Drug Savings Tips

05 Jun: Antidepressant medications are the most searched drug brands online

Consumers search for antidepressant medications online more than any other class of drug, according to data from comScore. In a recent study of 500,000 search queries, five of the 15 most frequently searched prescription brands were for depression. This is in keeping with our own search results at eDrugSearch.com. Here are those five antidepressant medications — in order of searches: Compare Lexapro prices Compare Effexor prices Compare Cymbalta prices Compare Prozac prices Compare Paxil prices So, which antidepressant medication are right for you? In addition to consulting your physician, here are two helpful resources: The Mayo Clinic offers an excellent overview of your options and considerations in making a decision. Dinah at Shrink Rap, a blog by psychiatrists, explains how she…

05 Jun: eDrugSearch.com featured on The Morning Show with Mike and Juliet

If you read this blog regularly, you know that eDrugSearch.com is an impassioned advocate for licensed Canadian pharmacies — and the American citizens who choose to use them. We work hard to educate consumers on how to stay safe when ordering medications over the Internet. In fact, it’s why we created this site in the first place. This past Monday, we were invited to be part of a panel on the topic of online pharmacy safety on The Morning Show with Mike and Juliet, a nationally syndicated TV program. Scott Baradell spoke on our company’s behalf. Here’s a video excerpt:

27 May: Lipitor: 50 million prescriptions can’t be wrong, right?

Lipitor was the most frequently prescribed brand-name drug in the United States last year, with 50 million prescriptions being filled. Vytorin was right up there, with 20 million. Add in all the other statins and you’re up to an amazing 150 million. As you might expect, we’ve had a fair amount of discussion in the eDrugSearch.com Community about statin drugs, which are used for the treatment of high cholesterol. People are most interested in understanding and comparing the benefits of Lipitor, Zocor and Crestor. Zocor is currently available in generic form in the U.S., but the other two drugs are not. Vytorin, of course, is on the outs these days after research showed in January that this combination drug (essentially…

22 May: Don’t blame the Internet for prescription drug abuse

Yeah, I know; I’ve written about this topic before — more than a few times. But I feel compelled to do so again. Frankly, I’m mad as heck and I can’t take it any more. Just as there have been past hysterias blaming the Internet for sexual predators, pornography, political polarization, celebrity obsession, obesity (go outside and play!) and every other social malady facing our nation, now it seems the media is whipping itself into a frenzy over the dangers of Internet pharmacies for prescription drug abuse. The latest blog post I flagged on this topic, “Internet Pharmacy Websites the New Drug Dealers,” referenced a sad tale on CNN.com headlined, “My husband died from online drugs.” Don’t get me wrong….

16 May: Just how insured ARE you? Prescription drug co-pays are on the rise

Jo Hartley reports: “Health insurance companies are currently revising their pricing systems for very expensive drugs and they are now requiring patients to pay hundreds and sometimes thousands of dollars for prescriptions for drugs that may save their lives or slow the progress of serious diseases. “With the new pricing system, insurers have now abandoned the traditional arrangement in which patients pay a fixed amount for a prescription regardless of what the drug’s actual cost. Instead, now they are charging patients a percentage of the cost of certain high-priced drugs. This percentage is usually 20 to 33 percent and obviously this can amount to thousands of dollars a month for some patients.” Hartley continues: “It is not known how many…

30 Apr: Do I have a chip on my shoulder? Maybe a little bit…

The Texas Startup Blog was kind enough to run a post by me on what it’s like to be a Health 2.0 startup from South Texas. Here’s an excerpt: “I live in Spring Branch, Texas — not Silicon Valley, Silicon Alley or even Austin. I don’t particularly like small talk, about Web 2.0 or anything else. I haven’t prepared a PowerPoint deck full of made-up numbers showing my company’s path to $100 million in three years. I’ve self-funded my company rather than seeking VC funding — which means I don’t have to play the BS game and, more importantly, can build my business without interference. “The result of all this is that, to some people, my startup and I are…

28 Apr: eDrugSearch.com: crunching the numbers

From the press release we distributed this morning: eDrugSearch.com, the Health 2.0 social network and comparison shopping site for prescription drug consumers, announced today that it has generated more than $2.1 million in sales for member pharmacies through 875,000 visitor referrals from its comparison shopping engine. This includes an estimated $435,000 in March, based on 175,000 referrals to member sites. “eDrugSearch.com has established itself as one of the Web’s fastest-growing vertical search engines and comparison shopping sites since our launch last year,” said Cary Byrd, president and founder of eDrugSearch.com. “Our visitors know they can trust the quality and service of the pharmacies in our database — and trust us to deliver lower prices on prescription medications than they can…

20 Apr: Zyrtec slaps down Claritin in guerrilla marketing war

Finally — pharmaceutical advertising on a budget! Yeah, I know I’m late to the party on this one, but I wanted to chime in: Love this campaign. Compared to the shlock we usually get from Big Pharma, it’s a breath of fresh air (so to speak). Read more here. Also here are some prices comparisons: Claritin prices vs Zyrtec prices. However, in price Claritin is the clear winner!

