Dr Dach writes:
According to Irving Kirsch in Prevention & Treatment , “there is now unanimous agreement that the mean difference between response to antidepressant drugs and response to inert placebo is very small. It is so small that, despite sample sizes involving hundreds of participants, 57% of the trials funded by the pharmaceutical industry failed to show a significant difference between drug and placebo. Most of these negative data were not published and were accessible only by gaining access to US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) documents. The small difference between the drug response and the placebo response has been a “dirty little secret”. It was not known to the general public, depressed patients, or even their physicians”(link).
Various methods were used to manipulate the results of SSRI drug studies to insure a favorable outcome:
1) Responders to the placebo are eliminated at the beginning of the study. (Placebo washout)
2) Benzodiazepine sedatives were given to mask the SSRI induced agitation.
3) Unfavorable drug studies are buried in the file cabinet and not disclosed to the public.
4) Miscoding suicidal events as “emotional lability”, and homicidal events as “aggression” to hide suicidal events from regulators.
5) False attribution of suicide to the placebo arm.
6) Hiring ghost writers to make the medical articles more favorable.
7) Cash settlements for SSRI drug litigants which seals records and withholds unfavorable drug studies from the public.
Using these and other gimmicks, the drug industry managed to gain FDA approval for the SSRI class of drugs. Since the FDA approval is the foundation of our medical system, the first step in restoring integrity is to halt the “waiver system” which gives doctors immunity from prosecution for conflicts of interest. The system allows doctors to deliberate on FDA advisory committees while receiving money from the drug industry, a conflict of interest that is also a federal crime (link)(link).
You can read the whole article here.