PAXIL: Athlete Wrongly Given Pacemaker for Paxil-Induced Heart Malfunction – FL

NOTE FROM Ann Blake-Tracy (www.drugawareness.org):

Although Paul’s case is an older case I have only this week found my copy
of excellent this article so had not been able to send it out before now,
but feel it is extremely important to include in our database. Others need to be
aware of the effects of SSRI antidepressants upon the heart, even in those who
are in excellent physical condition. I would encourage you to read the entire
article as it is full of very important information of drug approvals, financial
ties between drug companies and the FDA, Paxil withdrawal effects, the common
ignorance of doctors about these adverse effects and their unwillingness to
admit them even in the face of glaring evidence.
___________________________________________
His “abnormal” heart rhythms come from having the benign “athletic
heart syndrome,” a sign of a super heart. The original fainting was probably due
to taking Paxil; the later problems were likely due to withdrawal from it.
Even with this confirmation, Paul had to go to more than 20 doctors
before he found one who would remove the pacemaker. Paul is recovering from his
ordeal; he is able to walk a mile now, although previously he could run 50.

www.purewatergazette.net/scienceofdeceit.htm

The Science
of Deceit

by Burton Goldberg

The mainstream media
regularly reports on the “dangers” of “unproven” herbal remedies and
supplements. But what is the reported number of people who have died from using
herbs and supplements? According to the FDA, between 1993 and 1998, federal,
state and local agencies reported a total of 184 deaths, most of which were
associated with weight loss formulas. Compare that to the reported number of
people who die in hospitals because of the side effects of properly prescribed
pharmaceutical drugs: more than 100,000, every year. You can add to that the
number of patients killed in hospitals because of “medical errors”: another
100,000 or so. Those statistics are from the Journal of the American Medical
Association (JAMA). This means that the ordained guardians of our health kill as
many people every week as died in the September 11 terrorist attacks.

And that number only includes people who died in hospitals. A 1998
JAMA article estimated that more than 2 million people require hospitalization
every year because of the adverse side effects of drugs. Moreover, it is widely
conceded that the number of adverse reactions and fatalities attributable to
prescription drugs is actually many times the number
reported.

Statistics aside, let’s put a face on what I’m
talking about. Paul Domb is the son of a dear friend of mine. Two years ago,
Paul was a 41-year-old endurance athlete who had run thousands of road races,
hundreds of triathlons and other world-class endurance events. Paul had
regularly trained twice a day for 20 years to stay in competitive shape, so it
was hard for him to understand why he should begin to experience anxiety and
panic attacks. He went to a psychologist who, after a few sessions, recommended
that Paul take the antidepressant drug Paxil. Paul was reluctant, but his
anxiety was affecting his work in corporate real estate, so he started taking a
daily dose of 20 mg.

About three weeks later, Paul was set to begin
an early morning swim when he felt his heart suddenly speed up. For the first
time in his life, he felt faint and lost consciousness. He fell backward,
crashing onto a metal pool chair. He revived after several seconds, and felt
ready to continue his workout, but his training partner convinced him to take it
easy and go home. Paul related the incident to his wife, who insisted he go to
the hospital for an examination.

At the hospital, he underwent an
extensive battery of tests. They took Paul’s medical history, asking what
medications he was on, and took brain scans, electrocardiograms and various
other tests. Paul’s electrocardiogram measuring his heartbeat rhythms showed an
unusual pattern. A cardiologist specializing in heart rhythms was called in. He
told Paul that he needed to put a catheter up Paul’s groin to stimulate the

heart in an effort to reproduce the earlier arrhythmia. Paul refused, but the
physician told him that a previous patient with the same symptoms who refused
the test died soon after. Scared into it, Paul took the test. Afterward, the
doctor came back with the bad news: Paul had a rare disorder called Brugada
Syndrome. Without having a pacemaker/defibrillator inserted, he was told, his
heart could suddenly stop and he could drop dead at any moment.

There was worse news: The disease was genetic and the possibility
existed that Paul’s 5-year-old daughter had the same condition and could die at
any time.

Paul had the pacemaker inserted. Unfortunately, his
doctors did not take into account that he was a competitive athlete, and they
set the parameters of the pacemaker wrong. Whenever Paul went to sleep, his

heart rate dropped below “standard,” and the device would rapidly pace his
heart. Paul was unable to get more than two hours of sleep at a time. Although
the doctors eventually reset his pacemaker, that was just the beginning of what
became almost six months of physical and emotional hell. He was nauseated, but
vomiting brought no relief. He frequently had convulsions. Electric shocks would
shoot through his body 30 or 40 times a day, sometimes violent enough to cause
him to fall. He started having recurring thoughts of suicide ‹or violence
toward others. And through it all he was tortured by the fear that his daughter
was going to die because of the genes he had passed on to her. Paul traveled the
country, seeking an answer, but no doctor could help him. So Paul buried himself
in research, trying to find a solution to his problems. And then one day he
happened to catch the TV news show 20/20. On it were people describing exactly
the same symptoms as he had, only they didn’t have Brugada Syndrome ‹they were
suffering side effects of trying to withdraw from Paxil.

