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Causes of Deaths:" Psychiatric-drugs 3rd place after cancer and heart attacks


The book by Prof. Peter Gotzsche (Deadly Psychiatry and Organised Denial, 9/1/2015) is available in Kindle Edition for $20 as of 9/28/15.  I have his earlier, Nov. 2014, book Deadly Medicine and Organised Crimeordered it from Amazon through a UK company 6/15.  He, like Prof. Ben Goldacre, is too entrenched for pharma to pressure the University to force them out of their teaching jobs.     


Peter G°tzsche is a specialist in internal medicine and professor in clinical research design and analysis at the University of Copenhagen. His new book, Deadly Psychiatry and Organised Denial, is published by People's Press. Visit deadlymedicines.dk and The Council for Evidence-based Psychiatry, cepuk.org.  As of 10/1/2015 his book is not available through Amazon. 


http://cepuk.org/2015/09/15/daily-mail-psychiatric-drugs-third-major-killer-heart-disease-cancer-says-prof-peter-gotzsche/


Daily Mail: ‘Psychiatric drugs… third major killer after heart disease and cancer,’ says Prof Peter G°tzsche


by Admin on 15/09/2015 in ExpertsIn the PressNewsPsychiatric drugs    http://cepuk.org/


The Daily Mail today publishes two articles describing the devastating and often deadly impact of psychiatric drugs.  In the first piece, Cochrane Collaboration co-founder Prof Peter G°tzsche details the findings of his new book, Deadly Psychiatry and Organised Denial (2105).


“More than 80 million prescriptions for psychiatric drugs are written in the UK every year,” says G°tzsche. “Not only are these drugs often entirely unnecessary and ineffective, but they can also turn patients into addicts, cause crippling side-effects – and kill. For instance, antipsychotics, commonly given to dementia patients to keep them quiet, raise the risk of heart disease, diabetes and stroke. Psychiatric drugs also make falls more likely, and breaking a hip can shorten life significantly, while some antidepressants are linked to a potentially deadly irregular heartbeat.


And the death toll from these pills has been grossly underestimated. As I reveal in a new book … the true figure is terrifying: according to my calculations, based on data from published and unpublished sources, for psychiatric drugs are the third major killer after heart disease and cancer.”


The second article is written by CEP co-founder Luke Montagu and summarises his horrific experience withdrawing from benzodiazepines and antidepressants.


The articles can be found at: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-3234334/Prescription-pills-Britain-s-biggest-killer-effects-drugs-taken-insomnia-anxiety-kill-thousands-doctors-hand-like-Smarties.html

 

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Peter G°tzsche is a specialist in internal medicine and professor in clinical research design and analysis at the University of Copenhagen. His new book, Deadly Psychiatry And Organised Denial, is published by People's Press. Visit deadlymedicines.dk. The Council for Evidence-based Psychiatry, cepuk.org.

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http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-3234334/Prescription-pills-Britain-s-biggest-killer-effects-drugs-taken-insomnia-anxiety-kill-thousands-doctors-hand-like-Smarties.html#ixzz3mifoBIKi 
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@MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook  Dailymail.com 9/25/15

Prescription pills are Britain’s third biggest killer: Side-effects of drugs taken for insomnia and anxiety kill thousands. Why do doctors hand them out like Smarties?

  • 80 million prescriptions for psychiatric drugs are written in UK every year 

  • Psychiatric drugs are the third major killer after heart disease and cancer 

  • Professor G°tzsche reveals the scale of the issue in a new book

  • Luke Montagu, 45, heir to the Earl of Sandwich, was wrongly prescribed anti-depressants which took him seven years to detox from

     

By PROFESSOR PETER GěTZSCHE FOR THE DAILY MAIL

Soaring drug use, a growing number of addicts, far too few clinics to treat them and a rising death toll. This might sound like a scene from an impoverished country run by drug cartels - but it is, in fact, the day-to-day reality for NHS patients who are prescribed psychiatric drugs to treat anxiety, insomnia and depression.  More than 80 million prescriptions for psychiatric drugs are written in the UK every year. Not only are these drugs often entirely unnecessary and ineffective, but they can also turn patients into addicts, cause crippling side-effects - and kill. For instance, antipsychotics, commonly given to dementia patients to keep them quiet, raise the risk of heart disease, diabetes and stroke. Psychiatric drugs also make falls more likely, and breaking a hip can shorten life significantly, while some antidepressants are linked to a potentially deadly irregular heartbeat.

