An analysis of medical records in the UK reveals that the use of certain antidepressants for depression is linked to a heightened risk for mania and bipolar disorder. The research, published this week in BMJ Open, found the strongest effect for serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) and the antidepressant venlafaxine.
From MinnPost: According to an international team of researchers, the alcohol industry is misleading the public by misrepresenting and downplaying evidence linking alcohol consumption with cancer. "For...
Last year (2012) the British Medical Journal (BMJ) published a study from 5 Nordic countries (Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, and Sweden) based on more...
On Monday April 14th, an important new study from Harrington et al was published in the journal Pediatrics (the official journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics.) The study was designed to examine prenatal use of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) and the risk of autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) and other developmental delays (DDs). Nine hundred sixty-six mother child pairs were studied and the researchers found that in boys, the association between maternal SSRI use in the first trimester and autism was very strong (OR 3.22). The association between third-trimester maternal SSRI use and developmental delay was even stronger, with an odds ratio of 4.98.
After the 2009 suicide of a seven-year-old foster kid who had been on two “black box” medications intended for adults, Florida updated its policies to protect vulnerable children from over-prescription. Unfortunately, according to a report by Orlando Weekly, “foster children are still being put on psychotropic medications without caregivers following proper procedures.”
What goes wrong for the 10-15% of women who feel like hiding under the covers instead of gazing blissfully into their newborns peaceful face? Is it expectations unmet? Is it hormones? Is it the brain? Having spent several years treating these women, I believe that what we are calling postpartum depression and anxiety is in fact postpartum immune dysfunction, and its attendant inflammation.
Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (such as Prozac and Zoloft) are the most commonly prescribed medication for depression. SSRIs have long been associated with an...
School aged children exposed prenatally to psychotropic medication show poorer outcomes in cognitive ability.
In exchange for pleading guilty to murder, a young soldier received a 45-year sentence with the possibility of parole. The plea resulted from evidence that Chantix, a smoking cessation drug manufactured by Pfizer, can increase hostility and agitation, according to the SunHerald. “Several experts provided some evidence that Chantix affected (the soldier’s) ability to appreciate the nature and quality or wrongfulness of his acts,” the SunHerald noted.
A recent Cochrane review has found that serious adverse events occur for about 1% of children and adolescents treated with Ritalin.
Disturbingly, our study and others reveal that the black box warning is now ignored in many countries, since antidepressant prescriptions for children are on the rise again. Despite increasing certainty that antidepressants are ineffective and likely cause suicidal behavior in young people, psychiatry continues to claim that they reduce suicide risk.
From The Atlantic: As opioid abuse rises, some attorneys general and advocates are filing lawsuits against pharmaceutical companies for misleading doctors and the public about...
US news coverage has primarily framed the opioid drug abuse epidemic as a criminal justice issue rather than a public health problem, according to new research published ahead of print in the Journal of Psychiatric Services. The media’s framing of the epidemic may increase stigma against those who develop a dependency on prescription drugs and distract political attention from public-health oriented solutions, such as increased access to substance abuse recovery treatments.
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?
Last week a study in BMJ linked antidepressants to the risk of suicide and aggressive behaviors. The Science Media Centre has compiled responses to...
Three independent studies in two journals reported strong links between antipsychotics and falls and fractures.
Bipolar drug therapy is a balancing act of benefits vs. harms. Odds of attributable benefit cluster in a 15-25% band, so 75%-85% don’t see substantial benefit. Stated differently, if five people take a bipolar drug, only one is likely to see substantial improvement due to it, but all five will have side effects.
In this opinion piece for The Guardian, Deborah Orr tells of her frightening experience with intense disassociation that occurred after starting an antidepressant. Article →
New study confirms previous evidence that antidepressant use is linked to developing type 2 diabetes.
A recent editorial, published in BMJ, argues there is an increase in coercive measures in psychiatry that are damaging to individuals diagnosed with mental illness.
It is appropriate to hold a company or doctors who may be aiming to make money out of vulnerable people to a high standard when it comes to efficacy, but for those interested to advance the treatment of patients with any medical condition it is not appropriate to deny the likely existence of harms on the basis of a failure to reach a significance threshold that the very process of conducting an RCT will mean cannot be met, as investigators' attention is systematically diverted elsewhere.
The Anything But the Company Drug playbook involved digging deep into the medical records of the person reporting a problem in order to find the ingrown toenail at the age of two that was possibly the cause. And of course if something else was possibly the cause, then we can’t conclude that our drug did it.
Derek Summerfield, consultant psychiatrist at South London and Maudsley National Health Service Foundation Trust, challenges the assumption that Western depression is a universal condition.
A woman in Texas attempted suicide while in the active group of a clinical trial for smoking-cassation drugs Chantix and Zyban, both known to...
The official voice of the American Psychiatric Association covers the short and long term side-effects of antipsychotics and promotes the use of therapeutic alternatives...