Merolla Chiropractic

100 Bedford Street
New Bedford, MA 02740


By Dr. Mike Merolla
April 22, 2012
Category: low back pain
Tags: chiropractic   back pain   drugs   safety  

Big Pharma probably has its hooks into you and you don’t even know it. 

 This was brought home to me yesterday in a conversation I had at a party.  Big Pharma, in case you’re unaware, is the pharmaceutical industry. 

 The pharmaceutical industry spends billions of dollars every year on direct to the consumer advertising.  The only other country besides the U.S. that allows the pharmaceutical industry to advertise directly to consumers is New Zealand – it’s banned in all the others.  The industry makes billions more manufacturing those drugs and then distributing them to you through your medical doctor and pharmacy.

And most people are led to believe drugs are safe

I had a conversation with a friend’s mother that reminded me of all this.  She had recently fallen off a chair while cleaning her windows.  Over the next few days she developed back pain.  It would not go away, so she saw her primary doctor.  He placed her on two drugs: an anti-inflammatory and a muscle relaxant.  By the time we talked - it was now almost 3 weeks after the injury - she was also taking over the counter Tylenol (acetaminophen).  I asked her when she was to return to her doctor, and she told me a follow up visit had never been made or discussed.  In the meantime, she was getting no relief!

 I asked her why she had not talked to me (she knows me very well).  She told me she had thought of calling, but was afraid of having her “back cracked” and though it might not be safe since she was in so much pain.

You can imagine my surprise.  I knew that acetaminophen caused about 500 deaths a year from liver failure and was responsible for over 50,000 ER visits per year (just go to WebMD for a recent article:

But she didn’t know the dangers of medication and thought it was the chiropractor who was to be avoided.

 Why would she think this? 

Well as you might imagine, one answer is Big Pharma.  They have a poor track record when it comes to letting us know about the potential dangers of their medications.  They also have great difficulty stating the true benefits vs. risks of their drugs.  For a recent example, you can read about Johnson and Johnson, which has been fined more than $1.2 billion for deceptive marketing of Risperdal, its antipsychotic drug.  And this is just one of 11 lawsuits over Risperdal that Johnson and Johnson has been involved in over the last several years.  (See CBS news:$1.1b-in-risperdal-case/).

 This story does have a happy ending. 

As you might imagine, after talking with me, she made an appointment in the office and began feeling better after one treatment one!  More relief came from hands on care than almost 3 weeks on medication. 

And her liver is fine with the chiropractic adjustments!  I don’t think the same can be said for the drugs.