Sunday, April 30, 2017

Comments by BetterLife

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  • Overdosed methylphenidate adminstered transdermally as Daytrana® induced many spiritual experiences. The wall sent signals, my computer transmitted messages from eastern Europe when no applications were running, and one afternoon, invisible soundless angels told me it was okay to die. I told them I had things to do.

    Aware that I was close to dying from dehydration, I managed to save myself with a solution of sugar and salt in water, the poor person’s electrolyte solution.

    It was glorious to be that kind of crazy until the bad things that keep happening when you’re crazy and can’t prevent or fix them had accumulated to a degree they were bumming my unhinged high. When I was helped by a friend to realize I was psychotic and stopped using the drug, I entered dopamine agonist withdrawal syndrome (DAWS) and stayed in it for almost two years. If I’d known what it was I might have been able to exit it sooner.
    I was abandoned by two psychiatrists I’d been seeing and a neurologist who’d just diagnosed an off-label type of epilepsy after an EEG and a physical exam. (I couldn’t stand with my feet parallel and pressed together so the inner sides were in contact.) I had to fend for myself, armed only with bad luck and the belief that I deserved my life back no matter what I had to endure. New doctors said it was depression but it was not. One said he thought I enjoyed it.

    It was so bad it made depression a desirable alternative: depression is a human experience; it’s different from contentment but it’s made up of familiar feelings; DAWS is outside what our brains could ever know without the poisons that cause it. It’s not worse than depression on some continuum. It’s a hell that only a supernatural force of evil could conceive and inflict.

    The way to tolerate consciousness in DAWS, for me, also involved spirits, preferably 80 proof Cazadores Reposado.

  • We don’t have to reach psychiatrists and get them to agree that they must stop what they are doing and do something else, or nothing, for a living. It’s not possible and it isn’t a complete solutions. It would be like vegans hoping to convince cattle ranchers to stop producing cattle for slaughter. We have to reach legislators (and the voters who enable them) and get them to make it illegal to practice psychiatry with a medical degree, just as it is illegal to practice it without one…to make psychiatry illegal, the way rape and murder are illegal.

  • I don’t think it’s necessary to identify oneself as a torture-endurer to advocate for better treatment of the human race by psychiatric enforcers. I think it’s better not to. You’re dealing with brainwashees who have not left the field despite knowing all about its wrongs. I’d go so far as to say they are enthusiasts, if they’ve stayed with it more than a month or so. They don’t believe it’s possible for a former victim to recover from the fictitious “brain disease” whose name that was attached to them at some point and put them in harm’s way in the first place. They’ll humor you to a degree but they will not regard you as an expert nor consider your descriptions of your experiences as anything other than unfortunate rare events to be heard and forgotten, or more typically, confabulations or lies.

    Status as a former focus of psychiatric attention can open doors, but entering the system as a patient advocate who is not and never has been subject to the abuses of the system affords an equal footing with other personnel, and means they have to offer reasons for rejecting your suggestions and failing to answer your questions.

  • It’s also possible to understand and maybe predict reactions to brain-changing drugs by taking a look at liver enzymes. Yolande Lucire is an expert. I’ve heard that investgating liver enzymes is not all it’s cracked up to be in general, but I haven’t heard anything bad about Dr. Lucire. She knows all about akathisia and violence, a topic few in medicine seem to know or care about.

  • Thanks for telling some of your story, Welton. What was done to you was absolutely horrible, so I’m not thanking you because I enjoyed it. It’s because it helps when more people know about what is done to people. There can’t be anything worse than being a child or teenager whose parents buy into it. There goes that primal sense of parent as protector. As for very old age? The first state that bans forced psychiatry will see a mass immigration of people in their 70s.

    Pro tip: once you’re in California’s system in one of their many protective programs, anyone who drives you to another state is guilty of abduction. You’re not only not allowed to refuse “treatment,” you can’t even leave the state to escape it. Terrifying.

  • Half of all young adults are male. Most of them are single, and at least a third of them are unemployed. About 20% of them smoke and another segment vapes nicotine liquids. This suggests that the typical young man is the most likely person to be diagnosed with “psychosis,” based on a book written by atypical middle-aged and older men.

    I suspect there is an evolutionary force at work; the silverbacks who’ve been least successful at mating* work to keep the most exciting young men (the rebels without a clue we all knew and loved) away from the women. If they can’t lock them up, they can render them impotent.

    *In 1997, it was revealed that psychiatrists have the highest divorce rate among the medical specializations. Their rate, 51%, is high for any profession.

    “Over 30 years of follow-up, the divorce rate was 51 percent for psychiatrists, 33 percent for surgeons, 24 percent for internists, 22 percent for pediatricians and pathologists, and 31 percent for other specialties. The overall divorce rate was 29 percent after three decades of follow-up and 32 percent after nearly four decades of follow-up.”

    And, pointedly,

    “Physicians who reported themselves to be less emotionally close to their parents and who expressed more anger under stress also had a significantly higher divorce rate, but anxiety and depression levels were not associated with divorce rate.”

  • The science in psychiatry comes out of business schools. It is applied not in the development of so-called “diagnoses” and “treatments,” but in the brilliant non-marketing marketing of the profession and the products it sells. First it was sold to the medical profession (doctors and the self-protective associations they shield in) and governments (state and federal). The medical profession and the “authorities” (which operationalize as gun- and Taser-wielding dog-catchers of man) have sold it to the people. Some of us want our money – our personalities, IQs, friends, families, careers, homes and money, that is – back, is all.

  • “For that, we were told to send our clients to the psychiatrist. For those most alienated from other people, it seemed, help from another human being was not to be provided.”

    Psychiatrists are human beings! However, the help they deliver will typically be in pill form. That must be what Mr. Unger meant. Bertram Karon, a psychologist (professor emeritus) at Michigan State U, wrote

    “There has never been a lack of treatments that do more harm than good. They have in common that they do not require understanding the human condition.”

    He doesn’t believe there is a “genetic component.”

    “I have never treated a schizophrenic patient whose life as experienced by the patient would not have driven me, or anyone I could conceive of, crazy.”

    Mainly, he listens.

  • Nutrition and mood extremes…it just does not seem like food could matter very much, but some people swear by it.

    Medium chain triglycerides ended the torment of dopamine agonist withdrawal (DAWS) for me, and I didn’t expect or hope for it. I was looking for improved memory and cognition after 5 lost years. There were three ruinous years of polydrugging that started with a misdiagnosed withdrawal effect after mis-prescribed venlafaxine/Effexor. 3 years on drugs ended in a spectacular burst of psychosis, followed by 2 years in DAWS, coped with by heavy beer drinking + daily pot (opiates are said to work better, but that’s a double-bind set-up), resolved entirely by MCTs for 10 days. Just a big glob of coconut oil and a smaller glob of grass-fed cows’ butter (Kerrygold, good omega 3/6 ratio, as I understand it) in a cup of instant coffee in the morning, and carb avoidance at other times, for good measure. Sleep came back, nearly unbearable dread/doom/horror stopped, and drinking/pot went away spontaneously and effortlessly.

    Others report miracles on a 100% meat diet. Not viable for compassionate vegetarians and vegans, of course. I have found two people online who went this route and swear by it–both women, for what it’s worth. Here’s one.

    Stated benefits: an end to “bipolar” and 60 lb weight loss.

  • This is what is so stunning:

    “I have trained and worked at well-regarded academic teaching hospitals all over the United States and had never once been presented with this data or an alternative view to my son’s “disease.”

    We know doctors are smart–it’s hard to learn what they learn and pass tests and graduate. They have to be good memorizers, but they don’t have to advance science to graduate, the way PhDs do. A PhD dissertation is original research of publishable quality. Exam scores are not. So we have a lot of smart, highly confident men and women living in an information bubble. They rely on what other doctors believe, and what other doctors believe is what other doctors say. Sticking to the standard of care and being wrong can never get them in trouble. Rocking the boat and being wrong (or just being accused of being wrong) is far too costly.

    It’s great to hear from an MD who pierced the membrane and let herself out, and better yet, is working to get some fresh air in to educate doctors without the same tenacious will to find something better than the status quo.

  • I doubt all the deaths caused by prescribed drugs are counted. The current generation of elderly people experiences more death from falls than any other, and they are also elderly at a time when rates of prescribing falls-causeimg drugs like statins and beta-blockers have done nothing but rise for many years–at their peak now. So does a person die of a fall/head injury, or because a drug that causes hypotension and syncope caused her to fall?

    If only the drugs were prescribed for actual illnesses. The bulk of the drugs taken by old people these days are meant to prevent things, or deal with the side effects of other drugs, not cure or limit genuine organic health problems.

    The newest data show that lifespan has decreased for Americans, for the first time in many years. If you know any old people and know what drugs they’re on, you’ll know why,

  • Before he got to Columbia, he (Lieberman) wrote to the New York Times, outraged to have read that New York’s top cop had banned the use of the so-called hogtie on suspects. The practice of tying someone’s hands and feet together behind his back and tossing him in the back of a car was sometimes lethal. It is not just potentially lethal, it’s inhuman. But Lieberman knew better. He even knew that the police commissioner was pandering to civil rights lawyers who assert the rights of African-Americans. The commissioner’s response was the comeuppance Lieberman needs several times a day.

    Else where in my blogpost is the letter he co-authored, meant to convince the UN’s special rapporteur on Torture, Argentinian attorney Juan Mendez, to adjust his definition of torture so it didn’t include practices typical of psychiatrists in US psychiatric wards. Mr. Mendez was measured in his response, politely conveying the “###k off, creeps” that the letter-writers deserved.

    It is in a blog post punctuated with some of the best Lieber-Tweets and responses, which presents a fictional Skype interview with Lieberman, which you can skip if you just want to read the letters and thereplies, which are near the end. They’re presented as whole page images, so they’re easy to find. Please comment if you enjoy or in some way appreciate it.

  • “Non-invasive behavioral activation techniques”? It sounds inhuman. Love and affection probably fall under “non-invasive behavioral activation techniques”, but should be referred to as “love and affection.”

    How about living in a family household, as part of the family you created, instead of being away in a senior living facility?

    How about not being on one or more drugs to prevent or slow (possibly) diseases (that you might not have been fated for anyway)? Those drugs also install symptoms are “depression,” including sadness, anger, irritability, fatigue, pain, and weakness (namely, Aricept, and every drug for high cholesterol and every drug for high blood pressure)?

