Promotional pressure, patient expectations and belief in the basic benign nature of drugs lead to overprescribing by physicians.
It is estimated that only half of the USA consumer's drug bill is medically justified. Physicians prescribe antibiotic to patients with colds knowing that they are ineffective against the common cold. This overprescribing has caused an epidemic of adverse reactions and doctor-induced diseases. The death rate from these diseases in the USA is estimated at between 30,000 and 130,000 per year. The development of drug resistance bacterial strains have emerged and are estimated to cause an additional unnecessary 100,000 deaths a year, particularly in hospitals. A number of diseases are being detected which are caused by treatments 20 or 30 years earlier or even to the patient's mother. For example, a woman may develop cervical cancer if their mother was treated with diethylstilbestrol during her pregnancy 20 years earlier.