Friday, February 26, 2021

“Direct-to-Consumer Advertising — Selling Drugs or Diseases?”

With the American Medical Association (AMA) declaring its opposition to direct-to-consumer (DTC) drug advertising, Martha Rosenberg asks, did DTC increase the number of people who have "diseases"?

Biotech Exploits a Loophole in a Federal Transparency Law

From STAT: A small biotech company, AveXis, recently offered a $3,000 honorarium along with paid airfare and lodging to several experts to attend a so-called...

“Letter to the Editor: Guns and Mental Illness”

The president and president-elect of the American Psychological Association penned a letter to the New York Times calling on “Congress and other policy makers to address these factors with interventions supported by evidence rather than avoiding them by scapegoating the mentally ill.”
forced treatment

“All for the Best of the Patient”

For psychiatric ‘help’ to happen by force is a paradox and makes absolutely no sense. It can destroy people's personality and self-confidence. It can lead, in the long run, to physical and psychological disability. My dear daughter Luise got caught in this ‘helping system’ by mistake, but she didn't make it out alive. I'm sad to say I later discovered that the way Luise was treated was more the rule than the exception.

People Are Hacking Antidepressant Doses to Avoid Withdrawal

From New Scientist: Some organizations are helping people hack their dosing regimens so they can taper off psychiatric drugs without severe withdrawal effects. One Dutch organization...

“Saving Congressman Murphy from Fraudulent Information”

Dennis Embry, a clinical psychologist and government consultant on mental health, shares a letter he sent to congressman Murphy warning him about how he may have been misled concerning his mental health bill. “I am specifically writing you about erroneous, false information you’ve been given about the National Registry of Evidence Base Programs and Practices. That erroneous information is likely to cause serious problems, which have been withheld from you.”

Still Mistreating the Elderly with Psychiatric Drugs: Antipsychotics

The percentage of seniors in the United States prescribed potentially deadly antipsychotic drugs increases with age. A new study reveals that in the face of serious risks of strokes, fractures, kidney injuries, and death, over seventy-five percent of seniors given antipsychotics do not have a diagnosis for a mental disorder.

“Woman Can Sue Study Sponsor for Suicide Try”

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 Changing Role of the Pharmaceutical Representative

From the Center for Health Journalism: Due to drug safety scandals and rising drug prices, pharmaceutical representatives are increasingly being criticized by physicians, medical schools, and...

Unhelpful Utterances: 6 Comments We Should No Longer Hear From Mental Health Professionals

Professionals are paid to share their wisdom with those who are, typically, less informed. But, when dealing with mental health professionals in the psychiatric arena, it is wise to retain a degree of skepticism about the words spoken by the doctors and nurses commissioned to help reduce human misery and suffering.

A Radical Hypothesis: Give Patients Drugs They Know Don’t Work

In this interview for Vox, Ted Kaptchuk discusses his research on the effectiveness of giving open-label placebos - sugar pills that the doctors admit are...

Treatment Guidelines Downplay Antidepressant Dependence

A review of treatment guidelines published in Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics found that guidelines “shy away from stating clearly that SSRIs/SNRIs, like BDZs, are often (though...

More Critiques of the Lancet Antidepressant Study

Researchers and advocates have continued to critique The Lancet's recent study claiming to prove definitively that antidepressants are more effective than placebo. Below are a...

The Pharmaceutical Industry in Contemporary Capitalism

In this piece for the Monthly Review, Joel Lexchin details four strategies that the pharmaceutical industry is utilizing in order to maintain its high level...

Free ‘Commercial Speech’ Cases Threaten Pharmaceutical Regulation

Two recent court rulings argue that pharmaceutical companies have a first amendment right to market drugs “off-label” with a lack of scientific evidence, threatening...

“Lawsuits Link Abilify with Compulsive Gambling”

Plaintiffs allege that Bristol-Myers Squibb and Otsuka Pharmaceutical failed to warn doctors and patients about the risk for compulsive behaviors when taking the atypical...

Differences Within Critical Psychiatry

In this blog post for Critical Psychiatry, Duncan Double highlights three main areas of disagreement among critical psychiatrists: whether psychiatry should be seen as a medical...

Benzodiazepine Withdrawal Syndrome Awareness Video

Members of the group Benzodiazepine Recovery have created a video to raise awareness for benzodiazepine withdrawal syndrome. It is estimated that 30 percent of people...

New Nutrition Study Changes Nothing

From The Atlantic: The science of nutrition and healthy eating is not complicated and has remained relatively consistent for the past several years. However, the...

Comments by Shock Survivors and Their Loved Ones

The #FDAStopTheShockDevice petition has received over 2,200 signatures and 800+ comments. A more thorough analysis of those comments is forthcoming, however, we wanted to offer a glimpse of what people shared. The sixth, seventh, and eighth most common words used in the comments submitted through the petition were "damage," "barbaric" and "torture." We must continue the fight to make sure that the FDA hears the people who will be adversely affected by the proposed rule if it becomes an order. There is still a small window of time for you to sign the petition and leave a comment to the FDA.

ADHD Drugs Linked to Psychotic Symptoms in Children

Stimulant medications like Ritalin and Adderall, often prescribed to treat children diagnosed with ADHD, are known to cause hallucinations and psychotic symptoms. Until recently these adverse effects were considered to be rare. A new study to be published in the January issue of Pediatrics challenges this belief, however, and finds that many more children may be experiencing psychotic symptoms as a result of these drugs than previously acknowledged.

Nine Rights Every Patient Should Demand

From The New York Times: Many medical centers, professional associations, and states have developed patients' bills of rights. It is time to develop a Financial Bill of...
Dan Markingson

Ensuring Integrity of Studies: Analysis of the Dan Markingson Case

Dan Markingson was a 26-year-old mentally ill young man who violently killed himself in 2004 while enrolled in a drug-sponsored study of atypical antipsychotics among persons experiencing psychosis for the first time. Highly vulnerable individuals like Markingson should not be taken advantage of in the name of scientific research, and inability to protect such vulnerable subjects compromises the integrity of research.

We Pay a High Price for Unregulated Medical Devices

From The Lown Institute: New investigations and research are beginning to show the dangerous consequences resulting from the FDA's lack of oversight of medical devices. "It sounds crazy...

Teenage Antidepressants “Doing More Harm Than Good”

From BBC: A leading UK psychiatrist, Dr. David Healy, speaks out about the dangers of the growing prescription of antidepressants to young people under age...

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