Adverse Reaction to SSRIs, Iatrogenesis, psychiatry

Get the Hippocratical Boat

The Zebra

Earlier this year, a formal complaint was submitted to the Royal College of Psychiatrists (RCPsych) against its president Wendy Burn, and David Baldwin (Chair of its Psychopharmacology Committee).  The complaint stated that Professors Burns and Baldwin (in a letter published by The Times in February),  misled the public over antidepressant withdrawal by falsely stating that in the vast majority of patients, any unpleasant symptoms experienced on discontinuing antidepressants have resolved within two weeks of stopping treatment. Signed by 30 high profile medics (including Irish psychiatrist Pat Bracken) and people with lived experiences, the complaint stated that the latter is incorrect, not evidence-based and is misleading the public on an important matter of public safety – with potentially hazardous consequences. One only has to read a fraction of the damage caused by the RCPsych’s ‘discontinuation’ stance to see the harm caused to unsuspecting consumers – see James Moore for a prime example.

Sadly (for me at least), psychiatry from The Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland (RCSI) are equally irresponsible in providing misinformation to the public, with their ‘mental health difficulties are chemical imbalances in your brain’ tripe (I have addressed this before). Despite much ridicule and requests to retract this unfounded and equally dangerous statement, this public declaration by Ireland’s largest medical school is still available in all its inglorious glory on Twitter. This is a false and very dangerous message to give to vulnerable people, mainly because it gives the impression that only drugs can fix this ‘imbalance’. Indeed, the ‘imbalance’ belief can also have a detrimental affect on one’s personal autonomy, as it implies that external factors such as behavior or life changes will not improve our mental health – as the ‘inherent fault’ in our brains or character is at issue. Indeed, Dr Terry Lynch from Limerick even wrote a book about it, and very informative it is too (not biased at all, at all – although, I was happy to get a mention).

While the RCPsych and RCSI are not alone in providing misinformation to the masses, they are a fundamental part of the problem and complicit in causing harm. Indeed, psychotropic drugs (including widely-prescribed antidepressants and benzodiazepines) that target our mood, the way we feel, the way we think, are still largely hailed as ‘safe’. While some seem to tolerate these drugs with little adverse effects, others find the opposite, with disastrous, sometimes fatal, consequences. Violence is just one of the bizarre effects that can be caused by taking a drug commonly prescribed by one’s friendly GP. While drug companies have warned of reports of antidepressant-induced violent behavior, such as harm to ones-self and others, GPs and Psychiatry still seem oblivious to the dangers. No Zebras in their line of vision, no siree doc.

For example, a ‘Dear Doctor’ Letter sent to healthcare professionals in 2004 can be viewed here. It includes the following:

There are clinical trial and post-marketing reports with SSRIs and other newer antidepressants, in both pediatrics and adults, of severe agitation-type adverse events coupled with self-harm or harm to others. The agitation-type events include:
akathisia, agitation, disinhibition, emotional lability, hostility, aggression,

No doubt the friendly GP didn’t include THAT in his sales pitch for the ‘mild antidepressant’ he/she was prescribing. Indeed, iatrogenesis, however well-intentioned, doesn’t change the outcome and as we have seen with the RCPsych and the RCSI, the legalities of Informed Consent is still seemingly a very far-off concept. As for a drug that is specifically targeted at one’s emotions, mood and behavior – what could possibly go wrong? See the aforementioned zebra.

So, one wonders what disastrous drug-induced effect will be revealed to the public next? My money (and my RCSI Thesis) is on sex – see the RxISK website. Josephine/Joe, I foresee a more permanent problem.

Adverse Reaction to SSRIs, Cases, Depression, Our story., psychiatry, Shanes story.

Copenhagen Conference; Psychiatric drugs do more harm than good

Copenhagen, 16th Sept, 2015 – ‘Psychiatric drugs do more harm than good’. Peter Gøtzsche is the director of the Nordic Cochrane Center, Copenhagen and co-founder of the Cochrane collaboration. Peter’s new book Deadly Psychiatry and Organised Denial contains our personal stories of the harm done by psychiatric drugs. See our conference speeches below:

Leonie Fennell (me):

Stephanie McGill Lynch:

Kim Witczak:

Wendy Dolin:

Mathy Downing:

Peter Gøtzsche:

Robert Whitaker:

Adverse Reaction to SSRIs, lundbeck, psychiatry, Random, Shanes story.

