A New Low in Drug Research: 21 Fabricated Studies

fabricated drug studiesScott S. Reuben, a prominent Massachusetts anesthesiologist, allegedly fabricated 21 medical studies that claimed to show benefits from painkillers like Vioxx and Celebrex.

Baystate Medical Center said Reuben had faked data used in the studies, which were published in several anesthesiology journals between 1996 and 2008. The hospital has asked the medical journals to retract the studies. The studies reported favorable results from the use of painkillers Bextra and Vioxx -- both since withdrawn -- as well as Celebrex and Lyrica. Dr. Reuben's research work also claimed positive findings for the antidepressant Effexor XR as a pain killer.

The retractions, first reported in Anesthesiology News, have caused anesthesiologists to reconsider the use of certain practices adopted as a result of Dr. Reuben's research. His work was considered important in encouraging doctors to combine the use of painkillers like Celebrex and Lyrica for patients undergoing common procedures such as knee and hip replacements.

Source: Wall Street Journal March 11, 2009