  • You can end up drugged and in restraints after entering a general hospital with a physical complaint. It is not just psychiatrists who have access to means of oppression. And medical ward can pull it off.

    A long and rambling anecdote I can’t get off my mind, which I’ve written here before:

    An elderly woman who is very close to me was degraded in the worst ways after entering an emergency room with the purpose of having a laceration on her scalp sutured.

    Actually, that’s wrong. She didn’t intend to go. Her husband tried to keep the paramedics from taking her. The cut was about 3/5 of an inch in length and had finished bleeding. She’d hit her hed on a door as she fell to a carpeted floor. She fell because she was on a beta blocker that caused her to fall. She didn’t know it was the drug. I don’t know if her doctor knew she fell a lot. If he didn’t, it’s his fault for not asking. There was no reason to go to a hospital, but the paramedics who did the transporting work for a private company with a contract to be the city’s paramedics. They pay the city a fee for the privilege of providing the service and billing what they can for it. The bill for the 2-mile transport was $2000.

    Once there, the old woman was subject to every sort of test and scan imaginable, despite having no complaints. No pain. She was 82, and wasn’t able to state her birthday or what city she was in. It was assumed she’d had a terrible head injury. She hadn’t. She just didn’t know her birthday or where the ambulance had taken her.

    I believe she was addled by a very high dose, for her age and small size, of a beta-blocker called Atenolol. Hospital staff called her pharmacy to find out what drugs she took and bungled it. A fateful mistake. They came away with the belief that her was 50 mg/day of the ineffective crap, Atenolol, she took for a non-disease, hypertension. In fact her dose was a whopping 150 mg/day. Because they didn’t know she was on a high dose, they didn’t know that her sense of panic and need to get out of bed the next morning were Atenolol withdrawal. They didn’t know anything. MORNING NOTES: “Patient kept trying to get out of bed and was combative.” They forced Haldol into her and put this kind, shy, and mentally brilliant women in 6 point restraints. They kept her in them for 26 hours. Unfortunately her husband didn’t visit during that horrible period, but when he did arrive, he saw what had been done and undid it, as the banal and sadistic soulsucking nurses watched from a safe distance.

    A laceration that was not bleeding, little more than 1/2 inch in length. The wrong questions asked for the alert-and-oriented test. (Should just be: who are you, where are we, and what time is it.) Not a reason to commit someone or to fight them physically when they wish to leave. Correctly: “Patient wished to get out of bed. Staff were combative.”

    I’m glad she fought them, and very sorry she was out-numbered.

    There were no psychiatrists, not even a doctor who had finished training. She went in psychiatrically “well,” was made unwell by the beta-blocker dosing mistake, and then made worse by inhuman, degrading, humiliating and infuriating treatment selected by a resident. Instead of being tied up, she should have been discharged. As an elderly person who might have had dementia for all they knew, injecting Haldol was criminal. There was nothing wrong with her when she went in. Her soul was a carcass when she got out.

    It was this resident who wrote the orders for the abuse.
    He has the kind of face I can’t stand at the best of times.

    The patient’s life ended without her dying. I knew when I heard what had been done that she, given her nature, would not be intact. She was a severe mess for a while. She had delusions about the composition of the household and believed there were two copies of her husband. She wanted to kill herself and broke down crying on occasion, something never seen before. It’s always sickening when humans beings are abused and especially so when a person has led a laudable life and has reached age 82 and wishes to coast the last ten yards, and is instead mangled and spit out and left, in scraps, to cope. She has coped.

    She didn’t both with Atenolol after that. From 50mg to 0mg just happened. She hasn’t fallen down since.

    When I heard she’d been injected with Haldol, I called and told a nurse not to do it again. I said I am a psychologist, having earned a doctorate in social psychology, specializing (involuntarily) in gerontology. In the notes it says: “Jane Doe called, claimed to be a psychologist.”

    At one point the patient apparently exclaimed “You’re not doctors,” to the assembled torment squad of non -doctors. This too was noted, as if it were a ridiculous thing to say, like this, “You’re not doctors!”

    Number of deaths from falls has risen since 2004, when 41 per 100,000 elderly persons per year died after falling. By 2013 it was 57, a 39% increase. Surely that’s more lethal than the opioid epidemic.

  • Robin Williams had DAWS, which is dopamine agonist withdrawal syndrome. I’ve only seen it mentioned three times. Once by someone here, in a comment, once by me, elsewhere, and once in a comment under his widow’s impassioned essay about their life together and his death. That comment was by the doctor who has published the most about it. Mrs, Williams is doing her best to educate herself, but she let slip that he’d been taken off mirtazapine, a dopamine agonist, and put on something like Levodopa, which despite its name does not help with DAWS. I had DAWS for two years and it was absolutely the worst hell I could ever imagine. The only reason I didn’t kill myself is that I like being alive and was too stubborn to give in…not that I had a plan for defeating it. It’s not depression in the usual sense, it’s a superficial but tenacious affliction that locks you into Misery, doom, despair, hopelessness and deep dark bottomless grief every gosh-darmed day, with especial horribleness around 4 am, and very little sleep possible. One could easily become a drug addict by self medicating with opiates or benzos. I toughed it out with beer and pot. Doctors were useless–not a single one diagnoses it, despite my history of going mad on Daytrana (transdermal methylphenidate) and then quitting it cold turkey. I think powerloading coconut oil for a couple of weeks cured me, or else it was a coincidence.

  • So these are non-serious?
    abnormal ejaculation – ask a guy with PSSD about “abnormal” ejaculation. Pleasureless? Too soon? Not at all?
    tremor – many can’t do their jobs with a tremor in their hands, makes one appear to be weak or ill
    anorexia – leads to weakness, fatigue, syncope, and head injuries
    nausea – worse than pain, leads to vomiting, which is fun at work
    somnolence – mess up at work, school or caring for others
    sweating – give a presentation with nine-inch dark circles on your shirt, seem nervous when not
    asthenia – (abnormal weakness/lack of energy) sounds like severe depression
    diarrhea – dehydration (potentially serious), fatigue, fun at work
    constipation – pain, discomfort
    insomnia – fatigue
    dizziness – falling, head injury
    dry mouth – aversive, unappealing
    libido decreased – joyless life, unhappy partners, divorce, despair
    sexual dysfunction – see previous
    appetite decreased – see anorexia
    fatigue, vomiting or upset stomach, flu syndrome, drowsiness,
    blurred/abnormal vision or dry eyes – can’t perform job functions, drive, enjoy visual arts
    nervousness – highly aversive and crippling at times, causes irritability and harms relationships
    headache – day-wrecker, week-wrecker, etc
    dyspepsia – day-wrecker
    weight loss – not always desirable, impedes women’s fertility (which is just as well given the harm to developing babies and withdrawal after they’re born)
    central or peripheral nervous system problems – please specify
    lightheadedness/faint feeling – falls, head injury
    agitation – akathisia, perhaps? Pure hell.
    impotence – devastating
    taste perversion – loss of another great pleasure in life
    etc ???

    Anything on the nature and prevalence of withdrawal and post-withdrawal syndromes?

  • Peter, I’m glad you mentioned the proposed explanation for the supposed efficacy of the drugs in severe depression. That’s a tired refrain: “…but they do work in cases of very severe depression.” No, they don’t.

    Here’s the HAM-D. It captures a lot of anxiety-related issues, most of which should be expected to diminish as the trial progresses. Each item has its own scale, from 0 to 2, or from 0 to 4.

    1. Depressed mood

    2. Feelings of guilt

    3. Suicide

    4. Insomnia early [falling asleep]

    5. Insomnia middle [after falling asleep, wakefulness or restlessness during the normal sleeping hours]

    6. Insomnia late [early morning awakenings, and unable to go to sleep after getting out of bed.*]

    7. Work and activities [no difficulty, difficult or no longer working]

    8. Psychomotor retardation [moves slowly]

    9. Agitation [0=none, 1=fidgets, 2=plays wth hands, hair, 3=moving about, can’t sit still, 4: hand-wringing, nail-biting, hair pulling, biting of lips]

    10. Anxiety [psychological] [0-no apparent difficulty, 1=subjective tension and irritability, 2=worrying about minor matters, 3=apprehension apparent in face or speech, 4. Fears=expressed without being asked]

    11. Anxiety somatic [Anxiety with physiological involvement. (It says to avoid asking about symptoms that could be side effects of drugs, like dry mouth.)]

  • Haldol is especially likely to cause neuroleptic malignant syndrome and/or kill in people with dementia with Lewy bodies. In a cruel irony, DLB is characterized by the onset of delusions and hallucinations relatively early, compared with Alzheimer’s, but is often, probably most of the time, mistaken for Alzheimer’s. Some experts say DLB is the real issue in as many as a third of people diagnosed with Alzheimer’s.

    What others have experienced and warned against on this page happened to my healthy, competent, self-controlled mother last year, and indeed, humanbeing, it started with a mis-prescribed, hideously over-dosed beta blocker. She survived as a shadow of her former self, with some gradual recovery.

    A study of 39,000 people in Japan found that regardless of severity of hypertension, those treated for it died young than did those not treated. They don’t deny that hypertension precedes cardiovascular events. It’s just the treating it, according to their findings, is worse than leaving it alone.

    “Treated participants had significantly higher risk for cardiovascular mortality, coronary heart disease, heart failure, and stroke compared with untreated people. Among untreated participants, the risks increased linearly with an increment of blood pressure category. The risk increments per blood pressure category were higher in young participants (<60 years) than those in old people (≥60 years)"

    "The risks of cardiovascular mortality were ≈1.5-fold high in participants under antihypertensive medication."

    Not to mention the cognitive impairment, falls, head injuries and broken hips.

    I’m sad and disgusted to read about the author’s father’s tragic experiences and his death. I strongly endorse the device that no elderly person be left alone with the murderous fools in white coats.

    I can only assume it’s a mass conspiracy between gov and medicine to get people off the Medicare rolls and into the ground, probably achieved with just a few winks and elbow nudges.

    If it weren’t, wouldn’t it have stopped by now?

