What is the DrugFactsBox?

The last time your doctor prescribed a drug for your medical problem, did you stop to wonder how well the drug would work? If you are like most people, probably not.  We’ve been led to believe that doctors prescribe only medicines that work very well.

Unfortunately this is not true.

Everyday, people around the world are prescribed medications that have substantially less benefit or more side effects than they assume to be the case. Others are not getting the right medications for their particular condition. This is where the DrugFactsBox™ can help - an easy-to-read summary of the FDA’s data, answering questions like:


  • What is this drug for?

  • How big is the benefit?

  • How big are the side effects?

Our DrugFactsBox™ is a summary of the lengthy reports that the FDA considered while approving the drug. We’ve done the extensive research and analysis of these documents, so you can get “inside the kitchen” on the details of what a drug can - and cannot - do based on the best available data.

These are just the facts - the reality of the benefits and side effects, without all the hype. And knowing the facts is crucial. When buying a new car, you probably look to user reviews to see what other buyers think, if they like it, and if they think it’s a good buy. The problem with user reviews is that they are a self-selected group of people who tend to be expressing an opinion that is on one extreme or the other. And how many people would buy a car without looking at the specs - for example, the car’s horsepower, miles per gallon, and number of passenger seats? The DrugFactsBox™ presents these similar “specs” on prescription drugs so you and your doctor can pick the right drug for you.

Want to learn more on how to use the DrugFactsBox™? Read on or subscribe in the right column of this page to be invited to our beta when we launch the DrugFactsBox™.

Karen Lubell

Karen Lubell is a writer living in the Hanover, NH area. She holds degrees from Dartmouth College as well as New York University, where she taught writing while pursuing doctoral work in English Literature. She has worked as a writer and researcher in many different fields, including a stint at the New York Times as the language researcher for William Safire. Her special interest in the health sciences began four years ago with a health scare, which led her to the work of Drs. Schwartz and Woloshin. She is very excited to be a part of the Informulary team, and help with their mission to make data about prescription accessible to all. She lives in Norwich, Vermont with her husband, two children, and one very old cat.