Physician, **** thyself

Prescriptions, so far anyway, are not actually mandatory, and Roberta X isn’t interested in the most recent one pushed in her direction:

… one of those stupid damn anti-depressants they hand out to fibromyalgia sufferers* and on the package insert, in at least 24-point type, it says, MAY MAKE YOU SUICIDAL. MAY WORSEN DEPRESSION. I’m not taking that stuff. I have, in the past, long ago, been almost that depressed and I’m not going back there. I’m not even taking a chance of going back there. Ibuprofen, acetaminophen and aspirin are sold at at every drug store, five-and-dime, grocery store, convenience store and corner gas station; it’s even free from the first-aid cabinet at work and if those drugs don’t make the pain go all the way away, they do well enough just about all of the time. And they don’t make you wake up wishing the planet could be improved by your absence.

I did my time on antidepressants. I still have one tablet on hand, probably expired, but it’s not here because I might need it; it’s here to remind me that I don’t.

Oh, that asterisk leads to a footnote in the original, and since her footnotes are always worth reading:

* I’m not saying that’s not a real thing — who am I to talk, after all, with my chronic pain with apparently no findable cause? — but people diagnosed with it are most certainly one of the favorite targets of those gawshawful drug-pushing ads on the TV, with twenty seconds of happy scenes and forty seconds of Dire Warnings read in a rapid monotone over still images of pastoral settings. Y’know, if the stuff was so wonderfully wonderful, M.D.s would be pushing it high, wide and mighty, ‘cos they are the kinds of people who are nagged by unsolved problems. Since they’re not — Ahem. The corollary should be obvious.

The most egregious failing of said drug-pushing ads, if you ask me, is this apparently invariable line: “Ask your doctor if [brand name of drug] is right for you.” If it then fails you, it’s your fault, because you asked for it. By name. Generics don’t advertise, which is one reason I got seven (!) prescriptions filled Friday afternoon for under $25. Meanwhile, the one brand-name drug I take is $2.50 per tab, $75 a month; the little puzzle box of Belsomra (suvorexant) is $99.99 for ten of ’em. You can buy a hell of a lot of Benadryl for a hundred bucks.

Some day, given the general trend of things, prescriptions likely will be mandatory. Remember THX 1138? The big crime was drug evasion, failing to take whatever meds were issued to you. I have to assume that Big Pharma is okay with this.



  1. fillyjonk »

    17 October 2015 · 3:05 pm

    Another thing with the drug ads – it makes those of us who are slightly hypocondriacal worry more. The Type II Diabetes med ads, for example, give you the idea that everyone is diabetic, and the ones not on medication just haven’t found out yet. And that we’re all one dodgy blood test away from being yoked to some kind of pill that carries monsterism, bloody flux, and exploding head syndrome among its side effects.

    I have never seen either of my two regular prescriptions advertised, presumably because they are both out in generic form now.

  2. Roberta X »

    17 October 2015 · 5:29 pm


  3. McGehee »

    17 October 2015 · 6:21 pm

    Pain reminds me that I’m still alive.

  4. ms7168 »

    18 October 2015 · 7:43 am

    I quit smoking with Wellbutrin. My Dr told me at the time he thought it could be a win/win if I remained on it for anxiety and depression. I still take it and it has been just fine. I have a good friend who has to go back and forth between a couple of them because for him taking the same one for too long results in it doing nothing in his estimation. Hasn’t happened to me.

  5. ETat »

    18 October 2015 · 9:16 am

    Oh yeah, those ads are annoying, and that phrase in particular is infuriating.
    If my doctor is competent, he’d know about this latest snake oil already – and the fact (s)he didn’t prescribe it to me means it IS a snake oil. Or, he is incompetent and needs nudging from a layman to find out about the wonderful qualities of this pill – then who needs a “doctor” like that? he’s fired on the spot.

    Price of my generic rose suddenly with emergence of Obamacare from $30 for 3-month’s supply to $17 per month (insurance-deducted prices). And 2 days ago, when asking for refill at the pharmacy, I discovered the generic was discontinued (their term for it is “supplier can not fill the order”), and my insurance absolutely categorically does not cover brand names!

  6. Chuck »

    18 October 2015 · 12:47 pm

    ‘Drug Evasion’. That’s wonderful. I don’t remember that bit, but then I don’t remember when I watched that movie. Seems like a hundred years ago.

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