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Sunday, May 31, 2015

Do You Take Any of These Diabetes Medications? │ Is There Now a Reliable IBS Test?

Although I got to bed by 11:50 p.m. last night, I struggled to get out of bed by around 7:20 a.m. this morning.  I wasn't sleeping any longer, but my body just did not want to leave the comfort my bed was affording.

It was my hope to do a beer hike today ─ I especially felt in need of the four-mile round-trip hike because of losing out on the walk I thought I would be getting yesterday for some shopping (my eldest step-son Tho instead drove me to the supermarket, toted around my basket in the store, and then drove me home). 

I worked for a few hours this morning on a new post at my Lawless Spirit website, but I anon found my well-being drastically plummeted.

I returned to bed for over 1½ hours, and only got up about 15 minutes or so into the noon-hour because of how late it was getting.

Before I did anything else, I wanted to at least get that website post half-finished, so I stuck with it.

It took so much time!

I grew inexplicably anxious and battled a sense of hopelessness that I still feel remnants of.  I know much of it had to do with my total physical inactivity, but it was also of deep concern that I was squandering my day on that enslaving post.

When finally I felt I had reached the half-way point, I saved the draft.  And then I started working up the gumption to make that beer hike ─ I needed to (for the sake of reclamation of my self-esteem).

Why have I felt so dispirited today?

My younger brother Mark had been home after spending last night at his girlfriend Bev's home, and he even had a bit of a nap here, too.  And then he left ahead of noon, to be gone until the early evening.

Neither of my step-sons were up, so it seemed clear that I could get away and do the beer hike ─ if nothing else this day.

I managed to fire myself up into the commitment...and then I heard a car horn honk.

A check revealed that my wife Jack had come home from Vancouver with some groceries, and was going to be home for a couple of hours ─ she planned to do some cooking.

I would be going on no hike, nor even exercising here at home.  But at least it was all beyond my control, so I resigned myself to it and did not fret over it.

I supposed Jack was home from maybe 1:30 p.m. until she left for Vancouver again at roughly 3:45 p.m.

I felt a little left out when she and her two sons ate a meal together ─ I had eaten before Jack arrived home, and was no longer hungry.

And now some of that earlier discouragement is revisiting as I write about it all.

Before I move on, I want to post this old small photo that my older maternal half-sister Phyllis E-mailed me yesterday ─ it was taken back when she was Miss Richmond (B.C.) in 1963:


This alert or warning about a certain class of diabetes medications was sent out by the Health Sciences Institute (HSI) about four days ago:

New and (NOT) improved
Four years ago the largest investment bank in the world fired off an urgent alert to all of its investors.

Goldman Sachs warned that a new class of diabetes meds called SGLT2 inhibitors -- drugs that were supposed to be the next billion-dollar blockbusters for companies like Bristol-Myers Squibb and Eli Lilly -- would probably never see the light of day.

Clinical trials had linked SGLT2 inhibitors like Farxiga to horrible side effects such as breast and bladder cancers and kidney and liver damage. Plus the drugs didn't work very well.

Stockbrokers and their clients knew all about the terrible risks of SGLT2 inhibitors -- but diabetics didn't.

Since that time, Big Pharma has steamrolled the FDA and gotten six new SGLT2 inhibitors onto the market -- one may even be sitting in your medicine cabinet or purse right now. And they're just as lethal now as they were four years ago.

In fact, the FDA is now admitting that the same drugs it approved may be triggering a serious blood disorder that can lead to a coma -- or even death.

The FDA has sent a warning to doctors and patients that SGLT2 inhibitors like Farxiga, Invokana and Jardiance can cause a life-threatening condition called ketoacidosis.

Ketoacidosis occurs when your body can't use glucose properly and starts to burn fat for energy instead. If that goes on for too long, the acid levels in your blood skyrocket and you could end up in a diabetic coma or even dead.

It's the kind of disorder you usually see among patients whose diabetes is poorly controlled -- not among people who are forking over their paychecks for some hot new drug like SGLT2 inhibitors.

But at the Endocrine Society's big annual meeting a couple months ago, researchers from the University of Colorado shared the story of a 50-year-old woman who developed a serious and life-threatening case of ketoacidosis after just six doses of Invokana.

And while the dangers of SGLT2 inhibitors may come as news to diabetics and even their doctors, Wall Street and even some of the FDA's top advisors have known about them for years.

In 2011, an FDA advisory panel raised so many concerns about Farxiga -- which was developed by drug giants Bristol-Myers Squibb and AstraZeneca -- that Goldman Sachs analyst Jami Rubin said the chances of any SGLT2 inhibitor ever being approved were "likely dead."