  • There’s one antihypertensive that has improved memory test scores by two points out of ten, which is a lot, in very old people with hypertension, Losartan. My mother became noticeably sharper when she started taking it. It was about 8 months after the ordeal, and she began to recover. She could remember topics from one day to the next for the first time since the ordeal, and she talked about the kind of topics she had talked about all her life. Unfortunately, she finally went to a neurologist at her polydrugger’s request, and that moron started her on that accursed Aricept. I didn’t know until it was too late. I live two hours away…Neither doc had any idea how well she was doing since she started on Losartan. Her doc told the neuro ninny she had Alzheimer’s (which I think is false; this all began on a beta blocker right before the hospital ordeal). The idiot neurologist had no interest or expertise in geriatrics. So he writes a prescription for a toxic nocebo.

    Damned if the next time I visited, my mom wasn’t on the floor in her underwear, having spent the night there with some pillows and blankets. She wouldn’t let my dad help her up.

    All I could manage was to gently pull the blanket she was on towards the bathroom so she could put herself put back together. As I pulled, she cried out in terror, “NO! I’m going to fall! I’m falling!” and screamed a few times. Moving along the floor had invoked a hallucinatory experience of falling off a cliff or a building. It was horrifying to see my mother in such a state of terror, whether justifed at the moment or not. She was living whatever it was she was dreaming with her eyes wide open.

    I could go on, but you get the point. Gotta love those MDs, the stupidest and most lethal people in the country. (Not exaggerating.)

  • The CDC was pushing antidepressants during the hysterics of the so-called opioid epidemic. “Max out on safe alternatives like SSRIs” (before you prescribe drugs that actually work) was the message from Dr. Deb Houry. She’s an emergency medicine specialist with a career interest in domestic abuse who has no idea what she’s talking about.

    You’re right about withdrawal being potentially lethal for elderly people. I’m witnessing the horror of the ruinous effects of polypharmacy in both my parents right now. They were two of the smartest, healthiest people you’d ever want to meet, but they are now drugged to the gills, in their 80s, with pills to prevent heart attacks that neither is prone to. Statins, beta-blockers, and finasteride (to prevent cancer, except not) among others. They’ve both fallen so many times and had so many concussions as a result, in the last year r two, that they now need caregivers. I had no idea what a couple of walking drugstores their doctor had made them into until it was too late and their minds were fried. Then when the good doc responded to the opiod crisis by cutting the codeine he’d happily supplied for years to the addict he created, we had a nice case of withdrawal on top of it all. Somehow a statin was snuck in, after my dad discontinued in 2013, and my dad can barely talk or walk. He is enraged several times a day, and mostly stays in bed. He falls nearly every night, whereas he never fell before. I can’t get a sibling, my mom, or the doctor to give a damn, and my dad is too impaired to understand logic…Neither parent has their dignity intact. Thank you, brilliant FDA, for keeping us safe.

  • His work wasn’t finished. The death of his body when his mind was in fine form is a terrible loss for those who knew him. That goes without saying. It’s a misfortune for those who might have been spared much misery by whatever his future research and fearless criticism of dodgy individuals in his field would have accomplished. Dr. Wagner’s life just got easier, and that’s bad news for children and adolescents. For everyone.

  • It’s not about de-stigmatizing mania, psychosis, suicide attempts, mood swings, and antisocial personality disorder, is it? It’s about normalizing pill-popping so more people will try it, and so fewer people will give up on it. They encourage psych-drug users to wear their drug lists on their sleeves (“Medicated and Mighty!”), and make sure there is a shill or ten on every public discussion platform to empathize, suggest dosage tweaks, and share her own nightmarish “relapse” upon discontinuing her drugs. “That’s when I knew I REALLY needed Sytrexline! Those anti-meds people have no idea what they’re talking about!”

  • A company called TauRx has had some interesting results with a drug that untangles the Tau proteins that also characterize the brains of AlzD individuals. The study was roundly criticized because the finding occurred in an unplanned analysis, but it was a reasonable analysis that should have been planned. It is certainly worth doing again, properly. provided critical coverage, so critical that it quoted an amyloid-b proponent’s suggestion that it could have been a placebo effect…

    …reducing brain atrophy as a placebo effect?

    “In First Phase 3 Trial, the Tau Drug LMTM Did Not Work. Period.”

  • Yes, to-the-choir preaching, this one, almost comically so. But it was nice to see someone put the blasted 2nd Gen antipsychotics in their place. Abilify caused akathisia in 25% of subjects in the trials that led to its misguided approval by the FDA as an adjunct to an antidepressant when the antidepressant has damaged the brain so much that its effects can no longer take place in what is left. Basically, you stay on an AD long enough and you’ll need an AP. What does that imply?

    Why don’t they take the poor sucker off the antidepressant, then? Because they can’t. Ever seen a plank that’s been eaten by termites? They leave the outermost layer of the wood intact. Its looks fine, but if you poke it, you break right through the unsupported veneer and discover a bustling community of insects taking up the space. The wood is our brains and the termites are the drugs. They’ve done the harm and now they occupy the tunnels they created in the process. It’s best to leave things as they are.

    So what is Abilify? A gallon of shellac poured over the scene of the destruction, holding it together from the outside.

  • It happens here, too, in the less well-lit corners of every facility, sometimes, or always.

    It happens here, but not with such a horrendous concentration of harm, or out of public view for so long. But dark days may lie ahead, when there are more people in distress than can be cared for by those who are not in distress. (And if they’re not in distress, what’s wrong with them? What you said.)

  • I’m pasting in a post I found on an Alzheimer’s forum. It’s a reminder of what we are up against, and also suggests that our messaging can be misunderstood as alarmism and perceived as harmful by people who still believe in The Drugs.

    [start quoted material]
    Re: Aricept Results
    My Mom’s primary care prescribed Zoloft for her about 6 months ago. I was thrilled. She has needed help long before the dementia issues arose.

    Well, she didn’t start taking it for weeks but I could tell when she did. I asked and, sure enough, she’d been on it 3 weeks at the time. Then she began to sink back down and, sure enough, she’d stopped.

    She told me she heard one of those stories on the news about a teenager who killed his family because he was on Zoloft so she stopped it.

    Of course, I can’t even begin to explain to her. I did mention that the boy (I’d heard the story too) had been a problem for years and that he’d only been on the Zoloft for 2 weeks. [Which is exactly when to expect it. Note that he’d “been a problem for years” but had not killed his family until starting on Zoloft.]

    And that his defense attorney’s [sic] did that for a living, trying to find a reason other than personal
    responsibilities for doing something. [I’m starting to think this is a pharma shill…]

    Then I got off my soapbox and just let it go.

    I also asked her if she was dropping a hint that she’d been thinking about killing her family. And, if so, to start with one of my brothers. [Ha ha ha]

    She even got a giggle out of that. Sure wish she’d stayed on Zoloft.
    [end quoted material]

    (posted May, 2005 on

  • It’s brilliant of you to teach your children not to discuss mental or emotional issues at school. This isn’t quite that, but there’s a woman in Kansas facing life in prison (when last I checked) because her you son, at some “DARE”-like anti drug session, triggered an interrogation (without a parent present or even aware) by saying saying his mother “calls it cannabis.”

    Then…”The other students laughed, the teacher did not. He was removed from the classroom and questioned extensively about what he had said. Banda says that he was “made to feel very smart” so that he wouldn’t be afraid of talking to them, but that when they wouldn’t take him home he started to get worried. He was taken out of her custody and placed in a foster home in another town. Banda was furious.”

    Also, just avoid Kansas altogether. There are two cases where the children of people who live out of state were opportunistically harvested by government employees because their parents use marijuana legally at home. One uses it for epilepsy, which has got to be 1000 times better, side-effects-wise than all the epilepsy drugs. You might know how horrible they are if you have seizures, or if you fell under the bipolar bus and got put on a so-called “mood-stabilizer” that’s actually an epilepsy drug. Go to an epilepsy forum and weep for the people experiencing suicidal depression as a symptom of withdrawal while their brainwashed neurologists tell them it;s not possible and refer them to psychiatry… The other is a veteran rated 50% disabled and using marijuana legally for pain and “PTSD.” In any case, Kansas had or has their kids, and they were not even Kansas residents…

  • alternate #5.) Kids with psychiatrists, people with psychiatrists etc., sometimes get caught up in psychiatry. And once they’re labelled, the psychiatrists then use those labels against them. They can use them to demean them, to get away with their psychiatry by saying that the person is insane, to escape justice by means of using psychiatric terminology in legal documents etc; whereas, in fact, part of the distress that contributes to some of the problems the label describes is caused by such mistreatment of the individual. One just has to look at the multitudes of legal cases where this happens in various countries.

  • Indeed. The FDA does not approve of the use of antipsychotics on elderly persons with dementia and psychosis. That’s because of a doubling of the rate of death in such people when given antipsychotics in a group of very short studies like the Taiwanese one. It seems entirely arbitrary to limit the non-approval to individuals with dementia and psychosis. The key is the oldness, and the non-approval should be extended to all elderly persons (then to all of humanity).

    Something they’re probably too uninterested to have learned is that persons with Dementia with Lewy bodies are at greatly elevated risk for Neuroleptic Malignant Syndrome if made to take an antipsychotic. As much as 35% of old age dementia is Lewy body dementia, but it’s not often diagnosed properly. It can be diagnosed relatively late, because memory impairment is not typically among the first symptoms to become apparent. Delusions and hallucinations often precede it, and those are not always disclosed by the person experiencing them.

    Haldol and other neuroleptics have killed countless elderly people, with and without dementia. There are too many stories of someone’s elderly parent being admitted to a nursing home for short term physical therapy or extended recovery from surgery, and leaving on a gurney, killed within days by idiot, improperly educated, callous and brainwashed employees. They really think Haldol is a great drug. Search for Haldol or haloperidol if you want an eye-opener. It will keep you from setting foot in a hospital or nursing home unless you have some way to keep the murderous control freaks’ drugs out of your body. Stating in writing that you must not be made to take an antipsychotic isn’t reliable. ( is another place to listen in on some water-cooler medical chatter.)

  • Dr. Frances knows as well as anyone what it means to be haunted for life. He’s trying to undo his damages and hoping to win a naive new audience by championing ideas that sound good and in fact are good.

    When the fog of psychiatric correctness clears, you still have a doctor who believes that some individuals’ personal ways of being are diseases to be eradicated. He’s not been clear on what the individuals are expected to do or be after their genuine selves have been rendered impotent and silenced.

