Sales of human growth hormone (HGH) and anabolic steroids have reached all-time highs and some of the world’s biggest pharmaceutical companies are finding where there’s muck, there’s brass, profiting mostly off questionable sales of the drugs.
According to a recent Associated Press investigation, record sales of HGH have been buoyed mostly be questionable sales and major pharmaceutical companies are profiting along the way. The record sales have been pushed by demand in the U.S. market, AP found. More people are turning to HGH, mostly, to either gain an athletic advantage or to delay the effects of aging, an effect that’s been proven untrue.
Even efforts to crackdown on HGH abuse, through the prosecutions of major sports athletes and others, sales have spiked to record levels, multiple times higher than sales of regular prescription drugs. AP reports that sales of HGH (adjusted for inflation) rose 69 percent from 2005 until 2011. The average increase for a normal prescription drug is just 12 percent. Last year alone, sales reached $1.4 billion in the U.S. when estimates show that maybe as few as 45,000 people in the U.S. suffer from conditions which HGH is approved legally to treat.
Production of prescription vials of HGH at domestic pharmacy companies has increased two-fold in the last year.
Where is everyone getting HGH, the black market? Hardly. Through clever diagnoses, physicians are dispensing HGH at record rates and major pharmaceutical companies are profiting along the way. Doctors will refute that claim, that they’re dispensing HGH to any patient who asks for it as either a boost for athleticism or to aging Americans looking to reverse that process – as promoted online – and say that 90 percent of prescriptions are warranted.
The claim that HGH is being dispensed to the wrong class of patients is shown in the reported side effects. The report indicates that 40 percent of the reported side effects were among patients over the age of 18. Most patients who would be prescribed HGH are children.
According to the report, Genentech tallied almost $400 million in domestic sales of HGH last year. Pfizer and Eli Lilly have sold more than a half-billion dollars worth of HGH in 2011 combined, too. AP notes that sales of Pfizer’s Genotropin have topped sales of its popular antidepressant Zoloft.