VA Uses U.S. Veterans as Lab Rats in Anti-Smoking Drug Tests

The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) has been recruiting veterans for pharmaceutical drug testing, using miniscule cash payments as an enticement. One of these experiments involved Pfizer’s anti-smoking drug Chantix.

In the Chantix study, the VA took 3 months to alert patients of severe side effects—and then only after one of its participants, James Elliott, had a psychotic episode involving a confrontation with police. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) warns of possible side effects from Chantix, including hallucinations, suicide attempts and psychotic behavior, but these warnings were not passed on to patients prior to the study.

Among other accusations, at least one medical ethicist claims that the VA violated basic protections for humans in medical experiments during its anti-smoking drug trials.

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Image Courtesy Wikipedia

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