Journal of American Medicine vs. British Medical Journal

Who needs Hollywood for some juicy scandal? Check it out – from the heroicagencies listserve at :

Study 15 is certainly stirring up a storm amongst various groups watching
Big Pharma.  A couple of others that are hot at present include a scandal
involving JAMA.  The journal published a study comparing problem-solving
therapy; an antidepressant (Lexapro); and a placebo for treating stroke
patients with depression.  Now a couple of teachers from a small university
wrote a letter, that was published in the British Medical Journal, pointing
out that the JAMA article had failed to point out that the talk-therapy did
as well as the anti-depressant. And not only that the lead author had
financial ties to the drug company. When a Wall Street Journal writer
followed up on the story a deputy editor of JAMA told the
Wall Street
Journal writer
that the principal writer of the letter to the BMJ was “a
nobody and a nothing”.  According to the letter writer himself, he says he
got a call from the JAMA deputy editor saying “Who do you think you are?
You are banned from JAMA for life.  You will be sorry.  Your school will be
sorry.  Your students will be sorry.”   You can read the story here:

And that’s not all – more on this scandalous study from the Washington Post.

The saga of Study 15 has become a case study in how drug companies can control the publicly available research about their products, along with other practices that recently have prompted hand-wringing at universities and scientific journals, remonstrations by medical groups about conflicts of interest, and threats of exposure by trial lawyers and congressional watchdogs.


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