 

Soaring drug use, a growing number of addicts, far too few clinics to treat them and a rising death toll. This might sound like a scene from an impoverished country run by drug cartels - but it is, in fact, the day-to-day reality for NHS patients who are prescribed psychiatric drugs to treat anxiety, insomnia and depression.  More than 80 million prescriptions for psychiatric drugs are written in the UK every year. Not only are these drugs often entirely unnecessary and ineffective, but they can also turn patients into addicts, cause crippling side-effects - and kill.  For instance, antipsychotics, commonly given to dementia patients to keep them quiet, raise the risk of heart disease, diabetes and stroke. Psychiatric drugs also make falls more likely, and breaking a hip can shorten life significantly, while some antidepressants are linked to a potentially deadly irregular heartbeat.

 

All these have certainly ruffled feathers, but what I've discovered about the damage caused by psychiatric drugs far outweighs anything else I've identified.  In fact, the data on all this is available if you know where to look, but I'm the first person to pull it all together - for instance, finding that the number of suicides among adults and children taking antidepressant drugs is actually 15 times greater than the number calculated by the U.S. drugs watchdog, the Food and Drug Administration.  Yet psychiatrists and GPs generally ignore or deny the appalling scale of this damage from drugs that are all too often used without medical justification. Just this month, for instance, a study published in the BMJ found that thousands of people in England with learning difficulties are routinely prescribed antipsychotic drugs: these drugs do nothing to help these patients but are used as a chemical cosh [British slang:  a blackjack, bludgeon, blunt weapon, to attack with such a weapon].


Claims by psychiatrists that the drugs do work have to be taken with a pinch of salt, not only because good evidence suggests they don't, but also because those who run the trials almost always receive funding from drug companies.  Based on the same sort of flawed trials, antidepressants are also being handed out for conditions such as binge eating, panic disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder and menopausal symptoms.  The claimed benefits can be ludicrously small, for instance: they cut the rate of hot flushes from ten to nine a day. Yet despite the lack of good evidence for their benefits, 57 million prescriptions for antidepressants are handed out a year in England alone - and patients are left on them for years.

 

One reason why drug use is steadily expanding is that there is no chemical marker to diagnose depression or anxiety. So everyday changes in mood, such as feeling less happy or more anxious, can be a reason for treatment.  Most of us could get one or more psychiatric diagnoses if we consulted a psychiatrist or GP.  Claims by psychiatrists that the drugs do work have to be taken with a pinch of salt, not only because good evidence suggests they don't, but also because those who run the trials almost always receive funding from drug companies.

 

Based on the same sort of flawed trials, antidepressants are also being handed out for conditions such as binge eating, panic disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder and menopausal symptoms.  The claimed benefits can be ludicrously small, for instance: they cut the rate of hot flushes from ten to nine a day.  Yet despite the lack of good evidence for their benefits, 57 million prescriptions for antidepressants are handed out a year in England alone - and patients are left on them for years.

 

One reason why drug use is steadily expanding is that there is no chemical marker to diagnose depression or anxiety. So everyday changes in mood, such as feeling less happy or more anxious, can be a reason for treatment.  Most of us could get one or more psychiatric diagnoses if we consulted a psychiatrist or GP.

 

A successful treatment for depression would allow people to lead more normal lives - go back to work, salvage relationships. But in all the thousands of trials, I've never seen evidence that antidepressants can do this.  Some patients may become a little euphoric or even manic on them, but in patient surveys many report feeling worse, saying the pills change their personality, and not in a good way; they may show less interest in other people and report feeling emotionally numb. 'Like living under a cheese dish cover,' is a typical description patients use.  Sexual function fades; libido drops in half of patients and half can't orgasm or ejaculate. So antidepressants are not likely to save intimate relationships - they are more likely to destroy them.

 

When I gave a talk to Australian child psychiatrists, one of them said he knew three teenagers taking antidepressants who had attempted suicide because they couldn't get an erection the first time they tried to have sex.  These boys didn't know it was the pills - they thought there was something wrong with them. Although many psychiatrists still believe SSRIs cut the risk of suicide that can come with depression, it is well established that these drugs actually increase the risk in children and adolescents, and most likely in adults as well.

 

Despite the lack of a chemical marker for any psychiatric disorder, psychiatrists frequently claim the drugs work by correcting a chemical imbalance in the brain.  They say it's like insulin and diabetes - patients can't make enough serotonin. I've been told by a professor of psychiatry that stopping an antidepressant would be like taking insulin from a diabetic.  But it's nonsense - no one has found that depressed people have less serotonin in their brains, for instance - in fact, some antidepressants actually lower serotonin.

