Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Zyprexa Reviewed for Children's Use

Zyprexa has come up a lot on this blog lately. It's come up again - an FDA Panel has been formed to review Zyprexa off-label use for children. Apparently Zyprexa is supposed to be prescribed for schizophrenia and bipolar disorder, but is often prescribed for off-label disorders such as dementia and mild bipolar disorder. Another off-label prescription has been for kids. The FDA Panel has been convened to see about adding side effect warnings specifically for kids - as Zyprexa has been known to cause diabetes and other blood-sugar disorders.

Eli-Lilly is apparently pushing the FDA to approve Zyprexa for children between 13-17. With the not-uncommon side effect of diabetes, I wouldn't want my kid on it.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Alternative Ways to Help Depression

This is a continuation of my last post about ways to handle depression without using drugs.

One of these ways was discovered using animal studies - which I am personally opposed to since I rather like animals and have a dog and a hamster. Nevertheless, it's interesting. Basically, this article talks about a process that was done to mice. The process shows that going to a place associated with happiness, or hearing music that was associated with happiness made the mice regain their will to live just as anti-depressants do. It seems to me that playing a little music that makes you happy or going to the park instead of taking anti-depressants would probably save a lot of money during these rough economic times.

Another article talks about the uses of St. John's Wort to battle depression. It has been proved effective, so that's another natural remedy to depression. I actually went to school with a girl who was getting over an eating disorder. She took St. John's Wort to handle her depression and it really worked.

If you read the article referred to in the previous post about zinc deficiency being a cause of depression, that's three natural tools to battle depression.

I think that's pretty darn neat! What about you?

Monday, October 13, 2008

Alternative Resources for Dealing with ADHD and Depression

My brother works for Novus Detox, which is a clinic that deals specifically with medical drug addiction. They wrote an article on a wonderful resource for handling ADHD and/or depression. Check it out, it's very informative.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Drug Companies Fess Up

In 2007, The New York Times published an article noting that some states would begin to require drug companies report the amount of money they pay to doctors to attend conferences, in gift form and as payment for doing seminars on the drug companies behalf. The legislation has largely been ignored by the behemoth companies, proving that age-old saying "Money talks, BS walks".

Now it looks as if
Eli Lilly will be complying to these laws, as they are starting be be discussed on a national level.

Personally, I feel that Eli Lilly is simply pulling a PR stunt - saying "hey, don't look at us, we already comply to your rules", while still funneling tons of money into doctors to keep them talking about and prescribing their drugs. Really, the main benefit of the drug mammoth reporting what they are shelling out to whom is for the consumer, so they know in who's pocket their doctor resides.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Zyprexa News

A Brooklyn judge decided to unseal the previously confidential court documents regarding Zyprexa. They can be downloaded from here.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

FDA - A Step in the Right Direction

The FDA reports that they will be providing the public with quarterly reports of the drugs that are undergoing safety investigations due to complaints from patients, manufacturers and physicians. This is definitely a step in the right direction and an excellent plan for the FDA. They are opening their doors to consumers more and more, letting us see what is actually happening with a drug and what could possibly happen so we can make better, educated decisions.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Children Misdiagnosed with ADHD

I just read that there was a judge who scolded psychiatrists for their all too ready diagnosis of ADHD in today's kids. It all blew up after a child, who was doing well at home, was diagnosed for ADHD at school. After the build up of a couple years of drugs in his system, the kid began using drugs and sexually assulted an elderly woman at a railway station.

The psychologist on the case says that because boy did not need the drugs, they would have had the same affect on him as early illegal use of the drug "speed". This indeed makes Ritalin a surefire gateway drug for those misdiagnosed with ADHD.

I find it amazing that people will still deny that Ritalin, in the Narcotics Schedule as speed, is not right for kids to take. Any thoughts?

Saturday, September 06, 2008

N. Washitngton Gunman

I've read two articles about a gunman in Washington who shot and killed or injured several random people this last week. There's a statement in there from his mom saying he has been "desperately mentally ill" for some time. Does anyone know if he was on psychiatric drugs at the time? I'm just curious if this gunman was mentally ill, suffering from side effects or...?

