Navigation Links
TV drug ads: The whole truth?

LEBANON, NH (Sept. 16, 2013) Consumers should be wary when watching those advertisements for pharmaceuticals on the nightly TV news, as six out of 10 claims could potentially mislead the viewer, say researchers in an article published in the Journal of General Internal Medicine.

Researchers Adrienne E. Faerber of The Dartmouth Institute for Health Policy & Clinical Practice and David H. Kreling of The University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Pharmacy found that potentially misleading claims are prevalent throughout consumer-targeted prescription and non-prescription drug advertisements on television.

Over the past 15 years, researchers and policymakers have debated whether drug advertising informs consumers about new drugs, or persuades consumers to take medicines that they may not need. "Healthcare consumers need unrestricted access to high-quality information about health," said Faerber of The Dartmouth Institute, "but these TV drug ads had misleading statements that omitted or exaggerated information. These results conflict with arguments that drug ads are helping inform consumers."

Pharmaceutical companies spent $4.8 billion in 2009, surpassing consumer promotion for nonprescription products of $3 billion that year, the researchers said.

Content for this study came from the Vanderbilt TV News Archive, an indexed archive of recordings of the nightly news broadcasts (the news and commercial segments) on ABC, CBS, and NBC since 1968 and on CNN since 1992. Researchers viewed advertisements in the 6:30𔃅 pm EST period because the nightly news is a desirable time slot for drug advertisers because of the older audience that watches the nightly news.

The researchers reviewed 168 TV advertisements for prescription and over-the-counter drugs aired between 2008 and 2010, and identified statements that were strongly emphasized in the ad. A team of trained analysts then classified those claims as being truthful, potentially misleading or false.

They found that false claims, which are factually false or unsubstantiated, were rare, with only 1 in 10 claims false. False advertising is illegal and can lead to criminal and civil penalties.

Most claims were potentially misleading 6 in 10 claims left out important information, exaggerated information, provided opinions, or made meaningless associations with lifestyles, the researchers said.

False or potentially misleading claims may be more frequent in over-the-counter drug ads than ads for prescription drugs 6 of 10 claims in prescription drug ads were misleading or false, while 8 of 10 claims in OTC drug ads were misleading or false.

The Food and Drug Administration oversees prescription drug advertising while the Federal Trade Commission oversees advertising for nonprescription drugs.

The FDA and FTC have different definitions of false and misleading claims. For example, the FDA interpretation says prescription drug advertising must include information about the harms of the drug, but information on harms is left out of most OTC drug ads.

The researchers said there were some limitations in the study method: the sample was drawn from a 30-minute period of the TV broadcast day on four major networks, and does not represent all ads on TV. Also, they only analyzed what they determined as the most-emphasized claim in each advertisement and the coders need to interpret the meaning of claims to facilitate analysis, which did introduce subjectivity.

"Healthcare consumers need unrestricted access to high-quality information about health, "said Faerber of The Dartmouth Institute. "Consumers may see up to 30 hours of television drug advertising each year, while only spending 15 to 20 minutes, on average, at each visit with their primary care physician."


Contact: Annmarie Christensen
Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center

Related medicine news :

1. Mayo Clinic launches whole genome breast cancer study
2. Kidney cancer patients do better when whole kidney is not removed, U-M study shows
3. Low-dose whole-body CT finds disease missed on standard imaging for patients with multiple myeloma
4. Highly targeted irradiation as good as whole breast radiotherapy in early stage cancer
5. Beef & Pork Wholesaling in the US Industry Market Research Report Now Available from IBISWorld
6. Treating the whole person with autism
7. Treating the whole person with autism sets direction for parent-clinician collaboration
8. Whole-genome scan helps select best treatment for childhood cancer
9. Rebuilding a whole heart for children born with only half of 1
10. Benefit6 Whole Body Protection, a New Product by I Do Strive LLC, Provides Maximum Antioxidant Protection
11. Benefit6 Whole Body Protection, a New Product by I Do Strive LLC, Provides Increased Energy Production According to Recent Studies
Post Your Comments:
(Date:6/27/2016)... Aliso Viejo, California (PRWEB) , ... June 27, 2016 , ... ... that are fully customizable inside of Final Cut Pro X," said Christina Austin - ... with another unique style. Final Cut Pro X users can now reveal ...
(Date:6/27/2016)... ... June 27, 2016 , ... ... payment industry today announced its strategic partnership with Connance, a healthcare industry ... The two companies’ proven, proprietary technology combine to provide health systems, hospitals ...
(Date:6/27/2016)... , ... June 27, 2016 , ... recently awarded ... Eyeglasses . , Millions of individuals in the United States and Canada wear ... a way to both correct vision and make a fashion statement. Even celebrities use ...
(Date:6/26/2016)... ... , ... On June 10-11, 2016, A Forever Recovery, a holistic treatment center ... Breakfast Table in Battle Creek, MI, where the rehabilitation facility is located. This annual ... the world’s leading providers of cereal and other breakfast foods. Its residents often refer ...
(Date:6/26/2016)... Carolina (PRWEB) , ... June 26, 2016 , ... ... of a new product that was developed to enhance the health of felines. The ... centuries. , The two main herbs in the PawPaws Cat Kidney Support ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/24/2016)... , June 24, 2016   Bay Area ... Network,s Dean Center for Tick Borne Illness ... and Rehabilitation, MIT Hacking Medicine, University of California, ... today announced the five finalists of Lyme ... disease.  More than 100 scientists, clinicians, researchers, entrepreneurs, ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... 24, 2016 Dehaier Medical Systems Ltd. (NASDAQ: ... develops, markets and sells medical devices and wearable sleep ... a strategic cooperation agreement with Hongyuan Supply Chain Management ... on June 20, 2016, to develop Dehaier,s new Internet ... agreement, Dehaier will leverage Hongyuan Supply Chain,s sales platform ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... 24, 2016   Pulmatrix, Inc ., (NASDAQ: ... inhaled drugs, announced today that it was added to ... its comprehensive set of U.S. and global equity ... an important milestone for Pulmatrix," said Chief Executive Officer ... of our progress in developing drugs for crucial unmet ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: