From Johanna Ryan:
Who among us has not heard that at least once during a doctor’s appointment? Say you report a problem with the prescription drug the doctor put you on. Or, perhaps, that the drug is just not working. Maybe you even give him a RxISK Report, created on this website, or an article that seems to shed light on your odd symptoms.
The doctor responds by reminding you that he has ten years of advanced medical training, acquired at great expense and Herculean effort. So why are you busting your poor little brain trying to second-guess him? Better you should simply follow instructions—and remember the experience could very well be “all in your head.”
How great it would be if you could say: As a matter of fact, I DO have a medical degree! Surely then you could get your problem taken seriously?
After you read Marlene Beggelman’s Prozac story below, you may not be so sure.
Dr. Beggelman is an internist in Cambridge, Massachusetts—and, like most doctors (the mere mortals, anyway), a patient from time to time. She’s also a member of the Right Care Alliance, a network of health professionals, patients and community groups who are working toward a society in which the right care is accessible by all. That means both fighting for access to medical care—and fighting to eliminate “care” that is unnecessary or harmful, and wastes resources that could be redirected to real human needs. Her article originally appeared on WBUR-Boston Public Radio, as part of their CommonHealth series.
Years ago, after I suffered a deep personal loss, my doctor prescribed Prozac, and I joined the millions of Americans who have taken an antidepressant. A few weeks later, I had my first panic attack — heart racing, sweating profusely, gasping for breath — sensations of terror normally reserved for life-threatening events. Attacks continued every half-hour and were so incapacitating that I could not even leave my house. My doctors were confounded. Perhaps the attacks were related to grieving, they thought.
It wasn’t until weeks later when a friend, a mental health nurse, showed me a study about Prozac that the situation became clear. The study described high rates of suicide in Prozac-takers who developed severe panic attacks on the drug, and it noted that it would take months for the drug to fully clear from the bloodstream for any side effects to resolve. Predictably, three months after stopping the drug, I never had another attack.
As both a patient and physician, the experience left me with questions. Why didn’t my clinicians recognize the side effect? Why did they choose a long-acting drug with common side effects when there were other, safer choices? Why didn’t I do my homework before agreeing to this medication?
Clinicians often misdiagnose problems caused by medications, especially when patients take multi-drug combinations. In a study a few years ago, when patients told their doctors they had symptoms that are widely known reactions to the drugs they were taking, almost half the doctors told them there was no connection. A typical report: the “doctor suggested it was (my) imagination” or that “it’s all in my head.”
There are various reasons that drug side effects might go unrecognized: the shrinking time physicians have to spend with patients; the fact that doctors receive lots of information about the benefits of drugs but not much on their dangers; and cognitive dissonance or denial about the negative effects that drugs can have.
Cognitive dissonance, a universal human phenomenon, is based on the assumption that people want consistency between their expectations and reality, and twist their thinking into knots to make that happen. In the case of drug reactions, to preserve the notion that our efforts help rather than hurt, our impulse is to attribute the harm to something other than our intervention.
But when doctors fail to connect symptoms to medications, not only do they fail to help their patients, but they also fail to report the side effects to the Food and Drug Administration. As a result, the FDA is likely under-estimating the reactions, leading other doctors and patients to believe some drugs are safer than they are.
We could all benefit from more efforts to correct widespread misperceptions that impede the recognition of side effects — beginning with the assumption that the safety profile of most medications is well understood.
In fact, a high percentage of serious reactions have never even been investigated. Since drug reactions are often the cause of even the most frequent symptoms (such as fatigue, achiness, depression and cognitive dysfunction), medications should always be considered as a potential cause.
Patients may be the most reliable sources to report side effects. In fact, they are often the only information source about reactions to medications. Their observations deserve serious consideration.
Federal money for drug research and safety has declined to the point that pharmaceutical companies now fund over 85 percent of all research, medical journal publications and medical conferences, where physicians receive much of their educational information –- a clear case of the fox guarding the chicken coop.
Restoring federal funding to the National Institutes of Health to support more research on medications would go a long way to assure that accurate and unbiased information is available. If we want to change how doctors respond when patients with possible drug reactions walk through their doors, we also need to emphasize misdiagnosed side effects more in formal education and accreditation programs, such as continuing medical education, board certification and grand rounds.
For their part, pharmaceutical companies could support impartial research creatively — for example, by pooling and distributing funds through independent third parties.
A large-scale educational campaign such as the one that targeted smoking would increase public awareness and encourage direct patient reporting to the FDA when a side effect is suspected.
Pharmacists have an important role to play here too, and could be the point of contact where FDA reporting is initiated. It’s easy to imagine a sign at the pharmacy counter that says, “Ask me about side effects.”
It may also be time to expand our vision about how drug-safety research can be conducted. Social media provides a rich source of data, with hundreds of thousands of internet users communicating with each other monthly about their medication-related experiences. This “big data” source offers the massive number of data points required to understand the safety of multi-drug combinations — something that we currently know very little about.
