RxISK Prize

September, 12, 2017 | 19 Comments


  1. Congratulations on a fantastic idea – and a brave step forward. I sincerely hope that you will be successful in the attempt to solve this puzzle. Who knows, maybe the answer to many of the other problems associated with these drugs will be solved – or at least be better understood – as a result of this too.
    Are you going public with this news? By that, I mean are you contacting the general media to explain the answers you are looking for? Wouldn’t it be a good chance to share with the public the good work already being done by RxISK and the willingness to share the fact that there are still questions to which RxISK does not have the answers?
    I sometimes feel that the message of Rxisk needs a push out into the light. Yes, I know, it’s there online for all to find – and, probably, has helped very many by being there. However, I feel that it is mainly being found by those already suffering and looking for answers. Surely, in the long run, the message needs to reach those who have no need to go looking for it, so that the numbers who suffer will be lessened?

  2. Mick Bramham faces Sex and SSRIs and includes a Study in Iran which contains many links to Studies on PSSD which may help as a starter to support this critical research for those desperately overwhelmed, or, underwhelmed, as the case may be .. a powerful writer for this tragedy …

    Mick Bramham is an Existential Psychotherapist based in Dorset, UK. He has a particular interest in ethical issues and also in how our lives are shaped by the society, circumstances and culture in which we live.

    Post-SSRI Sexual Dysfunction (PSSD)

    There is however another trauma that some people are experiencing. It is not the result of war but rather from a battle with depression. These people are also victims and there are those who are not keen for it to be recognised for what it really is. Alas, their suffering continues. It is the damage caused by the SSRI antidepressants: I am specifically thinking of Post-SSRI Sexual Dysfunction (PSSD). PSSD has been referred to as a “stress syndrome” (details here) – such is the impact on the body’s physiology.


    Study of effects of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors on stages of sexual function in Iranian patients with major depressive disorder

    This study was carried out since little information on sexual dysfunction due to these medications is available in Iran



    A total of 75% of patients reported sexual dysfunction: 66.7% of men and 79.7% of women. A total of 74.1% of patients on fluvoxamine, 100% on fluoxetine, 75% on sertraline, 71.4% on citalopram and 100% on paroxetine reported sexual dysfunction. The most frequent sexual dysfunction was difficulty with orgasm, which affected 41.17% of women and 33.33% of men.

    According to Prof David Healy, we are not necessarily talking about high doses over many years; notably, “PTESD can happen after very brief exposure to an SSRI or related drug (3 days)” – see here. Yes, you read that correctly, after just a few days use.

  3. Can we offer our own theories, based on research over time gleaned from various professionals from the disciplines listed above? Sometimes these people have slipped us bits of useful information but are afraid to be identified personally with it. Particularly those working in university research departments whose funding is dependant on Big Pharma. Oh, and would it be indiscreet to ask what the prize might be? And who are the judges? What a fabulous idea…….

    • Heather

      Any hints that might lead somewhere are welcome – some people find temporary benefit from lots of things such as sleep deprivation or cannabis and we have a list of some of these. Any others people can add would be great. The bits of information also sound useful. But could all comments be directed to RxISK where the main site is

      We have a panel of sufferers. The first criterion is that whoever has a treatment will need to persuade our panel to try it. The second is that the panelists have to agree it has solved the problem or made a substantial difference. This is not something people who do not have the problem can judge/


      • I’m 52 & on Lexapro & Mirtazipine. (And others)
        I have been lucky enough to have come across ecstasy over the years & believe it should be used to treat illness like mine (PTSD) as every time I’ve used it – I’ve had no symptoms & felt total elation

  4. David

    Thanks for the explanation. Also, there is lots more detail about this Prize Launch over on Risk Blog, which I should have had the sense to check first. It’s such a cool idea, with so many advantages, can’t imagine why none of us ever thought of this before.


  5. Have you tried Cannabis?
    I expect you have but, have you tried CBD over a long period of time? CBD and THC can repair the brain, it encourages neurogenesis, the development of new brain pathways.
    I am profoundly improved from 2012 in numerous ways, and I only have access to as much medicine as I can afford, I expect if I didn’t always run out, I wouldn’t have progressive paralysis.
    There is some much research, it’s difficult to find conditions that some form of, or combination of the medicines from cannabis helps.
    I have literally thousands of cannabis studies republished on barbkueber@wordpress.com but I recently put a bunch together for our literal war against our profoundly ignorant government, that promised legalization, in 2015.
    I also write on Quora.com in Medical Cannabis, actually, I just battle back into the top writer spot, and I’m not even paid to write there!
    There are several studies available here
    I just posted this answer to an epilepsy question, but please listen to the short video to start https://www.quora.com/Would-the-effects-of-marijuana-help-my-condition-with-epilepsy-or-would-it-make-it-worse/answer/Barb-Kueber
    I share your campaign! I look forward to hearing of your successes!
    Please, keep up the great work!
    Barb Kueber

  6. Have you considered entering STIMULANTS into the equation? From my research and personal experience with Adderall in both myself and my ex husband (who suffers from chronic low energy and has tried numerous antidepressants), stimulants increase sexual desire and function dramatically.

    Dr. Kimberly Free

    • Kimberley

      There are many thousands of people affected by SSRIs, Finasteride and Accutane, lots of them doctors, researchers or generally all round capable people. Between them they have tried every obvious manipulation of the serotonin and dopamine and steroid hormone systems – stimulants, viagra and related etc and lots of herbal preparations. Some have taken pretty considerable risks. But nothing makes a consistent difference. What works when the system is working – like viagra or stimulants or buspirone – doesn’t work when the system is not working.


