Hi Dr. Rassman,
Check out this article on the Wall Street Journal: FDA Chief Is in Budget Bind.
With all due respect, why do you put so much stock in the FDA? It is clearly a horribly mismanaged government agency. President Bush and Congress have declined the FDA’s request for a budget increase due to the system being “badly broken” and even though it is still considered the “gold standard” (as the article states), it is obvious that there is much corruption. So why can you so easily disregard every product that hasn’t made FDA approvals and even some that the FDA have cleared (like the hair lasers)? I get that you’re hesitant to recommend anything beyond the FDA approved drugs because you are a physician and you do not wish to do any harm, but I’m open to new ideas and you seem to be coming from this old school mentality of just believing what the government tells you and disregarding everything else.
I love your site and I know you’re writing by far the most honest hair loss site on the web, but this is just something I have a problem with and I hope I can shake your tree a little bit to find out your thoughts on the FDA as a regulatory agency and their actual ability to act in the best interest of the public or in the best interest of the drug companies.
If I had to judge safety and effectiveness, I am afraid that I would be doing only one thing with my life and that thing would be to become an expert in possibly only one drug. It would take years and a massive effort to perform the same types of studies that the FDA requires. Every civilized country has their own FDA or equivalent with the same mission — to judge safety and effectiveness of various products before they come to market.
Governments build bureaucracies and much like the Katrina disaster in Louisiana, our government did not do a competent job. I am not a fan of bureaucracy or incompetence, and upon reading your referenced Wall Street Journal article, I know it speaks clearly about the problem. I am afraid, however, that I must use whatever sources are available to determine safety and effectiveness and other than the FDA, there are not any other substitutes.