There were concerns about "not only the drug's safety but also efficacy," Rubin wrote. And the trials produced disturbing side effects like an unexplained 500 percent increase in breast and bladder cancers.

"There were questions about serious complications that [the drug companies] tried to finesse," said Erik Gordon, a professor from the University of Michigan.

Drug experts also warned that SGLT2 inhibitors can threaten your kidneys. They all work essentially the same way, by forcing your kidneys to excrete glucose in your urine.

Even if you have moderately reduced kidney function -- which is common among diabetics -- the drugs may cause serious and permanent damage.

But despite dire warnings from medical researchers around the country and even members of its own advisory panel, the FDA opened the floodgates by approving Invokana in 2013.

There are now six of these dangerous SGLT2 inhibitors being prescribed to unsuspecting diabetics. Aside from Invokana and Farxiga (yes, the same Farxiga that the FDA panel recommended against), the list includes:
  • Jardiance (linked to urinary tract infections and heart problems);
  • Glyxambi (a combination of Jardiance and a hormone-mimicking med called Tradjenta that's been linked to pancreatic cancer);
  • Xigduo XR (a combo of Farxiga and metformin that's been linked to dangerously low blood pressure and bladder cancer); and
  • Invokamet (a combination of Invokana and metformin that may cause potentially fatal lactic acidosis).
While each of these drugs comes with its own list of troubling side effects, it's important to remember that they can all trigger ketoacidosis. Catching ketoacidosis early is critical, and you need to be on the lookout for telltale symptoms like fatigue; nausea; vomiting; abdominal pain; shortness of breath; excessive thirst; and confusion.

If you've been prescribed a SGLT2 inhibitor -- and especially if you're experiencing any of these symptoms -- it's urgent that you speak with your doctor as soon as possible. Hopefully you're being given a warning and a chance that many diabetics were denied for years.
The Health Sciences Institute (HSI) are a member site of NewMarketHealth.com.

As far as I know, I have no blood-sugar disorders.

I do not believe that I suffer any level of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), either.  I have a report from Dr. William Campbell Douglass II that he sent out about four days ago concerning that condition, but first I want to offer the sort of news article that he will be rebutting:
Here's what Dr. Douglass had to say about it:

Is this new "IBS test" simply a sneaky new push to sell drugs?
You certainly don't need a test to figure out when it's raining, and you don't need one for irritable bowel syndrome either.

Trust me, when you've got it, you KNOW it -- so I'm going to call BS on the new test for IBS.

It's not for the benefit of patients, and it's not even for their doctors (many of whom wrongly believe IBS is an entirely mental condition).

It's a tool to extract more cash from your bank account to be deposited into a drug companies coffers -- but just not how you might think.

You won't find this written in the glowing media coverage, but this "test" is being developed to help sell the antibiotic rifaximin, which Salix Pharmaceuticals is pushing as the next big IBS cure.

Just one problem: It does no such thing. It MIGHT help some patients with one form of IBS, but so far even the easily impressed FDA hasn't been convinced. The feds haven't actually approved it for the disease yet.

You know what would help them out? A test that redefines IBS to match what this drug treats -- and that's just what this is, because while IBS has many possible causes, this test looks for just one of them.

And it just so happens to be the one the drug might treat.

The test detects antibodies in the blood linked to a bacterial infection caused by food poisoning. That infection, in turn, can cause the immune system to overreact and lash out at the intestine even when the toxin itself is gone.

This "cause" is so uncommon that more than half of all IBS patients given the test come up negative. Despite the huge failure rate, it's being pushed by its inventor, Dr. Mark Pimentel of Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles.

Why is he so big on it?

Just check out this whopper of a disclosure from a 2011 press release from the hospital:

Rifaximin is marketed by Salix Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Salix also provided funding for the studies. Dr. Pimentel discovered the use of rifaximin for IBS, and Cedars-Sinai holds patent rights to this discovery and has licensed rights to the invention to Salix. Dr. Pimentel is a consultant to Salix and serves on its scientific advisory board.

Fox meet henhouse. Talk about a codependent relationship! Everyone in this love triangle between the hospital, the doctor and the company has a vested financial interest in this drug.

And that means none of them have a vested interest in YOU.

That's what I'm here for. If you've got IBS, you don't need an inaccurate test or an unapproved drug.

You need ACTION.

In most cases, the condition is caused or worsened by diet. Many people do well by eliminating processed foods and taking supplements with probiotics and digestive enzymes.

Work closely with a doc who knows how to spot ALL the possible causes of IBS and knows the best ways to treat them. I recommend an experienced member of the American College for Advancement in Medicine. Use their Physician+Link tool on their website to locate a doc near you.

Taking the BS out of IBS,

William Campbell Douglass II, M.D.

Despair is indeed one of the harshest of human conditions.
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