Monday, October 23, 2006

Rush Didn't Do His Homework

Rush Limbaugh recently opined at how unfortunate it was that Michael J Fox exploits folks by going off his meds for public appearances - he knows that Mr. Fox does this because, you see, "people" have told him. This is my response to Mr. Limbaugh - too long and no, i don't really expect him to take up the challenge, but a girl's gotta try.

******************************

I would recommend doing a little homework before you slap the "exploitative" label on someone because of what "people" have told you.

What you saw Mr. Fox experiencing on the McCaskill ad is a side effect of the most prescribed medication for Parkinson's, levodopa/carbidopa.

Looks pretty bad, right?

If you REALLY wanted to make a difference in people's lives, you might try drawing attention to the fact that this drug has dominated the field of Parkinson's therapies for 36 years - this is a drug that causes a side effect that, when it occurs in the absence of a causal drug, is evidence of neurological disease (Huntington's chorea).

Every single one of the big companies that makes a levodopa product, which causes a plethora of frequently disabling side effects, either makes, or has a generic arm that makes, or is affiliated in some way with a company or companies that make the myriad other drugs that are billed as fixing the problems levodopa causes - pretty neat set up, eh? Sell something that screws people up, then sell them something, and something else, and yet something else, telling them each time that adding THIS drug to the 47 other pills you take every day will surely fix the problem.

Levodopa is generic, you see, so lots of companies rely on that income stream, and the bigger ones have expanded their markets using the means described above – and while current income streams are important, potential for future growth is as, or more, important –and as long as no one breaks the unwritten rule and invents a drug that actually works for Parkinson’s, industry can happily just go on churning out adjunct after adjunct after adjunct – levodopa offers industry infinite potential for growth.

A drug that actually worked destroy all of that. Levodopa has been touted as “the best we have” for 36 years – the best for whom is the question, and the answer is obvious.

If you are REALLY interested in protecting people from exploitation, do something about THAT!

You are no doubt being flooded with emails telling you how badly you screwed up, so for pete’s sake, do the right thing an apologize to Mr. Fox.

2 comments:

McCaw Entertainment said...

I was under the impression Fox purposely didn't take his medication before the interview to show the world how bad it can be for a person with Parkinson's in his advanced stage. His plea for more research is just underscored by showing his extermely difficult results when medication isn't taken... medication and other kinds of treatments that is necessary through-- follow me on this one, folks: RESEARCH! So, Fox's interview was one a passionate plea for logic and compassion. Something Rush knows NEITHER!!!!!

anuket said...

I am right with you about the research and Rush, but as far as the medication, I can guarantee you, as a person with Parkinson's myself, that what Mr. Fox is experiencing in that ad is a side effect of his medication. The movements you see are called dyskinesias, they are a side effect of the drug levodopa, and they are glaring evidence that he DID take his medication. Parkinson's is a disease of immobility, not hypermobility.

And the dyskinesias are pretty bad, right? Well, that is what people with Parkinson's have been facing for 36 years from the stuff that is supposed to help them.