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—The Tenormin advertisement described by Dr Kincaid is one of several prescription drug advertisements that have recently appeared in consumer magazines. There are conflicting opinions about whether the public is well served or harmed by such ads. The Food and Drug Administration's view is that the ultimate effects of such communications depend on the content and format of the specific advertisements. This particular piece exemplifies how direct-to-consumer advertising can "trivialize" prescription drugs.The physician must be free to select and prescribe the most appropriate therapy for each patient. Advertising, to physicians or patients, can help make people aware of new treatments or new information about those treatments. However, the federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act prohibits manufacturers from promoting or labeling drugs with false or misleading statements.Increasingly, we see examples of marketing techniques and campaigns that skirt this law. It is difficult to say that giving away
Morris LA, Graham CF. Direct-to-Consumer Advertising With Added Inducements-Reply. JAMA. 1992;267(4):508. doi:10.1001/jama.1992.03480040056021