06 Apr: Comparison shopping engines always looking for a better equation

Saul Hansell at the New York Times has written an interesting piece on Zillow, the real estate valuation site that is now getting into mortgage comparison shopping. What I found most intriguing is how Hansell characterized his views on comparison shopping engines generally: I’ve been in love with the potential of online services to turbocharge comparison shopping by combing through all the options to find the very best deals. This is a mindset, I’ve discovered, that I share with many engineers and technically minded business people who also see shopping as a great optimization equation. … For all of them, there has been a sadly predictable transition as idealism morphs into the cruel realities of running a business. The comparison…

02 Apr: Top 25 prescription drug searches for March 2008

Here are the top 25 prescription drug searches on eDrugSearch.com for the month of March, including searches for both medications and medical conditions, starting with the most popular search. eDrugSearch.com visitors have conducted more than five million searches since our launch in January 2007. Viagra Vytorin Glucophage Cialis Synthroid Fosamax Finasteride Amoxicillin Lotrel Wellbutrin Lipitor Levitra Naproxen Singulair Loestrin Valtrex Yasmin Ibuprofen Quetiapine Allegra Lamisil Alendronate Plavix Bactrim Nardil

29 Mar: Personal finance writer Scott Burns offers good healthcare advice, too

Scott Burns is one of the best-read personal finance writers in the United States. I recently came across some thoughts on healthcare Scott shared at AssetBuilder.com, an investment site. Scott is chief investment strategist for AssetBuilder, a Registered Investment Advisor. Scott received the following opinion/query from one of his readers: I believe we should have a nationalized health insurance system based on the Canadian/French Health Care System. Both countries have longer life expectancies, pay less for their health care, and express greater satisfaction with their systems, in polls, than ours. As to “market based” plans, which are put forth as a solution, these would not help people such as me as I have a pre-existing health condition, Charcot-Marie-Tooth. I inherited…

21 Mar: Online prescription drugs: To buy or not to buy?

Here’s a nice video from Employment Crossing with tips on buying prescription drugs online. The one caveat we would add is that the FDA should not be your be-all-and-end-all in determining how, where and what to purchase online. It’s one data point to consider, but as we’ve shown time and again, it is a flawed one.

17 Mar: The FDA can’t protect you; this is why you need to protect yourself

In an article today excoriating the FDA for its regulation of prescription drugs, the New York Times reports: The Institute of Medicine, the Government Accountability Office and the F.D.A.’s own Science Board have all issued reports saying poor management and scientific inadequacies make the agency incapable of protecting the country against unsafe drugs, medical devices and food. Indeed, in the years since the last China drug scandal [in 1999], the share of drugs coming from that country has soared while the F.D.A.’s inspections of overseas drug plants have dropped. There are 566 plants in China that export drugs to the United States, but the agency inspected just 13 of them last year. The agency does not have the money to…

08 Mar: eDrugSearch Community has strong feelings about pharma lawsuits

We’re pleased to say that Tom Lamb at Drug Injury Watch is a member of the eDrugSearch.com Community. He wasted no time after joining in stirring up a little controversy, posing the following question: Do you think that this “federal preemption” of drug injury cases is a good idea or bad policy? Among the responses of community members (which you can see in their entirety here): It would be horrible policy, because as we all know, the FDA no longer has teeth and is basically run by the pharmaceutical industry. If you then say the pharma companies can’t be sued because of FDA approval, you turn the system into a sick (pardon the pun) joke… If these drugs are unsafe…

20 Jan: The dangers of anti-depressants

Fox News ran a provocative story Thursday slamming Big Pharma for overhyping the benefits — and downplaying the dangers — of anti-depressants such as Paxil, Zoloft, Prozac and Effexor. You can read the transcript here or watch the piece below. Frankly, it’s surprising to me to see this kind of anti-Big Pharma slant from Fox News. We’ll see where they go with the story.

