Getting it Right About Antidepressants, CCHR and a Global Concern About Psychiatric Drug Dependency and Risks

Patients have not been warned of the horrific withdrawal effects, a point that psychiatrist Allen Frances made in an interview with CNN’s Christiane Amanpour in 2018.

Patients have not been warned of the horrific withdrawal effects, a point that psychiatrist Allen Frances made in an interview with CNN’s Christiane Amanpour in 2018.

CCHR’s mission is to eradicate abuses committed under the guise of mental health and enact patient and consumer protections.

CCHR’s mission is to eradicate abuses committed under the guise of mental health and enact patient and consumer protections.

The headquarters for CCHR Florida are located in downtown Clearwater.

The headquarters for CCHR Florida are located in downtown Clearwater.

The Florida chapter of CCHR is a non-profit mental health watchdog dedicated to the protection of children.

The Florida chapter of CCHR is a non-profit mental health watchdog dedicated to the protection of children.

There are global concerns about a growing dependency upon a biological approach to treating mental health issues.

Attorneys, doctors, parents and family members are among those that fought a battle that took years to get the real risks of SSRI antidepressants made public.”

— Jan Eastgate, president of CCHR International

CLEARWATER, FLORIDA, UNITED STATES, August 6, 2019 /EINPresswire.com/ — Current debates in the media about antidepressants raise important issues—global antidepressant use is soaring, but the once-touted “miracle pills” now carry international drug regulatory agency warnings that potentially link them to suicides and acts of violence while studies show them to be “largely ineffective and potentially harmful.” [1] Citizens Commission on Human Rights International, a mental health watchdog group, wants consumers to be better informed about the drugs and provides a searchable online database to easily find the side effects of antidepressants and other prescription psychiatric drugs, as reported to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

About 43 million Americans currently take antidepressants. [2] Shockingly, IQVia’s statistics for 2017 show that more than 2.1 million 0-17 year olds are prescribed antidepressants despite the 2004 FDA Black Box warning that they may cause suicide. Even more worrying is that of these, 38,534 are aged 0-5 and 574,090 are 6-12 years old. [3]

According to the National Center for Health Statistics, the rate of antidepressant use among teens and adults increased by almost 400% between 1988–1994 and 2005–2008. [4]

In 2018, Martin Plöderl, Ph.D. and Michael P. Hengartner, Ph.D., reported findings from research, stating: “If you look at the past 10 years, antidepressant rates are associated with increased suicide rates,” the drugs “most likely cause suicidal behavior in young people” and “data strongly suggest that antidepressants can cause suicides and aggressive behavior.” [5]

A study from the Nordic Cochrane Centre and the University of Copenhagen published in the British Medical Journal also concluded that “children and young people are more likely to think about or attempt suicide while taking antidepressants.” [6]

There are global concerns about a growing dependency upon a biological approach to treating mental health issues. In 2017, the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the right to health, Dainius Pūras, reported: “There is now unequivocal evidence of the failures of a system that relies too heavily on the biomedical model of mental health services, including the front-line and excessive use of psychotropic medicines, and yet these models persist.” Mr. Pūras warned that power and decision-making in mental health are concentrated in the hands of “biomedical gatekeepers,” particularly those representing biological psychiatry. He called for a sea of change in mental health care around the world. [7]

Comments that the Democratic presidential leader, Marianne Williamson, recently made about antidepressants not treating a biological marker and being excessively prescribed seem to align with what Dr. Pūras advises. [8] It’s not an uncommon view. In an interview for CNN in 2007, Dr. Ronald Dworkin, one of many critics who believe too many doctors unnecessarily prescribe antidepressants, said: “Doctors are now medicating unhappiness.” [9]

CCHR is not anti-medicine and it insists that people who suffer from mental travail, anxiety or depressed mood get the help they need. But that shouldn’t mean stigmatizing them with claims they are “diseased” when there is no evidence of physical/medical abnormality for any psychiatric disorder. Even Thomas Insel, psychiatrist, and former Director of the National Institute for Mental Health (NIMH), said psychiatric “diagnoses are based on a consensus [vote] about clusters of clinical symptoms, not any objective laboratory measure [tests].” [10]

People choosing to take an antidepressant should be informed of such data. As CNN reported in 2009, “People who take antidepressants such as Paxil often say they feel less stressed and more outgoing, lively, and confident.” However, in a study covered in that report, the lead author, Tony Z. Tang, Ph.D., professor of psychology at Northwestern University in Illinois said: “Medication can definitely change people's personalities, and change them quite substantially,” but that can mean a “tendency toward emotional instability and negative mood.” [11]

Patients have not been warned of the horrific withdrawal effects, a point that psychiatrist Allen Frances made in an interview with CNN’s Christiane Amanpour in 2018. The interview was called “How Antidepressant Withdrawal ‘Can Trap People.’” Frances said, “There’s absolutely no interest on the part of the pharmaceutical companies in advertising the fact that getting on an antidepressant may trap you for years and maybe for life….” [12]

