Drug patents are good for 20 years after invention, but it is not so simple. Pharma companies may employ a number of strategies to extend patent protection on their best selling drugs.
+Rhona Finkel is a health and science writer, covering such topics as mood disorders, technology and health, the plight of the mentally ill, psychiatric medications, and updates and retractions in scientific literature. Also a consultant in social media publicity, she is an author on Candida Abrahamson’s blog at http://candidaabrahamson.wordpress.com.
In short, it seems there's no absolute answer to this question. The FDA warns that expired drugs may not be safe or effective, but testing has shown that most drugs were fine to use years after their expiration.
It's the rare American (or one with phenomenally good health insurance) who hasn't griped at least once about the cost of prescription medication.
A Drug's half-life is the amount of time necessary for the concentration of the medication in the bloodstream of the body to be reduced by one-half. The time it will take for a drug to reach a steady state, or full effectiveness, in the system is based on that half-life.
A significant aspect of successful drugs is tied up in their names. Once upon a time it was enough merely to have a good product, and any name might do. But times have changed.
A look at athletes tested positive for banned drugs and substances and barred from competition at the London 2012 Olympic Games.
There are several natural and disease-related causes of gynecomastia. A less well-known cause--a side effect of certain drugs accounts for as much as 25% of the incidences. Certain classes of medications pose a higher risk than others.
Warfarin was a fantastic discovery for farmers and ranchers. As uncomfortable as this may be for those on Coumadin, warfarin is still today used as a—very effective--rat poison.
2012 will be a tough year for pharmaceutical companies due to the loss of patent protection of several bestselling drugs. However, it may turn out to benefit consumers with lower prices.
On July 19th, a few members of the House introduced legislation that will require all pain medications to have safeguards to prevent abuse.
In 2009, 7 million Americans reported current (past month) nonmedical use of prescription drugs. That is greater than the number of those who used cocaine, heroin, hallucinogens, and inhalants--combined.
The major profits made by medications in the past year cluster around a group of 5 medications that were far and away the biggest money-makers of 2011.