Irish reports on GSK’s fraudulent marketing.

Following yesterdays news that GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) has been fined $3 billion for fraudulently marketing their products, I found the differences in Irish reporting and worldwide reports quite frightening. In the Irish Times and RTE News articles it reported, that among GlaxoSmithKline’s wrongdoing, was illegally marketing Paxil to children. OK SO FAR!

NO-WHERE in either Article does it say that the reason this marketing was so abhorrent, is because this drug increases the risk of suicide in children, a fact well known to GSK and the regulators (Under 25’s).

In contrast to the Irish reports, the New York Times and The UK Independent both include the fact that this drug can cause suicide in young people. I wonder why Irish people are not getting the same facts.

The other surprise was that no-where in these Irish Articles did it say that Paxil is marketed as Seroxat in Ireland. The Irish public would probably have never heard of Paxil but would certainly have heard of the publicity, mostly bad, surrounding Seroxat.

I recommend, that if anyone really wants to know the true appalling facts surrounding GSK, then there is no better place to get information than Bobby and Truthman’s websites.

Irish reporting: Irish Times Article and The RTE News Article.

UK and US reporting: UK Independent Article and The New York Times Article.

Interestingly Seroxat was again in the Irish papers (Irish Independent) this week, named as Seroxat not Paxil, here “Man attacked terrified party guest with sword after mixing alcohol and medication”.

Update: What I should have made clearer is that the European suicide warnings with these drugs are for under 25’s. If anyone has read the stories on this blog and others, age has nothing to do with a drug-induced suicide. Ask Brian PalmerRobert Raines or Donald Schell (Prozac, Celexa and Seroxat/Paxil)


5 thoughts on “Irish reports on GSK’s fraudulent marketing.

  1. On the whole, there is a similar lack of details in UK newspapers. The shortest report from all the “quality” newspapers is in the Times, which is hardly surprising given the close relationship between the Murdoch family and GSK. Only the Independent and the Daily Mail mention Seroxat by name. The Mail dips into its archives to publish a personal account. The Express, Mirror, Star and Sun appear to have no interest in the story whatsoever.
    Here are the relevant sections of each report:

    The Times:
    “… GSK has admitted paying for meals, spa treatments and theatre tickets for doctors as part of an effort to persuade them of Paxil’s benefits for patients under 18, when the antidepressant was licensed only for adults …”

    Daily Telegraph:
    “… Glaxo admitted promoting Paxil, an anti-depressant, to patients under 18 even though it did not have permission from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to do so …”

    The Guardian:
    “… Paxil – which was only approved for adults – was promoted as suitable for children and teenagers by the company despite trials that showed it was ineffective, according to prosecutors.
    Children and teenagers are only treated with antidepressants in exceptional circumstances due to an increased risk of suicide …”

    The Independent:
    “… The drug at the centre of the scheme, the blockbuster pill Paxil, which is branded Seroxat in Britain, has since been banned for use by children because it can make them suicidal …
    … Paxil, once GSK’s best-selling drug, was never approved for use by children but because doctors were free to use their discretion, the company had a strong incentive to steer the medical profession to scientific studies that suggested it might be helpful to under-18s diagnosed with depression. Those studies were paid for by GSK itself. Sales reps for Paxil even called on paediatricians to highlight the studies …”

    Daily Mail:
    “… It bribed doctors to prescribe Paxil to children even though the authorities had not approved its use for under-18s.
    The controversial depression drug has been linked to a higher risk of suicide both in the US and here, where it is known as Seroxat …”

    “… SEROXAT ‘LIKE A LOADED GUN’ FOR DEPRESSED TEEN WHO KILLED HIMSELF
    Jamie Hoole killed himself aged just 18 – two months after being given the GlaxoSmithKline drug Seroxat for depression.
    His mother Jean Bambrough is convinced he would still be alive had it not have been for the drug. ‘It was like prescribing him a loaded gun,’ said the 41 year old.
    ‘Jamie was depressed but I strongly believe he wouldn’t have done what he did if it wasn’t for Seroxat.’
    The talented pianist and artist was given Seroxat after he lost his self confidence and started to withdraw from everyday life.
    At first the drugs seemed to be working and his depression seemed to lift.
    Speaking to the Mail in 2008, Miss Bambrough, a personal assistant said: ‘For the first few days, he was smiling and looked happy.
    ‘But that didn’t last long. He became very agitated and couldn’t sleep. He was having really awful dreams. He couldn’t keep still and rocked backwards and forwards. He thought he was going mad.’
    Jamie then started to harm himself, cutting his arms, legs and stomach with a knife.
    He hanged himself at the family home in Northwood, North-West London.
    An inquest in 2003 concluded his death may have been ‘wholly or in part’ linked to his use of the drug. After the hearing Miss Bambrough said: ‘All data on drugs should be made public before they are used on anyone – adults or children.’…”

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    1. Hi Brian,
      Thanks for all the information, interesting reading in the UK papers.
      That’s an interesting point about the relationship between the Murdoch family and GSK. I was wondering if the same is happening here. I found this here http://www.idaireland.com/gsk/ where the Vice-President of GSK Cork says that GSK has the support of the Irish Government through IDA Ireland.
      So Irish taxpayers are funding a pharmaceutical company who promote drugs to children knowing that it can cause suicide. The same GSK who hid the deaths and heart-attacks caused by Avandia in order to keep the drug on the market. I strongly object to that. The bigwigs in GSK should be held accountable for their actions and not just fined (which they are probably insured for). The benefits do not outweigh the risks with Seroxat/Paxil but the benefits must have outweighed the risks for GSK to continue their marketing of killer drugs.
      Leonie

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  2. For companies like GSK (and Lundbeck) we are all just collateral damage… For them.. this is just the cost of doing business. But… at the rate their going, they will have no ‘reputation’ to trade off eventually. Everyone gets there information from the internet nowadays and these crimes will forever be imprinted on the web and found through word searches.. At least we have the internet, imagine the stuff that they could get away with, without any public opinion or backlash, before the internet age?… shocking…

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