Paul could
hardly believe it. His doctor had told him to stop taking Paxil before his heart
surgery. Paul started studying Paxil, and what he found shocked and enraged him.
He discovered an astounding pattern of apparently deliberate deception by
SmithKline Beecham (now called GlaxoSmithKline), the manufacturer of Paxil,
withholding information on the dangers of this drug from the FDA and the medical
community. In June 2001, GlaxoSmithKline lost a lawsuit when a Wyoming jury
awarded $6.4 million to the family of a man who killed three relatives and
himself after taking the antidepressant. The verdict was based on the company’s
failure to sufficiently warn doctors and patients that the effects of the drug
could include violence. It has since come to light that 20% of patients
worldwide who were prescribed Paxil for depression stopped taking it because of
suffering adverse effects. And effects of withdrawal include intense insomnia;
vertigo; electric shocks; profuse night sweats; nausea; extreme confusion;
intense fear of losing sanity; and thoughts of suicide and homicide. A class
action filed in San Diego, representing thousands of victims of Paxil is
pending.

Paul then went to an expert: Pedro Brugada, the physician
son of Dr. Ramon Brugada, for whom the condition is named. Brugada the younger
looked at all of Paul’s records and told him that he didn’t have Brugada
Syndrome. Other experts concurred. Paul was told that the hospital’s original
procedure to reproduce arrhythmia “would’ve brought a horse down.” His
“abnormal” heart rhythms come from having the benign “athletic heart syndrome,”
a sign of a super heart. The original fainting was probably due to taking Paxil;
the later problems were likely due to withdrawal from it.

Even with
this confirmation, Paul had to go to more than 20 doctors before he found one
who would remove the pacemaker. Paul is recovering from his ordeal; he is able
to walk a mile now, although previously he could run 50. Despite off-the-record
confirmations of incompetence and negligence in Paul’s misdiagnosis and
treatment, not one physician would sign a letter to that effect, or agree to
testify on his behalf. Now, multiply Paul’s story by thousands, by millions,
every year, and you can understand my anger over sensationalistic headlines
about the “dangers” of taking herbs like St. John’s wort.

Here are
some truths about the “scientific” testing of pharmaceutical drugs that you
probably are not aware of. Did you know that the research information contained
in the Physicians’ Desk Reference  (the pharmaceutical bible used by M.D.s
)is supplied by the drug manufacturers themselves? Did you know that the FDA
approves drugs not by actually doing the testing, but simply by reviewing
studies submitted by the drug manufacturers? Did you know that a drug
manufacturer needs to submit only two studies showing satisfactory results to
get a drug approved by the FDA‹even if there are even more studies showing the
drug causes adverse reactions in an unacceptably high number of cases?

Did you know that most of the articles discussing the efficacy of
drugs that are published in medical journals are studies paid for by the drug
manufacturer? And that often, as the New York Times reported last summer, the
academic scientists listed as lead authors are often just “window dressing, to
lend credibility to papers that are really the work of drug companies. The
academic scientists’ main role in such studies is to recruit patients and
administer experimental treatments. The scientists or their universities are
paid for this work.”

And did you know that a study conducted by USA
Today found that more than half of the experts hired to advise the government on
the safety and effectiveness of medicine had a direct financial interest in the
drug or topic were asked to evaluate? An analysis of financial conflicts of
interest at 159 FDA advisory committee meetings from January 1, 1998, through
June 30, 2000, found that at 92% of the meetings, at least one member had a
financial conflict of interest, while at 55% of meetings, half or more of the
FDA advisers had conflicts of interest. These conflicts included helping a
pharmaceutical company develop a medicine, then serving on an FDA advisory
committee that judges the drug.

You may not know that a significant
portion of your tax dollars earmarked for healthcare goes to research on
patentable drugs that make billions of dollars for drug companies. The
government should fund research into nontoxic, non-patentable remedies at a much
higher level than it is presently doing. This situation again points out the
need for political action, for campaign reform. For 2001, the budget for the
National Institutes of Health was $20 billion. This amount could be doubled by
2003. Approximately 83% of this is spent on research performed outside the NIH.
This is serious money, and most of it goes to developing patentable drugs.