  • That chief headshrinker is Jeffrey A Lieberman, a professor at Columbia and an MD. He calls himself a scientist despite holding no doctoral degree in any science. (Any one can call themselves a scientist, and there is a long tradition of excellent work from self-educated scientists. It becomes socio-pathological when you use the badge to conduct unethical studies on innocent children, offer your crazy insights to a gullible media misled by your MD, and wear a white lab coat in vlogs you make for mass consumption, as Lieberman has done (the former) and still does (the latter).)

    From his “ask me anything” text-chat session on

    “The only thing that I can say about scientologies [sic; he typed it] antipathy against psychiatry is that unlike the idealogical zealots like Robert Whitaker and patients who are unwilling to acknowledge their own illness and thus blame psychiatry.”




    Yet more. Lying in his mass-market book “Shrinks” about the outcome of the first test on an actual patient of the first “antipsychotic” in 1952: “WHY THERE’S AN ANTI-PSYCHIATRY MOVEMENT”


  • No, but an elderly relative was on a beta-blocker called Atenolol at a very high dose for someone in her 80s who weighs 110 lbs. It was accidentally under-dosed when she was in a hospital for nothing. (Or, to fill empty beds and empty hospital bank account.) A nurse at the hospital called her pharmacy to find out what pills she was taking, and somehow, recorded 50 mg/day when the real dose was 150 mg/day.

    She had been admitted “for observation” (of the hospital’s bottom line?) after going there for unnecessary sutures for a 1.5 cm laceration. It had had stopped bleeding before she was transported. (She had been involuntarily transported over her retired-surgeon husband’s objection by the for-profit company our city contracts for “paramedic” services, and how they got to the scene is a story in itself. It wasn’t her or her husband’s wish.) Interestingly, in the hospital records, the laceration became a 2 cm laceration between Day 1 and Day 3, despite not changing in actual length. Someone must have realized what a cluster-eff they’d inflicted on her and tried to create something like a justification for it.)

    Because she had “inexplicably” fallen, she was subject to every test or scan imaginable, ultrasound scan for blood clots, brain CT-scan, EKG, x-rays, all with negative findings. The fall was easily explained by the chronic overdose of Atenolol, which sloppy nursing or sloppy pharmacy communication disguised as a normal (though still potentially problematic) dose.

    I believe she got no Atenolol on the afternoon and evening of Day 1, but should have got 50mg at both times. She got none or 25 mg on the morning of Day 2. By 9:00 she was freaking out in a state of panic and terror and was tackled, jabbed with Haldol, and put in restraints.

    It was a year ago and she’s still a changed, damaged, ruined human being as a consequence. The idiot nurses and doctors had caused withdrawal and as usual, blamed aberrant behavior on the patient, imputing it to psychiatric causes or voluntary behavior when the cause was physical and was their fault.

    The upside is that she completely discontinued the drug afterwards, and hasn’t fallen once since then (12 months). Before that she was falling at least once every other month, luckily breaking some ribs and a vertebrae (i.e., her back) but not a hip, through all those collapses onto concrete and tiled floors. She’d been on Atenolol for at least 2 years. I found a flyer in her files, from AARP, which handles her Part D Medicare. It suggested switching to Atenolol because they were withdrawing coverage for a more expensive antihypertensive they were going to stop covering. (I forget which one it was).

    I had no idea there was a beta-blocker withdrawal syndrome, but Dr. Google has opened my eyes with comments like these on various medical forums, all regarding Atenolol:

    …went through enough terror with just that short time.

    …my life and my blood pressure have not been the same since.

    …great amounts of panic-anxiety

    …full fledge [sic] panic attacks

    …could not leave my house because of the bad anxiety and panic attacks

    …times when I thought I was going to die

    …felt like someone was continually injecting adreneline [sic]

    …horrible anxiety attacks and very bad fatigue.

    I’m glad you got off Coreg quickly. Was it real Coreg, or a generic? here are some horror stories about the generic…

    And if it was for hypertension, the prescription would be questionable in the first place.

  • I wondered if it was a typo, too. It says a great deal when Andrew Weill says he is surprised to hear what Dr. Wood has to say. I don’t know if it says a lot about him, or about the barrier between our testimony and the ears of those who could do the most good if they heard it.

    I haven’t been too impressed by Weill in the past. He issued a memorably biased rejection of the possibility that consuming coconut oil leads to weight loss.

    He cited a study of 20 women. Half used two tablespoons of coconut oil per day in their cooking, and half used two tablespoons of soybean oil. They all cut 200 calories per day and they all exercised 4 days a week. After three months, they’d all lost about two pounds. How weak an intervention could you design?

    Then he says “In other studies, dieters who used MCT-rich oil extracted from coconut lost more weight than those who used vegetable oil, but the losses reported were modest.” I’ll take “modest” if it comes from merely switching to coconut oil, or adding it. How many pounds is “modest,” anyway?

    If he’d wanted to tout coconut oil, he could have ignored the first stupid study and played up the second one. He doesn’t use citations in his articles, even when he discusses specific studies. I wrote him off. I hope Dr. Wood’s information will start him on a transformation.

  • Sorry for the late reply, especially because I’m disagreeing with and correcting some of the statements made in replies to my original comment.

    I didn’t recommend against tapering. I said it isn’t a panacea, and it unduly improves the image of antidepressants. The mainstream media has caught on, and now mentions tapering as if it addresses the problem of antidepressant withdrawal so completely that withdrawal is a non-issue. Now, anyone who has problems after they go off an antidepressant brought those problems on themselves by not tapering slowly enough.

    How slow is slow enough? Well, if you had problems, you’re told your taper wasn’t slow enough. The Theory of Tapering therefore cannot be falsified.

    It is true: There are studies that conclude there’s no difference between tapering and not tapering. (I know: their tapers weren’t slow enough.)

    I’ve been a member of long enough to have read countless stories of people suffering all through tapering. There are people who were doing fine until the last dose reduction, from minuscule to nothing. That last step isn’t a quantitative change like all the previous ones. It’s a state change, from one a drug to not on a drug, and it can bring on withdrawal symptoms in full force.

    The implication that I don’t know what I’m talking about is an attack-the-messenger strategy. I’ve gone off more psych drugs than most people have been on, and it wasn’t because there was anything wrong with me when I first took a dose of Effexor IR.

    Regarding smoking, some people might prefer tapering to quitting cold turkey, but that”s because, as I implied, tapering is the opposite of quitting. Using is the opposite of quitting. Cold turkey was the method used by the majority of former smokers because of the simple fact that you either smoke, or you don’t. Quitting isn’t a process. Quit is a status.

    Smoking and antidepressant use are apples and oranges, anyway. Smokers crave nicotine, and AD users do not crave ADs. Physical complaints and mood changes in withdrawal from nicotine are negligible in comparison to those complaints and changes in withdrawal from ADs.

    I don’t recommend tapering or cold turkey. I recommend thinking long and hard, doing a lot of reading, and questioning experts, users and former users before taking an antidepressant drug for any reason.

  • Robert Sapolsky, a Stanford neurobiologist, was last seen “working on a modified virus that could carry engineered ‘neuroprotective’ genes deep into the brain to neutralise the rogue [stress] hormones before they can cause damage. The virus is now shown to work on rats…”

    The modified virus is herpes. Volunteers?

    I thought his lunacy was worth mentioning because of a column he wrote right after the Germanwings antidepressant-induced atrocity. It ran in major newspapers across the country. The gist was: “get treatment because depression kills.” He mentioned “schizophrenics” along the way. His thoughts on those diagnosed with schizophrenia?

    “…the vast majority of schizophrenics are dangerous only insofar as they break the hearts of loved ones watching the tragedy of a wasted life.”

    The unfortunate thing is that Sapolsky is not just respected, he’s generally revered. For those uncertain about how to revere him, he provides the model by revering himself.

  • I’ll board this hijacked train.

    “Some evidence suggests that receipt of SV-40 contaminated polio vaccine may increase risk of cancer…”

    Good old SMR: “Suggests-May-Risk.” It means there’s a relationship, period.

    Any studies showing that it reduces the risk? Didn’t think so. I believe they would say so: “In fact, some evidence suggests that being shot up with monkey-AIDS-causing-virus actually may reduce your risk of cancer…”

    In the (presumed, but wrongly, perhaps) absence of studies revealing a negative relationship, findings would would necessarily average out to a positive relationship. The basic statistic calculated to determine a relationship between two measurements or yes/no outcomes is a number between -1 and +1. When more of X is associated with more of Y, it’s a number between 0 and +1. When more of X is associated with less of Y, it will be a number between -1 and 0. If all you have are findings of a positive relationship or of no relationship, the average will be above 0: a positive relationship. It cannot be 0.

    “…the majority of studies … have shown no *causal* relationship between receipt of SV40-contaminated polio vaccine and cancer.” [asterisk-emphasis added]

    But have the majority of studies found a relationship, despite no proof of causality? Sounds like a possibility. How would you prove causality other than in an experiment that cannot legally be conducted? So, another way of saying the above would be “the best evidence we have so far…” because correlational evidence is as good as it is going to get.

    If being injected with monkey-AIDS-causing-virus increases the odds you’ll get cancer, either the shot causes it, or something correlated with the shot causes it. (Getting cancer later can’t cause you to have got the shot earlier.) I’d like to hear some ideas on what was correlated with getting a polio vaccine in the US in 1960, other than being born.

    This isn’t about the wisdom of being vaccinated against polio; it’s about word use. Any government I fund is obligated to tell the truth clearly. Ours doesn’t.

  • I’m quite sure my doctor, a woman, believed I was neurotic when I asked her to look at a hard, attached mass I knew was cancer. Nope, not to her it wasn’t. I asked her how she knew it wasn’t cancer. “Because it isn’t” was her reply. Itch cream was prescribed. I went back a month later, with what was now a large-ish hard, attached mass. An ointment edged out the itch cream–more staying power. I finally went to a specialist (also a woman), who hadn’t even started the specialized part of the exam when she began saying words like “radiation” and “chemotherapy.” A CT-scan found that it had spread to my liver, and also spawned a secondary tumor, which proved to be highly inconvenient in the long run, because chemo didn’t finish it off and radiation seemed to feed it. One life-changing massive surgery later…(two, if you count the unnecessary one)…

  • I don’t think the author meant to belittle pseudobulbar affect. He meant to say that is’s another symptom of antidepressant damage that will not be attributed to antidepressants, as it should be. It will be a new diagnosis, and a reason to prescribe a new and no doubt expensive drug.

