Today’s weekend Wall Street Journal features a favorable editorial on CEI’s national survey of orthopedic surgeons, which was released earlier this week. As the Journal notes, “it might interest readers to know that 80% of orthopedic surgeons surveyed in a new poll released by the Competitive Enterprise Institute think the painkiller should be back on the market.” The editorial goes on:
That finding isn’t all that surprising. These physicians work regularly with people suffering from chronic pain…Trained in the vagaries of medical treatment, they also know that almost all drugs have risks. So they see no sound reason Vioxx should be ruled out as an option for patients who can’t find relief elsewhere.
More broadly, the 175 orthopedic surgeons surveyed by the Polling Company for CEI seem to agree that the FDA is generally overcautious, not too lenient, when approving new drugs. Some 76% say the FDA approval process is “too slow”; 60% say that “on balance” FDA regulations “hinder” rather than help their ability to treat patients; and 70% said they favor changing the law so that unapproved therapies can be made available so long as they carry appropriate warnings about their status.
(Subscription required for Wall Street Journal link.)