The Hidden Gorilla

Three weeks ago What would Batman do Now covered the issue of suicide in the military – an issue that had Batman missing in action, and the Joker suffering the adverse effects of psychotropic drugs. Then along came James Holmes to the premiere of Dark Knight Rises in Aurora. Most drugs that can cause suicide, including the antidepressants, mood-stabilizers, antipsychotics, smoking cessation … [Read more...]

One Script to Rule them all

So Long and Thanks for all the Fish portrayed doctors in a rather flattering light – the victims of a tragedy. They were portrayed as losing out in a Faustian bargain when they failed to realize the hazards in making all new drugs available on prescription only. The bargain offered them a chance to entrench themselves inescapably in healthcare as the only legal source of all treatments that worked … [Read more...]

There’s something about Mary

A paper looking at antidepressants and birth defects in Denmark has just appeared. Anyone can download it and read for themselves (Jimenez-Solem et al 2012). Its worth reading. The published data demonstrate an increased rate of major birth defects on SSRIs which fits what almost all other studies have found. But this study also finds that women who have stopped their SSRI 6-9 months previously … [Read more...]

Herding women

Since 2005, Paroxetine, first marketed by GlaxoSmithKline as Seroxat/Paxil, has carried warnings of birth defect risks. These risks led to litigation in the US – but not elsewhere. In the first case that went to court in the US in 2009, the Kilker case, the lawyers for Lyam Kilker argued that, even before Paxil was launched, there was good laboratory evidence that the SSRIs might cause problems, … [Read more...]

A new epidemic

This post is by Dr Adam Urato, a Professor of Obstetrics & Gynecology at Tuft's University Imagine for a moment that a virus started affecting about 5% of all pregnant women—200,000 US pregnancies per year. Imagine that it caused significant pregnancy complications--more than 10% of those infected with the virus would have miscarriage, up to 20% or more would have preterm birth, and 30% of … [Read more...]

What would Batman do now?

Johanna Ryan in her post Dependence Day points to serious problems linked to psychotropic drug use in the military and what seem to be recent alarming developments, but there is a 60 year history here. In the 1950s, the VA hospital system commissioned Norman Farberow to look at rising rates of suicides among veterans. He studied veterans hospitalized for either medical or psychiatric conditions … [Read more...]

Dependence Day

Author: Johanna Ryan, Labor Activist with Illinois Workers Compensation Lawyers (Chicago)  Last month I watched as forty Iraq and Afghanistan vets led an antiwar march to the gates of the NATO summit in Chicago, and handed back their medals. At the rally, they described the toll the wars had taken on the troops as well as the people of Iraq and Afghanistan, and demanded their “right to heal.” … [Read more...]