A short history of pharmaceutical marketingBMJ 2012; 345 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.e7801 (Published 20 November 2012) Cite this as: BMJ 2012;345:e7801
- Robin Ferner, director, West Midlands Centre for Adverse Drug Reactions, City Hospital, Birmingham B18 7QH, UK
Thomas Gainsborough’s painting Peasants Going to Market: Early Morning suggests these peasants have a fairly straightforward plan to sell their meagre baskets of produce, which they will not expect to make them wealthy. Ironically, the canvas was one of a collection amassed by Thomas Holloway, who made a fortune from patent medicines, adroitly using newspapers both for explicit advertising and as a vehicle for news stories of astounding cures.1 Unsurprisingly, he advocated the “Hollowayian System of Medicine,” encapsulated in the slogan, …
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