  7. I have tried Dexidrine and bho concentrate to. Stimulate my dopamergenic system after being on antipsychotics. I ended up with headaches, nausea and diarrhoea. After the bho concentrate, I’ve had headaches everyday for over a week and they don’t appear to be going away. Is that b/c the system is damaged? I never noticed any effects from either of the two.

    I also suffer from many things from the antipsychotics-I solidly believe that I have permanent brain damage from these drugs. I cannot get aroused at all-I’m quite anhedonic actually. Please find a cure for this.

  8. I had PSSD for roughly a year four years ago and my sex drive returned to normal.
    Unfortunately I tried to come off Prozac too quickly six months ago it’s back again, although not as pronounced as before. The first time, I could go a whole month ejaculating once or twice and it was a chore; now it’s about once a week, although my libido is definitely well below baseline.

  9. Hi all,

    I’d definitely say I’m one of the more severe cases. Took Citolapram for a week the Setraline for a week back in May 2015. After 4 days I became impotent…
    For the first 2 years I managed to have intercourse occasionally but the last year it’s become worse, to the point I can’t get any form of erection and my morning wood is completely gone. Ruled out every potential cause. Why isn’t more being done to find a cure for this? And why is this illness left in the dark?

  10. I went to a GP on the advice of a counsellor. They had arranged from me to receive benzodiazepines 1.5mg bromazepam. The doctor said it was useful for sleep, for which I used to sleep early given that I had a need to wake up early in the morning. I stopped and went to withdrawal, convulsing uncontrollably with panic attacks. I thought I had acquired a mental disorder and went to a psychiatrist, only to be drugged with lexapro, and subsequently the ER of the hospital, to be drugged with fluoxetine. Throughout it all, no one recognised by akathisia and tremors as a benzodiazepine withdrawal.

    Both were just single tablets, but they changed my life profoundly. Is it due to the benzodiazepines or the SSRIs or both? I don’t know. But 5 months after my last exposure to any pharmacological agent, I suddenly couldn’t sleep and it lasted for a week. On the 3rd day, it happened. I felt my entire body clamp up as though I was about to seizure, and it became numb and stinging, as though lidocaine had been smeared onto it and it had been stuck into the electrical socket.

    It took five months for the pain to subside and for it to feel like any part of my body. But, the damage had been done. The glans was numb. Yes, it still could be aroused through extremely rigorous rubbing, but it was as though I had the part of a circumcised man with calloused skin.

    The loss in sensation is quite specific. All of the foreskin was now non-erogenous when it had been so in the past. The frenulum is no longer erogenous. The glans is the sole erogenous zone, but the sensitivity has been radically reduced. The “bright” electrical sensation of tactile stimulation is now “sour”.

    It’s been 5 months since the last changes.

    I really hope that I have a cure. I’m just in my twenties. Meanwhile, relieving myself is chore, rather than the joy of life.

  11. Hi there ! Any news since the article ? Guess not but just curious.

    Extended fasting can help change the brain chemistry and helps improve electrical impulse activity and support neural function/connection, which is surely the key point. Neurotransmitters get weak while using SSRI/SNRI, they almost die and don’t emit any electrical signal.

  12. Hi, my name is David, I’m 21 y/o and this is my life- ruining zoloft story. About 4 years ago my psychiatrist prescribed prozac for my anxiety. I took it for a week and started to feel that weird emptiness and numbness, like nothing mattered anymore… sure, anxiety and panick attacks were gone… also all joy and pleasure of life were gone. It felt like a complete detachment from reality. The price was too high, so I quit cold turkey. After quitting the reality was unbearable (it was probably the withdrawal that i should have wait through) so i came back to the psychiatrist and she prescribed 50 mg of zoloft. I didn’t feel the withdrawal symptoms and everything seemed normal. My good old anxiety was back and all the joy and pleasure too. So i’ve been taking it everyday. Last 4 years i’ve been living semi- normal boring life… until i didn’t. Few months ago i started chatting with a girl and i was starting to develop strong feelings for her. Feelings were reciprocated. I was spending all days chatting with her. For that time of my life i was feeling happy and in complete ecstasy of new love. Although weeks passed and i started to feel weird. It seemed like all my anxious thoughts have dissapeared and i could go out more easily without having a panick attack. I was telling myself that it’s because i’m in love and that’s why i feel so careless and good. But more time passed and i noticed that i feel more and more numb towards my fears, my hobbies, my parents and her. I woke up every morning and was cheking up my phone in horror to check if our conversations were real, if she was real and if my feelings for her were even real. At one point i was feeling so apathetic towards everything that something clicked… i know this feeling… it’s the same feeling that i’ve been through while i was taking prozac for a week. I knew that this feeling is somehow related to meds. I did some research and found new studies that say that ssri have effect on romantic love. In order to save the relationship i decided to quit zoloft cold turkey hoping that my feelings for her and feelings in general will return like they did 4 years ago after quitting prozac… they didn’t. It’s been 2 months since i quit zoloft and i feel complete apathy, anhedonia, sexual dysfunctions, cognitive dysfunctions, memory problems and horrible insomnia!!! Pssd is not only sexual functions. It’s a complete depersonalization and derealization. I’m still hoping that my brain will beat that horrible state like it did 4 years ago with prozac but i’m afraid that i might have pssd for the rest of my life. Do you think that keeping taking zoloft while you start to become happy and in love could have that effect on me since it’s rather known that prescribing ssri to relatively happy people doesn’t make them better and it makes them apathetic. I also want to thank dr David for taking care of that topic. It’s time for psychiatrists to start taking responsibility for their unethical actions. Keep up the good work sir. If i will be able to maintain a job in that state i will spend all my extra money for a reward for a cure since i’m not interested in anything that i could spend money on anymore because of pssd.

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