A recent article in the New York Times revealed that the
pharmaceutical industry spent $177 million on lobbying in 1999 and 2000: That’s
$50 million more than their nearest rival, the insurance industry. They employ
more lobbyists (625) than there are members of Congress ‹and more than half of
the lobbyists are former members of Congress, congressional staff members or
government employees.

This shows how important it is to get involved
politically, and work for campaign-finance reform. It’s also time for individual
physicians to take responsibility for their actions, and stop being pawns in the
economic games played by the drug and health insurance industries. Physicians
will change only if their patients demand it. Reform will only come from market
forces, which means you: how you spend your money on healthcare, and on
charitable and political donations. Get informed, take responsibility for your
own health, and choose your doctors and medicines wisely.

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ANTIDEPRESSANTS: Star D Study – Only 3% Remission, Not 67%

Last paragraph reads:  “”Although the study‘s reports make no
mention of this outcome, their data show that after a year of continuation
treatment following remission, of the 4,041 patients who entered the program
only 108 (3%) had a sustained remission — all the other patients either dropped
out or relapsed. Yet STAR*D‘s authors and the NIMH have publicized the study as
showing a 67% success rate for

antidepressants.”

http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/mad-in-america/201005/update-the-stard-report
May 19, 2010, Psychiatry

Update on the STAR*D Report
The
documented recovery rate in the STAR*D trial–worse than thought?
Published
on May 19, 2010

Two months ago, I wrote a post about a New Yorker
article that reported that 67% of the depressed patients in the STAR*D trial
“recovered.” As I noted in that post, the 67% figure was a highly exaggerated
number. Only 51% of the 3,671 patients who entered the trial ever remitted, even
for a short period. Furthermore, only about 20% of the patients remitted and
then reported to STAR*D investigators, at some point during a 12-month follow-up
period, that they were still doing well.

But this left an obvious
question, one that I hadn’t been able to find an answer to in the published

STAR*D reports. How many of the 3,671 people who entered the trial remitted and
then stayed well and in the trial throughout the entire 12-month follow-up? That
number would provide a documented long-term recovery rate for patients in the
trial.

A few days ago, Allan Leventhal sent me a 2009 article he
coauthored with David Antonuccio, and in it, they successfully identified this
number (finding it in a confusing graphic I hadn’t been able to decipher.) In
their computations, they relied on STAR*D reports that told of 4,041 initial
participants (3,671 was the number of “enrolled” patients counted in the
analysis of drug-remission rates), and then they came to this bottom-line
conclusion about the documented long-term recovery rate:

“Although the

study‘s reports make no mention of this outcome, their data show that after a
year of continuation treatment following remission, of the 4,041 patients who
entered the program only 108 (3%) had a sustained remission — all the other
patients either dropped out or relapsed. Yet STAR*D‘s authors and the NIMH have
publicized the study as showing a 67% success rate for antidepressants.”

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PAXIL: Acquitted of DUI: Involuntary Intoxication: Virginia

NOTE FROM Ann Blake-Tracy
(www.drugawareness.org):

Because the package insert for Paxil
warns that this antidepressant does produce “alcohol cravings” and we know how
common it is for mania to be induced by SSRIs, with one type of mania being
“Dipsomania” – an overwhelming compulsion to drink alcohol” – this
information needs to be spread far and wide ASAP! Patients are NOT warned
of this when they are given this drug! Few are even given the package insert
which is a “failure to warn” on the part of both the drug maker and the
pharmacist. How many DUIs are being caused by the SSRI antidepressants? We know
that DUIs in middle aged women, the main users of SSRIs, have DOUBLED over
a recent 10 year period. Is there a connection? As a society we need to know.
Where is MADD on this issue?
___________________________________________
The Fifth case from the end reads:  “Defendant was on Paxil, an
anti-depressant drug, and had a few drinks after playing golf. He was arrested
and charged with DUI after weaving through traffic.  He was “obviously
impaired” according to his lawyer.  ‘The worst I’d ever seen in 25 years’.”

“An expert testified that Paxil, taken with alcohol, has an “additive
effect” in some people.  The Defendant was never told about this.  The
Court acquitted the Defendant because to self-administer an intoxicant, one must
be aware that they are consuming an intoxicant.

http://virginiadui.poweradvocates.com/dui_defenses.html

4.
Involuntary Intoxication .  Commonwealth v. Moore, February, 2003 (Fairfax
Co. GDC).

Defendant was on Paxil, an anti-depressant drug, and had a few
drinks after playing golf.  He was arrested and charged with DUI after
weaving through traffic.  He was “obviously impaired” according to his
lawyer.  “The worst I’d ever seen in 25 years.”

