The drug culture

Not the illegal drug culture of heroin and cocaine – the “legal” drug culture with Ocycontin and Prosac – legal because a doctor trained in science hands out permission slips for a fee.

An example of how out of control this has gotten. A reporter from Bloomberg working in Venezuela decided to write an account of what is like scrounging for food to survive.

My Venezuela Nightmare: A 30-Day Hunt for Food in a Starving Land

(Interesting reading for Alex Jones Fans)

By the third paragraph, she is frenetic trying to find cholesterol drugs for her eight year old son (!). She specifically mentions Vytorin or Hiperlipen, two statin drugs.

While statins reduce your blood cholesterol by overriding the stasis of the liver, and some heart attack patients have elevated cholesterol, the notion that using statins reduces M&M is sketchy and there is evidence it causes significant damage including developing type 2 diabetes (but we have another drug to combat that!)

As real world data flowed in (as opposed to short term clinical trials for FDA approval), the truth was in the numbers. Unless you have already had a heart attack, statins have no effect in preventing heart attacks or stroke.

The idea that a mother is giving statin pills to an 8 year old is insanity, especially since she ends up giving him some unknown substitute from India.

Giving statins to children is an “off label” use unless the child has a very specific genetic defect – meaning there are no scientific studies to support the use and no studies looking at unexpected risks. The genetic condition is present in only about 1 in 200,000 children.

Early on as I was getting to know my niece (the GP Doctor) and sizing up whether I could trust her with my medical decisions, she made an alarming statement – something probably taught as “common sense” in medical school. “If it were up to me, I would put statins in the water supply”. Not wanting to immediately drive our relationship into a ditch, I held back on asking her “Do you not believe in informed consent?”… Or I could have raised the ante and moved on to the Alex Jones question “if there was a drug that made men sterile that could be delivered via the water supply without their knowledge, would you find that acceptable?”. She also found it amusing to make men squirm when she demanded to know if they own guns.

In retrospect, I could have saved a lot of time if I hadn’t held back. I was content to let her follow her instincts and training believing that fat people are stupid – especially Republicans who don’t believe in Science, eat at Chick-Fil-A, shop at Walmart and think The Late show is not really “news”. We haven’t talked in over a year and she is preparing to leave Charlotte. I doubt she will even say goodbye before she leaves. Oh well…

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