Could your meds make you suicidal?

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November 19, 2012 | 3 Comments


  1. I saw noting on your site about Xarelto. I was given this blood thinner about a year ago and was on it less than two months.

    It has caused me some really serious problems that have not abated since going off the drug. I still have severe muscle pain and cramping and a traveling head pain on occasion.

  2. A recent article about patterns of suicide in America, coming out of the public health research community, caught my eye. While it says nothing specific either about meds or lack of meds, it raises some red flags about antidepressant use in this country.

    Titled “Increase in Suicide by Hanging/Suffocation in the U.S., 2000-2010”, it concludes that overall suicide rates rose 16% during that time, but suicides by hanging or suffocation (a grouping that includes mainly hangings) went up 52%. In people ages 45-59, overall suicides were up 39% while suicides by hanging/suffocation more than doubled (up 104%). While no detailed figures were given, it did state the suicide rate was rising faster among women than men. You can read the whole study here, courtesy of the American Journal of Preventive Medicine:

    So what’s up? As an American aged 45-59 I can tell you our access to guns and pills is still as good as ever. However, hanging does seem to be a feature of most of the SSRI-linked suicides I have read about. And the group seeing the biggest rise in hangings are heavy users of SSRI’s — women especially. Eleven percent of Americans over 12 are taking these pills, but among women aged 40-59 it’s 23%. Almost a quarter.

    We constantly hear cries from official medical bodies and their drug company backers that depression is undertreated and that it’s crucial to get more people on the pills in order to prevent suicides (see Julie Wood’s excellent story above on AFSP). Yet if that were true wouldn’t the most medicated group (middle-aged women) be seeing a decrease in suicides rather than registering the sharpest increases? And why would hangings be on the rise far faster than traditional methods like pills and shootings (which have actually decreased)? There is a disconnect here that the medical establishment, especially groups like AFSP, need to explain.

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