikes May Follow $500M Jury Award in Hepatitis C Case.”
- Neurontin: Last week, Pfizer settled a Neurontin wrongful death case for a confidential amount.
Have a great week!