    Ten bucks says they’ll call it “mini-bipolar’ or if they really put their shrinking caps on, “Bipolar with Limited, Attenuated Mood Events” (BLAME)

  • The suicide comment assumes that people who feel badly enough to kill themselves feel worse than people enduring extra-pyramidal drug and withdrawal effects. If you haven’t talked to anyone in the latter group, and aren’t in it, it’s probably impossible to the guess the depth, breadth, and duration of the life-wrecking syndromes. There is such thing as suffering so badly you beg out loud to die, but not being willing to kill yourself. That should be recognized.

    Some people do kill themselves to escape extra-pyramidal side effects, and anyone who has endured them or is enduring them knows why.

    That the drugs induce suicide is not discussed here much mainly because no one who comments here has killed himself or herself, and there’s something of an ethic of sticking to topics you know something about.

    There are people here mourning those who have killed themselves, and the gravity and atrocity of doctors having instructed them to take pills known to doctors, researchers, drug companies, and governments to put their lives at risk is not lost on anyone, author or commenter.

  • What I’ve noticed and not been fond of are articles written by people who don’t know the subject matter well enough to avoid wording, lifted from what ever media article they’re re-writing, that hits the wrong note. It might be patient-blaming, pharmapologism, or diagnosis-validating, among others. They clearly mean well, but they clearly haven’t lived through it, or been around the loosely unorganized non-movement long enough to know in their bones that what they are (re-)writing comes from a pro-drug, pro-diagnosis, pro-psychiatrist stance.

  • “c) that side effects lead to medication non-adherence which has been linked to increased risk of relapse, re-hospitalization, and self-harm”

    Which means that drug effects lead to non-adherence.
    Which means that drug effects are linked to increased risk of relapse, re-hospitalization, and self-harm.

    I read some lead-headed reporting in the records of someone who was dropped from 150 Atenolol to 25 mg overnight, attributed to the patient’s pharmacy’s information including atenolol, 25mg/day, which is highly unlikely. More likely, the dingbat was told by the patient that she was on the drug, and assumed the dose was the lowest, given the age and frailty of the 108-pound patient. Dropping atenolol like that can cause extreme anxiety ad panic attacks. The lead-headed reporting was “Patient combative with staff. Patient wanted to get out of bed.” It’s pretty obvious that the correct telling is “Patient wanted to get out of bed. Staff combative with patient.” No mention was made of why said patient should have remained in bed if it were her wish to stand, given that the presenting complaint was a scalp laceration slightly over 1/2″ in length (.6″) that wasn’t bleeding, and that the thousands spent on scans and tests to figure out why the patient fell revealed nothing wrong with her health. The fall that caused the laceration is easily attributed to the crazy-high 150mg/day dosing of Atenolol. Had they been aware of her actual dosing, the patient might have been spared the iatrogenic hell of 6-point restraints while enduring Atenolol withdrawal. Nothing 5mg IM Haldol wouldn’t make worse, however, so naturally that was accomplished. Eff-word you, idiot, ignorant, sloppy nurses.

    That patient was not me, but I could pen a slim volume called “Surviving Registered Nurses,” or “Nurses try to kill me ALL. THE. TIME.” The advice at the end would be to avoid nurses at all costs, and to resort to 6-point restraints and IM neurotoxins only when they are a danger to themselves or others. I regret to say that’s at approximately all the time. Just go on to find out what a bunch of self-important humanity-haters that profession has become.

  • Another little-publicized and sometimes denied fact is that getting off some beta blockers can bring on crippling anxiety and even panic attacks. People use strong terms to describe what it’s like, with “hell” and “horrible” among the more popular.

    Naturally, it’s been established that beta blockers are not worthwhile in the treatment of hypertension, and there are strong suggestions that treating hypertension, which is a predictor of cardiovascular diseases in the way ldl is a predictor, is more lethal than not treating it. This study was probably a headache ofr drug makers. It was done in Japan and included people in 6 levels of hypertension. It wasn’t a matter of those with the highest levels of hypertension being the most likely to be treated, with the hypertension rather than the treatment explaining the relatively high rates of death due to heart attack, stroke, etc. Blood pressure was linearly related to death in the untreated group, as we’ve been told, but being treated for it at any level of hypertension increased the odds of dying from cardiovascular disease, heart failure, and stroke.

    Cardiovascular risk with and without antihypertensive drug treatment in the Japanese general population: participant-level meta-analysis.

    “The risks of cardiovascular mortality were ≈1.5-fold high in participants under antihypertensive medication.” (No beating around the bush.)

    “More attention should be paid to the residual cardiovascular risks in treated patients.” (“Residual” is a nice word.)

  • I’m starting to believe that our messaging has a leftie tone. We appear to want sympathy and except people to not only care, but do something about a cause that isn’t their own. We direct it too much at liberal audiences and law-makers, in whom we believe sympathy resides. What we forget is that everyone is afraid of mentally ill people, and that liberals might be more so than others. After all, they don’t have loaded rifles standing next to their beds to deal with “crazed” intruders or concealed-carry pistols at the ready should something go down at Walmart again. We figure conservatives are heartless and not inclined to help those less fortunate, so we don’t expect help from their side. But they have a particular hatred of Wasteful Government Spending (which the liberals see as Wonderful God-given Sinecures), and we can leverage that into action by making the correct points, focused not on misery, but on money.

    Framing the problem in terms of what is spent on drugs sold by foreign-headquartered drug companies, which is most of big pharma, and what little good it does Americans might get some attention and some anger of the kind that motivates. It would be helpful to describe cheaper alternatives and demonstrate that there would be fewer mass shootings if they were in place (which takes the heat off NRA). The savings must be estimated, but they’d be huge. Once there is a large number attached to a reasonable proposition, the proposition becomes attractive.

    We’d have to counter APA and self-appointed pro-drug, pro-force spokesmodels like Jeff Lieberman, E Fuller Torrey and Helen Farrell, but we have a few well-placed advocates in academic medicine who can decimate the spokesmodels’ vapid, palatable wisdoms with actual data.

    In sum, it’s all marketing, and we are doing it wrong.

  • We need a lobbyist, or several. We don’t agree on everything, but if we could agree on a set of points, perhaps those endorsed by the United Nations regarding forced treatment and additional ones based on an assembly of all the “black box” warnings the FDA has mandated, we could present a powerful statement to counter TAC, NAMI, PHRMA, and groups* that do little more than lobby Congress to make laws that force the rest of us to submit to harmful interventions again and again, too often losing our right to genuine health or our lives as the result.

  • I agree with the points made in the article, and with Oldhead’s comment. I like bcharris’s comment, and I think an android companion would probably be more helpful than a psychiatrist or drugs for many.

    I just want to pick a nit, something I’ve stopped myself from doing in noisier discussions where the point would be lost. It’s about this statement, which is made often when “mental health” and violence are discussed:

    “… individuals who are diagnosed with serious mental illness are more likely to be victims of crime than perpetrators. Further, they are rarely violent in the first place.”

    My nit-picking is pointing out that the odds of being violent versus experiencing violence have no bearing on whether those with “serious mental illness” diagnoses are, on average, more violent than those without such diagnoses. If I am not mistaken, the data on hand says they are. Presumably the use of psychiatric drugs and other drugs explain that.

    Making the comment about the higher risk of being attacked than attacking invites opponents to point out what I just pointed out, and in any case, the risk ratio is probably true of everyone, diagnosed or otherwise. Since so few people are killers (for example), and there are more people killed than there are killers (given that some killers kill multiple times), everyone is more likely to be killed than to be a killer.

    To mention that most mass shooters have been patients of psychiatry or mental health service providers and taking psychiatric drugs undermines the attempt to convince an audience that those with psychiatric diagnoses are no more violent than the general population, but it’s the stronger and more important point to get across, in my opinion.

  • I was happy to see the word “homeostasis” here. It’s been avoided by the charlatans who speak of chemical imbalance, because the drugs they use to “correct chemical imbalances” do not correct or restore any kind of balance. They do nothing, unless by chance, in favor of genuine homeostasis, which is a state that’s like the idling of a well-tuned engine running on clean, optimally potent fuel. With antidepressants, sub-processes go awry and interact with other tweaked subprocesses. The gears begin to grind here and there and subsystems, deprived of the usual inputs and channels for outputs, malfunction. Hearts beat at the wrong pace, nerves carry messages of pain when there’s been no stimulation, or nothing at all despite intense stimulation. The natural state of relaxation is prevented by signals of distress heeded by the limbs but unknown to the conscious mind, and the natural process of falling asleep is subverted by noisy parties in parts of the brain that normally twiddle their thumbs all night. Ingesting food is experienced by the stomach as insult and injury, so the stomach signals, with intense nausea, that food is no longer welcome. By its only ex post facto means of self-preservation, it sends food back up the esophagus and out the mouth, returning it to where it darned well came from. So the body is a rendered a mess.

    On antidepressants, and after they are stopped, one’s consciousness experiences emotions uncoupled from the experiences that normally trigger them. The altered individual is not aware their their operating system was deleted and that legacy code buried somewhere in the brainstem, adequate to the purposes of a monitor lizard, has reassembled itself and taken on the job of running a human being in a human milieu. Anxiety about social status becomes paranoia. Romantic love turns into disdain or hatred. Takers gain weight, lose empathy, and shop, drink and gamble their families and homes away. Maternal love turns into murder. Bland misanthropy wakes up one morning and suggests mass slaughter as the remedy for ongoing dissatisfaction with oneself and others. It makes sense (to a monitor lizard).

    “Antidepressant,” is a bit of a misnomer. The drugs are more like molecular monkey wrenches. If only it were as easy to stop taking them as it is to start taking them.

  • You can do it, but be aware that the account would eventually get deleted because Facebook only tolerates individuals using their real names. They have eventually busted all my fake accounts. In the case of a shared account, they might have ways of detecting that logins are occurring from all over the country or world, and simultaneously. If everyone used a good VPN* service, and pretended to be from the same city, that would help. If you make an official “Page,” many people can administer it, but I don’t know that Pages can comment on off-site content.