An expert testified
that Paxil, taken with alcohol, has an “additive effect” in some people.

The Defendant was never told about this.  The Court acquitted the Defendant
because to self-administer an intoxicant, one must be aware that they are
consuming an intoxicant.

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SSRIs: Soldiers: One of Six Prescribed SSRIs – Iraq/Afghanistan

Paragraphs six and seven read: On February 24, 2010, the House Committee on
Veteran Affairs convened to explore the increasing number of military
related suicides. However, the hearing was not well publicized by the
mainstream media.

“The nature of roadside bombs creates psychological terror. Our troops who
witness violence and destruction of innocent lives are routinely
prescribed antidepressants to blunt their emotions.

One in six military members is prescribed psychiatric drugs such as
Zoloft, Lexapro, Paxil or Prozac even though the FDA warns that antidepressants
increase the risk of suicidal thinking and behavior in some. Time magazine
reports that the Pentagon keeps statistics on just about everything but does
not maintain a central clearinghouse for antidepressant prescription data,
making exact numbers ‘difficult to track’.”

http://www.sdnn.com/sandiego/2010-04-15/blog/a-more-perfect-union/emblem-tim
e-to-rethink-the-cost-of-wars/comment-page-1#comment-31110

Emblem: Time to rethink the cost of wars
By Tracy Emblem, Guest Contributor

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Tracy Emblem is an attorney and a Democratic candidate for U.S. Congress,
California’s 50th District.
The National Priorities Project estimates that it cost the U.S. taxpayers
$1.05 trillion dollars to fund the Iraq and Afghanistan wars through the
end of Fiscal Year 2010. In March, the administration appeared again on
Capital Hill to ask for another $33 billion to support the “surge” in
Afghanistan.

Why have we so readily forgotten that Americans were told there were “
weapons of mass destruction” in Iraq as the reason for our military invasion
when this turned out to be false. Like Iraq, there is absolutely no guarantee
our troops will be withdrawn by 2012. From the Russian-Afghanistan
experience, we should readily expect it will take much longer than the six years
we previously spent in Iraq.

Recently 356 members of Congress — 189 Democrats and 167 Republicans —
voted to keep the wars funded without any debate. Why?

The Iraq and Afghanistan “occupations” have caused hundreds of thousands
of civilian casualties from insurgents and military engagement, while
thousands of women and children have been displaced. Repeated military
deployments have also wrecked havoc on our own soldiers and families. Nearly 300,000
U.S. troops have been deployed to Afghanistan or Iraq for a third or
fourth time.

We can no longer afford to blindly accept that these “wars” are “just”
or “necessary” when U.S. soldiers and families are suffering the effects of
prolonged war.

Related Links: More by Tracy | A More Perfect Union | Politics

On February 24, 2010, the House Committee on Veteran Affairs convened to
explore the increasing number of military related suicides. However, the
hearing was not well publicized by the mainstream media.

The nature of roadside bombs creates psychological terror. Our troops who
witness violence and destruction of innocent lives are routinely prescribed
antidepressants to blunt their emotions.
One in six military members is prescribed psychiatric drugs such as
Zoloft, Lexapro, Paxil or Prozac even though the FDA warns that antidepressants
increase the risk of suicidal thinking and behavior in some. Time magazine
reports that the Pentagon keeps statistics on just about everything but does
not maintain a central clearinghouse for antidepressant prescription data,
making exact numbers “difficult to track.”

Antidepressants are not the only type of drugs routinely prescribed to our
troops. According to the Pentagon Health Affairs Office, almost 3.8
million pain relief prescriptions were prescribed for service members last year —
four times the amount prescribed in 2001. The military also prescribes “
stay awake” amphetamine drugs; the side effect increases paranoia and
homicidal behavior in our soldiers and causes breakdown in morale.

Unfortunately, when our soldiers return home and try to assimilate in
civilian life many remain the casualty of post traumatic stress, drug
addiction, physical pain or disability ­- and they return to the prospect of
high unemployment, divorce, homelessness, prison or suicide ­- the hidden
costs of wars. The costly “wars” have drained our troops and families
emotionally and depleted our economy as well as left a destructive toll on the
Iraq and Afghanistan people.

Americans should not sit silently by while our nation is led into
protracted warfare without debate. We must critically ask whether it is in our
nation’s interest to bring our troops home and start the healing process.

Tracy Emblem is an attorney and a Democratic candidate for U.S. Congress,
California’s 50th District. Contact her at Politics(a)SDNN.com with “to
Tracy Emblem” in the subject line.