A 2017 study published in Frontiers in Psychiatry concluded that “antidepressants are largely ineffective and potentially harmful.” Lead researcher Michael P. Hengartner at the Zurich University of Applied Sciences in Switzerland cited evidence that the likelihood of relapse is correlated with duration of treatment—the more one takes an antidepressant, the likelier one is to have another episode of depression. [13]

Dismissing important adverse effects of antidepressants that have been reported in peer-review medical journals does a disservice to consumers. It puts a $4.6 billion a year antidepressant market before patients’ safety and welfare. In the U.S., one of only two countries that allows Direct to Consumer TV and magazine marketing, antidepressants have been among the top advertised Rx category. [14]

Jan Eastgate, president of CCHR International, said: “It took years to get the real risks of SSRI antidepressants made public. Attorneys, doctors, parents and family members are among those that fought this battle. CCHR provides resources for consumers through its online Psychiatric Drugs Side Effects Database taken from FDA adverse drug reports. It continues to investigate and expose the psychopharmaceutical-psychiatric failures that stigmatize individuals in need of care but far too often are only offered physically damaging treatment.”

CCHR supports the UN Special Rapporteur Dainius Pūras’ advice that “It is crucial now to assess the root causes of failure and to chart a way forward, reaching consensus on the best way to do this.” For more information visit www.cchrflorida.org or call 727-442-8820.

About CCHR: Initially established by the Church of Scientology and renowned psychiatrist Dr. Thomas Szasz in 1969, CCHR’s mission is to eradicate abuses committed under the guise of mental health and enact patient and consumer protections. L. Ron Hubbard, founder of Scientology, first brought psychiatric imprisonment to wide public notice: “Thousands and thousands are seized without process of law, every week, over the ‘free world’ tortured, castrated, killed. All in the name of ‘mental health,’” he wrote in March 1969.

Sources:
[1] Michael P. Hengartner, “Methodological Flaws, Conflicts of Interest, and Scientific Fallacies: Implications for the Evaluation of Antidepressants’ Efficacy and Harm,” Frontiers in Psychiatry, 7 Dec. 2017, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5725408/
[2] IQVia Total Patient Tracker (TPT) Database, Year 2017, Extracted April 2018.
[3] https://www.cchrint.org/psychiatric-drugs/children-on-psychiatric-drugs/
[4] “Astounding increase in antidepressant use by Americans,” Harvard Health Publishing, 20 Oct. 2011, https://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/astounding-increase-in-antidepressant-use-by-americans-201110203624 ; “Antidepressants: Top Advertised & 3rd Most Commonly Used Rx Drug,” Pharma Marketing Blog, 24 Oct. 2011, http://pharmamkting.blogspot.com/2011/10/antidepressants-top-advertised-3rd-most.html
[5] Martin Plöderl, PhD & Michael P. Hengartner, Ph.D., “Suicides Are Increasing – And So Are Antidepressant Prescriptions,” MAD, 23 Aug. 2018, https://www.madinamerica.com/2018/08/suicides-are-increasing-and-so-are-antidepressant-prescriptions/
[6] “Antidepressants linked to suicide and aggression in teens,” NHS (UK), 28 Jan. 2016, https://www.nhs.uk/news/mental-health/antidepressants-linked-to-suicide-and-aggression-in-teens/
[7] “World needs “revolution” in mental health care – UN rights expert,” United Nations Human Rights Officer of the High Commissioner, 6 June 2017, https://www.ohchr.org/EN/NewsEvents/Pages/DisplayNews.aspx?NewsID=21689
[8] https://www.buzzfeednews.com/article/ryancbrooks/marianne-williamson-antidepressants
[9] https://www.addictioncenter.com/stimulants/antidepressants/symptoms-signs/
[10] Thomas Insel, “Transforming Diagnosis,” NIMH Website, 20 Apr. 2013, http://www.nimh.nih.gov/about/director/2013/transforming-diagnosis.shtml
[11] Anne Harding, “Antidepressants change personality, study suggests,” 8 Dec. 2009, https://www.health.com/health/article/0,,20412111,00.html
[12] https://www.madinamerica.com/2018/10/allen-frances-increasing-use-antidepressants/
[13] Michael P. Hengartner, “Methodological Flaws, Conflicts of Interest, and Scientific Fallacies: Implications for the Evaluation of Antidepressants’ Efficacy and Harm,” Frontiers in Psychiatry, 7 Dec. 2017, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5725408/
[14] “Antidepressants: Top Advertised & 3rd Most Commonly Used Rx Drug,” Pharma Marketing Blog, 24 Oct. 2011, http://pharmamkting.blogspot.com/2011/10/antidepressants-top-advertised-3rd-most.html

Diane Stein
Citizens Commission on Human Rights of Florida
(727) 422-8820
email us here
Visit us on social media:
Facebook
Twitter
LinkedIn

CCHR – Antidepressant Drug Warnings


Source: EIN Presswire