    *VPNs are Virtual Private Networks. You login into their application before you commence using the web. They assign you an IP address from anywhere in the world you chose (among their offerings), so that your real IP address is not revealed when you view web pages. (Normally it is logged by the computer that is hosting the pages.) Your real IP address lets people pinpoint you to a city block, or to your home if your internet service provider is consulted. It’s like a calling card that you leave by accident. Or like you stepped in something and now you’re leaving tracks all over the internet.

    Some people use a VPN to seem to be from a country that is allowed to access certain material on the web, if they live in a country that isn’t allowed to. Others use it for lightweight anonymity, because lot of bloggers keep track of the IP address that visit their blogs. If you’re stalking the enemy and don’t want to be recognized by your IP address every time you enter their turf, a good VPN is probably a good enough defense against being recognized, if you change up your fake location often. I doubt anything is NSA-proof, though.

    Good VPNs don’t keep any user activity logs, unless they have to by law, in which case they’re not all that good for people who do bad things on the net. Good VPNs don’t leak your real IP address. Bad ones do both.

    Leak what? Search for: lifehacker leaking ip address VPN.
    A lifehacker article on the topic of leaks will be the first result.

    Some VPN services are free, but always test for leaks and check their logging practices.

    I just searched for: best vpn
    The first site listed by Google gave high ratings to some good VPNs.

  • Far too many. And the MDs just eat it up, because then they can whip out the “mood stabilizers” and “antipsychotics,” and that means they have a patient for life. Like a spider wrapping another envenomated fly in spider silk and stashing him somewhere in her web, they accumulate wealth, one victim at a time.

  • I read Dr. Gold’s article too. I liked it about as well as Dr. Hickey did. There’s one in a similar vein by a delusional-seeming Dr. Helen Farrell. If you care to read it, do not miss Dr. Pies’ contributions to the comments section.

    I met J in the Emergency Department. Dark red blood [there’s another kind?] was oozing out of self-inflicted deep lacerations to her forearms. [If they were deep, blood would do more than ooze.] The surgical team was consulted and the cuts were debrided, cleaned, stitched and neatly bandaged. [Is this the Martha Stewart take on locked wards?] J was patched up. [No she wasn’t. She was stitched up.] But she was not healed. Her wounds ran deeper than a surgeon’s instruments could access. [What do you mean? They were in her ulnas?]

    “Locked up?!” These are typical words expressed by patients who learn that they are going to be admitted involuntarily to the psychiatric unit. [No, it’s what they say when they learn they are not going to be allowed to leave.] When J heard this news, her own tear-stained face scrunched up in an expression of horror. After several minutes of pleading, she finally resigned herself to the plan. [I bet that's therapeutic, being terrified until your will is broken. Sign me up!]

    A nurse came into the room and took J’s phone. [That would be a theif, not a nurse, in common parlance.] She took her sweater, her belt and the laces from her shoes. [Now the nurse is a sexual offender, too.] J stripped down into a standard hospital gown. [We like that opening in the back, even though we don’t do surgeries in this ward.] It is common for patients to make one last plea and many have told me that they fear the psychiatric unit is analogous to prison. [Because it is. And you have a sick way of writing about terrified people’s behavior. If you didn’t enjoy it, you would do something else for a living. You like the tear-stained faces of young woman, and their pleas. Admit it.]

    J is representative of the many patients whom I treat on a day-to-day basis. She is a composite of those actual people who suffer from serious mental illnesses ranging from psychotic and mood disorders to personality disorders that require hospital level care. [You’re a composite of Stalin, Mao, Jack the Ripper, and Betty Boop.]

    Not Your Mother’s Psych Ward [Leave my mother out of this, Ding-Dong, unless you want to go a few rounds in the parking lot.]
    The days of psychiatrists wantonly locking up patients like J against their will are long gone. They have been replaced by a legal process called civil commitment that firmly puts patients’ rights first [even as it locks patients up against their will, or at the whim of a judge who knows nothing but what psychiatrists tell him]. Yes, J was being admitted against her will, but she would retain her power to make treatment decisions, summons legal counsel, and even have a hearing with a judge [unless she lacked insight or was declared non compo mentis. Because if her idea of treatment was telling you you’re a deranged creep and demanding that you stay at least 30 feet from her at all times, I don’t think she’d receive it. I think she’d lose every one of those powers you listed, just for requesting something that most people would find at least a little bit funny, not a sign of “mental illness.”] These safeguards apply to patients like J who are mentally ill and at risk of harm to themselves or others as a direct result of mental illness. [Did I miss something? Cutting her arms doesn’t mean J is “mentally ill.” It probably means something awful’s going on in her life that she either can’t escape or can’t articulate, to herself or anyone else. One thing she does not do is lock people up and drug them. That, my friend, is “mentally ill” even by your standards, if you’d stop and think about it. Except I’d just call it sadistic.]

  • Truly. Imagine if there were no psychiatry. Someone might invent it for a dystopic futurist novel in which one small set of people is allowed to declare deficiencies of mind in the rest of the population, deficiencies for which there is no proof, only the opinions of the special caste. Further, they can break up families, extract people, including children, from their homes and lock them up, and may inject chemicals that make their captives’ brains malfunction, and their bodies, too. Nearly everyone ever seized by the Caste bears the marks in one way or another for the rest of their lives. No one dares to oppose them for fear of being labeled deficient and seized. And thus the population is controlled.

    Except that’s not a novel, that’s now.

  • The very terrible thing is that the people who repeatedly insisted that Dan accept an idiotic, invented diagnosis won’t be charged with emotional abuse and harassment. This story moved me to tears, because Judy is so intelligent, yet she was fed a bill of goods and mostly accepted it, probably because the sales people seemed intelligent and serious. We’re not meant to know that “healthcare” professionals are sales people, selling a service that does no good. If we recognized them as salespeople, we could overlook their intelligence and see them the way we see door-to-door swindlers and carnival hawkers, many of whom are quite bright, selling ineffective potions, over-hyped gadgets, and magic spells. We could thanks, but no thanks, and close the door, walk away.

  • Me too. And notice that all of the illustrative examples were the hard cases, living outdoors in the northeast. That’s the thing about Rosenbaum. She paints pictures for those who are willing to forget that there’s a world outside her words. She’s quite the menace in that her fantasies are published by an august journal where they reinforce the worst instincts of the worst doctors, and it all goes on where the general public would never think it possible.

    I assume you read “Re-connecting the dots.” If not, you must. But have someone you can rant to handy!

  • Well, I really meant the actual human beings, the Pelosi, Feinstein, H Clinton, Obama types, whatever they are called. I don’t think anything regarded as socialist has been anything like anarchy in recent centuries. Don’t forget the Bolsheviks. That’s a flavor of socialism that was nowhere near anarchy. Something closer to anarchy, in recent history, was the very people they were bent on killing, the Cossacks. Rumor has it that they didn’t have centralized government, and to the extent they were organized, it was for military might, not control of production. What they had was enough land per capita, and a suitable climate to be self-sustaining as individuals and as a culture. What they lacked was outside support, which mattered, because their productivity on the land was too desirable to be left alone. They thought they could do their thing indefinitely, but by the mid 1850s, globalism was crowning, and their way was anachronistic. It was crazy, actually. When they ran out of bullets, they were done.

    Isn’t that was crazy is? Doing your own thing, or wanting to, in a context where someone else with an unlimited supply of bullets wants you to do their thing? When you read about the goals of those who would “treat” what they call “schizophrenia,” it always boils down to “independent living.” Well, being homeless *is* independent living (while lacking outside support). Independence is not the goal of mental-healthing. The real goal, which isn’t really a secret, is that everyone be a “productive” member of the collective, er, society.

  • I see. Thank you for explaining. What you said about the Left/Liberal participation in the “mental health” enterprise is quite true. Their governing philosophy is “tyranny with benefits,” which appeals to those who like tyranny, whether they want the benefits or not, and those who accept tyranny because they want the benefits. As tyrants, Left/Liberal legislators and their cronies find it convenient and lucrative to imprison troublemakers, which is why the USA has the largest percent of its population in prisons (many of which are run by for-profit private concerns, with publicly-traded shares listed on the New York Stock Exchange), and the highest rate of individuals incapacitated by a for-profit mental health system (encompassing “medical” “care” and drug sales) on earth. The imprisoning and mental-healthing of difficult people also enriches attorneys (who are mostly Left/Liberal, and worthless in assisting us in the fight against the mental health enterprise*) and the public purse.


  • I’d love to see a “bucket” for the research on post-psychotropic drugs problems, which are common, often severe, and just as valid as any other medical problem. They have symptoms that make them seem like disorders of the psyche, but they are caused by chemical injuries to the nervous system and heaven knows what else (hormones seem to be affected, too)

    The ICD diagnostic system includes a code for “post-psychiatric illness personality disorder,” or something similar. It’s regarded as psychological. It sounds like post-psychotropic brain damage to me.

  • It is paternalistic rubbish.
    “Although these medications are “clearly effective,” and many patients who are unable to take one drug fare better on another, we do need better drugs.”
    –Guess who she quoted for “clearly effective?” Jeffrey Lieberman. Why did she put the term in quotes? Because she knows it isn’t true. The sentence is a typical jumble of ideas. If the drugs are clearly effective, why do we need better ones? And who is “we”? Doesn’t she mean “they,” the people who receive the prescriptions? If many who can’t take a drug fare better on another drug, what about those who do not?

    “Such good and compassionate care is possible, but only if we […] are willing to accept, not deny, their differences.”
    –She’s saying that political correctness gets in the way of good “care.” She doesn’t understand that if there were good care, nothing would get in its way.

    “Why should schizophrenic delusions be left alone when we’d consider such an omission to be negligence in someone with psychosis from toxic metabolic encephalopathy?”
    –A classic Rosenbaum illogic. Answer: Because they are not caused by toxic metabolic encephalopathy.

    How’s this for a reference?
    “What is anosognosia? — backgrounder”
    Treatment Advocacy Center, June 2016.

    Despite the recent date, the link is dead:

  • I pointed out this 3-article series to the news editor a few days ago, which might be why it’s here. I did not point it out because I endorse it or thought MIA would. It’s of interest because it’s by the cardiologist who wrote a manipulative, illogical series for NEJM last year, saying conflicts of interest really aren’t anything to worry about. She was the darling of the Ivy League careerist MDs on Twitter for a few weeks; the fawning was close to obscene. Then critics started in, and opposition and opprobrium were delivered by the bushel.

