Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Possible Fraud by Pharmaceutical Companies as Placebo Confirmed as more Effective and Safer than Antidepressants

A recently article reported in Newsweek Magazine, of a study by (The Journal of the American Medical Association) and other studies have shown that the effectiveness of antidepressants is almost entirely due to the hope and aspirations that the drug will be effective and not the drug at all. Hence, a placebo is more effective than antidepressants, and there are no side effects from placebos. The side effects from antidepressants alone can kill you. According to the FDA the use of antidepressants can cause anxiety, agitation, panic attacks, insomnia, irritability, hostility, impulsivity, akathisia (severe restlessness), hypomania, mania and suicide. They have also been attributed to mass murder (Columbine, Virginia Tech) to list a couple. Newsweek reports regarding a study by Irving Kirsch and Guy Sapirstein of the University of Connecticut. Patients on a placebo improved about 75 percent as much as those on the drugs. Essentially you positive mind will cure your depression.

Many may ask how is it possible that these drugs could get approved by the FDA for decades if they are proven to be ineffective. Well the early failed results appear to have been suppressed. Thomas Moore of George Washington University used the freedom of information act to analyze the FDA earlier studies of antidepressants. There were numerous company sponsored studies by the makers of Prozac, Zoloft, Paxil, Effexor and others. Many of these studies were unpublished, and over 50% more unpublished studies than other classes of drugs. Apparently 40% of the all clinical trials had never been published, and most of those unpublished trials according to Newsweek's article were the trials that proved antidepressants were a failure. The damaging results indicate pharmaceutical companies may be fraudulent in their studies and disclosures, and we ask why companies are allowed to sponsor trials. In addition, the FDA appears to have allowed it. Who is watching the store? Why wouldn’t the government at minimum only allow independent studies? But even that could be problem. Scientists at Universities who have questioned antidepressant results and who have cited Irvin Kirsch’s results have been reprimanded and their future grants have been threatened. These University grants are typically funded by large pharmaceutical companies. Looks like for our own safety we need to find another independent study group, and perhaps the Department of Justice can look into the FDA and pharmaceutical studies for authenticity.

Newsweek’s article also points out the relationship of the chemical imbalance theory causing depression. Pharmaceutical companies have claimed for decades that this chemical imbalance is the cause of depression. The typical SSRI (serotonin reuptake inhibitor) is supposed to raise the serotonin level of the patient. This is the basis of all their research. Well a new drug study indicates that lowering serotonin is as effective as raising serotonin on depression. The new drug tianeptine made in France lowers serotonin. Now the American and UK pharmaceutical companies’ main argument is gone, but they never really had an argument. In actuality, there is no scientific evidence at all that demonstrates antidepressants alleviate depression. The hope and expectation that a pill “sugar pill” will be effective recently has shown to alleviate depression.

When Bristol Myers Squibb’s advertises Abilify as an add-on to one’s current antidepressant because of it’s ineffectiveness on depression, it is an indication from the industry that their products have failed. In addition, many of these drugs are marketed for Bi-Polar Disorder, ADHD, and even non-smoking. ADHD has also been found to be fraudulent (see the book ADHDFraud by Fred Baughman Jr.). Will it be found that antidepressants are ineffective with these maladies also? There is certain to be more investigation into these past unpublished results, and we hope the justice department will look into fraud and misrepresentation. Like the Real Estate bubble the pharmaceutical house of cards is coming down, and we are sure there are many lawsuits to come with this disturbing information.

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