In a letter to the Irish Times, the ‘great and the good’ [my irony] of Irish psychiatry wade in to the Shane Clancy case (detail here) to sort out a few misunderstandings for us mere mortals (and Dr Michael Corry) who they think know nothing…
“…A controversial statement has been made … namely that antidepressants cause homicide, which we wish to rebut…”
“…There is no scientific evidence whatsoever that antidepressants cause homicide…”
“…the erroneous belief that antidepressants induce aggression and homicide…”
“…those with severe depressive illness, who need antidepressants for continuing wellbeing…”
So say Prof PATRICIA CASEY, Prof TIMOTHY DINAN, Prof MICHAEL GILL, TCD, Prof BRIAN LAWLOR, Prof JAMES V LUCEY, Prof KEVIN MALONE, Prof DAVID MEAGHER, Prof COLM McDONALD.
Pretty black and white then, or so they would have us believe. However in reality it’s not so clear cut… There is much evidence (anecdotal and trial and pharmacovigilance data) that to points to a link between antidepressants and violence.
For instance I wonder if any of these very impressive Irish professors have read the paper Antidepressants and Violence: Problems at the Interface of Medicine and Law.
Published on September 12, 2006, this study by David Healy, Andrew Herxheimer and David B. Menkes deals with an issue that cannot be ignored. So many people take Seroxat and find it starts to give them unexplained violent and aggressive episodes.
“Recent regulatory warnings about adverse behavioural effects of antidepressants in susceptible individuals have raised the profile of these issues with clinicians, patients, and the public. We review available clinical trial data on paroxetine and sertraline and pharmacovigilance studies of paroxetine and fluoxetine, and outline a series of medico-legal cases involving antidepressants and violence.
Both clinical trial and pharmacovigilance data point to possible links between these drugs and violent behaviours. The legal cases outlined returned a variety of verdicts that may in part have stemmed from different judicial processes. Many jurisdictions appear not to have considered the possibility that a prescription drug may induce violence.
The association of antidepressant treatment with aggression and violence reported here calls for more clinical trial and epidemiological data to be made available and for good clinical descriptions of the adverse outcomes of treatment”.
The link to the paper is here and I suggest you scroll down to the end and read the 9 cases listed in the annex.
Also I wonder if any of my Irish ‘friends’ have ever seen this website – SSRI stories.
I guess my take on this is one of disbelief – how can these Irish psychiatrists not know enough to admit there may be a problem here and it needs more careful investigation – at the very least? A very reasonable and sensible point of view, I would have thought.
But no – the Irish Professors have told us they are right and everyone else is wrong… happily in the UK there are less and less of this kind of medical dinosaur in practice – shame about Ireland though.
And shame on this list of Doctors who want to stifle free speech and modern thinking.
Take a bow once again – PATRICIA CASEY, TIMOTHY DINAN, MICHAEL GILL, BRIAN LAWLOR, JAMES V LUCEY, KEVIN MALONE, DAVID MEAGHER, COLM McDONALD.
[And the cynics amongst us would ask for each and everyone of the above named to list their earnings from Pharmaceutical companies in the past 10 years… just to be sure there could be no possible conflict of interest in their views.]