Saturday, January 19, 2008

BMJ Advertising Watch : 19 January 2008

This is the British Medical Journal Advertising analysis for this week.

I'll also comment on any appearance of any discussion in the BMJ about questionable Ezetimibe research.

Rules: As usual this is for the BMJ as delivered to subscribers in the UK. The classified advertisement section is excluded, as are pages advertising the BMA or products of the BMJ/BMA/BNF.
BMJ Advertising analysis 19 Jan 2008
Comment: This week only 98% of the advertising was for pharmaceuticals (there was a single half page advertisement for a Private Healthcare company). As before, there was no advertising space devoted to other products doctors might be inclined to purchase (stethoscopes, expensive cars, services, holidays, books, cosmetics), or non-pharmaceutical healthcare products. The ratio of advertising space to content was about the same as last week (1 page of advertising for each 2.6 pages of content).

There were two rather good articles about osteoporosis in this issue. I'll discuss these over the next few weeks.

Discussion about the Ezetimibe scandal: Still none at all. There was however a full page advertisement for Ezetimibe (Ezetriol, Vytorin, Zetia). The advertisement states "Better Together", "For patients not controlled by initial statin alone". The advertisement doesn't mention that the only evidence available so far suggests that the drug has no clinical benefit at all. It also doesn't mention what happened to the data.

Click here for collated BMJ Advertising analyses.

Postscript: Matthew Holford posted an interesting commentary on this BMJ Ad-watch. He revealed correspondence with the BMJ asking about their reported rejection of a scientific paper criticising GlaxoSmithKline. This rejection was apparently on the basis of the legal costs of review rather than on factual content. He asked how much an advertisement costs in comparison with legal "peer review" of a manuscript (perish the thought). He received no reply. I'll say more about this next week.

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1 comment:

Radagast said...


I mailed the BMJ about advertising, and whatnot, a little while back. It didn't respond.