Bad Science hilariously exposed the tricks that quacks and journalists use to distort science, becoming an international bestseller. Now Ben Goldacre puts the $600bn global pharmaceutical industry under the microscope. What he reveals is a fascinating, terrifying mess.
We like to imagine that medicine is based on evidence and the results of fair tests. In reality, those tests are often profoundly flawed. We like to imagine that doctors are familiar with the research literature about a drug, when in reality much of the research is hidden from them by drug companies. We like to imagine that doctors are impartially educated, when in reality much of their education is funded by pharmaceutical industry. We like to imagine that regulators let only effective drugs onto the market, when in reality they approve hopeless drugs, with data on side effects casually withheld from doctors and patients.
All these problems have been protected from public scrutiny because they're too complex to capture in a sound bite. Ben Goldacre, however, shows that the true scale of this murderous disaster fully reveals itself only when the details are untangled. He believes we should all be able to understand precisely how data manipulation works and how research misconduct on a global scale affects us. With Goldacre's characteristic flair and a forensic attention to detail, Bad Pharma reveals a shockingly broken system and calls for something to be done. This is the pharmaceutical industry as it has never been seen before.