Some of you may notice I’ve removed a post from this site – it was the Britney Spears post that was here earlier.
I found out I’d been getting some flack about it from someone called ‘Jake’ at the UK Depression Forum – the link to the thread is here.
Jake wasn’t happy with the story or the source and concluded about me and Seroxat Secrets: “I really have to question the honesty and integrity of that website”.
That’s why I took the post down – you know, actually, I kind of agreed with ‘Jake’ on that one – and I really don’t want anyone to be able to question the honesty and integrity of what I’m trying to do here.
But then I thought ‘Jake’, what about the rest of Seroxat Secrets – surely you can’t dismiss all the FACTS here because I messed up with one post?
Or maybe you could if you have an agenda… below is ‘Jake’s response to the 10 Downing Street petition:
Whoa! I’m sure your campaign to ban Seroxat (generic paroxetine, brand Paxil in the U.S.) is well intentioned, but I think your reasons are erroneous, and worse, doing so would be very harmful to millions of people with depression, anxiety, OCD, panic disorder, social anxiety disorder, generalized anxiety disorder and post traumatic stress disorder. From a personal standpoint, it would be devastating to me, since paroxetine is the only SSRI that really knocks out my depression and anxiety–and I’ve tried almost all the antidepressants on the market.
Some corrections to your arguments for banning Seroxat:
1.That controlled clinical trials do not show Seroxat to be effective for depression.
–GSK’s two controlled clinical trials submitted to the U.S. FDA did show paroxetine (Seroxat) significantly superior to placebo in treating depression, which is the only way it could have gotten FDA approval.
–in addition to the studies submitted by GSK there have been numerous additional double-blind placebo controlled trials showing paroxetine superior to placebo in treating depression. Check it out by Googling paroxetine and randomized controlled trials and you should find many references. If you can’t find it, let me know and I’ll find some myself.
2. By focusing only on depression you’re forgetting that Seroxat has many other approved clinical uses, each of which is supported by 2 or more randomized clinical trials. These approved uses include GAD, social phobia, PTSD, OCD, and PMDD. In fact, paroxetine, amongst all antidepressants, has the broadest variety of approvals (and probably the most supporting evidence, with the possible exception of Prozac, which has been around longer).
3. As to side effects, no doubt about it that Paxil has some unpleasant side effects, and is quite possibly worse than the other SSRIs in terms of two particular side effects: sexual dysfunction and discontinuation. But the fact is that all the SSRIs have about the same side effects as Paxil, and the differences are really not all that great. If you want to ban Seroxat, then the same arguments should apply to almost all of the world’s commonly used antidepressants. The fact is that although these side effects are unpleasant, sometimes intensely so, the newer antidepressants, such as Seroxat, Prozac, Paxil, escitalopram, citalopram, and venlafaxine, are generally far safer than the previous generation of antidepressants (the TCAs) and safer than most other major classes of psychotropic medications, including antipsychotics and mood stabilizers. The arguments you endorse to dump Seroxat could much more aptly be applied to most antipsychotics and mood stabilizers–although as with banning Seroxat and the other SSRIs, the results would be devastating to millions.
4. The problem of withdrawing from Seroxat. Yes, discontinuing can cause very intense and difficult withdrawal symptoms, such as flu-like symptoms and shock-like “zaps.” All the other SSRIs and most other antidepressants also have discontinuation risks, as do most of the antipsychotics and mood stabilizers. For almost all these medications, the recommendation is to taper them gradually, to minimize these effects–although unfortunately some doctors don’t adequately communicate this to patients and many patients quit abruptly either out of ignorance or disregard. For a small minority the withdrawal effects can be very difficult despite a gradual tapering, but even amongst this majority the side effects often subside within a week or two. For even a smaller minority, the withdrawal can be extremely unpleasant over a longer period, but even for this group there are other techniques that can work–such as switching from Seroxat to Prozac, the latter being an SSRI that is almost always easier to discontinue.
It does need to be acknowledged that for the vast majority the withdrawal from Seroxat–and the other SSRIs–is usually not a serious problem, especially when recommendations are followed. After all, millions have stopped taking these meds without suffering serious problems.
5. The tradeoff in taking any medication. There isn’t any medication I know of that doesn’t have adverse side effects–after all, aspirin, Tylenol, and penicillin kill many each year due to adverse side effects. It’s all a matter of whether the benefits outweigh the adverse effects and risks. All the docs and all of us have to weigh the benefits and harms every time we take a drug. Seroxat and the other SSRIs all have risks, but they are far safer than many available alternatives, and they have proven benefits to millions, include myself and many others on this and other depression forums. I don’t think it’s an accident that suicide rates have dropped amongst every demographic segment after antidepressant use became widespread amongst that group.
As for me, I’ll put up with the sexual problems (now mild) because of the huge positive impact on my emotional state and quality of life. It’s not right to rob me and countless others of this choice.
Hmmm – honesty and integrity? You decide.