In the 5-year period beginning in 2003, there was a whopping 52% increase in adverse reactions to drugs. Most common was corticosteroids. Narcotics, anti-coagulants, anti-cancer drugs and immunosuppressants were also common reactants. 83% were in patients older than 45 years. Average costs per hospital stay were 50% higher for those who suffered adverse effects. Most of the drugs were not new. It appears to me that doctors are getting more aggressive in prescribing existing powerful drugs. Mixing in nutrients and herbs whenever possible would seem to greatly reduce these complications, as well as the cost of medical care.
See Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. 2008 Nationwide Inpatient Sample.