Monday, July 02, 2007

Ask your doctor about

We call on Thursday to beg them to let us take the not-yet-approved-for-use-by-humans drug. It's name so far is APD791. "This is the first study in which APD791 will be given to humans." Here's the word on the street about it:

APD791 is a selective inverse agonist of the 5-HT2A serotonin receptor. By selectively inhibiting the activation of 5-HT2A serotonin receptors found on platelets and vascular smooth muscle, Arena believes that APD791 may reduce the risk of arterial thrombosis and conditions such as acute coronary syndrome, heart attack and stroke.


If we are among the chosen few we will be the first humans to take this. Fortunately that means that our dosage will be low: 1mg one time. The plan is to increase the dosage (in later studies) as high as 160mg.

But the fun has already begun. Today we showed up and signed on all the dotted lines agreeing to risk the following:

nausea, abdominal pain, rash, headache, dry mouth, dizziness, drowsiness, common cold symptoms, and nausea.

Other side effects also include nausea and sometimes feelings of nausea. And those are just the "common" side effects of similar drugs. Of course the list continues:

hepatitis, kidney stones, heart attack, low blood pressure, abnormal heart beat, bleeding from the stomach, nose bleed etc.

Okay--they list heart attack third. As if they had to ease up to it then taper back down. Why bother listing anything else?

"What might go wrong?"
"Oh there are several possibilities. Your heart might stop beating."
"Hmmm...tell me more before I decide."
"Well you might have trouble sleeping."
"Wow that sounds serious. Anything else?"
"Dry mouth..."
"Whoah! Get me outta here!"

Among the "side effects" listed are "abnormal laboratory test results." This is the type of warning that could be nothing or it could be horrific.

Scenario 1:

"Your results are back and I'm a little concerned about some abnormalities."
"Oh No! What is it?"
"Well your cholesterol is surprisingly good for someone with your diet and you seem to have antibodies making you immune to to every disease known to man."
"Hmmm...That's odd."

Scenario 2:

"Your results are back and I'm a little concerned about some abnormalities."
"Oh No! What is it?"
"Well we can't find your blood and it says your soul is dead."
"I have crossed oceans of time to find you."

But the name needs work. APD791 just doesn't have the right connotations of health vigor and longevity that it needs in order to sell. How about a little game of fill in the blank hinted at by the title post:

Ask your doctor about ___________.

I'm going to think about this for a few hours before posting again tonight.


Thanks for reaching out.

You can also contact me at wishydig[at]gmail[d0t]com.