Trending News Today: Drug Marketing May Exaggerate Risks of Certain Conditions

Top news of the day from across the healthcare landscape.

Meningitis B is a very rare form of the infection and recently resulted in a handful of cases among college students, with some experiencing amputations and death. Although the risk of contracting the infection is unlikely, some pharmaceutical companies are selling vaccines to prevent meningitis B, which come with a price tag of more than $300, according to Kaiser Health News. Health experts project that the vaccines would result in hundreds of millions of dollars in sales around the world; however, advocates are concerned that marketing efforts for the vaccines may inflate the potential risks of contracting meningitis B and cause parents to unnecessarily vaccinate their children, despite the rarity of the condition, according to Kaiser.

A new study suggests that increased carbohydrate consumption may be linked to a higher risk of mortality, while an inverse relationship is true for high fat intake, according to The New York Times. Patients who ate the highest amount of carbohydrates had an approximately 30% increased risk of death unrelated to cardiovascular health. The authors found that high intake of saturated fat, polyunsaturated fat, and monounsaturated fat was linked to lower risk of mortality and stroke, according to the article. Current guidelines recommend that individuals consume low amounts of saturated fats, but the new findings suggest this may not improve health.

It was recently discovered that a clinical trial for a herpes vaccine was conducted in the Caribbean without permission from the local government, the FDA, or a safety panel. Despite the criticism of the trial, STAT reports that this practice is common, with nearly all manufacturers relying on overseas trials to reduce costs and speed patient recruitment. A STAT analysis showed that 90% of drugs approved in 2017 conducted clinical testing outside the United States and Canada.