Tags: federal deficit, Iraq and Afghanistan wars, Military costs, National
Priorities Project, Soldiers

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Glaxo Is Testing Paxil on 7-Year-Olds Despite Well Known Suicide Risks

The only word for this news is “Criminal!” I hope they are watching these children 24-7 to keep them from committingsuicide or homicide while in the study. I recall the seven year old boy on Paxil I worked with who wanted to cut the baby out of his mother’s belly and the 17 year old who impulsively jumped off an overpass in front of a semi-truck to end his life. Then there was the 10 year old brother and 15 year old sister, both on Paxil, who stabbed their 7 year old brother and buried him in the back yard. Sounds like a great drug for kids, doesn’t it?
I just finished a court report (I have been testifying as an expert in these cases for almost two decades) on a Paxil case and noted that 18 of the listed side effects were indicators of mania. If Glaxo had labeled those effects for what really are instead of the labels they gave those reactions then no one would be surprised to know that in children the rate of Bipolar Disorder increased 4000% from 1996-2004.
As for Paxil being beneficial apparently someone missed the news that came out just over two years ago where the original studies done on SSRI antidepressants finally surfaced – many the FDA had never seen – indicating that the drugs offer no more benefit than a placebo. So if even the worst drugs perform better than placebo, where does that leave the SSRI antidepressants?
Ann Blake-Tracy, Executive Director
International Coalition for Drug Awareness
www.drugawareness.orgwww.ssristories.drugawareness.org

Glaxo Is Testing Paxil on 7-Year-Olds Despite WellKnown Suicide Risks

By Jim Edwards | May 21, 2010

It was established years ago that Paxil carries a risk of suicide in children and teens, but GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) has for the last 18 months been conducting a study of the antidepressant in kids as young as seven — in Japan. It’s not clear why the company would want to draw more attention to its already controversial pill, but it appears as if GSK might be hoping to see a reduced suicide risk in a small population of users — a result the company could use to cast doubt on the Paxil-equals-teen-suicide meme that dominates discussion of the drug.

GSK didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment. A staffer on GSK’s trials hotline confirmed the study was ongoing, however. The drug carries a “black box” warning on its patient information sheet, warning doctors and consumers that the antidepressant is twice as likely to generate lethal thoughts than a placebo.

The trial criteria listed on ClinicalTrials.gov, however, provide an interesting lesson in how managers can carefully design drug trials designed to flatter their products — something good companies don’t do.

The primary aim of the study is not to find out why Paxil makes some children kill themselves. Rather, it’s yet another efficacy study, which the drug doesn’t need because it was approved years ago — we already know the drug works.

Paxil is being tested against a placebo, so the results won’t be very surprising — even terrible drugs work better than sugar pills.

To what degree Paxil triggers suicide is only a secondary aim of the study. If the results suggest a lower suicide risk, expect GSK to play them up. If they’re bad, expect the company to dismiss them in favor of the primary endpoint results.

About 130 children have been enrolled, according to ClinicalTrials.gov, which puts about 65 patients in each arm. That means the results won’t be too statistically robust — there only need to be two or three outlier results to skew the numbers by several percentage points.

The trial will wrap up in September.

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ANTIDEPRESSANT WITHDRAWAL & ALCOHOL: Mother Murders her 3 Year Old Daughter: IL

Paragraphs 15 through 19 read: “Throughout the interview Starr said she was in school because Bianca was the only ‘remotely good’ thing in her life.”

“She became hysterical when the detectives told her Bianca died.”

“ ‘I want her back,’ she cried.”

“The tape shows that Starr calmed down within minutes. Eventually she said, ‘Safe to say to say I killed her. Safe to say I’m going to go to jail. Safe to say I’m never going to be sane again’.”

“Starr also told investigators she had skipped a dose of an anti-depressant.”

http://www.wsiltv.com/p/news_details.php?newsID=9900&type=top

Prosecution Rests in Starr Case

MARION

After an emotional week in court, the Herrin woman on trial for killing her three-year-old daughter has decided not to testify, according to court documents.

Prosecutors began presenting their case against Karrae Starr, 20, by playing the tape of the 911 call she made in late September 2008.

They wrapped it up Friday morning by showing the jury a recording of her interview with investigators, which was conducted hours later.

In the video Starr wore a t-shirt with blood stains on it. She acknowledged the blood belonged to her daughter, Bianca.

During the interview, Starr told investigators Jill Blus of the Williamson County Sheriff’s Department and Bruce Graul of the Herrin Police Department she got angry when Bianca went to the playground with her boyfriend without telling her.