Recently, my friends’ 13-year-old developed the same problem I had experienced with Prozac, and missed school for several months as a result. The parents had not been informed about this relatively common side effect and, as in my case, months passed before the correct diagnosis was made.
Almost three-fifths of Americans take a prescription medication and nearly 15 percent take five or more, while children are the fastest growing market for drug companies. With drug reactions already the third-leading cause of hospital deaths in the U.S., we desperately need more focused, sustained and unbiased research and education to put the brakes on what is already an epidemic of medication-driven catastrophes.
Editorial Note: When some patients have a stroke or other brain injury, they can develop strange symptoms in which there seems to be a failure to recognize they are ill. These disorders generally fall under the term Anosognosia, from the Latin for a loss of insight (agnosia) on the fact that they are ill (nosos).
Doctors when they prescribe seem to develop Venomagnosia from the Latin for a poison and loss of insight. (This could also be Avenegnosia). Doctors rarely see themselves as Veneficent – they know they aren’t Maleficent and figure Beneficent is the only other option. This Veneficiality is something that needs combating – almost sounds like it needs a Vampire Slayer.
In addition to the usual comments, we invite readers to suggest other words. The game though is the terms have to be in Latin or Greek – we are after all describing a medical phenomenon.
Angustagnosia might emphasize more the suffering of the patient whose origin the doctor or patient is unaware of.
Invictagnosia – is invincible ignoring.
There is a related post Venomagnosia on DavidHealy.org
What about Malinagnosa – distracting consumers from the truth, just in case they find out that this game called healing, is all part of a scam to make money.
Thanks to Dr. Beggelman for letting us share her story! “Cognitive dissonance” probably does have a lot to do with doctors’ reluctance to see harmful side effects of drugs–especially when they are the prescriber.
Another big obstacle is that fox guarding the chicken coop she speaks of — the drug companies who sponsor and pay for all the key research on their own products. The results are printed in prestige medical journals under the names of high-profile experts from Harvard, Stanford or UCLA, and almost always conclude that the new pill is Safe, Effective and Well Tolerated.
This is a serious intimidation factor for any local doctor who is seeing something different in her own clinic. Who is she to question the New England Journal of Medicine? Colleagues are likely to tell her that her observations are just anecdotes, but they have to follow the Evidence. By which they mean the reports in the august journals. What few doctors (and even fewer patients) really realize is that these articles are not just ghost-written — they are ghost-researched. The famous doctor who signs the article may not have seen a single patient; instead, the patients were evaluated by contract researchers in fifty or a hundred centers scattered across the globe, and the data were collected and massaged by drug company employees before Famous Doctor had his first look.
Marlene is right: We desperately need to “expand our vision about how drug-safety research can be conducted”, and collecting the experiences of patients is the best place to start. This is exactly what RxISK is trying to do. Partners welcome!
I have pulmonary hypertension. I now know that ssri’s cause that, as quite a few of my friends on Ssri’s have it…Yet cardiologists prescribe these drugs as good for the heart. so wrong isn’t it. I went on prozac as I was told it was the easiest drug to come off. Well I have not left the house since i went on them. I continue to crave alcohol on them, especially in the morning, when I wake up with a massive panick attack. Reality seems far removed as I can’t differenciate between what I dream & What is real. My memory just leaves me mid comvertsation. I tell my Psychologist & Doctor, that I have an uncontrolable Urg to drink. They say Im stupid, that’s not in the literature, and its your drinking Causing your memory loss. maybee,..but I did not have issues with drinking pre Ssri’s. I’m so over every one telling me I’m wrong. No one can help me. I’ve been on ssri’s since I was 40. You get to a point..that I am at that suicide is the only way out. I really have had enough of the physical illness and the brain damage I have caused by these pills. I have failed at getting of them. Can someone please contact me as I can’t go on and was going to go back on Aropax (paxil) I’m at my witts end. And my son is also a mess from Zoloft. please Help.
Kerry, you have taken your first, very important step which is to share your story with other similar stories which regularly appear on this site. Without knowing far more about your full situation, it is difficult to know exactly what we can do to help. However, what we CAN do is read your comments and acknowledge that fact. Knowing that you are being heard and believed can have a positive reaction in itself.
We believe every word of your story because we’ve lived through it – either as a sufferer or as a carer. Both of those roles are almost equally draining in their different ways. Your suffering, however, is two fold – you see your son suffering as well as being in a similar situation yourself. I would recommend that you read as many ‘comments’ as you can on this and David’s Blog. Somewhere you might come across a tip or two that may help you and your son. I do hope that you have other members of your family who are able to support the pair of them. Keep reading and keep your comments coming. We promise to reply every time with any tips that we have which may support you a little in your fight to better health.
