For years many of us have hoped that doctors prescribing SSRIs would begin to be sued & found liable for handing these drugs out, as I say in my book, as if they were candy & subsequently sing to you as you leave their office, “Happy Trails to You Until We Meet Again.” Of course I say that emphasize that these doctors do no follow up with patients who are to be monitored on these drugs!
The doctor in this case prescribed Paxil 10 years earlier, never saw the patient again, & when he got a call about the patient while on vacation he doubled the man’s dose of Paxil & added either the antipsychotic, Zyprexa, or another antidepressant, Effexor. (From the article it was difficult to tell as both drugs were discussed.) Either drug could produce a synergistic effect upon serotonin so that it would be as if his dose was closer to being tripled, instead of just doubled.
The resulting jury verdict? “On Nov. 21, 2012 the jury found both doctors negligent, but concluded that only Dr. Beals’ (the prescribing doctor) acts had contributed to or caused Mr. Mazella’s suicide. The jury awarded his wife and three children $1.5 million.”
And I cannot agree more with Dr. Peter Breggin, the court expert in this case, as he concludes: “Hopefully this malpractice verdict will encourage my colleagues to take a closer look at their too often cavalier attitudes toward prescribing psychiatric drugs.”
The attorney for the family Ernest DelDuchetto concluded: “It was comforting to see a jury agree with our proposition that these drugs (antidepressants) are not panaceas for all sadness,” and that they can have serious harmful effects.”
We have begged for attorneys to file against the prescribing physicians, as well as the drug companies, for years, but in the past they felt their hands were tied & it was most important to go after the drug companies themselves in these cases. Of course that is the main focus as they knew their drugs could produce suicide. So without any question they were liable.
But what I really want to see next is one of these doctors legally held accountable for ONLY VERY BRIEFLY discussing the suicide warning associated with antidepressants, which warning they are required to give due to the Black Box Warning for suicide placed on these drugs by the FDA. And then the doctor, in his/her next breath downplays that Black Box Warning to such an extent that after you’ve heard it you’ve been led to believe this is a side effect that only a man on the moon could have in reaction to a drug as mild as an antidepressant! Those doctors are guilty of “failure to warn” & as such should be held accountable for these deaths & have their licenses pulled for ignoring FDA guidelines when the warning is as serious as a Black Box Warning – the next closest thing to a drug being completely banned!
(Click the link below to read the full article on successful suit.)
About the Author: Ann Blake Tracy is the author of PROZAC: PANACEA OR PANDORA? –OUR SEROTONIN NIGHTMARE!, and the director of the International Coalition For Drug Awareness [www.drugawareness.org]. She has testified before the FDA and has testified as an expert in legal cases involving serotonergic medications since 1992.
BOOK: Prozac: Panacea or Pandora? – Our Serotonin Nightmare! Anything you ever wanted to know about antidepressants is there along with everything drug companies hope you never find out about these drugs. SAFE WITHDRAWAL CD “Help! I Can’t Get Off My Antidepressant!” on how to safely withdraw from antidepressants & most psychiatric medications is saving lives! Both available at www.drugawareness.org
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“Ann, I just wanted to let you know from the bottom of my heart how grateful I am God placed you in my life. I am now down to less than 2 mg on my Cymbalta and I have never felt better. I am finally getting my life back. I can feel again and colors have never been brighter. Thanks for all that you do!!” … Amber Weber
“Used your method of weaning off of SSRI’s and applied it to Ambien. Took 6 months but had been on 15 mg for years so what was another 6 months. I have been sleeping without it for 2 weeks and it is the first time I have been able to sleep drug free for 15 years. What a relief to be able to lay down and sleep when I need or want to. Ambien may be necessary for people at times but doctors giving a months worth of it at a time with unlimited refills is a prescription for disaster. It is so damn easy to become dependent on. Thanks for your council Ann.”… Mark Hill
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