Friday, September 05, 2008

Thomas Jefferson Quote about the FDA

Thomas Jefferson comments on the FDA before it existed:



"If people let the government decide what foods they eat and what medicines they take, their bodies will soon be in as sorry a state as are the souls who live under tyranny" - Thomas Jefferson (1743 - 1826)



Interesting, eh?

Monday, September 01, 2008

Mad Driving Skillz? Not on Anti-Depressants

I just found out that Anti-depressants like Prozac and Zoloft affect driving skills negatively along with other coordinative skills and concentration. Another interesting side effect to spice up our lives. I wonder if all those commercials I've been seeing on TV about adult ADD have taken into account that some of those adults may simply be suffering from the side effects of anti-depressants.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Foster Kids Medicated

I was sent this link. It's various youtube videos that have kids who were in foster care and heavily medicated. The stories are completely heartbreaking - one kid was told by a therapist that he should forget his mother because she was in prison. Then the kid was told he was depressed and given medication. Shockingly (excuse my sarcasm), the poor kid remained depressed. Anyway, check out the videos. They're real eye openers.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Overprescription of Ritalin in the UK

I appear to be forever reading articles - I actually get so many articles about Ritalin, Prozac and psychiatric drugs/diseases that I don't ever have enough time to post them all. I wish I did, because I am sure there are a lot of people around that don't get alerts on these things. After all, there's only so much information we have time to read in a day.

So, here's an
interesting article I read recently. The basic idea behind it is that there are huge variations in the amount of Ritalin prescribed in various parts of the UK. Some say that there is simply better health care in some areas than others, but there is such a disparity between amount of prescription, it appears that Ritalin is simply being over prescribed in some areas.

What do you think?

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Adults with ADHD or Way for Drug Companies to Make Money?

I just read an article which states that adults suffering from depression, anxiety, alcoholism, drug addiction and more may have ADHD. Of course, Professor Phillip Asherson at the Institute of Psychiatry gives us the nebulous, "We don't know if this is the problem - but hey, let's throw some drugs at it and see what that does."

I'm sorry if I sound rather jaded, ladies and gents, but I see this as a simple plan to make the drug companies and psychiatrists more money. All they are doing is prescribing something to cover up the problem - like giving someone with a broken back some Xanax. Sure he feels great, but he still can't walk. Plus, when it wears off, he still has a broken back!


What do you think? Do you think their supposition may be valid, or that this is just another plan to make drug companies richer?

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Woman Doesn't Receive Proper Medical Attention in Psychiatric Ward

This story tells of a woman who had a preventable blood clot in a psychiatric ward, but due to lack of care and inattention to her symptoms, she died. Psychiatrists went to medical school with other medical doctors. To my knowledge, they took the same Hippocratic oath as those doctors. This sort of inattention in any medical facility would be inexcusable, yet they are saying the woman died of "natural causes". If it's natural to be stationary in a hospital for 20 hours and then die of a blood clot, then I suppose they are right, otherwise I think it's totally outrageous and is definite medical malpractice.

Any thoughts?

Friday, July 04, 2008

Label Me Sane

I found out about a great group that helps people get off of prescription drugs. Normally, when a drug is prescribed, it either a) only deals with part of the problem - other parts of the problem are prescribed other drugs or b) the drug will illicit side effects that get drugs prescribed to sort the side effects out. This program was set up to stop this vicious cycle and allow people get off of medical drugs once and for all.

I have encountered a few really excellent detox groups - one being Point of Return and the other is Novus Detox. Both of these are excellent medical drug detox facilities. Also, a great program created by Scientology Founder L. Ron Hubbard is the Narconon Program.

If anyone you know needs help getting off of prescription meds, check out the above programs. They are all well worth your time and research.

Monday, June 30, 2008

New Warnings for Abilify

The FDA has issued changes to the Abilify box warnings. The box now warns of seizures and convulsions, head rushes and possible cognative and motor impairment. I just wanted to send out a little update on this, since the FDA doesn't let you know about this sort of thing unless you sign up for updates - which you can do here.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Check Out the Links

Wow! I found some great links to various blogs that have something to say about psychiatry. Check them out:

My brother works at a drug detox clinic and is often featured on a radio show about drugs. Check out what he has to say on his blog.