This fairy tale has proved very damaging and can lead to patients becoming addicted. They are given more pills or a stronger dose in the hope that the 'imbalance' will be fixed, and can be on them for years. When they try to come off the pills and experience very unpleasant side-effects, patients say they are told their symptoms are the result of their illness coming back.  This ignores the fact that the drugs' withdrawal effects can mimic the symptoms of psychiatric disorders. It also doesn't fit in with what happens when patients in desperation reach for the drugs again: within a few hours they can be feeling better. Real depression doesn't fade that fast.  Doctors' misconceptions about the drugs they prescribe are turning temporary problems into chronic ones. 

 

More than one million people in the UK are addicted to sleeping pills and anti-anxiety drugs, according to the All Party Parliamentary Group on Involuntary Tranquiliser Addiction, even though for years official advice has been to not prescribe them for longer than four weeks.  Patient surveys reveal that similarly large numbers are having problems withdrawing from antidepressants. The case of Luke Montagu, told below, is a vivid and horrifying example of the destruction antidepressants and benzodiazepines can cause.

He still suffers from the crippling effects of withdrawal seven years after coming off the drugs, which he should never have been prescribed in the first place.  Yet the NHS does almost nothing to help these victims. There are disgracefully few facilities to treat them - fewer than ten in the whole country, and all these are run by small charities, some of which are closing due to lack of funding.

We need to educate doctors so they know how these drugs really work, and show them how to help patients stop taking the pills (by very gently reducing the dose).  According to my calculations, if psychiatric drugs were only prescribed for a few weeks in acute situations, we would only need 2 per cent of the prescriptions written at the moment for insomnia, depression and anxiety. The saving in human and financial terms would be enormous. 

 

Later this week, I will be speaking at a major conference on how we can reduce the use of these drugs, More Harm than Good: Confronting The Psychiatric Medication Epidemic, which has been arranged by the Council for Evidence-based Psychiatry at the University of Roehampton in London.  My proposal is to start a campaign to Just Say No - it is time for a war on psychiatric drugs.

 

As told to JEROME BURNE



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Experience of SSRI user. 

 

Diane Cullimore, chapel-en-le-frith, United Kingdom, 1 week ago

My life has been ruined by Seroxat [Paroxetine, Paxil in US] too. I was prescribed them 16 years ago for chronic pain.  If I could turn the clocks back I would never have taken them. The drugs company Glaxo lied in their trial results about your body becoming dependent on them. I now have M.E.  And have found that severe withdrawal is so dangerous and crippling I can't get off them. There is NO help! I have been battling my drug for years to get support to come off and am still fighting for help. I am mostly in bed because of the M.E. And my life is in tatters. God help anyone struggling to get off these life changing drugs. I've been to hell and back but still fighting. It’s so wrong that there is help for illegal drug withdrawal but nothing and I mean nothing for prescription drug dependency and the drugs companies are killing people basically with no come back.  The medical profession needs to hang its head in shame. I know that some Drs [sic] don't even recognise severe withdrawal. I am still here to tell the tale. [If you doubt her accounting or consider it atypical, I suggest you watch a couple of the YouTube documentaries on psychiatric drugs.  Got to my page at (http://healthfully.org/rh/id7.html and click on link in section 5.  

JK comments:  Paxil is one of the top five selling SSRIs, now off patent.  All of the SSRIs (serotonin reuptake inhibitor) are essentially the same (but for Wellbutrin) though for marketing reasons each manufacturer distinguishes his SSRI from the others.  By the way, there is no science behind as to the psychiatric conditions being caused by low level of serotonin. 

Nearly all the popular psychotropic drugs are downers marketed as treatments for depression, anxiety, pain, restless-leg syndrome, pre-menopause syndrome, etc.; viz., they cause drowsiness, increase sleep, and reduce performance on memory tests.  A number of my friends have had similar experience to Diane on various psychotropic drugs.  Two of them are in a dull cloud from which they can’t come down because of the withdrawal, and both are basically waiting to die.  It is horrible way for them to spend their retirement years; and there us the burden on their wives who must supervise them.   Both are beyond intelligent conversation.  These drugs are more devastating upon the elderly because their cognitive functions naturally decline with age and the rate of clearance by the liver is slower.  Both friends have been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s Disease.  Alzheimer’s disease diagnosis is based upon their behavior.  Several others friends have gone through the withdrawal described above, and none have rated their treatment as worthwhile. 

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Disclaimer:  The information, facts, and opinions provided here is not a substitute for professional advice.  It only indicates what JK believes, does, or would do.  Always consult your primary care physician for medical advice, diagnosis, and treatment. 




Positive bias averaged 32% (range 11 to 69%) in a NEJM article, 2008.  The study of neuroleptic drugs made a comparison of 74 journal articles to the raw data which was obtained by FOIA (Freedom of Information Act) from the FDA. See http://healthfully.org/index/id9.html, or http://content.nejm.org/cgi/content/short/358/3/252