Document Detail


From Lydia Pinkham to Queen Levitra: direct-to-consumer advertising and medicalisation.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  18761506     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
Abstract/OtherAbstract:
The medicalisation of life problems has been occurring for well over a century and has increased over the past 30 years, with the engines of medicalisation shifting to biotechnology, managed care, and consumers. This paper examines one strand of medicalisation during the last century: direct-to-consumer advertising (DTCA) of pharmaceuticals. In particular, it examines the roles that physicians and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) have played in regulating DTCA in the US. Two advertising exemplars, the late 19(th) century Lydia E. Pinkham's Vegetable Compound (for 'women's complaints') and contemporary Levitra (for erectile dysfunction) are used to examine the parallels between the patent medicine era and the DTCA era. DTCA re-establishes the direct and independent relationship between drug companies and consumers that existed in the late 19(th) century, encouraging self-diagnosis and requests for specific drugs. The extravagant claims of Lydia Pinkham's day are constrained by laws, but modern-day advertising is more subtle and sophisticated. DTCA has facilitated the impact of the pharmaceutical industry and consumers in becoming more important forces in medicalisation.
Authors:
Peter Conrad; Valerie Leiter
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Historical Article; Journal Article    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Sociology of health & illness     Volume:  30     ISSN:  1467-9566     ISO Abbreviation:  Sociol Health Illn     Publication Date:  2008 Sep 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2008-09-02     Completed Date:  2008-11-24     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  8205036     Medline TA:  Sociol Health Illn     Country:  England    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  825-38     Citation Subset:  IM    
Affiliation:
Department of Sociology, Brandeis University, Waltham, MA 02454-9110, USA. Conrad@brandeis.edu
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MeSH Terms
Descriptor/Qualifier:
Advertising as Topic / history,  methods*
Commerce
Consumer Participation*
Drug Industry*
Erectile Dysfunction / drug therapy
Female
History, 20th Century
History, 21st Century
Humans
Imidazoles*
Male
Piperazines*
Sociology, Medical
Sulfones
Triazines
Chemical
Reg. No./Substance:
0/Imidazoles; 0/Piperazines; 0/Sulfones; 0/Triazines; 224785-90-4/vardenafil

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine


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