Airborne lawsuit settled

As blogged by Abel Pharmboy of Terra Sigillata, a $23.3 million settlement was reached in the class-action suit against the makers of Airborde, launched by plaintiffs in California. The suit was on the grounds of false advertisment, as “Airborne” is simply an over-priced vitamin pill being pushed as a real medicine. As has been noted, the sole “clinical trial” of the product was performed by two men with no experience in clinical trials, who formed a company just to “test” Airborne.
The investigations continue:

Let’s be clear on the reason for the charges, the settlement, and the continued investigation of the company and its product:

1. In the US, a product carrying claims to cure or prevent disease is consider an unapproved drugs until it meets the standards of blinded, placebo-controlled studies following submission of an Investigational New Drug Application (IND) to the US Food and Drug Administration.

2. Advertising claims for consumer products meet a lower standard but cases of false advertising can be acted upon by the US Federal Trade Commission. In fact, the actions of the FTC have often preceded those of the FDA on supplement products.

First Enzyte, now this. Hopefully we’ll start seeing less of these “herbal” nostrums and the modern day snake-oil salesmen peddling them, and more real, scientifically tested medicine.

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7 Responses to “Airborne lawsuit settled”

  1. Ok, what just happened? « Twisted One 151’s Weblog Says:

    […] Twisted One 151’s Weblog Just another WordPress.com weblog « Airborne lawsuit settled […]

  2. Robert Jones Says:

    I’m sorry, but the first thought I had when I saw this was utter disgust, not at the makers of Airborne, but at the cheesy litigious jerks that jump at the chance to sue anyone they can with class-action lawsuits… Regardless of the foolish advertising mistakes initially made by the company representing this product, and the litigious nature of those who desire to “cash in” on the lawsuit just to get $30.00 for six packs which they can’t even prove they purchased, the reasons and methods behind why the teacher Victoria Knight originally created it were sound. She, like many others, enjoy the idea of taking a more holistic approach to fighting things like the common cold and other such sickness… I honestly don’t recall the packaging ever saying it actually cured the common cold, and had I seen that, I would have laughed! NOTHING known currently “cures” the common cold, and people stupid enough to believe that there is deserve to be laughed at as well! From the very beginning of me using the product, I had heard MANY good things from others who had been using it concerning how well it seemed to help them fight off simple stuff like colds and flu, and having used it for several years, JUST for that purpose, I can absolutely say that it has always seemed to work quite well for me. Not because it “cures” a damn thing, but because the mixture of vitamins and herbs it is made of seems to help my body in its fight AGAINST such things. It HAS been FDA approved as a dietary supplement (otherwise it wouldn’t be on the shelf to begin with), and that’s just fine for me. Personally, I hope the company continues to offer it, because I’ll absolutely continue buying it…whether or not it’s “proven” by science to help in any way… We already know that vitamin C helps the body fight off illness; Airborne has that. And the mixture of herbs it contains, developed by a woman who has STUDIED herbal remedies and their current applications, have been used to help fight illness for decades if not centuries. Folks, we’ve got to remember that pharmacies who’d rather push FAR more expensive prescription and over-the-counter drugs would GLADLY see these somewhat more holistic (and comparatively remedies go straight down the tube, whether they work or not! I have no doubt that such thoughts and motivations are behind this lame litigious move. It’s a shame that so many dolts are jumping on the “let’s sue somebody for a quick buck” bandwagon. I have less respect for that than some marketing idiot making the foolish mistake of claiming a product cures the common cold when it merely helps the body fight it off…

  3. Airborne II « Twisted One 151’s Weblog Says:

    […] some of the responses from the holistic ‘medicine’ crowd in response to my post on the Airborne settlement, I’d like to first point out that in addition to not working (beyond possibly as a placebo), […]

  4. itmovesitchats Says:

    Stating that Airborne works no better than a placebo is ignorant assumption.

    Game over.
    You have lost the internet.
    Please try again.

  5. twistedone151 Says:

    Re:itmovesitchats
    “Stating that Airborne works no better than a placebo is ignorant assumption.”
    Then I suppose you consider the New England Journal of Medicine ignorant? I refer you (and others) here, here, and here.

  6. Ridiculous Says:

    Robert,

    You are right on the money with your comment. There are so many people living in our “sue-happy” nation that are jumping at the chance to take part in lawsuits like this. It makes me sick. For anyone to actually believe that this product would “cure” your cold is insane. I feel terrible for the makers of airborne that they have to indure this madness. If there is a product that will help give me the vitamins my system might be lacking, in order help build it up and “possibly” help me stave off a cold or two, I’m all for it. For those who’d prefer to pop prescription drugs like candy, more power to ya. People get sick…it’s a fact of life and more times than not (espeically with colds) all you can do is wait for your body to fight it off. I think we should take all these over-priced, class-action lawsuits and throw them out the window. How about we focus our attention on things that truly matter, like prosecuting real criminals, instead of wasting our time and evergy on pointless lawsuits, so we can all make a quick buck. It’s so sad….

  7. skeptologic Says:

    As you can see from my blog http://skeptologic.com/2008/04/19/airborne-does-the-settlement-go-far-enough/, I agree with twistedone151. As a matter of fact, I think that the makers of Airborne deserve more than just this slap on the wrist. They should have to give back every penny they made on this scam. If you don’t think they should give it back to the consumers, then let’s have them donate it to schools for better science education. I find it amazing that people can defend these quacks for scamming people out of their money. If you want vitamin C, drink some orange juice. You get most of the vitamins you need if you are eating enough food, and too many of some vitamins can be toxic. And Robert, you are wrong that it is on the shelf because it is FDA approved. There are lots of things on the shelf that are not FDA approved, like homeopathy. Airborne and other supplements are allowed because of the DSHEA. As far as the herbs go, herbs are DRUGS. If there is ever any evidence that they cure something, pharmaceutical companies would make it into pills and make billions. The difference is that they have to prove their claims before selling it. Criticizing scientific medicine that works in favor of unproven quackery because of profit is ridiculous. The people selling unproven “remedies” are not giving away their products for free either.

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