The Rx Channel

by Debbie Harris — If TV stations were named based on the commercials they show, then my favorite channels appear to be the Prescription Drug Channels. Most of the commercials I see are for prescription drugs. Every once in a while I get to see that girl who named her new car Brad then totally wrecked Brad and sent him to the scrap yard, but ads like that are in the minority. In the span of about two weeks, I jotted down the names of 21 different prescription drugs advertised during the shows I watch. I didn’t count the number of times each drug showed up on my screen. I don’t have that kind of time.

The types of drugs advertised seem to fall into three categories: Social Acceptability, The Boosts, and Why Do You Have to Advertise???

Under the Social Acceptability category we have Chantix, to help people stop smoking. We get to see that friendly guy Ryan giving his testimonial a dozen times a day. He quit smoking with Chantix and so can you! Eucrisa is a topical treatment for eczema that works “above and below the skin.” Cosentyx and Taltz both work on psoriasis (Is there a social support group for these people???) helping people achieve smooth, itch-free skin. Contrave helps with weight loss. Use all three before posting a new profile on Match.com. Myrbetriq works on an overactive bladder and Viberzi deals with abdominal pain and diarrhea. Use these before the first date.

Under The Boosts category we have Zostavax — the “single-shot shingles shot.” With this drug, you can avoid shingles and work on your tongue twisters. There is Entresto, which helps reduce the risk of death in people with heart failure. It shouldn’t be taken by people who are allergic to sacubitril or valsartan. And how would one know that? Take one of those and see what happens.
Both Victoza and Jardiance are for people who have Type 2 Diabetes and heart disease. Oh boy, two treatments in one! But Victoza is an injection that can accompany your insulin injection — as if diabetics need more reasons to puncture their skin. Anoro helps people with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease to breathe more easily. But NEVER use it for asthma episodes. The stress of trying to be sure you’re using it right might make you need Viberzi.

Rexulti is a boost to your anti-depression medication, when one more pill will make life worth living. Repatha is for when your regular cholesterol lowering drug (statin) just isn’t cutting it. But stay away from Repatha if you are allergic to rubber, latex or the needle covers on pre-filled syringes. What’s in this drug?? Prevagen helps with memory problems—if you remember to take it.

Why do you have to advertise??? means: If you have this problem, your introduction to these medications shouldn’t come from TV advertisements.

In this category, there’s Eliquis, to help get rid of blood clots. It comes with a risk of excess bleeding. What better way to get rid of a blood clot than to bleed it out! Xarelto works on blood clots too—in people with atrial fibrillation (irregular heartbeat), heart valve problems, and/or people who’ve had knee or hip replacement. Apparently there’s a lot of clotting going on out there.
Latuda works on people with bipolar depression and schizophrenia. And how does one know that they should “ask your doctor” about this?

Enbrel helps with moderate to severe rheumatoid arthritis, as does Humira. Just be sure you don’t have contact with any germs, because these drugs lower your immune system.

Keytruda works on cancer, particularly skin and lung cancer. Stay on that Chantix, Ryan or you might end up on Keytruda.

After familiarizing myself with all these drugs and hearing all the possible side effects read in rapid-transit fashion by the commercial announcer, I think I’d rather just stay healthy. Then I won’t have to listen to the commercials on The Rx Channel!

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