Jake and Shane’s story.

Psychiatric Drugs do More Harm Than Good.

Myself, Stephanie, Kim, Mathy and Wendy spoke at Peter Gotzsche’s Copenhagen Conference ‘psychiatric drugs do more harm than good’ (see the last post for details). I’m very proud to call these women my friends. This video shows Stephanie’s talk followed by mine. I’ll put the others up as we get them. Please be informed of the possible dangers of these drugs. For Jake, Shane and all the many SSRI victims..

psychiatry, Random

Some Expert quotes for the Purposes of Informed Consent..

18th July 2015.

For decades Psychiatry has pushed a false notion that antidepressants are safe. Slowly though the public are realising that in fact the opposite is true, that antidepressants are not as safe as once thought and instead can cause suicide, violence, mania, akathisia, worsening depression, severe withdrawal, long-term sexual dysfunction, birth defects, depersonalisation, etc, etc.

Selective serotonin re-uptake inhibitors (SSRIs) are the antidepressants most widely prescribed today, once wrongly hailed as being ‘safer’ than the older tricyclic antidepressants. For every psychiatrist or misinformed, gullible doctor who proclaim these drugs are safe, there is an increasing body of experts whose names will be engraved in history for their attempts to save this and future generations from foreseeable harm.

Dr David Healy recently gave a stark warning on SSRIs. His attempts to warn the masses in order to avert further drug-induced tragedies, have spanned decades. Now though, it seems the stakes have changed – Dr Healy is not alone and there is an ever-increasing number of like-minded experts standing up in protest against this era’s ridiculous medical model.

So before you fill that prescription pad, think carefully. The following are recent, mostly original, quotes from around the world. You have been warned..


Dr David Healy, Author, Scientist, Psychiatrist, Psychopharmacologist, Founder of RxISK and world-renowned Medical expert, recently stated –

“I believe the SSRI era will stand as one of the most shameful in the history of medicine.”

Irving Kirsch, Author, lecturer at Harvard Medical School and Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center-

“I think that prescription of antidepressants will eventually be seen as the way bloodletting as a medical treatment is regarded today.”

Peter Gotzsche, Author, Physician, Medical researcher and Director of the Nordic Cochrane Center –

“There isn’t much happiness in the pills. Their most pronounced effect is to cause sexual disturbances… The drugs should therefore have been marketed as a formidable disrupter of your sex life, but that wouldn’t have sold many pills.”

Adam Urato, Author, Expert in Obstetrics & Gynecology, Assistant Professor at Tufts University School of Medicine, and Expert medical witness –

“The antidepressants freely cross over the placenta and into the developing fetus (baby) throughout the pregnancy. They have significant harmful effects for moms and babies including miscarriage, birth defects, preterm birth, preeclampsia, newborn complications, and long-term neurobehavioral problems. These chemical compounds—what we call antidepressants—are made in chemical factories and they go from these factories, into the pregnant moms, and then into the developing babies (fetuses). Nowadays, with 5 to 10% of all pregnancies being exposed to these drugs, what we are basically witnessing is a large scale human experiment. The track record of what happens when we expose developing babies to foreign chemical compounds is not good.  Chemicals have consequences for developing babies.”

Philip Cowen, MRC Clinical Scientist, Honorary Consultant Psychiatrist in Oxford University, and expert in Psychopharmacology –

“I do think it’s possible that in some circumstances SSRIs can lead to people behaving violently to themselves and others. It seems that the risk is apparent early in the course of treatment, particularly in younger people, and that’s why the NICE guidelines stress the importance of careful follow-up early in the antidepressant treatment of young, at risk patients.”