In the recording, Starr tells the investigators Bianca threw a fit when she dragged her home.
Once in Bianca’s bedroom, “I held my hand over her mouth” to make her stop screaming, Starr said.

“I was extremely [expletive] pissed off and drunk,” she continued. She told detectives she had five shots of vodka that night.

Starr said Bianca eventually calmed down, so she removed her hand, and asked Bianca if she was okay. Bianca said yes.

According to Starr, as she was leaving the room she heard Bianca get out of bed, so she turned around. When she did, she saw blood and foam coming from Bianca’s nose.

Thursday a forensic pathologist testified that the blood and foam, combined with swollen organs which were discovered during an autopsy, indicate Bianca was smothered.

“All indications are she didn’t stand up out of bed herself,” Blus told Starr.

Starr, who was a nursing student at the time, did CPR on her daughter. Eventually, she told investigators, “I picked her up and held her and told her to come back….I was giving up because she wasn’t responding.”

Starr said her boyfriend was in the other room on the computer as she gave Bianca CPR.

Throughout the interview Starr said she was in school because Bianca was the only “remotely good” thing in her life.

She became hysterical when the detectives told her Bianca died.

“I want her back,” she cried.

The tape shows that Starr calmed down within minutes. Eventually she said, “Safe to say to say I killed her. Safe to say I’m going to go to jail. Safe to say I’m never going to be sane again.”

Starr also told investigators she had skipped a dose of an anti-depressant.

As the recording played for the jury, Starr became visibly upset several times.

The trial continues Monday. It’s expected to wrap up by Tuesday.

U.S. Attorney Danny Kay and State’s Attorney Chuck Garnati are prosecuting the case. Public Defender Larry Broeking represents Starr.

By Dana Jay
djay@wsiltv.com

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SSRIs: Sharp Drop in Brain Activity + Worsening Depression & Suicidality

NOTE BY Ann Blake-Tracy (www.drugawareness.org):

Hopefully if you have followed my work or read my book, “Prozac: Panacea or Pandora? – Our Serotonin Nightmare,” you know that I have made the argument for a decade and a half that antidepressants are the most similar drugs we have ever seen to dissociative anesthetics like PCP or Ketamine. They just work in a little slower motion is all. This research would confirm that by showing adrop in brain activity within ONLY 48 hours of use! All one needs to do is go to the one color page inmy book with brain wave patterns of a 31 year old male on Prozac for six months. The brain waves show that the patient is in a total anesthetic sleep state and dreaming while talking with those doing the test on him!
_______________________________________
Paragraph five reads:  “Prior research, Hunter said, has shown that between 8 and 14 percent of depressed patients develop thoughts of suicide while taking the most common forms ofdepression drugs, known as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRI). Although reports have suggested that SSRIs are to blame, no firm link between these drugs and thoughts of suicide has been established.”

Paragraphs seven and eight read:  “The researchers treated 72 people suffering from majordepressive disorder (MDD) with one of two SSRIs, fluoxetine or venlafaxine, or with a placebo. All were evaluated by a clinician using the Hamilton Depression Rating Scale, a standard instrument that assesses the severity of a wide range of depression symptoms. Of the 37 participants on medication,five (13.5 percent) had worsening thoughts of suicide.”

“All of the participants were also examined using QEEG, which evaluates brain function based on thebrain‘s electrical activity. Among the 13.5 percent of participants who got worse, the researchersfound a sharp drop in brain activity within 48 hours of the start of medication. The dropoccurred in the midline and right-frontal sections of the brain, areas known to control emotions.”

SSRI Stories note:  In regard to placebo & suicidality, it should be remembered that the majority of placebo patients are ‘wash-out’ patients from other antidepressants and thus are actually inantidepressant withdrawal which can be extremely dangerous.

http://www.physorg.com/news189972383.html

Simple test can detect signs of suicidal thoughts in people taking antidepressants

April 8, 2010 By Mark Wheeler

(PhysOrg.com) — UCLA researchers have developed a non-invasive biomarker that may serve as a type of early warning system for doctors and patients.

While antidepressant medications have proven to be beneficial in helping people overcome majordepression, it has long been known that a small subset of individuals taking these drugs can actually experience a worsening of mood, and even thoughts of suicide. No clinical test currently exists to make this determination, and only time  usually weeks  can tell before a psychiatrist knows whether a patient is getting better or worse.

Now, UCLA researchers have developed a non-invasive biomarker, or indicator, that may serve as a type of early warning system.