Kerry go to https://davidhealy.org/out-of-my-mind-driven-to-drink/ and/or https://rxisk.org/driven-to-drink-antidepressants-and-cravings-for-alcohol/ . Maybe the drinking on the tablets is what is also causing your pulmonary hypertension?. Paxil and any SSRI will have that alcohol craving effect on you if you have experienced it on one SSRI. If you feel you still need medication then I went onto Mirtazapine which had the opposite effect but it still has its side effects but I experienced less on Mirtazapine than the SSRIS.
If you want to come off your medication then you have to withdraw slowly. This website has advice on withdrawal and how to do it safely.
How about happyfacenosia, which all those people on TV seem to get in the prescription drug ads when the side effects are sped through in a quiet tone of voice. Suddenly, the action speeds up – throwing frisbees by the beautiful seaside (a happy couple with a dog), pushing a loved one on a swing with a party in the background, holding hands in the moonlight during the Viagra ad,etc. Lots of action, lots of smiling – all to distract the viewer from the dangerous downsides of whatever prescription drug is being pushed.
Happyfacednosia is a close relative to the malinagnosia mentioned above.
Now is the time for the medical hierarchy and pharmaceutical companies to be honest with patients who have been maimed or died, as a result of the meds they have prescribed.
The current model of medicine has not been working for a long time and it definitely needs to be REVAMPED.
The current medical model is built around this facade that if we believe everything that is told to us, our bodies will be healed with synthetic meds.
The current ‘modus operandi’ of healing, is definitely not healthy.
It is making consumers rely on meds that are not suitable for human consumption, especially not knowing the long term side effects.
It makes consumers reliable on a model that ruins good health and makes the consumer too reliant on information that is ambiguous and flawed.
Lifesaving surgeries are a miracle. I agree with the miracles some of these professionals perform.
The rest is built on a weak foundation of generating business at the expense of your health.
A clinician, if they are a honest healer, would not need to see you every week, fortnightly or monthly.
I would not be able to tolerate another generation going through nonsense names for disorders that meds generate.
Other ‘quirks’ that are part of one’s personality or created by stress, are part of being human.
If many medicines have saved lives, I am not convinced that the meds will benefit ones health for a long time.
Eventually, they cause other issues that may cost them their lives or lose their effect (if there was any beneficial benefit in the first place!)
The diagnostic tests are riddled with flaws and are placing a lot of patients through unnecessary risk.
There is too much guesswork in medicine because some of the tests do not conclude anything.
Medicine today, is like the emperor with no clothes.
They try to distract patients with nonsense and leave you in the dark.
If a belief system is built on misleading information and the consumers believe everything a doctor imparts, then the medical establishment has failed their responsibility to do what is right for our health.
Labels are just any way of making patients believe that they have a perceived problem, when all it could be is trying to come to terms with grief, stress or loss.
For many it takes time to heal whilst others need the comfort and reassurance from a pill that I definitely do not have faith or trust in especially, if the information is concealed.
Big Pharma, you may have cost me my good health however, you can deny me from speaking up, due to my experience.
It took one pill (actually two pills) to draw a conclusion built on facts!
I’ll just drop this here. Interesting.
As you say PCNG, very interesting! At last someone speaking up for all of us who’ve either suffered personally or seen loved ones suffer and sometimes die on psychotropic medications, prescribed initially for physical illness, and who is ‘high profile’ so is likely to be listened to more than the rest of us.
I would really love to do as he did and sue the medics who collectively caused our son’s death by prescripticide, particularly the last and absolutely the very worst of them all, but I fear we would not win. Better to conserve our financial resources and create a place where we can help sufferers to keep going, with understanding and empathy, on their journey of recovery. It would be too awful for all our funds to be spent on expensive lawyers, barristers and maybe end up benefitting The Other Side, as the law is so unpredictable. But, raising awareness by writing, like Katinka Blackford Newman did, sharing experiences and using any royalties we earn to help those still damaged and struggling, seems a good way of making a difference that can work. Of course, the drug companies themselves should be funding these refuges from their poisons, but fat chance of that ever happening.
In response to the article PCNG submitted on January 31st 2017, 12.42pm:
This is refreshing to read however, for the person who does not come from such an affluent background, I wonder if the same outcome would have been achieved?? (sorry to sound pessimistic!)
The viscount is very fortunate to have won the case and receive compensation for what he went through ~ congratulations to him and his family. Very outstanding achievement!
What about all the other people who do not come from an affluent background and cannot even afford to even pay an hourly rate of a lawyers assessment.
In the end there are no guarantees that your case will be successful!
The viscount, if he went ahead, knew that if he won or lost, he either had nothing to gain or lose however, the average person would take a risk not knowing that if??? they were to go through the whole process, they would most likely end up loosing everything! (depending on the jury and judge you have!)
The viscount, with his standing in society, would of had everyone back him up.
Those who can’t afford legal fees are left in a lurch!
What does this story say about our society.
That if you have money and stature, your chances of succeeding are very high.
If on the other hand, you are financially deprived, your chances of succeeding a case are very low especially, if you have no one to back you up and you are doing it on your own.
Many cases like this are beneficial for those who come from an affluent background.