17 Jan: Top 25 prescription medication searches for December 2007

Here are the top 25 drug price searches on eDrugSearch.com for the month of December: Accupril prices Nexium prices Viagra prices Combivent prices Acyclovir prices Prozac prices Propecia prices Actos prices Yasmin prices Plavix prices Lipitor prices Crestor prices Levitra prices Synthroid prices Azithromycin prices Valtrex prices Topamax prices Vytorin prices Remeron prices Xenical prices Imitrex prices Levaquin prices Byetta prices Celebrex prices Strattera prices As we state each month, the list isn’t a perfect reflection of the most popular drugs purchased online, largely because of Google. For a variety of reasons, eDrugSearch.com  appears very high in the organic search results for some drugs, but not as high for others. This obviously skews our results. With this caveat, however, we…

03 Dec: Top 25 prescription medication searches for November 2007

Here are the top 25 searches on eDrugSearch.com for the month of November: Accupril Crestor Viagra Plavix Yasmin Lipitor Acyclovir Zyprexa Vytorin Diovan Strattera Climara Levitra Imitrex Simvastatin Zetia Latisse Crestor Abilify Synthroid Topamax Amoxicillin Zetia Combivent Valtrex As we state each month, the list isn’t a perfect reflection of the most popular drugs purchased online, largely because of Google. For a variety of reasons, eDrugSearch.com appears very high in the organic search results for some drugs, but not as high for others. This obviously skews our results. With this caveat, however, we hope that over time our results will shed light on trends in online drug sales. We’ll post our December results next month.

01 Dec: Michigan officials promote lower prescription drug prices

The Michigan Department of Community Health last year created a Web site, MichiganDrugPrices.com, to help the state’s residents find lower prices on prescription medications. Quantcast offers some interesting summary data on the site’s users since the 2006 launch: This site reaches approximately 67,524 U.S. monthly uniques. The site is popular among a heavily female, 55+, mostly Caucasian audience. Site users have an affinity for CanadaDrugs.com. Now, from looking at Quantcast’s “data” on my site and others, I know that the site’s information can be wildly inaccurate — our own site traffic is several times greater than Quantcast reports, although I don’t know that it’s worth the trouble of correcting them and giving them proprietary information from our servers. So take…

28 Nov: Is Patient Privacy Just an Illusion?

Government Healthcare IT interviewed Dr. Deborah Peel, the leader of Patient Privacy Rights. In the podcast she says that Microsoft’s HealthVault concept, which would allow a consumer control over their health information, is better than the data mining approach that others have recommended.  HealthVault also has external auditors to ensure privacy. It’s certainly worth a listen for those that are closely following patient privacy. We are very interested in how this HealthVault concept will play out in the expanding Health 2.0 environment.  It certainly seems to empower people to have full control over their healthcare information, but we are a little skeptical that such a system should be controlled by one company. We can hear it now, “That’s Dr. Microsoft to…

20 Nov: Steve Case Announces that Revolution Health Wins Award

Online healthcare sites are getting hot.  Witness Steve Case, who left AOL and started RevolutionHealth.  Today Steve announced that the site took home a couple of eHealthcare Leadership Awards. “RevolutionHealth.com was just awarded the Best Overall Health Internet Site by the eHealthcare Leadership Awards – and also took home high honors for Best Health Content and Best Overall Design.” The recipients seem a bit pharma-heavy, so we were glad to see consumer-focused RevolutionHealth in the winners circle. It seems the award is well-deserved, and doing some research, I came across two posts by Allen Searls, who may have coined the term Health 2.0.  He writes about it here in his now defunct Wondiring blog in 2005, a company that was acquired by Revolution…

19 Nov: Defining Health 2.0: It’s All About the Consumer

Frankie Dolan has a great post about the definition of Health 2.0 and how it differs from Medicine 2.0. “I have come to think of Health 2.0 websites as being those that provide services geared towards the consumer, and Medicine 2.0 those geared towards services for the medical professional” eDrugSearch is directed at the consumer, so by Frankie’s definition we are a Health 2.0 company.  And a good thing too since I have a real passion for using technology to empower the consumer. What do you think would make a good Health 2.0 application for consumers?  What is missing out there?

05 Nov: The hypocrisy of drug re-importation laws, continued…

Sooooo… the FDA says it doesn’t inspect drugs imported from China and India (and sold through U.S. pharmacies) for safety. Did you know that almost 80 percent of the active ingredients in prescription drugs sold in the U.S. come from these countries? And yet, the FDA still wastes its time with the “issue” of U.S. consumers buying drugs from licensed Canadian pharmacies. Something doesn’t quite add up, does it? Watch the Lou Dobbs report:

24 Oct: Read our RX drug tips in NSIDE MD magazine in San Antonio, Texas

We’ve begun writing a bimonthly column for a wonderful San Antonio publication called NSIDE MD magazine. We invite you to read our first article, Five Tips for Choosing an Online Pharmacy. With the coverage we’ve received from the San Antonio Express-News, the San Antonio Business Journal and local TV, we’re feeling very “loved” by our hometown media. But we’re just getting started, folks … today San Antonio, tomorrow the world 🙂