    I found the piece lacking in impact and insight. Sort of a nothing. No firestorm of criticism on Twitter yet, which is probably a disappointment to the author.

    Matt S. picks it apart below.

  • I share your distaste for the word “medications.” Why not “medicines,” I wonder, not that that term is palatable either. And the most reprehensible useage is the ubiquitous “her meds,” “your meds,” etc. The last psychiatrist I wasted any time with (not realizing I suffered from dopamine agonist withdrawal syndrome) told me I had to take “my meds.” (Topamax was making me into a stupid person who cried a lot, and I thought that was a bad direction for me.) I told him they weren’t my meds, they were his drugs. That was it. I left him to contemplate his 3-d model of synapses and serotonin being messed up by Prozac.

  • I have no wish to debunk your comment. I was glad to read it. Every time I encountered a statement about “dopaminergic pathways” and psychotic symptoms, I had a small sense that that was wrong, but discarded the thought. You seem to be saying unbalanced or excess dopamine can’t produce hallucinations because dopamine isn’t a hallucinogen. That’s more of a revelation than it should be!

    Is experiencing hallucinations anything like being asleep and dreaming? If so, it would not require big fancy explanations for why some people hallucinate and others do not. The only thing to explain would be why some do it only while asleep.

  • I have no trouble believing that there is bias in the science. This article was biased, too, though.

    There are too many conclusory statements for this to be convincing. A conclusory statement ‘… is a statement made in an argument that states a conclusion, without any foundation, underlying logic, or reasoning.” So, something like this…

    “Donna Maney is an expert in neurobiology at Emory University.”

    Says who?

    “Earlier this year, she published an article stating that “the communication and public discussion of new findings [in the neuroscience of gender] is particularly vulnerable to logical leaps and pseudoscience.”

    That’s nice, but it’s just what someone said. Examples of studies that relied on logical leaps and pseudoscience, and the mechanisms and effects of bias, are needed.

  • In real life, he won. If he had “lost,” therefore, it would have been because it was rigged. He might have had a gut feeling, which I had, that the massive rallies supporting his candidacy, compared to the limp hand-clapping for Clinton’s, meant he’d win the election, polls notwithstanding. And as the Podesta emails revealed, there was some undue influence via the media’s coziness with Clinton that made his battle much harder. That’s not exactly rigging, but it’s dirty. That he won despite the way he was depicted day after day after day in major outlets is quite remarkable.

  • If you don’t know what Jeffrey St Clair meant about destroying Libya, here’s a hard-left writer’s chilling summary of Clinton’s role and just how misguided it was. For those who don’t know, Libya was once a country. It is now hell.

    You can cite Trump’s anti-Muslim-immigration remarks as Islamophobic, but people hold them up against Clinton’s murderous deeds, and their result.

  • JEFFREY LIEBERMAN is a big pal of Tim Murphy’s, and also of a Kennedy cousin who believes he is being successfully treated for bipolar disorder. I’d wager that Lieberman fed Tim Murphy that absolutely untrue stuff about Holmes, Rodgers, and a few other mass killers being “untreated” mentally ill. Lieberman has testified before Congress on mental health. The Marshall Project, a worthy, human-rightsy publication co-created by former NYTimes editor Bill Keller, gave Lieberman a voice during the James Holmes / Batman/Aurora trial. Lieberman asserted that Holmes was not insane, and shortly thereafter, a few jurors were sent packing because they’d been exposed to media coverage. In reality, how many jurors were exposed but not caught? How many would have seen Lieberman’s unethical and absurd assessment of Holmes’s mental health (Not psychotic, just “troubled”), based on a scribbled “diary?” But Bill Keller was all for it, because Lieberman is a professor of psychiatry at an Ivy League university, I guess. Lieberman is the one to watch.

    His record on human rights is appalling. This blog post contains to infamous (or should be) letters he wrote to or about public figures, showing his craven tendencies. Both letters received replies that put him in his place.

    Destroying Lieberman’s false credibility would help a lot. Not that Mr. Whitaker hasn’t done it ably; but a wider awareness is needed.

    In case you’re interested, Lieberman’s unseemly showing in the Holme’s case, among other problems with the trial and various doctors, is covered here:

  • This is a comment on the wording of the donation box:

    “Enjoyed what you just read? Consider a donation to help us continue to produce content, provide up-to-date research news, offer continuing education courses, and continue building a community for exploring alternatives to the current paradigm of mental health. All donations are tax deductible.”

    No, i really did not enjoy it. Some similar but not as bad just happened to my mother in a modern, high-profile hospital and she has the mind of a child now. My mother is alive, but gone. I don’t read this site for enjoyment.

  • Your description so much like being admitted to a prison that it boggles the mind. Only a cold-blooded sociopath–no scratch that–only a really stupid sadist…oh, never mind. I was trying to think of the kind of doctor who would believe that that kind of treatment is good for anyone. I don’t think they do think that. It’s good for them if patients keep coming in and public and private insurance companies keep transferring funds. A racket, in other words.

  • Jim Coyne wrote a nasty paper about David Healy. Underlying his beef with David is his inability to believe that antidepressants are dangerous. If he knew what David knows, I’d join forces. Did you see him take up the cause of the ME/CFS patients vs Simon Wessely this year?

    In this anti-Healy rant, he calls out the result — that 2/10 became suicidal on an antidepressant. He was incredulous. His comment was something like “How is that we wouldn’t know about this, if it’s true?” LOL LOL ROTFLOL.

    Most of us don’t have the media’s ear, most of us don’t want publicity, scant few doctors will listen, and pharma is in the business of not listening. Those doctors who do listen are pilloried (even by you, Jim!)

    There are those of us who want to talk about this, far and wide. But we don’t get very far on our world tours. (No one believes us, Jim. And you’re not helping.)

  • To perpetuate an argument that came up after one of Sera Davidson’s posts, I’ll noted that McCain and Jolly are Republicans, as is Charles Grassley, who led the investigation that dislodged pharMercenaries A. Schatzburg (ceased leading an NIH-funded research project at Stanford U.) and C. Nemeroff (left his job as chair of the psychiatry department at Emory U.) from lofty perches. Is this going to become a partisan issue with the smarty-pants Dems on the wrong side of science?

    All three are senators, which puts them in a position to vote against HR2646 and the similar senate bill when they’re up for a vote in the senate. If you write to them, point out a few things that are bad about the bills, and ask them to lobby their pals in the senate to vote against it/them.

    I think it’s important to point out that Tim Murphy, sponsor of HR2646, used falsehoods about Adam Lanza, James Holmes, Aaron Alexis, and Elliot Rodger in promoting the bill.(1) He said they were all cases of untreated mentally ill individuals. They had all been subject to psychiatry or psychiatric drugs. Connecticut won’t spill the beans on Lanza’s drugs,(2) but Holmes’s was Zoloft, Alexis’s was Trazodone, and Elliot’s was a benzodiazepine.

    (1) In Murphy’s words:
    “Untreated serious mental illness in recent acts of mass violence – Adam Lanza (Newtown, CT), James Holmes (Aurora, CO), Jared Loughner (Tucson, AZ), Aaron Alexis (Washington, DC), Elliot Rodger (Santa Barbara, CA) – demands action.”

    (2) Connecticut’s assistant attorney general’s incoherent, revealing excuse for denying Able Child access to Lanza’s medical history:
    “No matter how the outcome of the use of antidepressants, or the causal link between the use of antidepressants and the kind of violence that took place in Newton – that’s not a legitimate use [of Adam Lanza’s psychiatric drug use history]. Even if you can conclusively establish that Adam Lanza, that his murderous actions were caused by antidepressants, you can’t from that logically conclude that others would commit the same actions as the result of taking of antidepressants. Not only is the use to which you wish to put the information illegitimate, it is harmful because then you can cause of lot of people to stop taking their medications and cooperating with their testing physicians.”

  • The points made are all good ones, particularly the one about prisons, in which iatrogenic violence perpetrated by drugged prisoners is considered a disorder and the newly violent, drugged prisoners are “treated” with more drugs.

    In the words of Dr. Lucire:

    “How is it possible when presented with overwhelming evidence, even the evidence of our own eyes, that we can deliberately ignore something – while being entirely aware that this is what we are doing?”

    I don’t know, but when can we start charging drugmakers who fake their drug trial data with crimes? Civil suits are impossible to pursue, for most Americans.

    [There are problems with some uses of the word “iatrogenic” in the article. All effects of medication are, by definition, iatrogenic. Iatrogenic means “originating in therapy” (of any kind). A sentence that begins “another area where the iatrogenic effects of medication are seen…” means “another area where the medication-caused effects of medication are seen…”]

  • SSRI sexual dysfunction in the form of erectile dysfunction, numbing, and anorgasmia is a real physical effect of antidepressants, and for some people, it has yet to go away. It isn’t a nocebo effect or mass hysteria. If it were a fabrication of the mind, something that is easier to talk about would have been chosen.

    ”More than two-thirds (68%) first experienced sexual problems as a symptom of their depression, and 17% first experienced sexual problems only after starting antidepressants.”

    That’s the worn-out ‘blame-the-patient’ attitude, ‘pre-existiing condition’ version. There are sex problems in people who aren’t on drugs, which SSRIs apparently don’t correct, but there are distinct problems that people on antidepressants experience.

  • I don’t regard people who say they are helped by antidepressants as mere beneficiaries of a placebo effect. They feel different, at least at first. The depression scales in most drug trials don’t capture it.
    They care less about things that used to upset them. They’re forgetful, in a good way: they can’t ruminate if they can’t easily call the past to mind.

  • You nailed it, madmom. I just saw it yesterday, when someone sent me an article by his widow. He was in Mirapex, was taken off, and put on Sinamet. Mirapex is a dopamine agonist, Sinament is levodopa. Going off Mirapex is the #1 route to Dopamine Agonist Withdrawl Syndrome, and I am here to tell you it is about as bad as being conscious can get, out side the obvious physical things and the obvious terrible life events.