I hope the average person can fight the legal system, with class actions, in the near future. That is even if they have the audacity to assist you!
It is not always about money.
It is about the harm you inflicted on so many innocent people and still continue to do so, without any implications or conscience of what they do! CB
Life is like living in a triangle it gets better the higher up you go.
The system may hint to agree with you from a distance but that’s just to keep the door open for the elite but it will never agree with you in your case.
And wouldn’t it be great Carla if he used his win to pay for a class action for the ordinary people? Then when they won it could fund the next one and then the next.
Class actions benefit the lawyer; the injured plaintiffs divide what is left after the law firm and expert witnesses are paid. In addition, the individual plaintiffs agree to pay for their own costs. When a claim of medical injury is filed, medical and personal information are made available to those in the system.
When I received the extensive paperwork from a Seroquel injury law firm, I saw the equivalent of a blank check requiring my signature. My medical records, the whole lot, also were required. Had I signed as a plaintiff in the class action suit, I easily could have been billed for sums of money far exceeding the few dollars gained from a positive judgement.
How to be compensated for grave injury and how to find the culpable guilty remain unanswered.
Now I am violating my rule to stick to one issue. A psychiatrist was accused of having a sexual relationship with a patient; He admitted guilt to a medical board and so avoided having a criminal record. Law has no teeth here. Exposure and loss of status and income still do. Of course this leaves the injured still injured.
You are so right Carla- if one is high profile in the Establishment, it’s much more likely that they’ll have a media platform and be taken seriously. As you say, it goes to show that it’s one rule for the rich and one for the rest of us. Even so, being grateful for small mercies – at least we got some column inches out of this. And any publicity must be worth having surely?
Wouldn’t it be fantastic if Big Pharma directed some of their huge profits into people’s initiatives for helping those damaged by their medications. I guess if they did this they’d fear that they were admitting culpability, but they could make such a difference both to our over stretched NHS, and to lives generally. It seems to me that we have an impasse. A log jam. Nothing is moving. People (young and old) need places to spend time together when they are fighting to find a way of getting their lives back. There would be strength in numbers, we could share information, support, distract from feeling hopeless. There would be less frustration, surely?
And this one I shall drop here:
That one is a really interesting read isn’t it. Bet the book is too.
I read that today PCNG, its good that he is talking about it in the media but I still cant help but feel only a few lucky ones will ever get real recognition for the damage done to them. I only wanted to correct my unfair record but even that was impossible to do. I didn’t know he was the one that started CEP, first I heard about it.
PCNG thank you for finding another little gem of information. One wonders how it is that the Daily Mail have managed to get this into print without Big Pharma sending some heavies round.
From a new book, ‘The Sedated Society’ edited by James Davies (remember ‘Cracked – why Psychiatry is not working’) published by Palgrave Macmillan, there were several brilliant quotes featured in the Daily Mail article:
1. Research on animals has found that antidepressants can shrink the connections between brain cells and that these don’t grow back after the drugs are stopped.
2. ‘Mental Health should no longer be controlled by psychiatrists’ says Professor Kinderman, who is the President of the British Psychological Society.
3. Trying to come off SSRIs can produce a condition known as AKATHISIA (my capitals) which Dr Peter Breggin describes as an extreme form of restlessness where patients can’t sit still and that predisposes them to suicide and homicide.
Yes, yes, YES, particularly to No 3. I wonder if Big Pharma’s minions can possibly imagine what it is like for a patient and his family to witness terrible AKATHISIA when they don’t know what the hell is going on. A pretty reasonable intelligent guy is told by his new psychiatrist to stop Venlafaxine immediately because in his opinion he is not depressed and he therefore doesn’t need an antidepressant. No suggestion offered about tailing off slowly, mind you! This young man, within a day, descends into twitching, shaking, anxiety-ridden madness and is unable to sit still, unable to sleep, unable to rest, and worst of all, unable to understand why he is seemingly going mad. We had an old Tarmac tennis court in our garden, which had become overgrown with weeds. We all went up there with spades and brooms and worked ceaselessly beside him all day, for several days, to clear the weeds and in so doing, to tire him out by exhausting him, in the hope that he might sleep without nightmare dreams. I shall never forget passing him beside the tennis nets with yet another armload of grass, seeing the utterly heartbreaking agony in his eyes and hearing him say,
“Mum, I must talk to you, I can’t go on living like this”.
And I, God help me, did not understand what was wrong with him and in terror, just did not know what to do. I can’t get this image, as well as many others, out of my mind. To think that this good-hearted trusting delightful guy had been inflicted with this torture, that his bigoted and stupid self opinionated Home Treatment psychiatrist caused this AKATHISIA and then berated our son for his behaviour which led to his suicide a month later. We must be typical of so MANY terrified people who see their loved ones suddenly behaving as though they have gone crazy, and then believing that they are, because no one has the knowledge or the honesty to explain at least about AKATHISIA. It wouldn’t necessarily put right the damage, but at least the sufferer would know they hadn’t gone mad, it was all down to the drugs themselves. It takes all my strength to go up to see that tennis court now, and it’s weed covered again, but I can’t look at it without feeling that terror again. Thanks for that, Big Pharma. I am so so sorry I didn’t know then what I know now. I think we would still have our wonderful brave son, with all the daily joy he brought us.