18 Oct: Top 25 prescription drug searches

We thought it would be of interest to pharma bloggers and others to share a monthly list of the most-searched-for medication prices on eDrugSearch.com. Here are the top 25 searches for the month of September: Simvastatin prices Abilify prices Synthroid prices Yasmin prices Lipitor prices Lamisil prices Symbicort prices Levitra prices Xenical prices Vytorin prices Topamax prices Zetia prices Zoloft prices Crestor prices Cialis prices Aciphex prices Prevacid prices Lisinopril prices Viagra prices Plavix prices Celebrex prices Singulair prices Risperdal prices Diovan prices Casodex prices The list isn’t a perfect reflection of the most popular drugs purchased online, largely because of Google. For a variety of reasons, eDrugSearch.com appears very high in the organic search results for some drugs, but…

10 Oct: Prescription Assistance’s “Orange Bus” is a PR steamroller

Just look at the amount of local news coverage the PPA’s “Orange Bus” campaign is getting across the country. It’s certainly no Straight Talk Express, but I guess people are so desperate for any kind of relief from high prescription prices that they’ll show up to see Montel Williams talk about how great Big Pharma is. Here’s an example of the news coverage this astroturf campaign has been getting.

03 Oct: The Wal-Mart effect

Even though pharmacy giants like CVS and Walgreens have denied that Wal-Mart’s $4 drug plan has affected sales, Walgreens stock has slumped by 15 percent, and the chain has announced lower-than-expected third quarter earnings. According to Peter Rost at Brandweek NRX, weaker margins on generic drugs were the reason for the slump. Peter also says that Wal-Mart has “just started wreaking havoc in the drug market. Target and others followed. Nothing will be the same. Watch as the old stalwarts try to keep prices high, until they finally bite the dust.” Wal-Mart said Sept. 27 it would increase the number of generic medications covered by its plan to 361.

26 Sep: Better nutrition now, fewer pills later

In this 10-minute video, Natalie, a lovely Austin, Texas-based nutritionist, discusses how to improve your diet so you can take fewer statins (cholesterol drugs like Simvastatin), proton pump inhibitors (drugs for heartburn and acid reflux like Nexium and Prilosec) and antidepressants (Prozac, Zoloft, etc.)

19 Aug: Provide a free service to your blog readers: Add a drug-search widget

As readers of our blog should know by now, we’re passionate about what we do at eDrugSearch.com. Yes, we’re a for-profit business — or at least we plan to be. (We’re currently generating zero revenues as we work to grow our member base.) But we’re also on a mission that has nothing to do with making money. We’re fed up with America’s corporate healthcare system — and specifically with Big Pharma’s greed in sucking every last dollar it can from our country’s elderly, working poor, and others who can barely afford to purchase prescription drugs. eDrugSearch.com gives these people an alternative — a place where they can feel safe in searching for lower-cost drugs from licensed pharmacies in countries like…

20 Jul: Older diabetes drugs are cheaper, effective and have fewer side effects

It appears someone finally decided to take a look at the effectiveness and benefits of older diabetes drugs (such as metformin) compared with newer, more expensive ones (such as Avandia). Dr. Shari Bolen of Johns Hopkins University studied various medical databases and found 216 relevant studies and two systematic reviews. According to Reuters: Older drugs controlled blood sugar levels about as well as the thiazolidinediones [Avandia] did. There were some differences, however, in other effects. Thiazolidinediones were the only drugs that increased HDL “good” cholesterol levels, but they also increased LDL “bad” cholesterol levels. Metformin reduced LDL cholesterol levels, while the other agents appeared to have no effect on cholesterol levels. With the exception of metformin, the drugs generally increased…

30 May: eDrugSearch.com featured on KENS 5 in San Antonio

Watch out, world: I’m a TV star now. KENS 5, the CBS affiliate in San Antonio, ran a report on eDrugSearch.com on its evening newcast Tuesday night. Here’s a text excerpt from Wendy Rigby’s story: Millions of Americans who are uninsured or underinsured have trouble affording the prescription medications they need. Now, a South Texas man has come up with a way for them to find better deals safely… For those who can’t afford to pay the high prices, enter Bulverde resident Cary Byrd, whose brainstorming led him to create a Web site called eDrugSearch.com. “I just wanted to create something where people can go and search for the medications online for, you know, cheaper prices,” he said. Here’s how…

01 Dec: Slashdot discussion shows despair, confusion in healthcare debate

This post appeared today on Slashdot: I’m a self-employed programmer who is about to become a father. Previously, my family’s insurance has come through my wife’s employer, but she is eagerly looking forward to being a stay-at-home mom. We must look for that elusive low-cost insurance in order to enable her to do this … On the individual coverage plan front, my research shows story after story of deception, fraud, and general run-around or obfuscation by most of the major players and nearly all the minors. With all of the bad experiences out there, I’ve yet to see a good review of an insurance company. What does the Slashdot crowd use and recommend? The question has received well over 100…