Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Conflict Of Interest: Lexapro JAMA BMJ

NHS Blog Doctor :
“And these days the BMJ itself is not to be taken too seriously. It has long since forfeited its place amongst respected medical journals. It is more of an in-house comic now. Were it printed on more absorbent paper, it would most likely be found in a smaller room than the library. The BMJ has become the Daily Mail of medicine.”

Given the well known views of Dr John Crippen on the British Medical Journal (BMJ), it takes a very brave blogger to be quoting from the
BMJ again.

But this is just too good not to share.

Lexapro (escitalopram)-SSRI antidepressant (S-enantiomer of the racemic Citalopram-Celexa)manufactured by Forest who licenses the rights for both Celexa and Lexapro from Lundbeck, which is based in Denmark. Celexa is known as Cipramil in Europe.

JAMA: Journal of the American Medical Association.

BMJ: British Medical Journal.
WSJ Health Blog:JAMA Editor Calls Critic a ‘Nobody and a Nothing’
March 13, 2009, David Armstrong

“Jonathan Leo, a professor of neuro-anatomy at tiny
Lincoln Memorial University in Harrogate, Tenn., posted a letter on the Web site of the British Medical Journal this month criticizing a study that appeared in JAMA last spring. The study concerned the use of the anti-depressant Lexapro in stroke patients. In addition to identifying what he said was an important omission in the paper — that behavioral therapy worked just as well as the drug when compared head to head in the study — Leo also pointed out that the lead author had a financial relationship with Forest Laboratories, the maker of Lexapro, that was not disclosed in the study."

It is amazing that the Big Pharmas are moving their psychiatric drugs into the "not strictly psychiatric" arena. Perhaps they are learning from the
Biederman experience.

Leo faced criticism from editors at the Journal of the American Medical Association!

“When JAMA editor in chief Catherine DeAngelis was asked about Leo by the WSJ Health Blog on March 12, she expressed her displeasure with him. ‘This guy is a nobody and a nothing’ she said of Leo. ‘He is trying to make a name for himself. Please call me about something important.’ Read the posting here.”

Catherine DeAngelis, M.D., M.P.H., Receives AACAP Catcher In The Rye Humanitarian Of The Year Award:
"Dr. DeAngelis was chosen as AACAP's 2009 Catcher in the Rye Humanitarian of the Year because of her leadership on discussions of conflicts of interest in medicine."

“Leo says he received an angry call from JAMA executive deputy editor Phil Fontanarosa last week, shortly after Leo’s article was published on the BMJ Web site.
“He said, ‘Who do you think you are,’ ” says Leo. “He then said, ‘You are banned from JAMA for life. You will be sorry. Your school will be sorry. Your students will be sorry.”
This is from Jonathan Leo’s statement:
“Over the past several years, I have written about the potential impact of conflicts-of-Interest in medicine (COI). I have also watched how the mainstream media reports the results of medical research with great interest.”

“The financial relationship with Forest Laboratories was well-documented and easily discoverable via a Google search, as evidenced by Dr. Robinsonπs previous self-disclosures in varied sources such as here, here, here, here, and here.”

Having forewarned the JAMA a letter to the BMJ was published after the BMJ checked with its own legal department. They are worried about JAMA too.

In the latest editorial of the JAMA: March 20, 2009

“Leo is certainly ‘somebody doing something’ very important.”

But wait for this:

“JAMA continued to ask that the entire piece be retracted.”

Did they not know that once it is out there on the web, it is out there? It was a sure way to give it publicity. Perhaps the JAMA editorial team should start reading blogs.

Two different issues here: the influence of Big Pharmas on research and JAMA, why?! It is only the BMJ!

Latest: AMA/ JAMA to Investigate. Chicago Tribune.

Link: WSJ Health Blog: March 23, 2009
Update: WSJ Health
See also Carlat Psychiatry Blog Furious Seasons


Anonymous said...

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Cockroach Catcher said...

Thanks. The latest post is on music.
The Cockroach Catcher