Editorial: Use of legal drugs is growing out of control

Prescription drugs have overtaken illegal drugs in terms of American addicts. It seems unusual that prescription drugs would be such a problem. After all, they can be given out based only on a doctor’s recommendation, which should make them harder to come by compared to over-the-counter drugs. Demand, however, has freed them up.
Watch any prime-time TV show and you’ll see numerous ads for prescription drugs to treat countless maladies and even some conditions that are brand new. Melody Peterson, author of “Our Daily Meds,” recently attended a pharmaceutical conference where one of the topics was “Creating a disease.” It was called overactive bladder, which used to be called incontinence in elderly people. Now people of any age who think they go to the bathroom too often can get a drug called Detrol. The drug became a blockbuster seller for Pfizer.

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