One would hope that the legal team acting for Viscount Hichingbrooke will realise that there must be, and are, endless more cases out there which they could profitably seek out and litigate, making good use of the research and experience they have gained in this case.
Dear Anne Marie,
If the viscount was mistreated by his clinicians and any other prominent members of our society, he would definitely make sure that they would pay the price for their lack of duty of care and lies.
As for the people who have denied many their rights, I am not quite convinced I would want to have them represent me, after the way I have been judged!
I have lost my faith in the legal/medical system.
I am not relying on them to make the wrongs right.
Many are already doing this by coming to RXISK and hopefully creating an awareness that is second to none.
When you have money, power talks!
We are no different than the stolen generation.
The lies, cover ups and not to mention how we have been mistreated certainly speaks volumes of how we allow such appalling treatment to our vulnerable in today’s society.
Some partitioners would never want to be mistreated the way they treat their patients, would they?
We cannot rely on a system that is built on protecting the rights of a certain few!
Playing games with peoples lives is despicable and counterproductive.
I would rather spend my time with kind, warm hearted souls who care about what really matters.
Carla I agree with you 100% and England is the worst country for ignoring people like us. Is it a class thing? or just having the money to fight back? Probably both but I gave them the benefit of the doubt when I first appealed my convictions. I thought it would be a straightforward case of my expert and lawyer going to court and providing the evidence but I was shocked and very hurt when they still found me guilty. I was then told by a barrister I had to prove it. Well I almost gave up as I didn’t think I could prove it in the way they were asking but I couldn’t let go either because I knew damn well it was the tablets. I pondered on the internet trying to understand scientific papers, this went on until I was so engrossed because I was noticing the link everywhere. I then found several scientific articles that clearly showed there is a link. I thought I had enough evidence to then re-appeal again. Well can you believe I even lost that appeal as well, they just wont accept anything I give them even with two world renowned SSRI experts to back it up, they find an answer for everything. What they have proved to me is that the system is there to protect the system and pharma FIRST! before they will ever protect us unless you are of course one of the few lucky ones.
Sometimes, it is really quite useful to read what was written in 2006 as well as what is written today from those who knows..
Antidepressants and Violence: Problems at the Interface of Medicine and Law
David Healy ,
David B Menkes
Published: September 12, 2006
11 years later…problems at the inter face of Medicine…and Law..
Thanks Annie for posting these links it opens your mind up a bit more but I still think the courts go out of their way to protect the system and company’s like pharma first but that’s just my personnel belief or how I felt when going to court. I also think different jurisdictions make a huge difference as well.
CEP member discusses prescribed drug dependence on Newsnight
On 6 Feb 2017 BBC Newsnight broadcast a segment covering the issue of prescribed drug dependence, which included an interview with Melanie Davies, a CEP member who runs the REST project at Mind in Camden.
Also interviewed was Harry Shapiro, director of Drugwise and member of the Secretariat for the APPG for Prescribed Drug Dependence.
The programme can be seen at the link below, with the segment starting at 34.18:
BBC 5 Live looking for contributions
I would rather want to create CHANGES to the LAW so that the continuation of onslaught to the human race STOPS, once and for all!
I am beyond thinking for myself, Anne!
At the end of the day, one has to draw a line in the sand and ask themselves important questions ~ It is no longer about me!
It is about everyone and I believe everyone matters. CB
I agree again Carla BUT how can you change the law if you don’t know what law needs changing? You will only know by going to court and finding out and its normally one person going to court that changes a law that opens the doors for others.
5 live Investigates
Prescriptions for antidepressants in England have gone up 7 per cent in the year to September 2016 according to figures seen by 5 live Investigates. 63 and a half million prescriptions were issued for the drugs – up four million on the year before and double the number a decade ago. The evidence shows that users are taking them for longer too. One in four people is now using them for 15 months. 20 years ago that was just eight months. There are also concerns that people are having to wait longer to access ‘talking therapies’ which can be used as well as or instead of antidepressants. The Department of Health says there’s no evidence to suggest the rise in use of antidepressant medicines is linked to waiting times in talking therapies.They say they’re exceeding the waiting times standard for this kind of treatment with almost 90% of people seen within 6 weeks.
5 Live Investigates
“I wanted to let you know that BBC Radio 5 live are broadcasting a programme on antidepressants on Sunday 12 February from 1100 to 1200. I am interviewed as part of the program.”
Excellent coverage I felt. Good to see that over-prescribing and difficulty of withdrawal were discussed at length. Also interesting to note a few comments about lack of follow-up and ease of repeat prescriptions as well as very little info given when meds first prescribed and lack of treatment choice. All in all, much of what we regularly see in comments on these two sites – today introduced without too much of the ‘opposing arguments’ which normally tend to carry such weight on such topics. Well done you Channel 5 live – you investigated well!