Sandy talks about what to do if your child has a chemical imbalance

Grahame talks about his views on psychiatry

The Alliance for Human Rights tells us about the
ADHD Experts Meeting in Florida

Pharmalot posts an update on my previous post about army vets being use for drug experiments

Friday, June 13, 2008

Citizens Commission of Human Rights in Florida

My dad sent me some links the the Citizens Commission of Human Rights in Florida that I'd like to share.

The first is to a book called
A New Approach to a Healthy Mind

Here's
some great videos

Local news articles about psychiatry

That's about it! Let me know what you think.

Sunday, June 01, 2008

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Army Suicide Rate Increases

This article points out that an enormous amount of soldiers (a confirmed 108) have committed suicide in 2007. Ten times as many have attempted or thought about suicide. This has ranked suicide as the fourth leading cause of death in the army, exceeded only by hostile fire, accidents and illness.

Somehow, the additional 180 hired psychiatrists and psychologists along with added mental health screening has not handled the problem. It's only getting worse. It makes me wonder if the amount of army suicides are going up in relation to the amount of soldiers on psychiatric drugs. If soldiers are on SSRIs or other drugs that include suicide as a side effect, the psychiatrists hired could be part of the problem - not the solution.

I'd love my readers to keep their eyes and ears open for more data about this truly tragic epidemic that is happening in our military.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Reporting Side Effects Directly to the FDA

There is a 1800# and website to report adverse side effects of drugs to the FDA directly. The FDA currently is offering this information on print ads, but not on tv ads. This articles tells that the Consumers Union is now appealing to the FDA to get this information out in TV ads, along with the print ad campaign. They have compelling statistics - among those who take prescription drugs, one in six experienced a serious side effect. Only thirty-five percent of these people knew that you could report the side effect to the FDA directly. Eighty-one percent had seen or heard a drug ad in the last month, but ninety-one percent had seen this ad on tv. So, by putting this number on television ads, it would reach the majority demographic of prescription drug users.

The 1800# is: 1-800-FDA-1088 and the website to report side effects direct to the FDA is www.fda.gov/medwatch.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

FDA Outlook - Bleak or Rosy?

The FDA announced they will be hiring over a thousand new employees over the next year. However, this article accuses them of just playing catch up. Others look at the new hiring as an interesting move by the FDA and are hopeful that all these new employees will help in food and drug oversight, as well as make FDA service faster.

What do you think? With all these new employees, will the FDA change their ways and become an efficient group instead of a glorified DMV for food and drugs?

Sunday, May 04, 2008

Next Two Weeks

Hi! I'm off on vacation for the next two weeks, so please expect my next post to be on May 18th, 2008. Thanks for following my blog!

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Shooting - Prozac Induced?

Decide for yourself, check out this article with the following in mind - Prozac is an SSRI with side effects of suicidal thoughts and violent behavior. SSRI withdrawl symptoms include the above two side effects as well.

Why do we have people on such destructive drugs? Aren't mental health experts supposed to be protecting society against those who would be dangerous to themselves and others - not causing depressed people to become dangerous to themselves or others via drugs?

What do you think?

Friday, April 18, 2008

Side Effect Info on Bupropion Hydrochloride

While the FDA is out there approving new drugs and saying they are safe as shown in this article, side effects of many anti-depressant drug including ones made from bupropion hydrochloride, such as Wellbutrin XL and the new generic produced by Impax Laboratories Inc list suicide as a side effect. So, be careful to read the side effects of all prescribed drugs.

As a side note, the FDA has begun to check for suicidal ideation more and more in prescription drugs, so make sure you check those pages of fine print before popping any pills. This goes for non-psychiatric drugs too.

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Statistics for Child Drugging

This article from the Guardian indicates various shocking statistics from the first comprehensive study on child drugging. Ian Wong conducted the study in the UK and the following are some of the published results:

"His analysis, to be published next month in the US journal Pediatrics, shows that between 1992 and 2005, 3,000 UK children were given anti-psychotics.

"Twice as many prescriptions were given to children for the drugs in 2005 as in
1992, with the biggest increase in the seven to 12 age group, where the number of anti-psychotics prescribed trebled. The largest category of use by far is in cases of behavioural disorders and personality disorders, including bipolar disorder (manic depression), autism and hyperactivity."

Back at the ranch (read - in America) there are some shocking statistics of kids being prescribed drugs they aren't supposed to be using. The winner in the USA is... drum roll please... anti-psychotics!

Why are psychiatrists improperly prescribing drugs to their patients? Let me know what you think.