Dr Terry Lynch, Doctor, psychotherapist and author –

“Depression and antidepressants are part of a very large quagmire of misinformation regarding emotional and mental health. Depression is heavily marketed as a disease, yet it doesn’t even come close to meeting medically-accepted criteria for a disease (e.g. specific confirmatory evidence in the history, physical examination and investigations). Even psychiatry’s bible, the DSM, has no scientific basis, being the product of consensus and not science, Antidepressants change how people feel, therefore they should be called “mood-altering” substances. What we have come to see as “depression” is in truth a combination of woundedness/trauma; the distress (in its many forms) caused by woundedness; defense mechanisms we use in an attempt to survive and live as best we can in the circumstances; and choice-making, which is often compromised by the previous three. It is truly remarkable that modern societies have been lulled into believing that taking substances in such circumstances that alter how people feel is (a) appropriate, (b) scientific) and (c) safe.”

Bob Fiddaman, Author, Blogger and Mental Health Advocate –

“Antidepressants were designed to treat illnesses that were, themselves, designed by the pharmaceutical industry. Consequently, the fact that these drugs can maim and cause death through violence towards oneself and others, is therefore always irrelevant.”

AntiDepAware Brian, Blogger, statistician and Mental Health Advocate –

“It would help if the triumvirate of GPs, psychiatrists and coroners would show a bit of honesty, and help to make the public aware of the potential dangers inherent in the swallowing of antidepressant medication.”

Mrs AntiDepAware, Brains and Beauty behind the latter –

“Why should it be down to the bereaved and harmed to battle for greater awareness of the dubious nature of “antidepressants”? These are random chemicals which can never merit the term “medicine” until the day dawns when they are accompanied by effective information and support.”

Luke Montagu, heir to the Earl of Sandwich, co-founder of the Met Film School and co-founder of CEPUK –

Psychiatry is a corrupt and dishonest business: it treats so-called illnesses that don’t exist with drugs that don’t cure and can cause great harm. And once you have been harmed, it then diagnoses further illness and prescribes yet more drugs.”

Robert Whitaker, medical and science journalist, author, and founder of ‘Mad In America’ –

“.. modern studies have found that medicated depression is much more likely to run a chronic course. Indeed, in longitudinal studies, the disability rate for those who stay on antidepressants is much higher than for the unmedicated group. For instance, during a six-year NIMH study on depression that was conducted in the 1990s, the patients who took antidepressants were seven times more likely to become “incapacitated.” In a Canadian study on disability, antidepressant use was associated with a two-fold risk of going on to long-term disability.”

Peter Breggin, MD, psychiatrist, author and medical expert-

“.. evidence continues to converge on the dangerousness of antidepressant drugs. Given the difficulty showing any effectiveness even in the short-term, the use of these drugs becomes more and more problematic. … Psychiatry has always been slow to respond to scientific evidence that its treatments are harmful. Often, as in this case, psychiatry flouts science.”

Olga Runciman, Author, psychiatric nurse, campaigner and Co-founder of the Danish Hearing Voices network-

“A lie is a lie and here this lie (TADS) proved to be a highly lucrative one by implying these drugs are not only safe but helpful and then quoted worldwide as one of THE most reliable pieces of research.”

Mickey Nardo, aka 1boringoldman, Retired Psychiatrist and Blogger –

“Among the bizarre misrepresentations in Clinical Trials of psychiatric drugs during the Age of the Decepticons, this one (TADS) may take the grand prize.. ”

Peter Hitchens, Author and Journalist –

“Normal human beings become abnormal, possibly for ever, as soon as they first ingest these powerful, poorly-researched chemicals, often prescribed by doctors shamefully ignorant of the growing body of expert criticism of them.. If there is the slightest risk that they make good, kind mothers lose their minds and kill their own babies, I can imagine few more pressing matters on the agenda of any government than to establish the truth and act on it. Please, somebody listen.”

James Davies, senior lecturer in social anthropology and psychotherapy, psychotherapist, Author and Co-founder of CEP –

“Antidepressant medications do not return us to health as medical pills aim to do – they rather manufacture a new state of mind, and often an unnatural state.”

Penultimate word from Dr Nardo’s Blog

“Another interesting phenomenon I’ll point out, is how certain folks seem so convinced SSRIs can have this huge powerful negative effect on the brain while discounting any chance that for some people it really helps. Can’t it be that some are helped, some harmed, and some neither one? Is this not the case for almost all prescription medications?”

Previous words from the wise. Last word from mise –

While I agree with Dr Nardo’s latter quote, it might provide greater clarity if it read “ certain folks seem so convinced SSRIs have this huge positive effect on the brain, while discounting any chance that for some they can actually cause harm..”

