Prescription medicines undergo thorough clinical trials regulated by the FDA and are FDA-approved on the basis of their safety and effectiveness. Biopharmaceutical research companies also work closely with FDA throughout the entire life of approved medicines, continuing to monitor the medicines for safety issues. It is important that patients work with their doctors to understand the benefits and risks of all of their medicines.
Direct-to-consumer (DTC) advertising has health benefits, including raising awareness of diseases and treatment options and empowering patients to communicate with their physicians about medical problems and potential treatments. DTC communications about prescription medicines can not only increase awareness about diseases, but can often motivate patients to speak with their physicians about treatment options. This communication is important for people who suffer from symptoms that may be embarrassing for some to address.