Synopses & Reviews
The untold crisis in American medicine, with side effects that may be hazardous to your health.
We all know that health care and prescription drug costs are skyrocketing, but few doubt the excellence of American medicine. John Abramson, M.D., an award-winning family doctor on the clinical faculty at Harvard Medical School, reveals, in the same clear language that he used with his patients, how the corporate takeover of clinical research and medical practice is compromising Americans' health. You -- and your doctor -- will be stunned by his findings.
For twenty years, Dr. Abramson cared for patients of all ages in a small town north of Boston. But increasingly his role as family doctor was undermined as pressure mounted to use the latest drugs and high-tech solutions for nearly every problem. Drawing on his background in statistics and health policy research, he began to investigate the radical changes that were quietly taking place in American medicine.
At the heart of the crisis, he found, lies the changed purpose of medical knowledge -- from seeking to optimize health to searching for the greatest profits. The lack of transparency that has become normal in commercially sponsored medical research now taints the scientific evidence published in even our most prestigious medical journals. And unlike the recent scandals in other industries that robbed Americans of money and jobs, this one is undermining our health.
The hormone replacement debacle, it turns out, is not an isolated case. The same kind of commercial distortion now pervades the information that doctors rely upon to guide the prevention and treatment of common health problems, from heart disease to stroke, osteoporosis, diabetes, and osteoarthritis.
The good news, as Dr. Abramson explains, is that the real scientific evidence shows that many of the things that you can do to protect and preserve your own health are far more effective than what the drug companies' top-selling products can do for you -- which is why the drug companies work so hard to keep this information under wraps.
In what is sure to be one of the most important and eye-opening books you or your doctor will ever read, John Abramson offers conclusive evidence that American medicine has broken its promise to best improve our health and is squandering more than $500 billion each year in the process.
Isn't it time to learn the facts, discuss these issues with your doctor, and reclaim the good health and medical care that all Americans deserve?
“Acompelling and well-documented analysis... a book every American should read.” Elliott Fisher, MD, MPH, Professor of Medicine, Dartmouth Medical School
“A powerful and coherent case that American medicine has gone badly astray.” Publishers Weekly
“Before you see a doctor, you should read this book.” Eric Schlosser, author of Fast Food Nation
“Essential for all those who want to intelligently reclaim responsibility for their own health.” Cheryl Richardson, author of Take Time for Your Life, Life Makeovers and Stand Up for Your Life
“A clear and concise explanation of how American medicine has gone astray...a must read for both patients and doctors.” Herbert Benson, MD, author of The Relaxation Response and The Breakout Principle
“Fulfills the criteria for high quality in health services: the right diagnosis and the right prescription at the right time.” Barbara Starfield, MD, MPH, University Distinguished Professor, Johns Hopkins University & Medical Institutions
“Abramsons book will have you rethinking your relationship with your doctor and your health.” The Oregonian (Portland)
“Enlightening.” Washington Post Book World
A family doctor reveals with startling evidence how commercial interests have eroded the excellence of American medicine.
Using the examples of Vioxx, Celebrex, cholesterol-lowering statin drugs, and anti-depressants, Overdo$ed America
shows that at the heart of the current crisis in American medicine lies the commercialization of medical knowledge itself.
Drawing on his background in statistics, epidemiology, and health policy, John Abramson, M.D., an award-winning family doctor on the clinical faculty at Harvard Medical School, reveals the ways in which the drug companies have misrepresented statistical evidence, misled doctors, and compromised our health. The good news is that the best scientific evidence shows that reclaiming responsibility for your own health is often far more effective than taking the latest blockbuster drug.
You -- and your doctor -- will be stunned by this unflinching exposé of American medicine.
About the Author
John Abramson, M.D., has worked as a family doctor in Appalachia and in Hamilton, Massachusetts, and has served as chairman of the department of family practice at Lahey Clinic. He was a Robert Wood Johnson Fellow and is on the clinical faculty of Harvard Medical School, where he teaches primary care.