My Authors
Read all threads
Is it a shock-horror for M.D.s to prescribe you a medication that hasn't been proved effective for the use in question? No, it's completely normal. I explain "off-label prescribing" and its relationship to COVID-19 care at @dcexaminer /1…
The news hook is the flap over use of chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine in treating #COVID19 patients and the suggestion that there's something not on the up-and-up about doing so since they aren't FDA approved for that. /2
"It’s both legal and utterly routine for doctors to prescribe a drug for indications other than the one for which it has been approved — so-called “off-label prescribing.” In fact, an estimated 20% of pharmaceuticals reach patients that way," I write. /3
The catchphrase “has not been proven effective” is, in truth, more a legal statement than a medical one. And it will be true almost by definition in the case of treatments aimed at a newly emergent malady, for which there will be no compounds proven effective yet. /4
What leaves the issue so confused is that it's completely okay for docs to seek for and find valuable uses for drugs other than the original indication, but double-plus-illegal for a drug marketer to talk about that, even if entirely truthfully. /5
"There’s a good chance that if some compounds prove useful against COVID-19, the first such will be discovered among those already prescribed for other indications." If so, it will be another instance, among many, of drugs that are prescribed off-label saving lives. /6
Related, this recent line from @slatestarcodex is so apt: "Just like the legal term for 'not proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt' is 'not guilty', the medical communication term for 'not proven effective beyond a reasonable doubt' is 'not effective'".…
Missing some Tweet in this thread? You can try to force a refresh.

Enjoying this thread?

Keep Current with Walter Olson 😷

Profile picture

Stay in touch and get notified when new unrolls are available from this author!

Read all threads

This Thread may be Removed Anytime!

Twitter may remove this content at anytime, convert it as a PDF, save and print for later use!

Try unrolling a thread yourself!

how to unroll video

1) Follow Thread Reader App on Twitter so you can easily mention us!

2) Go to a Twitter thread (series of Tweets by the same owner) and mention us with a keyword "unroll" @threadreaderapp unroll

You can practice here first or read more on our help page!

Follow Us on Twitter!

Did Thread Reader help you today?

Support us! We are indie developers!

This site is made by just three indie developers on a laptop doing marketing, support and development! Read more about the story.

Become a Premium Member ($3.00/month or $30.00/year) and get exclusive features!

Become Premium

Too expensive? Make a small donation by buying us coffee ($5) or help with server cost ($10)

Donate via Paypal Become our Patreon

Thank you for your support!