Home The Book Dr Articles Products Message Boards Journal Articles Search Our Surveys Surgery ESWT Dr Messages Find Good Drs video

The business of medicine

Posted by Sunny Jacob - Bayshore on 8/11/02 at 12:46 (092210)

Following are my comments based on several statements made on this message board, such as high cost of ESWT treatment, physicians promoting one specific brand of equipment, medical ethics and conflict of interest by health care professionals and FDA approval of ESWT equipment.
It is quite understandable that a physician uses the media to promote his or her service through articles or interviews. Some specialists are even at times enthusiastic to make their news available to journalists to inform the general population. They have likely been directly involved with research done in the hospital or research facility and financed by the health care industry and are commenting about their direct experience with the product (a drug, an equipment or a procedure).
Case in point about ESWT equipment and FDA approvals.
FDA approval gives the public comfort by confirming that a) the drug or equipment does not harm the patient, and b) it provides an improved outcome over existing methods.
However, neither the FDA nor any other government develops or prescribes treatment protocols. These are provided by the applicant for approval.
Therefore, such approvals should not be accompanied by public relation campaigns featuring researchers. Rather, the results should be published in scientific journals where peer groups can examine the evidence and then make an informed decision regarding advice to their patients.
With patients hungry for information and equipment manufacturers desperate to recover their multimillion dollar investment, it is naïve to think that there ought to be a 'state-church' separation between the practice of medicine and the profit for the corporations.
As for the treatment fee, clinics have risked large sums up front without any guarantee of return on investment. Furthermore, patients do have a choice. In our free market society, competition eventually will decide the right fee for a service.
While the ethics may be somewhat fuzzy in some cases, it is unlikely that any physician would risk his or her integrity or professional status to help some corporation to make a few additional dollars.

Re: The business of medicine

rob. a on 8/11/02 at 13:31 (092217)

Unless of course, that physician has a finacial tie to that corporation. And that is what makes for'fuzzy ethics' to use your own words.

Re: The business of medicine

Dr. Zuckerman on 8/11/02 at 14:07 (092220)

and that is why we have an FDA in the USA. Therefore the sucess and safety has been tested and reviewed by someone outside of the corporation. I just can't think of any other way to have this done .

Re: The business of medicine

Scott R on 8/11/02 at 17:33 (092244)

If this is the rob I know, do you have a new email address and phone number?

Re: The business of medicine

john h on 8/14/02 at 10:57 (092446)

Sunny: You make a very good point that I have overlooked and that is the FDA does not establish the 'treatment protocol'. I do not know how that has escaped me as it should be obvious. They of course do make errors and have often had to backtrack on the safety of various drugs.

Re: The business of medicine

rob. a on 8/15/02 at 05:36 (092526)

I will call you Scott. I've been very busy!

Re: The business of medicine

rob. a on 8/11/02 at 13:31 (092217)

Unless of course, that physician has a finacial tie to that corporation. And that is what makes for'fuzzy ethics' to use your own words.

Re: The business of medicine

Dr. Zuckerman on 8/11/02 at 14:07 (092220)

and that is why we have an FDA in the USA. Therefore the sucess and safety has been tested and reviewed by someone outside of the corporation. I just can't think of any other way to have this done .

Re: The business of medicine

Scott R on 8/11/02 at 17:33 (092244)

If this is the rob I know, do you have a new email address and phone number?

Re: The business of medicine

john h on 8/14/02 at 10:57 (092446)

Sunny: You make a very good point that I have overlooked and that is the FDA does not establish the 'treatment protocol'. I do not know how that has escaped me as it should be obvious. They of course do make errors and have often had to backtrack on the safety of various drugs.

Re: The business of medicine

rob. a on 8/15/02 at 05:36 (092526)

I will call you Scott. I've been very busy!