Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Thanking the drug companies

If you follow blogs, you know that Instapundit and Andrew Sullivan have agreed on very little lately. It took the wonderdul people from Pfizer and Bristol Myers to bring them together. Can peace in the middle east be far behind?

Glenn Reynolds, Instapundit
August 2

INSTAWIFE UPDATE: The Insta-Wife saw her cardiologist today, and they did an EKG and downloaded the information from her ICD, which records its own EKG readings whenever her heart rhythms are funny. Turns out there wasn't much recorded, because her heart rhythms are much, much better. That didn't surprise me, because she's been feeling much better, too. That's not because of the ICD. It will shock her heart out of a dangerous rhythm, or pace it out of one before shocking if it can, which is great, but that's only after things go wrong. It's because of the Tikosyn -- a powerful and hard-to-prescribe anti-arrhythmic -- which is dangerous enough in some people that you have to be hospitalized when you start it, but which has worked wonderfully for her, and without noticeable side effects after the first couple of weeks. The drug has been a godsend for her, and I want to thank the folks at Pfizer for coming up with it. People are always bashing drug companies, but as I've written before, they do a lot more to improve people's lives than most of the critics have ever done, or ever will do.
Glenn Reynolds, MSNBC
August 4

Color me unimpressed with the claims of this critic of the pharmaceutical industry. I'm supposed to be shocked that drug companies use celebrity spokespeople, or that they make drugs to improve the function of people who aren't deathly ill? That's not a problem, that's progress.

The pharmaceutical industry isn't beyond criticism, of course. But I find most of the criticism rather strained, and all of the critics far too slow to give the industry the credit it deserves for the tremendous good it does.
Andrew Sullivan, Daily Dish
July 1

Got new data this week about my virus. You may recall that I went back on meds
because my viral load, after three years of stability at around 20,000 copies
per mililiter of my blood, went to 60,000 and then 140,000. After ten days of
medication, it came down to 1,500. By now, it should be zero. The drugs are
amazing and I barely notice them at all any more the side effects are so minor.
I guess I should add that these not atypical results show that although basic
scientific research must be funded by government, the "evil" pharmaceutical
companies are, in fact, among the most beneficent organizations in the history
of mankind and their research in the last couple of decades will one day be
recognized as the revolution it truly is. Yes, they're motivated by profits.
Duh. That's the genius of capitalism - to harness human improvement to the
always-reliable yoke of human greed. Long may those companies prosper. I owe
them literally my life.

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