Minerva

Minerva

BMJ 2001; 322 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.322.7293.1072 (Published 28 April 2001) Cite this as: BMJ 2001;322:1072

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Four fifths of new drugs that come on to the market add little or nothing to existing drugs, says a French pharmacology journal (Prescrire International 2001;10:52-3). An article blames French and European regulatory agencies for uncontrolled increases in “me too” drugs that drive up the nation's drugs bill and add to confusion for patients and prescribers. The problem is particularly evident among drugs for common chronic diseases. Doctors in France can choose from 12 angiotensin converting inhibitors, five low molecular weight heparins, and a wide range of non-steroidal anti inflammatory drugs.

Radiologists often complain that they are rarely acknowledged in Minerva pictures, despite their essential contribution interpreting radiological images. The picture in BMJ of 3 March prompted the latest round of angry correspondence, and Minerva was saved from a severe beating by the editor only by a frantic search through the files and the discovery that a radiologist had reviewed both images and had found them credible. To save her from this kind of stress, please be considerate to radiologists and give them credit where it's due.

In 1349, hundreds of London's plague victims were buried in a plague pit to the north east of the Tower of London. Six hundred and fifty years later, palaeoepidemiologists dug them up again to find out whether …

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