Reporting in the April edition of the peer-reviewed journal Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica, Aimee Hunter, an assistant research psychologist in the UCLA Department of Psychiatry, and colleagues report that by using quantitative electroencephalographic (QEEG), a non-invasive measurement of electrical activity in the brain, they were able to observe a sharp reduction of activity in a specific brainregion in individuals who proved susceptible to thoughts of suicide  within 48 hours of the start of treatment.

Prior research, Hunter said, has shown that between 8 and 14 percent of depressed patients develop thoughts of suicide while taking the most common forms of depression drugs, known as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRI). Although reports have suggested that SSRIs are to blame, no firm link between these drugs and thoughts of suicide has been established.

This study suggests, for the first time, a link between worsening suicidality and specific changes inbrain function while on these medications.

The researchers treated 72 people suffering from major depressive disorder (MDD) with one of twoSSRIs, fluoxetine or venlafaxine, or with a placebo. All were evaluated by a clinician using the Hamilton Depression Rating Scale, a standard instrument that assesses the severity of a wide range of depression symptoms. Of the 37 participants on medication, five (13.5 percent) had worseningthoughts of suicide.

All of the participants were also examined using QEEG, which evaluates brain function based on thebrain‘s electrical activity. Among the 13.5 percent of participants who got worse, the researchers found a sharp drop in brain activity within 48 hours of the start of medication. The drop occurred in the midline and right-frontal sections of the brain, areas known to control emotions.

Of note, eight of the 35 participants taking a placebo (22.9 percent) also had increased thoughts of suicide. However, the placebo participants did not show the precipitous drop in brain activity within the first 48 hours.

“This is the first study to show a change in brain function after the start of medication that appears to be linked to the subsequent development of worsening thoughts of suicide during antidepressant treatment,” Hunter said. “Importantly, changes in this biomarker did not predict worsening suicidal thoughts in the placebo-treated subjects, so the results suggest that the biomarker specifically detected medication-related worsening only.”

QEEG is a relatively inexpensive instrument that is non-invasive; measurements are obtained by placing electrodes on the scalp. As a result, Hunter said, further development of this biomarker could potentially lead to a tool that could be used by clinicians to predict, in the early stages of treatment, whether an individual suffering from depression will develop thoughts of suicide.

Provided by University of California Los Angeles

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ANTIDEPRESSANT: Woman Jumps From Brooklyner: First Suicide Ever in Bldg…

Paragraph five reads: “Diaz added that Paek reportedly suffered from clinical depression, and that she was on medication.”

http://www.brooklynpaper.com/stories/33/16/33_16_sb_brooklyner_suicide.html?comm=1

First suicide at Brooklyn’s tallest building

By Stephen Brown
The Brooklyn Paper

A woman jumped to her death from roof of the Brooklyner the borough’s tallest building last week, police said.

Thirty-year-old Jennifer Paek plummeted from the roof of the 51-story building on Lawrence Street between Willoughby Street and Myrtle Avenue in Downtown and landed on the seventh-floor terrace of the Metrotech office building next door at around 12:55 pm.

She was dead on the spot.

NYPD spokeswoman Mindy Diaz said that the dead woman lived on the 18th floor of the distinctive tower with her husband and had left suicide notes in their apartment.

Diaz added that Paek reportedly suffered from clinical depression, and that she was on medication.

The tragic suicide is likely the first of its kind for the Brooklyner, which opened early this year.

©2010 Community Newspaper Group

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Execise: Greatly Helps Anxiety: Anxiety Disorder Association of America

First two paragraphs read:  “Healthcare providers to prescribe antidepressants for patients who suffer from depression or anxiety, these medications can sometimes come with harmful side effects. As a result, the drugs can sometimes end up doing more harm than good.”

“According to findings that were presented at the annual conference of the Anxiety DisorderAssociation of America, more mental health professionals should begin prescribing alternative health resources such as exercise to their patients who suffer from anxiety as multiple reports have shown that it helps treat the condition.”

http://www.betterhealthresearch.com/news/researchers-suggest-exercise-may-be-best-treatment-for-anxiety-19704171/

Researchers Suggest Exercise May Be Best Treatment For Anxiety

By Donna Parker • Apr 5th, 2010 • Category: AnxietyHealth News

Healthcare providers to prescribe antidepressants for patients who suffer from depression or anxiety, these medications can sometimes come with harmful side effects. As a result, the drugs can sometimes end up doing more harm than good.

According to findings that were presented at the annual conference of the Anxiety DisorderAssociation of America, more mental health professionals should begin prescribing alternative health resources such as exercise to their patients who suffer from anxiety as multiple reports have shown that it helps treat the condition.