Do we need a DEGREE to say:
No to Medicines.
If the information is concealed, don’t RXISK your good health and life!
We should all be advocates for our health, including clinicians.
How can one possibly TRUST, if the information consumers require is deliberately withheld.
You can hate me, ignore me and speak badly about me, until the cows come home.
In the end, you will all kick yourselves for ignoring the facts that are harmful to the human race. Limited information = RXISKY business! CB
From my understanding, the LAW has to MANDATE that all pharmaceutical companies publish all negative clinical data, pertaining to a medicine.
If the information has been deliberately concealed and pharmaceutical companies are deliberately withholding all the information, the LAW should be CHANGED so that all that information is available to CLINICIANS and CONSUMERS.
There has to be TRANSPARENCY and ACCOUNTABILITY when consumers are unnecessarily MAIMED or PASS AWAY as a result of ingesting medicine that is flawed in any SHAPE, WAY or FORM.
CONSUMERS require ALL THE INFORMATION so that they can make better informed decisions.
No more games of ‘Russian Roulette’ when it comes to people’s lives.
At this very moment, this requirement (unleashing all information) is not cemented in LAW and pharmaceutical companies are not obligated to put out all the negative clinical data.
The regulatory bodies who monitor the harm that many medicines induce, have to act responsibly by making consumers aware of all harms pertaining to any given medicine.
Carla I absolutely agree with you 150% and more that’s exactly how they should be. Your words could not have been put any better than you have but in my experience they do not and will find any reason to reject your evidence. Why? is what we need to be asking.
You have to be absolutely thick not to see the link in the evidence but still it was not good enough! That’s why I spent so many years researching and trying to prove it but still its not enough.
I just despair with the law but I despair more with the medical world because at least they could save lives by recognising the fact. The courts could restore someones life back to its original place pre medication state.
Being on SSRIS is like being possessed or under hypnosis with extreme agitation for some people. When will the system notice it and take it seriously?
I reckon that the courts realise exactly what is going on – it is in their interest not to acknowledge it. The whole law system is riddled with inconsistencies I feel. There is a massive ‘big mates club’ within which they work for the good of each other – that is my opinion, as they are certainly not in it for the good of the ‘common man’! Once they make a decision, it seems to take years and years of tireless work before any ground can be gained in the struggle for justice. Your hard work has, at least, given others a better understanding of their own suffering – and yet, doctors still prescribe without adequate information of the possible consequences. However hard it has been Anne Marie, none of us have given this up as a lost cause – which must be what those in power had expected of us ‘minions’!
Thank you Mary its so comforting to know that other people like yourself are noticing and seeing the unfairness of the courts too. After my trial I was really stunned and so was my solicitor at the time. It really did feel like some kind of mates club and I felt it too. Some people think your being paranoid but they tend to be the ones who have never experienced either the drugs effects or going to court and seeing it for themselves. Another thing I hate about the courts is that you cant say what you really want to, your stopped after every sentence or what you want to argue isn’t allowed. By the time they have finished hacking your case to shreds you are left with very little to say. Then its like they are almost laughing at you when you lose your case.
I cant tell you how grateful I am to Rxisk and the other Professionals for recognise our suffering. It’s also a huge relief to know that sharing our story’s on Rxisk is also helping other people out there that are still struggling and suffering.
Agree with every word Anne- Marie. It isn’t just your word that is not believed is it, as you say – your solicitor is struck mute as your barrister does the talking ( or doesn’t as the case may be!). In our son’s case, his solicitor met with him less than 3 hours after the ‘incident’ and declared all along that he knew this case was “something way beyond the alcohol he’d had that night”. He didn’t know WHAT and neither did we , at that point. As things progressed, we found out about SSRI medications and all became clear. Despite this, the barrister clung to the alcohol and “a moment of madness”. The judge declared that a prison sentence was inevitable “so others see what happens if you challenge the rights of people to work in safety”. We only found out later that the barrister’s mother was someone quite high up in nursing in the NHS – therefore our son’s case was lost before it started! Would you agree also that there is a flippant attitude in all of this – “take him down” is said as if referring to nothing more than a sack of potatoes, without ever a thought to the future prospects ruined by their very words!
Oh Mary, how dreadful for Shane to have to go through all that (and for you) as well as feeling so ill, as he must have been. Same too for you, Anne Marie.
