Doctor Gets Prison Sentence for Faked Studies

June 26, 2010 at 8:46 pm 1 comment

Dr. Scott Reuben has been sentenced to six months in federal prison for proving to be one of the most fraudulent players in an increasingly fraudulent pharmaceutical industry. While his behavior is nothing new one, arrests like this do not seem to come along often. I can only hope it’s a sign of things to come — but I won’t hold my breath. I’m left wondering if he was arrested for perpetrating fraud or for not being good enough to keep it hidden.

From The Day:

Dr. Scott S. Reuben, a prolific pain researcher at Bay State Medical Center in Springfield, Mass., who during a 12-year span is believed to have faked at least 21 studies, will also have to return more than $360,000 to drug firms, including Pfizer, that gave him money for research. Pfizer will receive more than $300,000 in the deal that Reuben reached with federal prosecutors as he pleaded guilty earlier this year to one count of healthcare fraud.

Other fines and penalties in the case will require Reuben to repay nearly half a million dollars to various parties.

His faked studies include among others, studies for the drugs Celebrex and Vioxx. The latter of course, was pulled from the market due to concerns about its safety. You may remember those “concerns” adding up to more than 25,000 deaths by the FDA’s estimate.

Purported studies published in well-regarded medical journals specializing in anesthesia have since been retracted…

Rueben’s studies had been seen as pioneering when they were published. His data had supported the use of two of Pfizer’s major products – Celebrex and Lyrica – in combination to treat certain types of post-operative pain.

Of course his studies were pioneering — they were made up. With some of his studies pulled and others remaining on the books, one has to wonder if any are legitimate or if some just haven’t proven to be frauds — yet. I would certainly not want to be on a drug that was shown to be safe by one of the most fraudulent drug researchers in pharmaceutical history. One also has to wonder how many other doctor have faked studies in the major medical journals — or are we supposed to think Reuben’s the only one?

Pfizer getting their money back doesn’t mean they’re blameless either. It seems likely that they were happy to keep paying him as long as he kept coming up with the right answers. Sadly, frauds in this arena seem to be overlooked all too often. I say sadly because millions of lives hang in the balance while their products are sold in staggering quantities based on the work of researchers who are often paid  more for supporting a company’s interests than carrying out research with anything resembling actual integrity. As Jim Edward for BNET put forth in an informative article on the topic,

Pfizer wasn’t looking for research that simply broadened doctors’ knowledge of how Cox-2 painkillers work. It was almost certainly using that research to bolster its “operate for cash” promotion, in which pharmaceutical sales reps persuaded surgeons to write “protocols” for using Pfizer’s Bextra and Celebrex as post-operative painkillers instead of opioid drugs. Such uses were not approved by the FDA.

With all of the money these doctors are getting paid to study the safety and efficacy of drugs that they’re simultaneously paid to promote on the lecture circuit (read: pharma sales pitches as continued education), is a conflict of interest even in question?


Entry filed under: Pharma. Tags: , , , , , , , , , .

Should Transparency Take this Much Work? New Page – A Gallery.

1 Comment

  • 1. william wallace  |  June 27, 2010 at 9:51 am

    It as the iceberg much more being hidden than revealed.

    People invest for profit not loss, thus ongoing prodution
    of worthless drugs, very little if any Govt regulation in
    holding any to account, even less accounting, where it
    being such drug companies are funding political parties.

    The fraud in the promotion the marketing of unsafe as
    dangerious drugs deep as widespread as the pacific.

    Drugs treating mental health alone amount to a yearly
    turnover of $billions / where many such drugs totally worthless, in making not one iota of difference in aid
    to the mental well being of individual. The sad reality
    many of such drugs are responsible for having side
    effects resulting in physical problems… where one
    can’t venture out into the warm sunlight / effect of
    the sun on skin such the individual be badly burned.

    Side effects of damage to kidneys, as where in
    having perfect eyesight / where taking of drugs
    one then need glasses for reading, as daily use,
    etc, etc, thus in treated worthless pills for ones
    mental health problems / one ends in an situation
    in having physical problems added to their woes,
    an sad situation for the individual but great news
    for the drug companies / having people on short
    term courses of drugs / be as winning the silver
    medal / keeping people on / long term courses of
    drugs as (dependent) that where one wins gold.

    We see the power of such companies clearly
    in tobacco profits / where tobacco in making
    $billions of turnover yearly / thus abled fund
    political parties to the tune of $millions in the
    funding of election campaigns, their power
    so great it they whom chose the politicians
    they wish hold power it be them whom pick
    the next president, always they in deciding
    whom hold highest positions in public office.

    The curse of tobacco on the nation in having
    destroyed so many lifes / millions of deaths
    the untold suffering a endless river of tears.
    Thus we see the power of money to corrupt
    those whom blinded by greed, where failing
    to see / hear / the great wrong having done.

    The dire advertizing such a product through
    movies enticing / generation after generation
    where millions on millions of people addicted
    to tobacco / with its added highly addictive
    chemicals..where the dying soldier having a
    cigarette placed in his mouth, this action but
    portrayed as an act of love to a fallen hero.

    Where being portrayed that smoking helping
    cioncentration, in giving contentment, peace
    unto the female / its given glamour / beauty.

    The power of wealth to corrupt being like
    quicksands, one just gets slowly dragged
    under.. thus at present times for the USA
    the quicksand is above the waist, not yet
    enough in getting people screami, yet its
    enough in bringing focus on the situation.

    The material aspect is by far outweighing
    the spiritual, there but great need bringing
    more balance in the spritual (( in spiritual
    I do not mean religions with ideas /beliefs
    of a an fictional heaven)) but the spiritual
    in knowing experiencing there an heaven.

    In spiritual understanding there are many
    teachers, one such teacher..prem rawat.

    On PC search .. prem rawat foundation..
    on the site finding videos of ..prem rawat
    speak at depth on spiritual understanding
    experience / toward the needs in gaining
    of an much needed spiritual development.

    One also finding videos of .. prem rawat
    speak / / on youtube / though the longer
    videos on (prem rawat foundation) site.


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