Does the fact that antidepressants sometimes help, really make up for the fact that these drugs killed my son and many hundreds of thousands of other unwitting victims? Can the slaughter of the innocents be somehow justified? Maybe some might consider offering up their own child as collateral damage; I didn’t. Martyrdom was not Shane’s choice. For your family’s sake, make ‘informed consent’ yours.

Never, ever discontinue these drugs without the help of a good doctor. If you don’t have a good doctor, then find one. They might be few and far between, but thankfully are not quite extinct.

Adverse Reaction to SSRIs, Depression, psychiatry

Ireland’s academics and pharmaco-wha?

Shane and lucy hand

Today is the 1st of June 2015. Despite the huge strides that Ireland has recently taken, most notably in marriage equality, it seems, at least in medicine, we may have officially reverted to the dark ages. Despite wonderful world-renowned experts like David Healy and Peter Gotzsche making huge strides in making medicines safer for us all, three articles today in the Irish Independent shows just how far behind Ireland trails in pharmacovigilance.

You can make up your own mind –

Article 1. 

Two thirds who died by suicide not taking drugs prescribed for them

Professor Patricia Casey, University College Dublin (UCD) – Among the usual defence of the drugs, drugs, and more drugs, she states “Is non-treatment adherence and ultimately suicide an unintended consequence of the (black box) warning? This question cries out for an answer as life itself is at stake.” Eh, this study that Professor Casey refers to was done in Ireland – Ireland doesn’t have a black boxed warning Patricia!

Article 2.

Polarised public debate about anti-depressants deeply unhelpful

Brendan Kelly, also of UCD, decides to ignore the FDA, EU and HPRA warnings altogether. He states “Public debate about anti-depressants tends to be polarised to a point that is deeply unhelpful, especially for people with depression. The truth is that anti-depressants are not the magic bullets that some people hoped. But neither are they the evil little pills they are sometimes portrayed as”. Have you actually read the (drug company) leaflets Professor Kelly or did this come directly from a conversation you had with your colleague Casey?

Article 3.

Parents can be ‘too nice’ to their children when they’re ill, neurologist warns

Dr Suzanna O’Sullivan, National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery, this time from University College London, takes the proverbial biscuit. She says that “people shouldn’t pay too much attention to side-effects leaflets or they are likely to start experiencing the conditions psychosomatically” and further “Don’t read the side-effects labels on medication too closely… All these symptoms come from something already existing in your mind and your imagination”.

The dark ages – 

Yep, never mind that the victims and their families are saying otherwise, take that pharmaceutical drug company pill or the sky will fall in (and the experts may be out of a job). Interesting that all 3 articles came out today in the Irish Independent. I might be a little optimistic here but maybe we, the victims and their families, are getting somewhere – the feathers of academia seem unduly ruffled today.

These articles come shortly after Professor David Healy’s ‘Medico-Legal society’ lecture at Dublin’s ‘Kildare St and University Club’, which myself and the bold husband had the pleasure of attending. The lecture concerned the dangers of taking prescription drugs, particularly antidepressants, and the legal implications of same. Following his talk, it seemed that many academics within the medical and legal profession are well aware of the dangers, despite what these articles and so-called ‘experts’ in the Irish Independent are saying today. ‘Independent’ being the definition of irony here.

Incidentally, the European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries and Associations (EFPIA) Code, which includes pharmaceutical payments to doctors, will come into effect shortly. Transparency issues are about to get much more interesting.

As I was writing this another study was published, a Finnish-Swedish study that analyzed the link between psychotropic drugs and homicide risk. The study here found “that the use of certain drugs that affect the central nervous system are associated with an increased risk of committing a homicide. The greatest risk was associated with the use of painkillers and tranquillizing benzodiazepines, while anti-depressants were linked only to a slightly elevated risk.”  Yep, harmless, whatever you do, don’t read the leaflet!!

Update 02/June/2015

Professor Casey’s article appears in the Indo today ‘Mind and meaning: Antidepressants work‘. As usual, most likely for fear of legal repercussions by Prof Casey, the Indo never allow opposing arguments. My comment didn’t stay up for long and despite my best efforts at truth, I guess my constitutional right to freedom of expression doesn’t override the Irish media’s fear of another legal action by Casey. Comment below..