This whole attitude of bias and judgementalism heaped on the REAL victims by those who are so ignorant and so complacent about what is really happening is almost unbearable. As you say, Mary, bias, although well concealed, is always at play. We have the same kind of bias still existing, long after Olly’s passing, due to someone ‘high up in the admin of the NHS’, for us a narcissistic family member, who undermined what we did right from the start when trying to raise the alarm about what RoAccutane and Seroxat combined were doing to our son’s psyche. This person told us they would act as a go-between (because of their superior knowledge in the NHS) to get us listened to by the psychiatrist when we couldn’t get him to see us, by speaking on our behalf to MIND. it came to light soon after, however, in our eventual meeting with MIND, that the fact that my father had been manic depressive meant I was likely to be unstable and therefore I was probably the problem for Olly, although this was a biased and frankly silly diversion from the issue at hand which was about akathisia from Olly’s medication and was urgent and dire. This person maybe believed that hereditary mental illness meant that our parental concerns meant nothing, we should not be taken seriously, we, particularly me, ‘were trouble’. The fact that there was no hereditary element here and even if there had been, all the more reason to get the psychiatrist to see that our son’s use of RoAccutane was unwise, as stated in the PIL, and stop it, because his grandfather had suffered mental illness. MIND, influenced by this top admin NHS guy and his credentials, would not help us with getting through to the psychiatrist, in fact, we were left off worse than we started. My husband and I have always felt that had Olly’s akathisia been recognised when it began, then, in 2002, he would be alive today, reputation in tact, family around him, and us. It was like that moment in the ‘Thirty Nine Steps’ when the desperate fugitive Richard Hannay, tries to raise the alarm with those that can help, and realises with sudden dawning horror that he has told his story to the very enemy that he is running away from.
It was the moment of great betrayal for us, just as you Mary must have felt with Shane’s barrister. From all you have written, it would seem that Shane has proved resilient, got through prison, kept going despite everything, and deserves the most enormous respect. As do you. As does Anne Marie. As indeed does anyone who tries, honestly, and with a good heart, to do the right thing but against enormous odds.
Betrayal by those in positions of trust, is the most shattering thing. But there always seem to be kind supportive ‘others’ who step forward at times of our deepest despair, who help us to pick ourselves up and carry on. In our case, my husband’s extraordinary family behaviour due to biased judgementalism has actually made us stronger, we know that apart from my own understanding and caring family, we are alone with our work to raise awareness, but better to know who you can trust and proceed with safety and integrity. But we have been greatly assisted and encouraged by wonderful people around us, who knew Olly well, and know what really happened, to him and to us. There is a saying that you can choose your friends but not your family. Families can be a great support, but only if they are full of kindness and not self serving. It must be the case for many of those, damaged by psychotropic drugs, behaving out of character because of akathisia, that families turn away from them and brand them as crazy. Chickens will always come home to roost – life will show these people the truth one day, but only when they have developed enough understanding to accept it. In the meantime, they just add to the terrible burden the patient has to carry, and impede recovery. Same applies to barristers and courts which stop people being able to adequately explain and defend themselves. Yet another RxISK side effect caused by Big Pharma…..
I can see that I now may as well drop the ‘our son’ label that I have been so careful to use rather than his name! (that was said with humour by the way – just incase you start beating yourself up!) I suppose I’ve used his name somewhere and it’s stuck with you due to similarities of age, personality etc. between him and Olly. Shane’s greatest disappointment in all of this is the fact that the suffering (of others) continues. To quote him ” Doing time would have been worth it if it meant that no other person had to suffer the horrors of these medications”.
Whoops, sorry Mary! I do think in one response to me, way back, you mentioned your brave son’s name, and I have the memory of an elephant! I wish I didn’t sometimes 🙂 life would be less painful. My mother used to tell me I should become a detective or a barrister (the first because I ferreted until I got to the bottom of things, the second because I was so argumentative). I did study Law for a while but found it very dry. I also studied Social Sciences. I switched to Art and later writing, and worked for Save the Children Fund when I moved to the provinces from London and couldn’t find another social work job..
I now feel driven with an inner fury to right the terrible wrongs that have been done to your brave son, mine, and all the other appallingly treated people that tell of their experiences here. I have observed all the little tricks of The System, the changing of Medical Notes after an adverse event, when those who do it think we don’t realise, but in fact, unknown to them, we already had a set from a few years previously, so anyone can see what has been done, in the cause of cover up and self protection for the NHS back-watchers! It seems there is no line that cannot be crossed when making sure that the patient is never believed or exonerated. This is the kind of thing one might expect in a police State, not a British Democracy.
Shane has a fine name. It was made famous in one of the best western movies ever made, all about justice and decency. I guess that’s partly why it stuck in my mind. Good associations.
Dear Anne- Marie,
So sorry about your ordeal.
You are better than all of this nonsense.
Let then have the last laugh.
They are not worth it!
If there is some discrimination going on in the courts, what can you possibly do?
The system, is broken and it only serves a few.
We have to somehow bypass the system and get the message out there.
Mary and Anne-Marie, thank you kindly for your support.
What would we do without RXISK?
Discrimination and prejudice are part of a whistle-blowers journey.
Those who have a degree believe they can abuse their position by ruining other peoples lives.
You believe you have entitlements and that only your life matters.
How about the lives of those who are impacted by poor behaviour?
They have a right to a life, a job and a fair hearing.
