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Wednesday, April 8, 2015

THE PROBLEM WITH DRUG NAMES

BRYCE ON LIFE

- They certainly do not give us a clue about their purpose or use.

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I visited my doctor's office recently. I find it interesting the posters on the walls describing the latest drugs. They all have strange names which makes you think they are Latin based, but few are. Most simply have a marketing spin which is to catch your ear and hopefully plant it in your memory. Personally, I have trouble with the drug names which border on quackery as far as I'm concerned. Of course, I'm of an older generation who is more familiar with simpler cures such as Aspirin, Laxatives, Castor Oil, Cod Liver Oil, and Man & Beast Salve. Quite often a good slug of Coca Cola and a deep belch can work miracles. Maybe this is what they mean by "The pause that refreshes."

You also see several drugs on prime time television, particularly during the news hour, where they frequently mention both Over the Counter (OTC) and prescription drugs. The pharmaceutical firms literally spend billions of dollars on advertising their products, which is why drug names are so important to them. I must confess though, I haven't a clue where they get their names from, but they certainly do not give you an inkling as to their purpose. For example, I recently saw an ad for "Eliquis" which I presumed was to improve your vocabulary. In reality, it is to reduce the risk of stroke and blood clots in people who have atrial fibrillation (AFib), a type of irregular heartbeat,

I do not believe I am the only one confused by the names of the drugs. Consider the list of drugs below and try to determine their true purpose. You might get a couple right, but most people will flunk this quiz, I know I did, and I wrote it. (The answers are on the bottom.)

1. Aricept

A - To improve strength in hand grip due to arthritis.
B - Natural laxative.
C - To treat the symptoms of Alzheimer's disease.
D - To treat erratic breathing.

2. Astelin

A - To treat hemorrhoid inflammation.
B - To treat symptoms of hay fever.
C - To cleanse tongue and improve pallor.
D - To treat baldness due to chemotherapy.

3. Celebrex

A - Treats pain, including pain caused by arthritis.
B - Treats pain due to gun shot.
C - Stimulant for PMS mood swing.
D - Depressant for excessive alcohol.

4. Chantix

A - To treat throat and adenoids due to excessive use.
B - To treat alcohol addiction.
C - Nutritional supplement.
D - To treat nicotine addiction.

5. Cymbalta

A - Treats disorders of the inner ear.
B - Treats depression, anxiety.
C - A natural placebo.
D - Treats pain due to cataract surgery.

6. Detrol LA

A - To treat urinary incontinence (bladder control).
B - Plant food.
C - Treats depression in middle aged people.
D - Poisonous spray to control rodents.

7. Latuda

A - Treats the symptoms of motion sickness.
B - Natural laxative for people over 60.
C - Treats schizophrenia.
D - Non-addictive hallucinogenic to treat depression.

8. Levitra

A - A vegetable oil obtained by pressing the seeds of the Levit plant.
B - Common pill for the treatment of air sickness.
C - Treats arthritis in pet dogs and cats.
D - Treats erectile dysfunction.

9. Lipitor

A - Lowers high cholesterol and triglyceride levels.
B - Treats the symptoms of Herpes.
C - Balm for the treatment of cold sores.
D - Regulates pace makers.

10. Lunesta

A - Treats depression.
B - Treats insomnia (sleep disorder).
C - Non-addictive drug used mainly as an entheogen and recreational drug.
D - Reduces pain caused by female menstruation.

11. Nexium

A - Cause pupil dilation, reduced appetite, and wakefulness.
B - Medicinal drug used as part of religious or spiritual rites.
C - Treats anxiety while waiting in line or in crowds.
D - Treats heartburn, gastroesophageal reflux disease, stomach ulcers, and a damaged esophagus.

12. Omnaris

A - To treat asthma and nasal allergies.
B - Used in the treatment of Syphilis.
C - Chewable resin to treat nicotine addiction.
D - The world's most widely consumed psychoactive drug.

13. Plavix

A - To treat bladder control in seniors.
B - Used in the treatment of constipation.
C - A blood thinner used to help prevent stroke, heart attack, and other heart problems.
D - Treats memory loss due to Dimentia.

14. Prilosec OTC

A - Formerly known as Nicoret.
B - Treats hay fever and other allergies.
C - To treat heartburn.
D - Ointment used to treat scratches, cuts and other wounds.

15. Restasis

A - Treats insomnia (sleep disorder).
B - Stimulant used for circulation.
C - Used as a prelude to a frontal lobotomy.
D - To treats chronic dry eye disease.

16. Rozerem

A - Treats allergies due to flora and fauna.
B - Treats insomnia (sleep disorder).
C - An analgesic to relieve minor aches and pains.
D - An effervescent antacid and pain reliever.

17. Valtrex

A - Treats a wide range of conditions, including anxiety, panic attacks, insomnia, and seizures.
B - Treats herpes virus infections, including shingles.
C - Used to slow heart palpitations.
D - Treats gastro digestive ailments, such as diarrhea.

18. VeramystA - Treats excessive development of mucous.
B - Marital aid.
C - Breathalyzer used to relieve asthma suffering.
D - Treats nasal allergy symptoms such as congestion, sneezing, and runny nose.

19. Vytorin

A - Lowers high cholesterol and triglyceride levels.
B - Dietary supplement, includes several vitamin complexes plus iron or multimineral products.
C - Stimulant for use during exercise.
D - Used in the treatment of ear wax.

20. Zyrtec

A - Used to clean water pipes.
B - Treats nail fungus, both hands and feet.
C - Treats hay fever and allergy symptoms, hives, and itching.
D - Pet nutritional additive.
 
The possible side effects from using these drugs can be extensive; vomiting, diarrhea, nausea, insomnia, cramping, anorexia, constipation, headache, heart attack, stroke, seizures, liver problems, skin reactions, abdominal pain, and, of course, Death! This certainly does not encourage me to run out and buy it. No wonder they want you to call your doctor before taking these drugs, they do not truly know whether it will help you or hurt you. Frankly, I do not know how doctors keep track of all these drugs. There are obviously a lot more, which is why pharmaceutical firms spend billions in marketing their products, to create general awareness. However, the more they spend on marketing, the greater the unit cost for the medication, which leads to our last drug: KOWABUNGATHOL - a stimulant that waves a red flag in front of people telling them to wake up and let the doctor order the medication, not the patient.

ANSWERS: 1-C, 2-B, 3-A, 4-D, 5-B, 6-A, 7-C, 8-D, 9-A, 10-B, 11-D, 12-A, 13-C, 14-C, 15-D, 16-B, 17-B, 18-D, 19-A, 20-C

Keep the Faith!

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is a writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 30 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at timb001@phmainstreet.com

For Tim's columns, see:   timbryce.com

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Copyright © 2015 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

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