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Buh-Bye, Darvocet

Buh-Bye, Darvocet

Picture of Barbara Feder Ostrov

Here's what we're checking out today:

Painkillers: Popular (and highly addictive) painkillers Darvon and Darvocet – prescribed to an estimated 10 million Americans in 2009 – will be pulled from the market because they have been linked to potentially fatal heart rhythm problems, reports Andrew Zajac for the Los Angeles Times.

Bad Combo: Were you wondering just how Four Loko and other caffeinated alcoholic drinks manage to be so deadly? Linda Shrieves of the Orlando Sentinel explains.

Medicare Payments: And the annual Medicare "payment fix" game of chicken continues, as the U.S. Senate staves off a planned 23 percent cut to payments for doctors who treat Medicare patients. Happy holidays, doctors – that is, until New Year's Day – when the temporary extension expires.

Pharma Lawsuits: A new cottage industry of "plaintiff finders" has cropped up to serve lawyers who specialize in suing Big Pharma, reports Jim Edwards for BNET. Their services don't come cheap.

Health Reform: Jonathan Oberlander offers a helpful review of the future politics of health reform in the New England Journal of Medicine. (Via the Disease Management Care Blog)

Photo Credit: Amayzun (via Flickr)

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