Sunday, April 06, 2008

Speaking up about Seroxat

Pharmalot has a fascinating post regarding a blogger who spoke up about Seroxat (also known as Paxil to us Yankees) and the company that makes Seroxat/Paxil (GlaxoSmithKline) and the company's head of psychiatry. Glaxo only paid attention to him once it seemed he might be defaming the head of psychiatry. The blogger did compare the head of psychiatry to Hitler (perhaps not the wisest move in the world) and accused him of covering up the issues that Paxil has had - like the side effects of suicidality, death, etc. The lawyers for GlaxoSmithKline sent the blogger this letter, and he did take down the video and the defaming statements. However, the video that caused all this controversy has spread around the Internet and can be viewed here:

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Interview with a Member of the Novus Detox Facility Staff - Part1

My brother - Monty - works at at medical detox facility called Novus LLC, which deals with people mainly addicted to prescription drugs. He is a very busy guy and works directly with drug addicts. I asked him if he would do a email interview and here is the first part of that interview:

Q: What do you do for a living?


A: I work at a medical detox facility in New Port Richey FL, It is called Novus LLC. http://www.novusdetox.com/

Q: Do you run across psychiatric drug addicts in your line of work?


A: Yes, absolutely! I see them all them time. I would say that the (drug) most widely prescribed and addicted to would be the Benzodiazepine Xanax.

Q: Which psychiatric drugs would you say are addictive?


A: Hmm... That is a good question, I would first like to give you a good explanation of what being addicted would be:
ADDICTION
A person who is physically dependent on a drug is not necessarily addicted.
Addiction is the continued use of a drug because of the way that one feels after taking the drug—often described as a type of euphoria feeling or a "mellow" feeling or sometimes, in the case of many drugs, to not feel a certain way.
The more one is addicted, the more one's use of the drug becomes compulsive despite negative consequences which can be severe. Addicted people will often lie, doctor shop, sell and buy drugs on the street, deny drug use if asked and, in short, do things that they would never do otherwise.
If the addicted person stops or reduces their use of a drug, in almost every case the addicted person will experience withdrawal symptoms associated with the drug.
Having stated this I would say that the Benzo's are addictive and let me explain what these are: Benzodiazepines ("Benzos") are drugs that were first marketed in the 1960's for the treatment of insomnia, anxiety, seizures, convulsions and as muscle relaxants. Today these drugs account for about one out of every five prescriptions for controlled substances. Benzos like ProSom, Dalmane, Doral, Restoril and Halcion are often prescribed for insomnia. Klonopin is often prescribed for the treatment of seizure disorders. Ativan, Centrax, Librium, Paxipam, Serax, Valium, and Xanax are often prescribed for the treatment of anxiety.

Q: What kind of withdrawal symptoms could one expect to encounter if they are trying to get off psychiatric drugs? I know the answer varies with the drug, but can you give me a general idea?


A: As you stated that this can widely vary but you can have anything from being nervous to having a Grand Mal Seizure. I know that if not weened off these in the correct medical environment you can die from withdrawals of Xanax.

Thanks Monty, for this informative look at prescription drug addiction! I look forward to talking with my big brother more about the prescription psychiatric drugs he has run into in his employment with
Novus.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Sex as an Occupational Hazard?

The New York Post reports Dr. Glen Gabbard, a psychiatrist who treats his peers for sexual misconduct saying: "We all have to practice as if this (sexual misconduct) could happen to us - it's an occupational hazard to which we are all vulnerable."

How creepy is that? When I saw this and all the other psychiatrists and psychologists who said that they had been involved in sexual relations with their patients, I decided to do a little research. I did a quick search and found the following articles,
a psychiatrist being charged with predatory behavior, a prison psychologist having an affair with a patient,a shocking report of psychiatrists involved in sexual misconduct.

There are more, but those are just a few links to check out. It's strange to think that those we trust with our sanity do such insane things themselves.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Schoolboy Suffers from Suicidal Side Effect of Ritalin

This article reports the tragic death of 15 year old Anthony Cole, who hung himself after being on Ritalin for 6 years. From the report, it seems like it was a premeditated suicide - days before his suicide he had asked about how to write a will and about life insurance, an hour before he was found dead he had cuddled his parents and told them that he loved them.

