When the Cure Is Worse Than the Disease
by Bill Sardi
by Bill Sardi
Mary wonders why the new young doctor she visited recently says to nearly every patient, after examining their throat, that it looks like their esophagus is being eroded by stomach acid and they need to start taking acid-blocking pills. He hands patients free samples provided by pharmaceutical companies. The patients are oblivious to the fact that if they begin using the drug, they may never be able to stop taking it without experiencing an excruciatingly painful bout of rebound heartburn.
One way to build an income in private medical practice is to hook patients on drugs that continually require re-examination, testing and prescription renewal.
For example, blood thinners require prothrombin tests to determine how long it takes the blood to clot. Blood pressure pills require monitoring of blood pressure. And in the example above, once patients start taking acid-blocking medications they will find it is nearly impossible to stop taking them because withdrawal will provoke rebound acidity with throat-gripping pain.
Since the early 1990s it has been known that acid-blocking (histamine blocking) drugs commonly prescribed for heartburn create dependency. Withdrawal from the drug will create rebound hyper-acidity that causes the patient to reach for the antacid pills in desperation again.  ,  To make matters worse, acid blockers may induce more, not less, disease. Stomach acid is a defense against invading pathogenic bacteria that enter the gut in food (foods are not sterile, but have low bacteria and mold counts that stomach acid normally kills). The habitual use of acid blockers may result in infection and even cancer. 
Most drugs don't work, are inappropriate or are designed to make things worse
Critical examination of the effectiveness of prescription drugs reveals that there is (1) convincing data that most prescription drugs are not only ineffective but may worsen the condition being treated (yet are approved by the FDA), that (2) some of these medications appear to be designed to create life-long dependency upon the drug (drug withdrawal exacerbates symptoms), and that (3) some long-standing drugs that are the hallmarks of modern medicine have begun to lose their biological punch.
There are many examples of this:
It has recently been shown that asthma symptoms worsen upon withdrawal of the drug Accolate (zafirlukast), with benefits lasting only for the first five weeks and then symptoms return soon thereafter. The FDA approved this drug based upon short-term use data. Benefits are seen for only the first five weeks, after which symptoms return to their original state within seven weeks. Side effects range from diarrhea to liver damage. With no long-term benefits, the drug is only problematic for users. 
Other asthma drugs, such as albuterol, ventolin and salbutamol, work in the short term to relax airways, but over the long term over-sensitize the body and make the drugs less effective. Then airways become more sensitive to asthma triggers. 
Quetiapine, a drug commonly used in nursing homes to treat agitation and related symptoms in people with Alzheimer's disease, actually worsens their condition and speeds the rate of their mental decline. 
First-line drugs used to treat Alzheimer's do not stop the progression of the disease and are largely disappointing,  and side effects caused by second-line treatments (like Quetiapine) for Alzheimer's-related psychosis, aggression and agitation, offset any modest advantages of first-line drugs.  Drugs like these ensure your loved ones will never make it out of the Alzheimer's care facility.
Diabetes rates are exploding in America. Millions of Americans are being placed on anti-diabetic drugs. But nearly all anti-diabetic drugs result in weight gain and eventual total dependency upon insulin injections.  ,  This is another example of drugs locking patients into inevitably more severe disease.
Disease substitution, not disease treatment
All too frequently, drugs substitute one disease for another. For example, most anti-psychotic drugs induce weight gain and diabetes.  ,  This is so typical that many people believe a pudgy body always accompanies mental disorders.
Another example of disease substitution is the treatment of high blood pressure with diuretics which can induce a vitamin B1 (thiamine) deficiency that results in heart failure. One study found a third of patients hospitalized for heart failure, who are often treated with diuretics, were vitamin B1 deficient.  Vitamin therapy is uncommon in hospital settings.
Blood pressure drugs: inappropriate treatment
Consider drug therapy for high blood pressure, what doctors call hypertension. The idea is to lower blood pressure with medications and reduce the risk for a stroke. But no single blood pressure pill seems to work. More than one drug is often needed, and there are few if any studies that prove combination therapies are safe and effective. 
Most blood pressure drugs do not address the cause of the disease, which commonly are age-related changes in blood sugar or hardening of the arteries, resulting in inability of the blood vessels to dilate (widen) upon physical or mental exertion or stress.
Age-related inability to control blood sugar levels is generally caused by insulin resistance (inability of insulin to enter cells) which is induced by iron overload,  ,  ,  and hardening of the arteries by calcification which impairs dilation.
Diabetics experience buildup of underlying calcium in their arteries, which largely explains diabetic hypertension. 
Calcification of the inside wall of arteries induces coronary artery disease and hypertension, which can be measured by a CT scan.  Rats that spontaneously develop hypertension exhibit calcified aortas (the aorta is the first blood vessel outside the heart). 
Once the aorta stiffens due to calcification, then the heart must pump harder against this resistance, and hypertension develops. Societies that consume the most calcium have the highest rates of cardiovascular disease. Presently used calcium blocker drugs are not so satisfactory, but fortunately nature provides a component in whole grains (IP6 phytate, bran factor), which dissolves calcifications, but IP6 goes unused by modern medicine. 
