Table of contents:

How not to waste money on pacifiers
How not to waste money on pacifiers

The firing list of drugs will help you not to buy "fuflomycins".

How not to waste money on pacifiers
How not to waste money on pacifiers

What is a drug hit list?

The firing list of drugs is drugs and dietary supplements that have no evidence of effectiveness. They are sold in pharmacies, prescribed by doctors and advised by friends. But all of them most likely don't work.

The list helps to navigate the appointments, not to waste money on dummies and not to put dubious experiments on your own body.

What does “no evidence of effectiveness” mean?

This means that the drug has not been tested by evidence-based medicine.

Evidence-based medicine is the concept that any drug, manipulation or treatment must undergo a rigorous test of its effectiveness. To do this, it is necessary that they show results in research, and not any, but only those that maximally exclude the possibility of error. Such studies:

  • Conducted by disinterested persons. That is, if only the manufacturing company speaks about the effectiveness of the drug, this does not count.
  • They are carried out in such a way as to minimize the risk of error. The highest quality study is a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study with a large sample of patients. There are other options, but “Everyone at the entrance / at the site / at work says that it helps” does not count.
  • Reproduced. This means that if another group of researchers decides to repeat the experiment, they will get the same results. Therefore, the arguments "It helped everyone in the ward" and "I got better last time" do not work. They cannot be reproduced on a large sample.

Such studies are expensive, but the results are the most honest.

Depending on whether the drug has passed such tests or not, the level of its evidence is determined from A (reliable studies) to C (the reliability is so-so).

So, in the execution list of drugs, there are collected funds, the studies of which, according to the level of evidence, are either so-so, or even worse: their level is generally unknown, because they were not even tested.


Nikita Zhukov is a neurologist-epileptologist, author of the books "Modicina" and "Modicina². Apologia ", creator of the resource Encyclopatia, medical director of Medical Investment Group

Some of the drugs on the list have an evidence base, but with a deep analysis it becomes clear that it cannot be considered objective information: this is just scribble for the sake of publications, in which either the study design is not followed, or the methodology is not followed, or key data on which you can evaluate the correctness of the experiment.

Since these drugs don't work, why are they on sale?

Unfortunately, the world produces and sells a huge number of drugs that do not cure anything. This happens for several reasons.

  1. Medicines and supplements are. While people are sick, it is profitable to make money on drugs. It is especially profitable to sell drugs that do not work well, or to offer supplements to healthy people who want to become even healthier.
  2. Science and medicine in particular do not stand still, discoveries are constantly being made and new research is being carried out. Sometimes it turns out that a drug has lost its effectiveness (like flu cures), a drug has been overvalued, or there is a new drug that works better. But old drugs do not leave the market immediately, because neither doctors nor patients are ready to refuse them. “Often because the old drug is always trite cheaper, and what kind of efficiency is there - for a person it's the tenth thing,” adds Nikita Zhukov.
  3. People want to cure everything at once with one pill. The desire for a miracle creates a demand for all kinds of elixirs that help at once and from everything.
  4. Alas, the education of many doctors and patients is poor.

Unfortunately, doctors are often not burdened with critical thinking at all and actively support everyday myths and false hopes related to health. Therefore, not everyone can tell the difference between an active medicine and a pacifier. Nikita Zhukov

Evidence-based medicine appeared in the 70s of the XX century, it received a particularly strong development relatively recently, so not all states have yet switched to high standards. In order for a medicine to end up in a pharmacy in Russia, it is necessary to prove first of all its safety, and the level of effectiveness is not so important. Therefore, even in the list of vital drugs, you can find copies, the action of which has not been confirmed by international studies.

Why can you trust the list?

The list was compiled and is being replenished by neurologist Nikita Zhukov, the author of a series of books "Modicina" and a project on evidence-based medicine (this is part of which is the execution list).

The main criterion for adding a drug to the list is inconsistency with the principles of evidence-based medicine. The list contains no unreasonable assessments in the spirit of "this drug is good, but this one is not." All drugs are tested: the author has studied the world's scientific libraries and works that describe the action of drugs and their active ingredients. You can verify this for yourself. After the description of each drug, a fact check is given: how many publications, which ones and where exactly were found, taking into account the mention of the drug.

Reputable scientific journals and libraries are used to evaluate the drug, collecting studies with a high evidence rating. If they do not contain publications about the drug, then its effectiveness has not been confirmed.

Why are all libraries and research in English?

English is an international scientific language. It is on it that scientists around the world exchange information. All sensible studies are translated into English, published in scientific journals in English, cited in English. This is the reality, and the lack of an English version now is a reason not to read the study at all.

Understanding scientific information is, of course, great and useful. But not everyone needs it, and not everyone is ready to spend time combing through databases with foreign research. The firing list of drugs is just needed in order to make life easier for ordinary patients and not make them test each drug on their own.

How do I use the list?

When someone has recommended a drug to you, or even when it is prescribed by a doctor you don't know and don't trust too much, go to the list and check if there is a drug that interests you.

There is an application for mobile devices on Android, but it does not work well: it is just an alphabetical list of drugs, repeating information from the web version.

If you are ready to conduct your own research on the effectiveness of the drug, in the desktop version you can check for adding to the firing list. These are drugs that have not yet passed the fact-check, but raise doubts about their effectiveness.

The medicine is on the execution list. And now what i can do?

If someone from your acquaintances recommended this drug to you, then do nothing: do not buy, do not take. With a problem, consult a doctor for a worthwhile appointment.

But if the doctor prescribed the remedy, everything is a little more complicated.

  1. Try talking to your doctor first. Perhaps the drug was prescribed by tradition: many patients believe that a good doctor prescribes more of all kinds of drugs and "strengthening" means. Often, in response to such a request, doctors prescribe vitamins, hepatoprotectors and drugs that are not needed. Explain that you do not want to spend money on a drug with unproven effectiveness. An educated doctor will support and understand you.
  2. In the event that a doctor insists on taking medications and has not heard of evidence-based medicine, it is best to find another doctor if possible.

When a doctor insists on taking a useless drug and there is no way to go to another, you should first understand: is your condition so terrible? Since fuflomycins are almost always prescribed when nothing threatens health. Nikita Zhukov

But what if the effectiveness of the drug is still proven?

This may well be. In theory, if the drugs on the list are tested using evidence-based medicine, they can show effectiveness.

But, firstly, most of the funds have been on the market for years, and there is still no evidence of their work. And secondly, as long as there is no clear evidence of the drug's work, everyone who uses it participates in the "if it works, it will not work" experiment.

We can neither predict its effect, nor know in advance what side effects or contraindications may be, and this is really dangerous.

Nikita Zhukov

You are unlikely to want to take part in unreasonable experiments and pay for it.