When a foster youth encounters a Psychiatrist, chances are high that s/he will get medicated. Traumatized foster youth are often prescribed powerful psychotropics due to exhibiting a wide variety of “normal reactions to abnormal events,” such as despair, agitation, anxiety and self-harm. The practice has been well documented; foster children are prescribed psychotropics at a 2.7 to 4.5 times higher rate than non-foster youth. The National Center for Youth Law aptly summarizes the problem as; too many (25% of foster youth medicated), too soon (300 children under the age of 5 in California are given psychotropics annually) too much (adult dosages) and for too long (no planning or reviews for possible discontinuation).
Many experts expressed concern when the rate of antipsychotic prescriptions to children in foster care showed a rapid increase, peaking in 2008, and new recommendations and policies have tried to curb the use of these drugs. While the rate has plateaued, a new study points out that the “new normal” prescription levels are still dangerously high. The data reveals that almost one in ten children in foster care are currently being prescribed antipsychotic drugs with dangerous side-effects, many for diagnoses like ‘ADHD’ and disruptive behavior.
A systematic review published this week in the British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology found that patients taking antipsychotic drugs were at nearly twice the risk...
He could have asked me if there was a specific event that had precipitated my suicide attempt. He could have asked if I had a history of trauma. He could have simply asked, “What happened?” “What are you feeling?” or “So what’s going on?” Nope. He chose to open our meeting with an accusatory remark about a make-believe eating disorder.
As we have reported at MIA, new research indicates that Parkinson's disease patients who are given antipsychotics to treat dementia and psychosis may be...
Since the 1980s, antidepressant use has risen by at least four-hundred percent and obesity rates have climbed to include thirty percent of the population....
The Santa Cruz Sentinel reports on legislation being passed in California to go after physicians who overprescribe psychiatric drugs to foster youth. The proposed legislation also targets government agencies that fail to offer nondrug alternative therapies to help foster youth recover from traumatic childhoods.
Following a lawsuit brought by Andrew Thibault of Parents Against Pharmaceutical Abuse (PAPA), the FDA has produced adverse event and severe adverse event reports...
According to new research by Joanna Moncrieff and Sebastião Viola, mental health problems have become the leading cause of disability claims in the UK. While the overall number of claims for other conditions has decreased by 35%, claims related to “mental disorders” have increased 103% since 1995.
In a featured article for Psychiatric Services, psychiatrists from Dartmouth raise the alarm on the increasing numbers of children prescribed dangerous antipsychotic drugs. Despite the fact that data on the safety of long-term use of these drugs in this vulnerable population “do not exist,” the rate of children and adolescents being prescribed antipsychotic drugs have continued to increase over the past fifteen years.
On Monday, the US Supreme Court declined to hear Johnson and Johnson’s final appeal, forcing the company to pay $124 million for the deceptive marketing of the antipsychotic Risperdal. In 2011, South Carolina ordered the company to pay $327 million for pursuing “profits-at-all-costs” in its efforts to persuade doctors to prescribe their drug, but the fine was lowered to $136 million last year. The company had hoped to argue that the remaining penalties constituted an “excessive fine” and was supported by PhRMA, the Washington Legal Foundation, the Cato Institute and the Chamber of Commerce.
“Do they make people less aggressive? Yes, sometimes they do. Will they sedate people? Absolutely. Will they make kids easier to manage? They will,” Robert Whitaker tells Liz Spikol for Philadelphia Magazine. “But I know of no study that shows that medicating these kids long-term will help them grow up and thrive. The developing brain is a very delicate thing. The narrative is that these side effects are mild, and that’s just not true, and that the benefits are well-established, and so often they’re not.”
On his website, Dr. Nardo details the hidden risks and bad science behind the growing practice of using atypical antipsychotics to augment antidepressant treatment for severe depression. The story of Atypical Antipsychotic Augmentation of Treatment Resistant Depression is a “prime example” “to illustrate how commercial interests have invaded medical practice.” “Besides the obvious dangers of the Metabolic Syndrome and Tardive Dyskinesia, these drugs don’t really do what they’re advertised to do – make the antidepressants work a lot better.”
Researchers from the City College of New York and Columbia University published a study this month testing the hypothesis that people diagnosed with schizophrenia treated long-term with antipsychotic drugs have worse outcomes than patients with no exposure to these drugs. They concluded that there is not a sufficient evidence base for the standard practice of long-term use of antipsychotic medications.
In a series of experiments in mice, researchers found that the drug risperidone alters gut microbes, which in turn profoundly influence metabolism, weight, and overall health.
“The National Women’s Health Network launched the 'Pass on the Pink Pill – Or Pass Out' campaign, to warn women of the marginal benefits...
Martha Rosenberg highlights how the popular antipsychotic Seroquel is a perfect example of how direct-to-consumer advertising made billion dollar blockbuster drugs possible before side-effects...
Two patients have now died while taking the drug beloranib in an obesity drug trial. Both patients were in the active arm of the study and had received the drug rather than a placebo. Zafgen did not say whether it believed the drug had caused the blood clotting in the lungs that led to the patient’s death.
Drug makers have faced large fines for unethical and harmful practices but have simply treated these as a cost of doing business. Ed Silverman reports...
More than ten-percent of adults in the United States are currently prescribed at least one psychiatric medication but there is currently a lack of research on the prevalence of adverse drug events (ADEs) associated with these prescriptions outside of clinical trials.
In 20 years of inpatient hospitalization, the psychiatrists that I encountered focused almost exclusively on treating my diseased mind and had no concept or interest in the body. While the wheels of “progress” turn slowly in mental health, I hope that along with ongoing advocacy there will be a focus on responsible health counseling and supporting people in healthier eating and living.
In the third major verdict of its kind, drug giant Johnson & Johnson was ordered to pay a Maryland man who grew female breasts while taking the antipsychotic Risperdal. The company failed to warn doctors, patients, and regulators of the risk of abnormal breast development in young males and now faces about 5,400 lawsuits involving the drug.
I was a psychiatrist who participated in the Recovery After an Initial Schizophrenia Episode Early Treatment Program (RAISE ETP). Although I welcomed the positive headlines that heralded the study's results, the reports left me with mixed feelings. What happened to render the notion that talking to people about their experiences and helping them find jobs or go back to school is something novel?
A California jury ruled that Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen Pharmaceutical and a psychiatrist were responsible for the death of 25-year-old Leo Liu. During a clinical trial for Risperdal, Liu died of a heart injury that was “further complicated” by the drug and ignored by the study doctors. Janssen was found 70% responsible for Liu’s death and ordered to pay $5.6 million to the family.
Results of a large government-funded study call into question current drug heavy approaches to treating people diagnosed with schizophrenia. The study, which the New York Times called “by far the most rigorous trial to date conducted in the United States,” found that patients who received smaller doses of antipsychotic drugs with individual talk therapy, family training, and support for employment and education had a greater reduction in symptoms as well as increases in quality of life, and participation in work and school than those receiving the current standard of care.