Comment on Casey's article

Adverse Reaction to SSRIs, Newspaper and internet articles, psychiatry

And the mad shall inherit the earth..

Mad IrishCéad míle fáilte mo thóin. Apologies to all you Gaeilgeoirí – “Is fearr Gaeilge briste, ná Bearla cliste”.

Today the Irish Independent published an article which was just ‘shockin altogether’! Sure aren’t we Irish just plain feckin mad? The article confirms what we suspected all along, that over half of Ireland’s youth “may have a form of mental health disorder“. Now pardon my stupidity but more than 50% of anything then becomes the majority, doesn’t it? So if over half of our young population have a ‘mental disorder’, does that mean that ‘mental illness’ is now the norm?

Now there’s a further issue here, as the study was done in young people from schools in north Dublin, I wonder if it’s just northsiders who are mad – does it apply to my strange relations in Sallynoggin or are they in fact just bordering on insanity? Even worse, is it viral and will it spread out here to the friendly Wicklowites? Is that why the Stenaline axed the Dunlaoghaire to Hollyhead ferry, not because of any ‘ loss of revenue’ but instead to stop the spread of lunacy? It seems to be spreading at an incredible rate – considering in October 2013 (according to the Herald), ‘mental illness’ only affected 2 young people in 10, and now it’s spiralled to over 5 in 10.

The Independent article states that “Other research shows that the family is central to the young person’s mental health” – so therefore, surely the Dubs must be doing a shockin shite job at parenting? The same article references the College of Psychiatry of Ireland as underlining “the importance of ‘early intervention’ in order to try to give young people the best chance to get on with having full, productive and normal lives”. This is where it gets seriously ridiculous (or ridiculously serious). How early is too early for Irish psychiatry’s medical model?

Yesterday, amid the furore of Jeremy Clarkson and other important worldly news, a small article in the ‘Torquay Herald Express’ mentioned early intervention. The first line stated “authorities are to be asked to confirm the number of children in Torbay who are prescribed the anti-depressant Prozac”. The article referred to Councillor Julien Parrott and his fears for the number of 5 year olds (and older) being prescribed the antidepressant Prozac. I kid you not (no pun intended).

Early intervention? Prozac doubles the risk of suicide, doubles the risk of violence, comes with a black-box warning in the US and another EU warning for the emergence of suicidality.

Early intervention? Parents should be aware that the ‘early intervention’ programme is widely attributed to an Irish psychiatrist Patrick McGorry (living in Australia). In 2011 he found himself in hot water amid complaints that a study he was carrying out was unethical. 13 Australian and international experts lodged a formal complaint against him to stop this dubious drug trial from proceeding. The controversial study, which involved giving antipsychotic drugs to children as young as 15, was then aborted.

I believe that so-called ‘early intervention’ leads to the dangerous drugging of innocent children and to more deaths. Do we really believe that the majority of Irish children are inherently mentally ill?

C’mon – Leave our kids alone.  Fág ár páistí mar atá siad.

Adverse Reaction to SSRIs, Cases, psychiatry

TG4 – The Dark Side Of a Pill.,%20case-driven%20investigation%20into%20one%20of%20the%20medical%20success%20stories%20of%20our%20time.%20antidepressants.%20With%20global%20sales%20of%2020%20billion,%20the%20prescription%20drug%20is%20one%20of%20the%20most%20lucrative%20products%20of%20the%20medical%20industry.
Michael Jackson Concert Dublin

TG4 has recently televised a brilliant documentary on SSRIs (Selective Serotonin ReUptake Inhibitors) – you know, the dangerous antidepressants I’m always on about. The drugs which can cause people to kill themselves and others, and did so in my son Shane’s case with Lundbeck’s SSRI Citalopram (aka cipramil/celexa).

At this stage, Irish Psychiatry et al, who continue to deny that these drugs can cause suicide or violence, are looking pretty idiotic. I guess the pharma funded blinds go a long way to make up for ‘stupid’. Anyway, the link to the programme is here. I’m sorry to say it can only be viewed in Ireland and possibly on some iphones.

