RxISK.org, the first free independent website for researching and reporting prescription drug side effects, interviews Dr. David Healy, co-founder of RxISK, on the connection between suicide and prescription drugs. In the video, Dr. Healy explains how prescription drugs can lead to suicide, and what can be done to address this problem.
Many people know anti-depressants come with black box warnings stating that they can cause suicidal thoughts and behaviors, but many do not know that anti-psychotics and mood stabilizers can also cause these side effects, according to Dr. Healy, a world-renowned psychiatrist and psychopharmacologist.
“Even less known is that a range of drugs like the statins, acne drugs, weight loss drugs, anti-smoking drugs and asthma drugs are also linked to suicide,” Dr. Healy says.
Dr. Healy says that suicidal thoughts often begin within two weeks of starting an antidepressant, but can also occur when changing the dosage, ending treatment or adding another prescription drug to the mix. On the other hand, it usually takes a few months for suicidal thoughts to occur while taking mood stabilizers or anti-convulsants.
In the video, Dr. Healy also discusses the likelihood of experiencing these side effects, and the steps one should take when experiencing them. Dr. Healy encourages people to visit RxISK.org if someone believes they, or someone they know, are experiencing prescription drug-induced suicidal thoughts. Here, they can discover whether others experienced the same side effect, while on the same prescription drug.
“It becomes a lot easier to believe that the drug has caused you the problem if you become aware that there are hundreds of people who have experienced the same thing on the drug you are on,” Dr. Healy says.
RxISK is owned and operated by Data Based Medicine Americas Ltd. (DBM). DBM’s founders have international reputations in early drug-side-effect detection and risk mitigation, pharmacovigilance, and patient-centered care. Although drug side effects are known to be a leading cause of death and disability, less than 5% of serious drug side effects are reported. DBM’s mission is to capture this missing data directly from patients through RxISK’s free drug side effect reporting tool and use this data to help make medicines safer for all of us.
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