Posted by Richard Willett - Memes and headline comments by David Icke Posted on 23 May 2024

Are We Being Told the Full Story on Ozempic?

You’ll all have no doubt heard and read possibly statistically-challenged journalists hyperventilating about the new ‘miracle drugs’ – Ozempic and Wegovy. At first they were targeted at the very lucrative weight loss market. But now a new study tells us they can also reduce the risk of heart attacks and strokes:

But there are some curious aspects to this story. Firstly, this impressively-positive study was sponsored by Novo Nordisk – the manufacturer of the two drugs. Moreover, the latest version of the study was completed a couple of months ago. The fact that it is now being so widely reported suggests that what we’re getting may be a well-funded PR campaign rather than hard-working journalists coming to conclusions based on actually looking at the detailed study results. Some cynics have even suggested that the ‘miracle, breakthrough drugs’ campaign has been launched to try to distract us from stories about the negative and sometimes dangerous side-effects of these two drugs.

But perhaps the key issue is: what is actually being measured by the reported “20%” reduction in heart attacks and strokes in the drugs manufacturer’s study?

There are two main ways a pharma company can express results of its clinical trials – ‘relative risk’ and ‘absolute risk’. Let me use a simple example to explain.

Let’s imagine a five-year study done on a new statin in a medium-risk group of say 10,000 participants. Half the participants are given the new statin and the other half a placebo. Let’s further imagine that just 1.9% of those given the statin have heart attacks during the five years compared to 3.1% in the placebo group. The statin manufacturer could report that the risk of a heart attack in the group given the statin reduces by 120 heart attacks per 10,000 people. That’s an absolute risk reduction of around one person per 100 people or 1.2%. But given typical side-effects of statins – headache, dizziness, feeling sick, feeling unusually tired or physically weak, digestive system problems such as constipation, diarrhoea and indigestion, muscle pain, sleep problems, low blood platelet count – many doctors would not be too enthusiastic about prescribing this statin and many people wouldn’t be too excited about taking it for the rest of their lives if it just reduced the risk of a heart attack by one person per 100.

However, there’s another way for the pharma company to report its study results – this is the ‘relative risk’. In this case, the ‘relative risk’ of having a heart attack for those not taking this ‘wonderful new groundbreaking’ statin would be around 63% higher (3.1÷1.9) than those taking the statin. So using the ‘relative risk’, the pharma company could report that their statin more than halves the risk of a heart attack. Now that’s a more impressive claim to encourage doctors to prescribe and patients to take this statin.

However, when reporting side-effects from their products, pharma companies tend to use ‘absolute risk’. For example, study of around 467,000 people on various medical databases was conducted to assess whether there was an increased risk of people on statins developing acute pancreatitis. In the non-statin group (233,425) there were 1,355 cases of acute pancreatitis and in the statin group (233,647) there were 1,807 cases. If the pharma company was to use ‘relative risk’, it’d have to admit that there was a 33% increased risk of developing acute pancreatitis from taking statins. That’s not likely to encourage either doctors or patients. However, using ‘absolute risk’ the pharma company could say that the increased risk of acute pancreatitis from statin use was a mere one case per 1,000 people. That’s obviously a much more positive message than using the ‘relative risk’ of saying there was a 33% increased risk of acute pancreatitis.

Read More: Are We Being Told the Full Story on Ozempic?

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