Medications

Reforming pharmacy benefit manager practices may lead to drug cost savings

Efforts to control health care costs in the United States often focus on the listed prescription drug prices, but a perspective published by the Journal of the American Medical Association suggests that unregulated pharmacy benefit manager practices also may contribute to escalating expenses. Researchers from the University of North Carolina Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center, Northwestern […]

Medications

Law backs doctors who prescribe opioids to the dying

Some doctors fear litigation and professional ruin if they are seen to have overprescribed opioids to terminally ill patients, according to a University of Queensland researcher. Palliative care expert Professor Geoffrey Mitchell said opioid overuse and some states’ new assisted dying legislation had put end-of-life care clinicians created a “perfect storm” of fear for clinicians […]

Medications

Canada’s Ontario province says will sue opioid makers

Canada’s most populous province of Ontario on Monday announced plans to sue opioid makers to recover health care costs related to the deadly addiction epidemic. Ontario’s attorney general, Caroline Mulroney, said the province will join a lawsuit launched last year by British Columbia against more than 40 opioid manufacturers and wholesalers. “The opioid crisis has […]

Medications

FDA Approves Balversa

April 12, 2019 — The U.S. Food and Drug Administration today granted accelerated approval to Balversa (erdafitinib), a treatment for adult patients with locally advanced or metastatic bladder cancer that has a type of susceptible genetic alteration known as FGFR3 or FGFR2, and that has progressed during or following prior platinum-containing chemotherapy. Patients should be […]

Medications

Drug interaction causes hypotension

The commonly used muscle relaxant tizanidine can lower blood pressure. Tizanidine is metabolized by the enzyme CYP1A2, and concurrent use of tizanidine and a CYP1A2 inhibitor, such as ciprofloxacin, greatly increases tizanidine plasma concentrations. Despite package insert warnings, tizanidine and CYP1A2 inhibitors are commonly co-prescribed. Cecilia Chung, MD, and colleagues used electronic health records to […]

Medications

Pain clinics could cut down on opioid use, team finds

Chronic non-cancer pain is sometimes managed with high-dose opioids, which has partially contributed to the current opioid epidemic. New research from pain specialists at the University of Arizona and Banner – University Medicine may provide options other than opioids for patients with non-cancer chronic pain. “Our study shows the possible potential of pain clinics in […]