Two New Drugs Help Relieve Sickle-Cell Disease. But Who Will Pay?

The Food and Drug Administration recently approved two transformative new treatments for sickle-cell disease, the first in 20 years. But the drugs are wildly expensive, renewing troubling questions about access to cutting-edge medicines. Adakveo, made by Novartis, can prevent episodes of nearly unbearable pain that occur when malformed blood cells get stuck in blood vessels. Approved only for patients aged […]

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Zantac Has Low Levels of a Cancer-Causing Chemical, the F.D.A. Says

The Food and Drug Administration said on Friday that it had detected low levels of a cancer-causing contaminant in samples of heartburn medicines containing the drug commonly known as Zantac. It was advising patients who take over-the-counter versions to consider switching to a different medication. But no recalls have been initiated, and the agency said patients who take prescription versions […]

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Promising treatment for an incurable, deadly kidney disease

A potential treatment for polycystic kidney disease — a genetic disorder that causes the kidneys to swell with multiple cysts and can eventually lead to organ failure — has shown promising results in animal testing. A study describing the drug’s development and testing appears today in Nature Communications. The study shows an approximately 50 percent reduction in kidney size in […]

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Why Aren’t There Better Cancer Drugs? Scientists May Have Picked the Wrong Targets

Twenty years ago, the fight against cancer seemed as if it were about to take a dramatic turn. Traditionally, cancer doctors fought the disease with crude weapons, often simply poisoning fast-growing cells whether they were cancerous or healthy. But then a team of researchers hit on a new strategy: drugs targeting proteins produced by cancer cells that seemed necessary to […]

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Popular pain medication associated with greater risk of hypoglycemia: Tramadol, an opioid, is widely used to treat moderate or severe pain, but patients may be at risk of low blood sugar levels

Since its approval in 1995, the opioid tramadol (marketed as ConZip and Ultram) has become a widely prescribed remedy for osteoarthritis and other painful indications, in part because it presents a lesser risk for some side effects and has a lower abuse potential when compared to other opioids. It is currently ranked among the top five prescribed opioids and top […]

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Charcoal-based drug delivery system improves efficacy of common herpes drug

A study led by researchers from the University of Illinois at Chicago has found that combining acyclovir — a commonly prescribed topical herpes medication — with particles of activated carbon improves efficacy of the drug. This new approach allows for less frequent dosing and overall course of treatment while providing some protection from infection by the virus as well, opening […]

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Trump Administration Proposes Allowing Drug Imports for Cheaper Prescriptions

The Trump administration said on Wednesday that it was taking steps to make it easier for less expensive prescription drugs to be imported from other countries, particularly Canada, a move that has long been supported by progressives but has encountered fierce opposition from the pharmaceutical industry. Under the plan, the administration said it would propose a rule to permit pilot […]

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President Trump Withdraws Plan to Eliminate Drug Price Rebates

The Trump administration has abandoned a centerpiece of its efforts to address high drug prices, backing away from requiring some discounts to be passed directly to consumers under Medicare that could have lowered their out-of-pocket costs. President Trump had announced the proposal with great fanfare in January as part of the administration’s efforts to deal with the rising costs of […]

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