My heart goes out to his parents, his brother and sisters, his friends and extended family. I don't understand why parents are still allowing their children to take these drugs, I can only guess that it's because the side effects are not being taken seriously. They are very real and very serious.

If you know someone on Ritalin, please make sure they know the side effects and have fully evaluated their decision to take it.

Thursday, March 06, 2008

FDA Approves Abilify for Kids

*Warning – Excessive Sarcasm*
Great, just what we need - another psychiatric drug. This one's even approve for kids. The FDA recently approved Abilify for "Pediatric Bipolar Illness".
The facts are these: The symptoms for "Pediatric Bipolar Illness" sound like the growing pains most children go through. Here are the symptoms, and you can decide:

- An expansive or irritable mood (so if the kid is overly happy or overly irritable, they are mentally ill)

- Extreme sadness or lack of interest in play (if the other kids hate him or her - or vice versa)

- Rapidly changing moods lasting a few hours to a few days (ever seen a kid go from 0-60 in 1.3 seconds when they are hungry or tired? Could it be that it's a deficiency in food or sleep?)

- Explosive, lengthy, and often destructive rages (No tantrums allowed!)

- Separation anxiety (You can't love your parents and be worried that the people who have been around you constantly for the past five or so years are now leaving you with strangers)

- Defiance of authority (You must all be mindless drones)

- Hyperactivity, agitation, and distractibility (If you don't understand what your teacher is saying, so you get bored or distracted, you must have a mental illness)

- Sleeping little or, alternatively, sleeping too much (Who judges what "sleeping too much or too little" is in a child?)

- Bed wetting and night terrors (You know when you watched Terminator the other night? You now have a mental disorder. Enjoy.)

- Strong and frequent cravings, often for carbohydrates and sweets (Have a sweet tooth?! You MUST be crazy)

- Excessive involvement in multiple projects and activities (Can you multi-task? Can't have that. You might grow up to be capable of thinking for yourself)

- Impaired judgment, impulsively, racing thoughts, and pressure to keep talking
dare-devil behaviors (You react to peer pressure? You want to find out how high you can climb up that tree? Nutcase)

- Inappropriate or precocious sexual behavior (Your parents were too embarrassed to explain what your body is or does, so you are trying to figure it out? or You react to peer pressure? Off to the nuthouse with you! or better yet, let's give you a drug to make it all better)

- Delusions and hallucinations (hmmm... can't do much commenting on that one)

- Grandiose belief in own abilities that defy the laws of logic (ability to fly, for example) ( I guess R. Kelly is mentally ill then) - Note, the first comment in parentheses is not mine, it is actually on the list of symptoms. My comment is the R. Kelly one.

Okay, I know that this post is far more sarcastic than what I've posted before, but it makes me so mad I could spit that the FDA would approve a drug to "cure" kids of some specious disease. Look at the side-effects this drug has:

- Extrapyramidal Disorder (common extrapyramidal disorders are diseases like Parkinsons and they often cause strokes). Five percent of people who take Abilify got extrapyramidal disorder.
- Thoughts of hurting yourself
- Restlessness
- Headache or Anxiety
- Seizures
- Urinating less than usual or not at all
- Jaundice
- Insomnia
- Jerky muscle movements you cannot control
- Nausea
- Drowsiness, Dizziness or Weakness
- Choking or trouble swallowing
- Feeling faint

The list goes on. Look over these side-effects and look what the drug is supposed to cure. Do they look similar to you? Would you put your child on a drug like this?
Also, does anyone know if any studies done or any proofs presented with regard their being a connection between childhood "mental illness" (which, as I said above, sound a lot like growing pains to me) and adult "mental illness"?

Friday, February 29, 2008

The FDA - A Step in the Right Direction

While it seems that anything the FDA does is based upon an imperfect system, there is a new effort being launched by the FDA to oversee the side-effects of prescription drugs. I believe (but this is unverified) that they might be making a data base of these side-effects available for consumer use, which would be incredibly beneficial.

So, pros:
a) A database with side-effect listed (yay!) so we don't all have to read ten pages of fine print when a drug is prescribed to us.
b) More oversite on prescription drugs so that things like the
Zyprexa debacle aren't repeated.

Cons:
a) In usual FDA fashion, the new effort (called "Safety First") might be unwilling to pull a drug they have already approved.
b) They could get in cahoots with various drug manufacturers.

