In addition to hosting the Panorama programs and The Famous Grouse history of Study 329, Study329.org has a comprehensive timeline on the origins of concerns about the SSRIs and the risk of suicide, initially with Prozac and subsequently with Paxil/Seroxat. The hope is to provide a comprehensive repository for anyone who wants to study SSRIs, RCTs, and Study 329 in particular.
"CNN's Carol Costello explores Operation Tohidu, an experimental rehabilitation program to help veterans with PTSD." Operation Tohidu founder, Dr. Mary Vieten claims PTSD is not a mental illness and "there is no reason to medicate someone who has been traumatized by their war experience." When asked what percentage of soldiers returning with PTSD do not need drugs, she responds, "100%."
The International Business Times covers a new study showing “trials for new antidepressant medications may not be applicable to the population at large.” “The finding, published in the Mayo Clinic Proceedings, shows recent trials are less generalizable than the prior studies, as researchers excluded most depressed patients from drug company-sponsored treatment studies.”
Seniors are twice as likely to receive psychotropic prescriptions than younger adults but are much less likely to receive mental health care from psychiatrists or to receive psychotherapy, according to a recent study published in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society. More →
A group of US Food and Drug Administration scientists held a forum to discuss how to better evaluate side effects of sexual dysfunction associated with antidepressant drugs during clinical trials, and published their report in the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry. More →
People who have long-term, recurrent depression eventually develop smaller hippocampi in their brains, according to research published in Molecular Psychiatry. And University of Sydney psychiatrist Ian Hickie, a co-author of the study, told The Guardian that there exists "a good bit of evidence" that antidepressants provide a neuroprotective effect against such hippocampal shrinkage. Hickie apparently did not clarify to The Guardian, however, that the particular study he'd just co-authored had actually found the exact opposite -- that antidepressants were associated with greater hippocampal shrinkage. More →
SSRI antidepressant medications contribute to a significant worsening of emotional "rapid cycling" in patients diagnosed with bipolar disorder, according to a study published in the Journal of Affective Disorders. The authors described the study as the first-ever randomized clinical trial to test whether the finding from previous observational studies was true, and stated that the study clarified the "lack of safety" of antidepressants for some people with bipolar. More →
Four different studies conducted in different ways examining different groups have linked use of certain psychiatric drugs, particularly SSRI antidepressants and antipsychotics but also benzodiazepines, to bone fracture risks and negative impacts on human bone development. More →
An influential 2007 US National Institute of Mental Health-led study included a statistical manipulation that disguised the fact that youth taking antidepressants were actually over four times as likely to experience suicidal events as those taking placebo, according to a study in the International Journal of Risk & Safety in Medicine. This new published analysis has appeared several years after the revelations were first publicly discussed. More →
Continuing to take antidepressants during pregnancy was associated with higher rates of depressive relapses, hospitalizations and self-harming than stopping antidepressants, according to a study in Pharmacoepidemiology and Drug Safety. More →
"A Pfizer Inc. report shows a scientist warned executives last year about a potential link between the anti-depressant drug Zoloft and birth defects, and recommended changes to the medication’s safety warning," reported Bloomberg. More →
A new study shows psychiatric drugs kill over half a million Americans and Europeans every year who are over 65. Professor Peter Gøtzsche claims efficacy trials underestimate the harmful effects of antidepressants, which in fact cause up to 15 time …
A new study in JAMA has reinforced earlier warnings that taking SSRI antidepressants late in pregnancy appears to put mothers at a slightly increased risk of having newborns with persistent pulmonary hypertension. PPHN is a potentially life-threatening condition. More →
In The Lancet Psychiatry, David Menkes of the University of Auckland and Andrew Herxheimer of the UK Cochrane Centre argue that a recent headline-making Lancet study linking depression to acts of violence should have examined antidepressant medications -- rather than depression alone -- as possible causes. More →
Depressed pregnant women need good care. They should not be made to feel guilty for the choices they make concerning their depression or lectured to by those who don’t understand the area or lack compassion for them. In that sense, Andrew Solomon does the public a service by turning his attention and writing talents to the topic of depression and pregnancy this week in the New York Times. However, a crucial part of providing good care to depressed pregnant women is to give them accurate information on the topic. In this sense, Andrew Solomon falls short.
The reason that SSRI antidepressants have seemingly not performed better than placebo is because their effects have been measured incorrectly, according to a reanalysis of clinical trial data published in Molecular Psychiatry. A more appropriate way to measure SSRI efficacy, the researchers argued, is to ignore the answers to 16 of the 17 questions about patients' feelings that were typically asked during the drug trials. More →
Children's positive responses to SSRI antidepressant treatments for depression are even less significant than adult responses, and drop to "minimal" after just four weeks, according to a meta-analysis published in the Journal of the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry. More →
"Depression can double risk of stroke," reported Time, CNN, NPR and many other news outlets, covering a study by Harvard School of Public Health researchers in the Journal of the American Heart Association. More →
The apparently positive effects of antidepressants on depression are even smaller than previously thought and "fall far short" of clinical significance, according to a new analysis of the trial data published in Contemporary Clinical Trials. The study was conducted by Irving Kirsch, author of The Emperor’s New Drugs: Exploding the Antidepressant Myth, and MIA Blogger Joanna Moncrieff. More →
Pregnant women taking antidepressant medications, especially during the second trimester, have an increased risk of preeclampsia, a potentially serious or even fatal condition for both mother and child, according to a study by Kaiser Permanente Northern California researchers. More →
Salon looks at old data on depression studies and new data on anxiety disorders, and finds pharmaceutical companies and psychiatric researchers still "aren't telling you the whole truth." More →
A University of Oxford-led randomized controlled study published in The Lancet found that mindfulness-based cognitive therapy was as effective as antidepressants at preventing relapses in depressed people. The press release for the study noted this also meant that MBCT "isn't any more effective" than maintenance antidepressant treatment in preventing relapses. However, the mindfulness group had to deal with another important confounding factor which the study authors only noted in passing. More →
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