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News of the Weird
 

Anything for a buck


September 16th, 2010

More than a half-million children in the U.S. take antipsychotic medicines.

More than a half-million children in the U.S. take antipsychotic medicines and (reported The New York Times in September) "(e)ven the most reluctant (doctors) encounter a marketing juggernaut that has made antipsychotics the nation's top-selling class of drugs by revenue, $14.6 billion last year, with prominent promotions aimed at treating children." In one psychiatrist's waiting room, observed the Times reporter, "(C)hildren played with Legos stamped with the word Risperdal" (an antipsychotic made by Johnson & Johnson). (The company, which recently lost its patent on the drug, said it has stopped handing out the toys " which it insisted were not toys at all but advertising reminders for doctors.)
 
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