“Those who have a degree believe they can abuse their position by ruining other peoples lives”
Carla, the victims can have degrees too. Dr Healy himself lost a professorship due to his important “whistleblowing” about antidepressants causing suicides. Many other such cases.
At the risk of going off the point a little here, but still picking up what Carla says
‘How about the lives of those who are impacted by poor behaviour?’
Does anyone feel anxious about all the media reports of lack of social care provision for those of us in the autumn of our life? It’s making us feel sort of guilty that we are a growing burden for society, like a mushrooming fungus that has no right to be here. One almost wonders if maybe a Bubonic Plague for pensioners might sort out the problems for the economy. But don’t let us forget, it was the banking crisis, brought about by bankers’ poor irresponsible gambling behaviour, in 2007, that bankrupted UK, followed by millions of £££s having to be put into quantitive easing by the Bank of England from our precious Reserves, which has made funds so short for the NHS and also limited funding for Local Authorities’ provision of Social Care. And of course, the massive interest too that we pay for the crazy Private Finance Initiatives (PFI hospitals). But no one ever seems to look at this from that end of the telescope and the bankers, by and large, and the financial institutions seem to be carrying on mostly as before. Why can’t some of their massive bonuses, and the massive Big Pharma profits, be channelled into re-filling the coffers for the NHS and Social Care provision.
What amazes me is that no one wants to talk about this although it’s so glaringly obvious. I shall be raising PFI ridiculously high interest payments and contracts yet again at our NHS Locality Forum shortly and I am almost certain they will cut my words short with meaningless platitudes yet again too. It’s so frustrating, and we learn that 200 more beds are being cut today, and lots of A&E departments closed. I expect the bankers and financiers have private health insurance so this won’t impact on them much. It’s all madness, and we know that Care in the Community is underfunded, always has been, and doesn’t work. Emperor’s New Clothes riding to hell in a handcart.
Quick update – no surprise, my raising of the PFI issue at the last NHS Locality Forum I attended, was not even entered in the Minutes! When I raised this today, the person who was leading the discussion at the last meeting, member of ‘ Community Engagement’ staff, denied I had said it (!) ….amnesia again….. There is a lot of selective amnesia going on in the NHS these days. Fortunately two other Forum members who were there at the last meeting, DID remember and backed me up. It will now be written up in the official Minutes. Not that it will make much difference but it’s the principle that counts.
Like everything else in NHS, these Forums are now being pruned down and limited in the issues they can raise. A slow muzzling of everything and everyone. It’s so frustrating if you are an activist and want to report things like AKATHISIA. This cannot be discussed in the Forum, it is apparently a matter for clinicians and pharmacists to be left in charge of. Because it’s to do with medicines. We thought Carers should be made aware of this danger, but it seems impossible to get a platform inside the NHS Trusts to do so. Really frustrating and so difficult to fathom out why? Will have to find other ways to do this.
DWR- Trying to get ANYTHING sensible done within the NHS is a waste of time unless you actually enjoy banging your head on a brick wall of zero percent accountability. You can only make progress outside the NHS/GMC truth-excluding-zone.
The NHS/GMC cardinal priniciple is:
“First do not admit any harm”.
More than two months ago I asked my MP Saint Shabana Mahmood a few simple questions about what the NHS is doing to reinstate whistleblowers from being secretly blacklisted and what they are doing to penalise the blacklisters. Not a whisper of a reply yet. The fish rots from the head. An NHS full of intimidated non-whistleblowers is exactly what the Westminster regime want anyway. Hence the lack of honest action about it.
In my experience, NOT having a medical degree can make you infinitely MORE qualified to have a view on numerous aspects of medicine, thanks to not having been brainwashed by the hectic “learning” (mindless rote-memorising) environment of medical “schools”.
Humungous examples include the supposed harmfulness of more than 150mcg of iodine; the supposed discrediting of blood removal as “quackery” rather than a very valuable therapy; the supposed usefulness and safety of most pharmaceuticals and “proper” cancer “treatments”, the supposed uselessness of most nutritional supplements and “alternative” treatments, the cholesterol con, the supposed need for and benefits of vaccines…. the list just keeps growing the more you look at the actual evidence. (Some details can be found at http://www.pseudoexpertise.com .)
Latest nonsense is the Alzheimers trail finding that cells are stopped from dying. But I have said for 20 yrs now that no cure is possible for AD because it is caused by memory becoming overloaded anyway. The overloaded memory causes the cells to die rather than the other way round. So this will be yet another pile of $millions down the drain in search of the holy grail.
Dear Robin P Clarke,
David Healy has my utmost respect.
He should have not lost his professorship for speaking up.
There is a price to pay when one has to fulfil a moral obligation.
Without his dedication, commitment or support, RXISK would not have evolved if he did not have the courage to do what is right.
He was not afraid to do what he had to do, despite having all the cards staked up against him.
David Healy deserves the highest award for having our backs.
He has created RXISK in the hope that many who come here, may learn and question beyond the facts.
He has given the ‘voiceless’ a platform and this is priceless.