    The syndrome (DAWS) was named in 2013, and it typically visits those who go off Mirapex because of its “impulse control disorder” side effect. That is, they have gambled away their life savings, shopped it away, or had sex with anything that moved. It’s almost a perfect predictor, apparently, that DAWS lies ahead. ANd they say they have no treatment for DAWS. Someone who commented on RxISK said Wellbutrin was helping, and another guy keot saying Oxycodone…That might sound too risky, but I don’t think anyone who has DAWS would fear the risk of opioid addiction if there was a way out of DAWS. I don’t think the MDs have tried stimulants, but they should. I am not pro-psych-drug, but DAWS is not a psychiatric disorder. It’s physical and it kills. No one should ever have endure it for more than half a day, and that’s only if they are a magnificient jerk.

    I can’t find a media report that figured this out. But a bunch of doctors would have known it right away.

  • This should resonate with liberals especially: Tell your senators that the Scandinavians and other European countries (other than Great Britain) are decades ahead of us, and that both bills are being pushed on naïve congresspeople by a small group of backwards-looking anti-humanist psychiatrists and non-psychiatrists, who do not represent current progressive thinking.

    Tell them how Jeff Lieberman, former APA president, who testified in support of at least one of these bills, tried to convince the UN to change its proposed definition of inhumane treatment of the disabled, because it encompassed what American psychiatrists do to mental hospital inmates every day.

    He also tried to get the NYPD to resume the use of the demeaning and sometimes lethal “hog-tie” after the first black NYPD Commissioner banned it. Lieberman’s letter to the New York Times even included a race-based jab at the Commissioner.

    Make it personal, and it might resonate. Tell them about Lieberman’s cruel studies, which Robert Whitaker publicized in his award-winning Boston Globe series. (Check the details, please!) Giving Ritalin (speed) to first-episode psychosis in-patients, one of whom was fourteen, just to see how much worse it would make them? How much more miserable and terrified, in other words.

    That’s who thinks Tim Murphy’s bill is a great piece of legislation.

    Tell them that imprisoning people who are very distressed, searching their persons, taking away their belongs, and forcing risky, outdated drugs like Haldol into them is no way to end violence. It IS violence, and it is a national shame. Drugs are not more humane than physical restraints: they are equally odious; they just happen to be invisible. They fix nothing. They cure nothing. They can only suppress behavior and they do it at tremendous cost.

    Tell them: the FEDERAL GOV SPENDS $130B ON “MENTAL HEALTH” EVERY YEAR, AND SUICIDE IS UP 25% SINCE 1999! Don’t use all caps, though.

    Here is a meme of Senator Murphy puzzling over that fact.

    NIMH alone has an annual budget of $1.5 billion. I’s 13-year director, Tom Insel, finally quit, admitting that nothing had been accomplished. He blamed the lack of advanced technology. Oh PLEASE. Ask them to name ONE breakthrough in psychiatry that has occurred in their life time. One biomarker, just one, that proves a certain person has a “mental disorder” as opposed to just being terribly upset, for far too long, over terribly messed up circumstances, quite often a nasty home life they can’t escape for financial reasons.

    You can see for yourself how mangled the NIMH is when you search the site using a google trip. Paste this into a browser instead of going to
    to search, paste this in:

    site: self-esteem
    site: obesity
    site: HIV
    site: cruelty

    Here are how many hits you will get, in order:
    36 for self-esteem
    109 for obesity
    1690 for HIV (there are all of 30,000 new infections per year)
    0 for cruelty

    That’s right folks. I write my own jokes. That’s not a joke, though. That’s as exhaustive a search as you can do of a site’s publicly accessible pages, and it proves that NIMH has no concern whatsoever for those harmed by cruelty, and no interest in learning how to prevent it.

    Psychiatry will get nowhere if those bills pass, no matter how they are combined. I hope some of my thoughts give readers some ideas about what to say to their senators. You can do it. Go to to get their contact information. Real letters are better than email, but don’t let lack of a stamp stop you. Email today, and send the letter tomorrow. (Or call.)

  • I wish I had block-quoted the GSK info. On my display it looks like I am instructing Ally to “Call your healthcare provider right away”, just before the “Read….” link. It’s actually part of what I quoted from the warnings that come with Paxil, or did in a 2014 document.

  • Tree/house analogy is brilliant. I agree that with the benzos a) there is an immediate effect and b) you don’t have to get addicted. However it is darned easy. I don’t think they are safe for daily use. By the time you rack up what–6 days? 10? Definitely 30–you could feel the need to call 911 if you miss a dose. I sure did. But you didn’t say anything about daily use. Adderall (“amphetamine salts”also works right away, and though potentially addicting and able to cause psychosis, with low doses and limited use, is also an antidepressant that is far less destructive than antidepressants. The withdrawal syndrome is nothing compares to SSRI withdrawal, unless the Adderall user was in full-blown psychosis like Scott Stapp, the rockstar who flipped out on the stuff a few years ago,

    But such ideas are out of vogue, partly because benzos and speed have been accomplices in the ruin of people’s lives, but mainly because the doctrine of SSRI has destroyed so many other lives that to admit it is wholly wrong would be calamitous for those who have preached it for many decades.

    There’s still plausible deniability wrt to SSRIs and addictions. With benzos and speed, there are salient warnings about addiction potential. Not so with antidepressants. Regulators and profiteers rely on fuzzy definitions of addiction and dependency and find reason to avoid using the terms with antidepressants.

    To whit: A stable feature of antidepressant addiction is lack of cravings. Drug-seeking might take place, but only if the sufferer has decided they can’t stand the sensations and emotions of withdrawal and post-withdrawal ill-health and decides that hair of the dog is their only hope. I can imagine a desperate scramble by someone who feels so terrible that they can hardly bear another minute of it. It’s not done to get high; it’s done to prevent suicide.

    Yet cravings and drug-seeking are central to most concepts of addiction, so there’s the wiggle-room needed. If SSRI withdrawal and post-withdrawal features neither, few “experts” would deem them addictive. Experts suck in this case.

    Imagine the reparations due to the harmed users if drugmakers or prescribers ever have to pay? Gloriously large sums of money.

  • Are they your blogs? Do you know who created them?

    The links are to personal blogs created by someone who seems to be angry at Dr. Shipko. Maybe they were harmed by his advice or feel slighted by him. Do you know why they were created?

    Many of the links don’t work. One of them goes to a page on that requires special access privileges. Unless that’s a recent protection, it implies that whoever made the blogs is among those allowed to access the page, which is:

    There’s a professor James Hooper from UA (University of Alabama) who was arrested on drug trafficking charges this summer. Is this something to do with him? I guess his arrest might be the reason the page can’t be viewed at present. Maybe it was freely viewable by all when the anti-Shipko blogger linked to it.

    The blogs contain no information that indicates there is anything wrong with Dr. Shipko’s credentials or competence. There are links to two criminal cases in which Dr. Shipko apparently testified as an expert on the effects of certain psychotropic drugs. He correctly testified that psychosis and extreme, unprecedented violence can occur when people take these drugs, change the dose, or discontinue the drugs. There are warnings about violence that accompany SSRI antidepressants, so he is not exactly on the fringes with such testimony, though he might have been ahead of his time, given the age of the cases.

    In one case (Shellhouse) he stated that a he was not an expert in forensic psychiatry. The defense hired him anyway; that is a failing of the defense, not Dr. Shipko. Dr. Shipko is an expert on the effects of SSRIs, however, so discrediting his testimony simply because he has no background in forensics was a semantic play, not a valid one. The pills don’t care if you’re arrested or not.

    Contrary to what the blogs imply, SSRIs are known by the FDA to cause violence. This is from GSK’s medication guide for Paxil:

    Call your healthcare provider right away if you have any of the following symptoms,
    or call 911 if an emergency, especially if they are new, worse, or worry you:
    • attempts to commit suicide [which is a violent act]
    • acting on dangerous impulses
    • acting aggressive or violent
    • thoughts about suicide or dying
    • new or worse depression
    • new or worse anxiety or panic attacks
    • feeling agitated, restless, angry, or irritable
    • trouble sleeping
    • an increase in activity or talking more than what is normal for you
    • other unusual changes in behavior or mood
    (I added the emphasis on four items.)

    See the document here:

    Ally, do you share the blog-creator’s ill-will toward Dr Shipko? Do you have some experience with him that you think people should know about? It would be better to come out with it than to link to those blog posts. They don’t accomplish the harm to Shipko’s reputation that they apparently aim for.

  • This is egregious. If they would just take the hepatotoxic acetaminophen out of the opioids they wouldn’t be so lethal.

    The director of injury prevention is unqualified for the job and it looks like working at CDC is going to be the end of her:
    She said in an interview that doctors should “Max out” with “safe” SSRIs before resorting to opioids. Clearly she has done no serious investigation.

    “We absolutely want to treat your pain, but we want to do it safely.”

    We absolutely want you to stay out of our doctor’s prescription pads when you don’t know enough about drugs to say which ones are safe.

    The epidemic is antipsychotics, with more money spent on Abilify than on any other drug in some recent years, and 11% of the population taking an antidepressant. Not to mention stimulants, which 10% of high school boys are prescribed.

  • And yet, today on Twitter, pill proponents are up in arms because of a BBC show about a doctor who took all the patients in his practice off prescription drugs. There are cries of “pill-shaming” and “stigma,” which are efforts to turn this into a moral issue.

    That’s not right at all. I don’t know if they really believe those who speak out against psych drugs are shamers and stigmatisers, but there is no evidence to support such accusations. In the time I have been reading so-called anti-psychiatry sites and forums, I have never once seen anyone advocate drug-free depression therapies because they believe using mood drugs is immoral. Prescribing them is immoral, but that’s the doctors. The morality of patients is not something we question or disparage. We are concerned for their mental and physical health and comfort. We are former pill-takers, therapists, psychologists, and medical doctors and our only cause is the cause of health.

    We have seen it first hand, or lived it: the drugs are too harmful to be worth the debatable benefits they confer.

    PS. All four preceding comments were excellent.

  • Er, not every study. Pfizer didn’t fund the epidemiologist’s study, which is here:

    Two years before, this came of out UCSD’s shillboy, Robert Anthenelli. And it had smokers who smoked as few as ten cigarettes per day. That’s like studying alcoholics who drink 3 beers per day.
    Anthenelli is a scientific advisor to Pfizer, Inc., manufacturer of Varenicline. He receives no personal income and his services have been contracted by The Regents to Pfizer. As a result of this contractual arrangement, Anthenelli receives funding to support research and other University activities.