The ‘Dark Side of a Pill’ is obviously a very recent programme as it involves the recent case of the Manitoba teenager who killed his friend. The Winnipeg judge ruled that he murdered his friend because of the effects of the SSRI Prozac. Brian of AntiDepAware wrote about the case here (March 25 2014).

Considering that there are so many people consuming ‘life-saving’ (yes, that is sarcasm) pharmaceutical drugs that our wildlife are suffering because of it, be informed; watch the TG4 Programme. It just might save your life, or the life of your child. You might find it interesting to read Peter Hitchins view on SSRIs affecting our wildlife today:

“It’s sad to learn that starlings are suffering from antidepressants, apparently because they eat sewage-farm worms that have ingested the drugs from human waste. But isn’t it rather more important that so many people are still being persuaded to take these dubious, risky tablets – increasingly linked with inexplicable suicide?”

TG4; The Dark Side of a Pill.

Leonie Fennell; Psychiatric Drugs: Evidence Based Medicine or Psychiatry’s Smoke Ball.

PS. I have just been informed that it’s possible to view this in the UK on an iphone and possibly on an ipad. It can also be bought here for any Rockefellers out there.

Adverse Reaction to SSRIs, Cases, Depression, Newspaper and internet articles, psychiatry

George Werb, Another Iatrogenic Death?

George Werb

How many dead children does it take before the medicine regulators take action? How many parents screaming ‘STOP’ will it take before this medication madness is banned?

This week another inquest sheds light on the dangers of prescribing SSRIs (Selective Serotonin Re-uptake Inhibitors) to children. George Werb was 15 when he was admitted to the Priory Hospital in Southampton. He had previously been prescribed Olanzapine/Zyprexa and expressed concern that he was suffering from adverse effects of the drug. George’s parents also expressed concern that the drugs were harming him and asked for him to be taken off them. His mother, Joanne Werb, told his psychiatrist (Dr Carlos Hoyos) of George’s desperation to come off Olanzapine. Despite this, George and his parents’ concerns were ignored, the drugs were increased and Fluoxetine/Prozac was added to the mix.

According to this article, George had previously had an adverse reaction to fluoxetine, yet inexplicably he was prescribed it again and sent home. The following day (28/June/2013) George stepped in front of a train and was killed.

Defending his position, Dr Hoyos explained that “there is no significant evidence that the particular anti-depressants George was prescribed caused suicidal tendencies”. Seriously, what an absolute idiot! Dr Hoyos should be struck off for that one ill-informed sentence. If Dr Hoyos would care to open a packet of Fluoxetine, he would find a reference to suicidal tendencies in the PIL. I guess the supposed ‘expert’ never read the warnings or heard of a black-box then?  Sadly for George, the ‘expert’ was no expert.

Similar to Tom Boomer’s family (Tom aged 14), George’s family said at no time were the risks of starting Fluoxetine or the risk of suicide discussed. Again, Maria Bradshaw whose son Toran (aged 17) died from a Prozac induced death, was not informed that SSRIs doubled the risk of suicide and violence. The drug company in Toran’s case (Mylan) admitted that Prozac was the ‘probable cause’ of his death. Despite the dire FDA and EMA warnings of prescribing antidepressants to children, there is widespread opinion among GPs and Psychiatry that Prozac is safer than other SSRIs in Paediatrics. ‘Not so’ according to Dr David Healy, the leading expert in SSRIs. He stated that “Prozac is no safer than other SSRIs for children“.

Earlier this year the Irish Independent reported that another Irish child (age 14) had died following a prescription for Prozac. His mother said “that she had no idea about the side effects of Prozac and that she would never have agreed to him taking it if she had” and that “NO mother in her right mind would let their child have a drug that can cause suicide and self-harm when they are suffering from those symptoms in the first place.” 

So how many children will have to die before the multiple evidence before our eyes is believed?

Update, 07/Oct/2014 – Similar to the findings at Shane’s Inquest, George’s inquest found that despite walking in from of a train, George did not take his own life. A serious case review into George’s treatment at the Priory is under way –

Adverse Reaction to SSRIs, Depression, psychiatry, Random

How Many Coroners to turn on that lightbulb?