I say that this is a change for the better. The Pros are something new and the Cons are cons that have been around since the FDA's inception. What do you think?

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Great Links About Psychiatry

Here are some great links that I'd love to post about, but others have already done so:

Psychwatch reports on A BBC Documentary created to show the history of psychiatry in history and how it's affected democracy.

ScientologyAgainstDrugs posts a great article on ADHD. Very thought provoking!

Psychwatch reports on a psychiatrist having an affair with a mentally ill patient

Indystar reports Eli Lilly settling 900 more claims against Zyprexa, with 1100 still to go.

Psychdata reports Another Drug Company is Being Sued (My goodness! Are all the drug companies so messed up? You'd think they'd learn not to make stupid and deceptive marketing campaigns, but I suppose they're just chasing that buck.)

A Hilarious fake drug campaign is going on in Toronto for a "drug" called "Obay". LOL!

When it Comes to Depression - Does Anyone Really Know What They Are Talking About?

I started reading up on the condition that psychiatrists call depression and it was frankly, depressing.

I started my hunt by looking at my trusty Encarta dictionary, which said:
Depression - psychiatric disorder: a psychiatric disorder showing symptoms such as persistent feelings of hopelessness, dejection, poor concentration, lack of energy, inability to sleep, and, sometimes, suicidal tendencies.

Okay, that sounds pretty severe, right?

So, I started delving more into it and looked up depression on the Internet. It seems that some of the symptoms of depression are:

Sleeping too much, sleeping too little or a change in sleeping patterns; feeling irritable, sad or tense; loss of energy; decreased interest in things; restlessness or feeling slowed down; feeling worthless, hopeless or guilty; weight loss or weight gain...
Wow..it really sounds as if they are covering every possible ground here. "Hey, you lose some weight, you might be depressed! Oh, wait, you gained weight? Well, you could be depressed!"
I mean, half of the symptoms above could be explained by lack of sleep alone (haven't you ever felt irritable, exhausted, restless and uninterested when you don't have enough sleep?).

It seemed that trying to find symptoms that made depression easy to figure out was impossible, so I searched more into depression and conversely, into happiness, and this is what I found:

a) There is no consistent definition of depression out there. It's more like, if you're not happy, your depressed, and only your doctor can delineate when that happens.

b) Even a few weeks of sadness can be considered depression! What's with that craziness? If your mom died, are you supposed to be "okay" with it in a couple of weeks? I don't know how long it would take me to bounce back - but it certainly wouldn't be weeks.

c) Reading up on depression and how to "get happy" is actually depressing. If a person is just moderately happy and wants to attain higher states of happiness, and they read up on it, it seems as if everyone on planet earth falls short of the standards of happiness now required.

d) For some reason or another you are supposed to "live with depression". That's more depressing than being diagnosed with depression. No one should have to "live with" anything in their life.

I think I can officially say that there seems to be no finite information on depression available. This makes me wonder, if doctors and psychiatrists don’t understand this condition, how could they possible come up with a plausible cure for it?

Friday, February 15, 2008

The Polls Are In

You voted on the question, "Would You Give Your Child Ritalin". The polls are in and it is a resounding, 100%, unanimous, "NO"! Thanks for voting, everyone!

Ritalin - Overprescribed?

This article talks about Dr Gwynedd Lloyd and her new book Critical New Perspectives On ADHD. Dr. Lloyd basically says that many children in Scotland are being mis-diagnosed as having "ADHD" when really they are just poorly parented and badly behaved.
On the use of Ritalin, Dr Lloyd said: "This kind of medication for children as young as six is crazy. Their brains are still developing and yet they are being given mind-altering drugs."
Kudos to you, Dr. Lloyd!

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Woops - Lawyer Spills the Beans on Secret Eli Lilly Court Case

I read this news article and had to laugh. It seems that Eli Lilly was marketing a drug called Zyprexa improperly. Zyprexa has serious side effects, such as diabetes, hypoglycemia and more and is only approved to treat people with schizophrenia and severe bipolar disorder (like they need diabetes on top of all that?). Some documents from Eli Lilly revealed that they were pushing doctors to prescribe the drug for other disorders like age related dementia and mild bi-polar. Because of this, Eli Lilly will have to pay federal and state governments more than 1 billion dollars. This fine is in addition to the 1.2 billion dollars Eli Lilly has already paid in lawsuits from people who say they developed diabetes because of Zyprexa (which apparently is not a rare side effect of Zyprexa).
All this information and more was leaked to the New York Times in an email screw up by one of Eli Lilly's lawyers. He was trying to send an internal document to another lawyer, but ended up
sending it to a press agent with the same last name. Woops!