“Individuals who exercise report fewer symptoms of anxiety and depression, and lower levels of stress and anger,” said Jasper Smits, director of the Anxiety Research and Treatment Program at Southern Methodist University in Dallas. “Exercise appears to affect, like an antidepressant, particular neurotransmitter systems in the brain, and it helps patients with depression re-establish positive behaviors.”

In addition to treating patients for anxiety, exercise can also keep the body flexible, improve sleeping patterns, keep blood pressure in check and help increase bone strength.

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PAXIL: Catholic Priest Commits Suicide: IN Lawsuit

Paragraph three reads:  “Father Rick Tucker, who took Paxil because he was upset about the way his parish ignored a child abuse scandal, may have committed suicide because of side effects from the drug and not the stress from the cover-up, a federal judge ruled. Judge David H. Hamilton of Indiana’s federal court found that Tucker’s sister Debra could sue GSK over the death of her brother, who shot himself to death in September 2002.”

http://industry.bnet.com/pharma/10007579/glaxo-paxil-and-the-catholic-church-sex-abuse-cover-up-drug-implicated-in-suicide-of-priest/

Glaxo, Paxil and the Catholic Church Sex Abuse Cover-up: Drug Implicated in Suicide of Priest

By Jim Edwards | Apr 7, 2010

GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), which was already the focus of controversy over whether it ignored thesuicide risk of its antidepressant Paxil, has found itself linked to the Catholic Church’s cover-up of child abuse in the death of a priest who took the drug.

The case seems bound to become a further PR headache for GSK, which in 2008 was accused of obscuring the suicide risk of Paxil in studies for 15 years.

Father Rick Tucker, who took Paxil because he was upset about the way his parish ignored a child abuse scandal, may have committed suicide because of side effects from the drug and not the stress from the cover-up, a federal judge ruled. Judge David H. Hamilton of Indiana’s federal court found that Tucker’s sister Debra could sue GSK over the death of her brother, who shot himself to death inSeptember 2002.

The Tucker case stems from 1966, when Debra Tucker was 10 years old and attended the St. Lawrence Parish church in the Diocese of Lafayette-in-Indiana. At the same time, Rick attended St. Mary’s Seminary in the same parish. Between 1966 and 1968, Debra was raped two to four times a month by St. Lawrence’s children’s choir instruction, a lay employee of the church, she alleges. In1968, Tucker had an abortion at the abuser’s behest, and then her family  including Rick, who had no idea what was going on  moved house and the abuse stopped. Debra remained in the area and over the years the abuser painted her house and attended the funerals of both her parents, she alleges.

In July 2000, after Debra discovered that the abuser had also allegedly assaulted his own children, she attended a meeting with Father Tucker, St. Lawrence’s Monsignor Robert Sell and other church officials. She claims that Sell and the church agreed to ensure that the abuser had no further contact with children in the parish and in return she would not sue the church.

After learning that Sell and the church allegedly did nothing about the man, Debra Tucker sued for breach of contract in a separate case not involving GSK.

The parish dragged its feet over the lawsuit, and as Father Tucker waited for word over whether his employers would settle his sister’s case, he became increasingly anxious. He was also worried about an upcoming audit by the diocese because, the judge wrote, he had “advanced himself some monies” and the Church would discover these “irregularities.”

However, his anxieties were misplaced: the audit did not uncover any irregularities in Father Tucker’s bookkeeping, the ruling says. The Tucker family’s lawyer said that the amounts involved were in the $50 range  and thus proof that Father Tucker’s anxiety was a product of the drug and not the situation he was in.

After taking Paxil, Tucker went into a sudden depressive tailspin. His diary for Aug. 30, 2002, just two days after he was prescribed the pill, says:

“Things have gotten behind and I do not know how to catch up. I want to live, but I want out of the pain. I feel like I am in an ocean and I can’t swim to the top for air. . . . I can see no way out of it. I know that if I follow through with the thoughts that come to my mind, there will be people hurt. … Debra I am sorry.”

Father Tucker killed himself on Sept. 18.

Debra Tucker alleges in her complaint against GSK that the company knew as early as 1990 thatPaxil potentially had an increased risk of suicide, and that the company failed to warn patients of the risk of akathisia, psychosis or violent self harm. Akathisia is a profound state of anxiety in which patients, unable to rest, believe they are doomed.

GSK had asked the judge to summarily dismiss the case based because the expert witnesses who testified that Father Tucker’s death was triggered by the Paxil and not the other stresses in his life were inadequate. The judge ruled there was a case to answer.

GSK and Msgr. Sell did not immediately respond to emails and a voicemail requesting comment. I’ve decided not to name the alleged abuser  although his name is published in Debra Tucker’s complaint against the church because I could not reach him for comment.

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