March #45 : Spin Doctors - by Bob Lederer

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Table of Contents

Dog Days in Malibu


Born in Flames

Gay Guru

Soldier of Fortune

Rare Gem

Marathon Man

On the Waterfront

Race With the Angels

Mean Streets


To the Editor

Ticket to Ride

Death by Disclosure

Slip Off the Old Block

Poster of the Month: Ruff Times


Say What

HIV in the Hood

No Brownie Points

Grades for AIDS

French Twist

Southern Discomfort

Sister Act Up

Sister Act Up


POZarazzi: Call It a Day

Verse: Terminal Girl

Primary Concerns


Naming Names

Fast Company

Junk Mail

Life After Legacy

Spin Doctors

PWAs’ Best Friend

What’s Up, Doc?

HIV’s Incredible Endgame

The ABCs of Baby AZT

Hit the Dirt

Selling Sustiva

Publish or Perish

Best of the Rest

Where to Find It

What a Waste

Full Disclosure

People, Their Pets and Pet Peeves

Parental Guidance

Aunt Evelyn's Letters

Most Popular Lessons

The HIV Life Cycle


Herpes Simplex Virus

Syphilis & Neurosyphilis

Treatments for Opportunistic Infections (OIs)

What is AIDS & HIV?

Hepatitis & HIV

email print

March 1999

Spin Doctors

by Bob Lederer

The recent hype accompanying the release of two nonprotease antiretrovirals, abacavir (Ziagen) and efavirenz (Sustiva), is another reminder of the importance of independent information sources. As usual, pharmaceutical PR machines have spun the modest results of small, short-term clinical trials into claims of extreme drug potency. Indeed, when combined with older meds, abacavir and efavirenz are each said to constitute possible “protease-sparing regimens” (see “Fast Company” and “Selling Sustiva” ). And again as usual, community-based AIDS treatment newsletters have, after carefully weighing the evidence, raised serious questions about the most extravagant and premature claims. So the lesson stands: When making important treatment decisions, don’t rely on glossy smiling-consumer drug ads, short news articles or even the facts offered by an overworked doctor. Dip into the library of national AIDS periodicals (see "Best of the Rest"), and check out some of the most in-depth and trustworthy information available anywhere.

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