Monday, February 04, 2008

Ritalin Poll

I put up a poll to find out if you would give your child Ritalin. I'd love to know your answers, so please check it out.

Thursday, January 31, 2008

Ball Players Abuse Ritalin

The Las Vegas Sun reports that Baseball players have been getting around the ban on amphetamine use by taking Ritalin - also known as "Kiddy Cocaine" when used illegally. Check out the story here

Ritalin - Leading to Drug Abuse

Ritalin - also known (when abused) as "Kiddy Cocaine" is a highly addictive substance that can that can lead to substance abuse later in the user's life.

This drug that is supposed to "focus attention" by virtue of being a Schedule II narcotic (meaning in the same class as drugs like cocaine, morphine, methamphetamine, opium and others). So, of course it focuses attention - so does speed and cocaine. It's also highly addictive, like speed or coke.

Now, I highly doubt anyone would want to give cocaine or speed to their kid. So, why would they want to give Ritalin to their child?

Friday, January 25, 2008

The Lobotomist

There's a new PBS American Experience called "The Lobotomist" out. It's about Walter Freeman who is considered the father of the lobotomy. For those of you who don't know what a lobotomy is, it's basically a barbaric practice with very serious side effects in which the "doctor" (I'm sorry, but I can't bring myself to call someone a doctor who does this) takes an ice-pick like instrument and a mallet, and after knocking the victim out - usually by using electroshock treatment - inserts the ice-pick through the bone of your eye and slashes the lobes of the front of your brain. It's really disgusting and it's actually making my stomach turn just writing about it. Anyway, the PBS special is very interesting, check it out if you have the stomach for it.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

FDA Looks as Clinical Trials

This International Herald Tribune article states that now the FDA is requiring many drugs be looked into to see if they have suicidality as a side-effect. This is really good news! If the FDA becomes more aware of what each drug on the market does, they have to publish that information for us non-government people.

Friday, January 18, 2008

Which Drugs Have Black Box Warnings?

If you are researching psychiatric medication for any reason, it's important to know which drugs have black box warnings, or warnings of increased risk of suicidal thinking and behavior. The FDA has published these. This link also has links to any revisions in product labeling as well as current news on these drugs. It's important to research the side effects and studies on any psychiatric drug as it has been found in a recent study that the studies drug companies and medical journals publish have been exaggerated to make antidepressants seem more effective then they really are. Many doctors depend on medical journals and drug companies to give them up-to-the-minute information. They don't always check out what the FDA has to say about the drug. So, take some time to do an in-depth research of the subject before making any life-changing decisions regarding these drugs.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Falling Out of Love - Yet Another Side Effect of Anti-Depressants

Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors (or SSRIs) are drugs like Zoloft and Prozac. These drugs have many side effects - they've had black box warnings put on them as these drugs have shown to increase suicidal tendencies in kids and teens. Now it's been found that it can cause people to no longer be in love with their significant other. This makes me wonder - if these anti-depressants make someone no longer in love with another person - what is there to prevent the drug from making the user fall out of love with other things? In my opinion, the opposite of being depressed is being happy. Would you be happy if a drug made you no longer love your significant other? Wouldn't that make you wonder if the drug was making you no longer love other things or activities that you used to enjoy? How does that make someone less depressed?

Monday, January 14, 2008

Psychiatrist Sentanced to Prison

A Canadian psychiatrist was sent to prison for several of his unsavory acts toward his patients and for peddling drugs. This video has the scoop.

Thursday, January 03, 2008

ADHD Drug Affects on the Hearts of Kids

This article talks about the effects that ADHD drugs are having on kid's hearts. Apparently, the drugs are causing increased heart rate and other issues in kid's hearts. With heart disease being one of the top killers in the US, I don't see how this is not a big deal. Also, who knows what the long term effects such drugs can have on the hearts of children. What happens when they become adults? This question remains unanswered.