Tag: antidepressants efficacy
Researchers can’t predict the 15% who benefit from antidepressants, and the other 85% are unnecessarily exposed to the harms of the drugs.
In a real-world setting, less than a quarter of patients diagnosed with depression improved with medication, hospitalization, and therapy.
Nassir Ghaemi: “Most psychiatric medications are purely symptomatic, with no known or proven effect on the underlying disease. They are like 50 variations of aspirin, used for fever or headache, rather than drugs that treat the causes of fever or headache.”
Much of what Allen Frances says is sensible, but it would be more convincing if he would lay the responsibility for the present state of affairs squarely where it belongs: on psychiatry. I suggest, in all sincerity, that Dr. Frances abandon his attempt to absolve psychiatry from blame, and that he join the anti-psychiatry movement.
Researchers at the University of Zurich, led by Michael Hengartner, recently reported that antidepressant use was associated with worse outcomes in patients followed over 30 years. Here Hengartner provides more information about the study methodology and their findings.
After a meta-analysis of RCTs of antidepressants was published in Lancet, psychiatry stated that it proved that "antidepressants" work. However, effectiveness studies of real-world patients reveal the opposite: the medications increase the likelihood that patients will become chronically depressed, and disabled by the disorder.
When I first saw this Lancet 2018 network meta-analysis of antidepressant trials, my thought was that the authors had rewarded those companies that had cheated the most with their trials. My suspicion was strengthened when I looked at the results in their abstract and the three drugs they claimed were more effective and better tolerated.
The extraordinary media hype over the latest meta-analysis of antidepressants puts the discussion of these drugs back years. Despite the fact that rates of prescribing have doubled over the last decade, the authors of the analysis are calling for yet more prescribing. But this latest meta-analysis simply repeats the errors of previous analyses.
I submitted a letter to the editor of JAMA pointing out the likely explanation for the lack of effect of sertraline. JAMA rejected my letter, as it has done many times. Explaining why psychiatric drugs don’t work is not a priority for medical journals, it seems.
In this op-ed for Pulse, Des Spence argues the case for dramatically reducing antidepressant prescriptions, as antidepressants are often completely ineffective and unnecessary. "Clearly psychological pain,...
The assertion that the so-called antidepressants are being over-prescribed implies that there is a correct and appropriate level of prescribing and that depression is a chronic illness (just like diabetes). It has been an integral part of psychiatry's message that although depression might have been triggered by an external event, it is essentially an illness residing within the person's neurochemistry. The issue is not whether people should or shouldn't take pills. The issue is psychiatry pushing these dangerous serotonin-disruptive chemicals on people, under the pretense that they have an illness.
When the idea that selective serotonin re-uptake inhibitors (SSRIs) might make people feel suicidal first started to be discussed, I admit I was sceptical. It didn’t seem to me the drugs had much effect at all, and I couldn’t understand how a chemical substance could produce a specific thought. Because these effects did not show up in randomised controlled trials, they were dismissed and few efforts were made to study them properly. Then some large meta-analyses started to find an association between the use of modern antidepressants and suicidal thoughts and actions, especially in children.
In 2014, then National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) director, Thomas Insel, speculated that ketamine “might be the most important breakthrough in antidepressant treatment in decades.” A recent review of the research suggests that while ketamine may produce a rapid short-term improvement in depression, the effect is short-lived and the potential for addiction and dependence warrants considerable caution.