Saturday, March 10, 2012

Which physicians have been involved in ghostwriting scandals?

Prominent academic physicians at multiple universities have allegedly been involved in ghostwriting.  Below are just a few examples:

Gloria Bachmann, Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Robert Wood Johnson Medical School
Dennis Charney, Dean, The Mount Sinai Medical Center
Dwight Evans, Professor and Chair, Department of Psychiatry, University of Pennsylvania
Steven Haffner, Assistant Professor, Department of Medicine, Baylor College of Medicine
Martin Keller, Professor of Psychiatry & Human Behavior, Brown University
Marvin A. Konstam, Director, Cardiovascular Center, Tufts University School of Medicine
Stan Kutcher,  Professor, Department of Psychiatry, Dalhousie University
Jeffrey Lisse, Rheumatology Section Chief, The University of Arizona
Charles Nemeroff, Chairman, Department of Psychiatry, University of Miami
Bruce G. Pollock, Head of the Division of Geriatric Psychiatry, University of Toronto
Gary S. Sachs, Associate Clinical Professor of Psychiatry, Psychiatry, Harvard
Alan Schatzberg, Professor, Psychiatry and Behavioral Science, Stanford
Barbara B. Sherwin, Canada Research Chair in Hormones, Brain and Cognition, McGill University
Kimberly Ann Yonkers, Professor of Psychiatry and Obstetrics, Yale School of Medicine

What do medical journals say about ghostwriting?

The Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) published studies exposing the ghostwriting program used to push sales of Vioxx.  In an accompanying opinion, JAMA’s editors excoriated doctors who sign their names to ghostwritten studies and wrote,  "Individuals, particularly physicians, who allow themselves to be used in this way, especially for financial gain, manifest a behavior that is unprofessional and demeaning to the medical profession and to scientific research."

PLoS Medicine filed suit with The New York Times to gain access to hundreds of documents showing how companies used ghostwritten materials to convince women to use hormones after menopause.  The journal then published an archive of the documents, a study of the documents, and an editorial that stated:

It's time to get serious about tackling ghostwriting. As has been shown in the documents released after the Vioxx scandal, this practice can result in lasting injury and even deaths as a result of prescribers and patients being misinformed about risks. Without action, the practice will undoubtedly continue. How did we get to the point that falsifying the medical literature is acceptable? How did an industry whose products have contributed to astounding advances in global health over the past several decades come to accept such practices as the norm?

Founded in 1981, the Project On Government Oversight (POGO) is a nonpartisan independent watchdog that champions good government reforms. POGO's investigations into corruption, misconduct, and conflicts of interest achieve a more effective, accountable, open, and ethical federal government.

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Posted via email from Jack's posterous

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