Coroners Reports

Robin Williams’ close friends have expressed the opinion that the drugs he was prescribed caused his suicide. Following his death, the media frenzy has once again brought ‘mental illness’ to the forefront of peoples’ minds. Opinions have varied hugely, ranging from the unfounded – “vastly underdiagnosed ‘chemical’ depression” to the over-simplification “if [suicide victims] could see the impact their death has had on those left behind, they’d know that their life had value and meaning”.

Despite the opinions of Robin Williams’ close friends, his death has been used to promote the unfounded ‘chemical imbalance’ puffery and push pills to correct this said ‘imbalance’ – a travesty in my opinion. One article quoted Dr David Husted of the JFK Medical Centre psychiatry program, who said “..the general public often doesn’t understand about depression: It’s all connected to brain chemistry. Essentially, there’s a ‘glitch’…”. He went on to state that “depression is treatable if people are willing to give treatments — which include therapy and antidepressant medications – a chance”.

So what if Robin Williams’ friends are right and the drugs are killing people? This March two different coroners, one in the UK and one in Ireland, expressed concerns regarding antidepressants and their ability to induce suicide. It seems that more and more coroners are willing to speak out about prescription drug-induced suicide. Recently, Jacqueline Lake (a UK coroner), sent a report to the NHS regarding the death and subsequent inquest of Susan Poore, aged 65, from Norfolk. This report has been released online.

A regulation 28 report can be filed by a UK coroner, if, following an inquest, he/she perceives a risk of future similar deaths. A coroner has a duty to write a report under regulation 28 of the Coroners (Inquests) Regulations 2013, where there is a risk of further deaths occurring in similar circumstances as the deceased.

In Mrs Poore’s inquest report, the coroner raised concerns over the effect that the prescription drugs had on her.  Mrs Poore was prescribed Mirtazapine on 29th March 2012. 4 weeks later this antidepressant was stopped and changed to the SSRI Fluoxetine (prozac). 10 days later Mrs Poore walked in front of a train and was killed instantly. The coroner stated in her report that the ‘mode of death’ was out of character for Mrs Poore and that her depression deteriorated following the prescription of antidepressant drugs.

While researching regulation 28 reports, I came across another report which was sent by a different coroner, also to the NHS. Nine weeks before Mrs Poore died, a young man in a young offenders institute also died by suicide. Jordon Anthony Buckton, aged 20, was also prescribed Fluoxetine/Prozac a month before his death. Dorset coroner, Sheriff Stanhope Payne, raised a number of concerns in his report, including that the deceased was never monitored for the emergence of suicidality.

Despite the warnings of increased suicidality with all SSRIs, including Prozac, the GP who prescribed the drug to Jordan never actually met him or even checked to ensure he was doing okay. Despite never seeing Jordan, she stated that she ‘felt he was depressed’. An expert witness also gave evidence at the inquest that the NICE guidlines recommend monitoring following the prescription of antidepressants.

So, two suicides, same drug, same time scale, same steps taken – absolutely none! So I ask again, how many coroners will it take? Will Robin Williams’s death serve as the catalyst for opening peoples’ eyes to the dangers of prescription drugs; a posthumous starring role in ‘awakenings the sequel’? 

Coroner Jacqueline Lake’s Reg 28 Report.

Coroner Sheriff Stanhope Payne’s Reg 28 Report.

Friend’s opinion on Robin Williams’ death here and here.

A list of all the coroners who have raised concerns regarding prescription drugs will be compiled very soon.

Newspaper and internet articles, psychiatry

Marlon Wayans on Robin Williams – Iatrogenic Death?

Marlon Wayans on Robin Williams’ Suicide.

Whatever the reasons behind Robin Williams’ death, there will be a stunned, grieving family, looking for answers. Not surprisingly, the media have gone into overdrive, blaming his death on financial pressure, depression and even a recent diagnosis of parkinsons disease. Yet going on the facts provided, there may be an equally obvious cause.

Marlon Wayans, an American comedian and actor/director has publicly said what a lot of us were thinking. Did Robin Williams die from an antidepressant-induced suicide? (Courtesy of @FusionLiveTV) It’s great to see Marlon Wayans voicing his opinion, putting his neck on the line without any fear of repercussions; good for him. Makes a change from (or a welcome addition to) Dr David Healy and the CEP.

Rest in peace Mr Williams.