But instead of employing agents that will reduce the iron load or calcifications, like IP6  rice bran, vitamin D,  vitamin K  or magnesium,  other inappropriate medications are used, such as:
Beta blockers, which slow the heart rate to control blood pressure, but an overly fast heart rate is not the common cause of hypertension. Beta blockers induce a form of heart failure, cause fatigue and impotence and breathing problems, another example of disease substitution.
ACE inhibitors (angiotensin converting enzyme), which are employed to control blood pressure, but again, hypertension is not commonly caused by an excess of this enzyme.
Diuretics (water pills), which are prescribed for hypertension, but again, chronic elevated blood pressure is not caused by too much fluid in the circulatory system. The depletion of water will artificially lower blood pressure, but also deplete the body of essential minerals (electrolytes) required for proper heart rhythm and deplete vitamin B1 (thiamine) which then induces heart failure and mental problems, as previously mentioned.
Adults at risk for cardiovascular disease are warned they will experience a heart attack if they don't take their cholesterol-lowering drugs. Yet with millions of Americans taking these drugs, the number of heart attacks remains about the same. There is simply no evidence that statin drugs, the most commonly used drug for cholesterol reduction, reduce mortality rates. 
It is said statin drugs lower the risk for a heart attack by 30% (relative number), but in hard numbers the risk reduction is almost imaginary, with only 1-in 70 high-risk individuals, and in maybe 1-in 300 healthy individuals, averting a non-mortal heart attack, and these imaginary benefits are weighed against the real risk for liver damage, memory loss, muscle damage and other side effects. (Ask yourself how the FDA could possibly approve such a class of ineffective drugs.)
Paul J. Rosch, Clinical Professor of Medicine and Psychiatry at New York Medical College, has recently said:
The belief that coronary artery atherosclerosis (plaque) is due to high cholesterol from increased saturated fat intake originated from experiments in herbivorous animals. It was reinforced by reports allegedly demonstrating this sequence of events in various populations but ignoring contradictory data. The idea has been perpetuated by powerful forces using similar tactics to preserve the profit and the reputations of those who promote this doctrine. Opponents find it difficult to publish their scientifically supported opinions. The advent of statins has further fuelled this fallacious lipid hypothesis, despite compelling evidence that their effect is not due to cholesterol lowering and that serious side effects have been suppressed and alleged benefits have been hyped. The adverse effects of the cholesterol campaign on health, quality of life, the economy and medical research are inestimable. It is imperative that public health officials, physicians and patients are apprised of proof that it is misguided, malicious and malignant. 
This outspoken opinion was aired in a medical journal published outside the U.S.
Drugs losing their punch
Add to all these aforementioned problems with prescription medications the fact that the “magic bullets” of modern medicine, the antibiotic drugs, are becoming less and less effective due to germ resistance. Germs are now developing resistance against vancomycin, the antibiotic of last resort, which is reserved for use when other antibiotics fail. Reports are increasing that vancomycin is unable to kill off Staphylococcus aureus that causes pneumonia, which can be mortal.  An estimated 33—55% of Staphylococcus aureus infections in U.S. hospitals are now resistant to first-line antibiotic therapy.  Repeated use of antibiotics pushes patients to the day when they will develop an infection and not be able to recover from it.
In the cancer treatment arena, resistance to chemotherapy is believed to cause treatment failure in over 90% of patients with metastatic (spreading) cancer.  One study shows chemotherapy works to produce 5-year survival in less than 3% of cases.  Chemotherapy does temporarily shrink tumors by 50%, but leaves the patient with a totally impaired immune system. Furthermore, chemotherapy cannot penetrate solid tumors (breast, prostate, lung, colon, pancreas, brain, liver, etc), which represent the majority of tumors in humans. Most cancer patients succumb to side effects caused by treatment before they do from their tumors.
The major classes of prescription drugs are failures. Of concern is the realization most drugs are never designed to address the underlying biochemical causes of disease and may intentionally be designed to create life-long dependency.
Adjectives that could be used to describe modern pharmacology range from “disappointing, unacceptable, ineffective,” to “immoral, despicable, shameful, appalling, wicked, dreadful.” The Food & Drug Adminstration approval of such drugs gives false credence to medical therapies that were never designed for cure but rather to keep patients in a state of chronic disease and drug enslavement. This report begs for a follow-up report on safe and effective alternatives to prescription drugs, which is forthcoming.
- Nearly all anti-diabetic drugs cause a person to become overweight and totally dependent upon insulin.
- Asthma drugs sensitize the body to triggers that worsen this condition.
- There is no evidence that cholesterol-lowering drugs reduce mortality rates.
- All cancer chemotherapy drugs result in tumor resistance.
- None of the many drugs prescribed to control high blood pressure address the cause of hypertension.
- Antacid “heartburn” drugs induce greater problems when withdrawing from them, locking patients into lifetime use.
- Of the many drugs used to treat age-related senility, none stop the progression of mental decline and some hasten it.
- To an increasing degree, man-made antibiotics produce germ-resistance and mortality rates are rising from infections once conquered by these drugs.
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August 25, 2008
Bill Sardi [send him mail] is a frequent writer on health and political topics. His health writings can be found at www.naturalhealthlibrarian.com. He is the author of You Don't Have To Be Afraid Of Cancer Anymore.
Copyright © 2008 Bill Sardi Word of Knowledge Agency, San Dimas, California. This article has been written exclusively for www.LewRockwell.com and other parties who wish to refer to it should request permission to link rather than posting at other URLs.