Michael Palmieri

Off Label, the new documentary from Michael Palmieri and Donal Mosher (October Country), investigates the epidemic of skyrocketing prescription drug use in America – more specifically, how medications are being tested, marketed, sold and used for purposes they weren’t originally intended for, and the toll it takes on human subjects. The film follows seven stories of people who serve as human test subjects – both willing and unwilling – by pharmaceutical companies. There’s a man who’s made his living as a human guinea pig and has just reached the age where he can no longer take part; the middle-aged bipolar woman who takes 18 pills a day with varying degrees of success; the mother of a boy who brutally killed himself when he was put on the wrong medications in a clinical study; and a young Iraq war vet with PTSD who was prescribed a cocktail of drugs instead of getting the treatment he needed. All of these stories are used to make an unapologetic case against the use of prescription drugs for off-label purposes.

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