August 30th, 2007

Never cynical enough: medical variant

Contrary to repeated claims, many drug studies would pull test subjects who displayed nasty side effects from treatment, which was perfectly ethical, and then not pay the participant for the time. This meant that everyone understood that side effects were to be hidden if they wanted to get paid, so several of my lab rat friends admitted that they shut up and hid the migraines and the intense nausea for the $700 waiting for them at the end of the weekend.

This suggests that if you think you're having a side effect, it isn't on the Big List of Side Effects, and it's the sort of thing which could be concealed by a financially desperate grad student, you may well be right that it's a side effect.

Just in the interest of meticulousness and with some hope that everything isn't equally bad, does anyone know whether some big pharma companies have testing procedures which are significantly better or worse than the average, and if so, which ones?