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Dangerous lens solution and other news


As has been the norm of late, Public Citizen has been very busy over the past week advocating for safe drugs, doctor accountability, and comprehensive trade legislation. Testifying in front of Congress and the FDA is only part of what we’ve done. Check out these news highlights.

An Associated Press story picked up by newspapers all over the country tells of a contact lens solution that caused eye infections and, in some cases, even blindness. Even though consumers complained, the problems went unreported by the solution maker for over a year. Dr. Peter Lurie, deputy director of our Health Research Group, weighed in on the issue. Dr. Lurie also voiced his concern about “off-label” uses of botulinum toxin products as news of a Botox alternative, Dysport, emerged.

ABC News caught up with our hospital report this past weekend, featuring it and Dr. Sidney Wolfe, our acting president and director of our Health Research Group, on ABC World News with Charles Gibson. Their segment features Dr. Robert Ricketson, a surgeon who used a screwdriver instead of titanium rod during a back surgery. Three corrective surgeries later, his patient was left bedridden, paralyzed from the waist down. The catch? Dr. Ricketson lost his medical license in Oklahoma and Texas, but found a job in Hawaii because his previous employers had not reported negligence.

Most recently, Reuters wrote about mounting pressure on President Obama to enact new trade legislation. As over 100 lawmakers called Wednesday for such a change, Bill Holland, deputy director for our Global Trade Watch, speaks of our support for the new Trade Act, as it’s been called.

Flickr photo from Michele Catania.