Bottle of Lies: The Inside Story Of The Generic Drug Boom

Do we really know the medicines we take?

Book Name: Bottle Of Lies

Author: Katherine Eban


Many have hailed the widespread use of generic drugs as one of the most important public-health developments of the twenty-first century. Today, almost 90 percent of our pharmaceutical market is comprised of generics, the majority of which are manufactured overseas. We have been reassured by our doctors, our pharmacists, and our regulators that generic drugs are identical to their brand-name counterparts, just less expensive. But is this really true?

Katherine Eban’s Bottle of Lies exposes the deceit behind generic-drug manufacturing—and the attendant risks for global health. Drawing on exclusive accounts from whistleblowers and regulators, as well as thousands of pages of confidential FDA documents, Eban reveals an industry where fraud is rampant, companies routinely falsify data, and executives circumvent almost every principle of safe manufacturing to minimize cost and maximize profit, confident in their ability to fool inspectors. Meanwhile, patients unwittingly consume the medicine with unpredictable and dangerous effects.

The story of generic drugs is truly global. It connects middle America to China, India, sub-Saharan Africa, and Brazil, and represents the ultimate litmus test of globalization: what are the risks of moving drug manufacturing offshore, and are they worth the savings?

A decade-long investigation with international sweep, high-stakes brinkmanship, and big money at its core, Bottle of Lies reveals how the world’s greatest public-health innovation has become one of its most astonishing swindles.

Book Review:

The author uses a POV-like approach, with each chapter switching between the perspectives of different characters to slowly tell the story of this huge scam that claims to have saved countless poor people.

In the traditional perception of many people, the reason why the price of genuine drugs is so expensive is because the preliminary research and development costs of the drugs are so incredibly high. So during the patent protection period, the developers of the drugs are allowed to make high enough profits to give them the incentive and ability to develop better drugs.

As for the pharmaceutical itself, that is not with a few money, so once the patent protection period is over, the generic drugs that come out are only a few tenths or even a few hundredths of the price of the genuine drug is not much to be surprised.

But the author of this book uses detailed data and a large amount of evidence to prove that the reason why generic drugs are so cheap is because they found that the authorities are not so strict with their own testing, the pharmaceutical chain can save the province’s steps, can not save the same province, as long as you can use fake muddle definitely do not use the real ……

And in order to save costs and at the same time avoid the most possible trouble, generic drug companies sent to different countries of the drug quality is also completely different, the poor countries get the drug with fake drugs is not much different at all.

When I closed the book with a heavy heart, I searched the Chinese Internet for information about generic drugs. I can say that except for the comments about this book, all the platforms are full of praise for generic drugs, and any comments about generic drugs are uninformed.

But those who say these things may not have thought about the fact that generics have taken 70% of the drug market, and they have long been a larger interest group than the companies that developed the original drugs, rather than a “dragon slayer” challenging the monopolies.

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