GSK and The Miracle Med – The Happy Horny Skinny Pill

Skinny fat pic

An article in Sunday’s Telegraph ‘could antidepressants be ruining your sex life?’ concerned the use of widely-prescribed SSRIs (Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors) and the associated loss of libido. The article rightly refers to statistics that estimate between 30-70 per cent of SSRI consumers will be affected with some form of sexual dysfunction – despite their much-argued efficacy. According to Peter Gøtzsche, Cochrane scientist, “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.” 

However, the Telegraph article also conveyed common misconceptions into the psychopharmacological workings of antidepressants. In a nutshell – by increasing the levels of happy neurotransmitter serotonin, this effectively lifts overall mood but as a result of this increased serotonin level, your libido will decrease along with the ability to orgasm. It seems, despite there being no way of quantifying serotonin (at least not when alive), belief in ‘the chemical imbalance myth’ still prevails.

Nevertheless, leaving aside the legend of the chemical imbalance, the article also discusses another ‘libido-friendly’ alternative to SSRIs, GlaxoSmithKline’s Bupropion/Wellbrutin. The author seemingly expounds the virtues of this drug, marketed in the U.S. as Wellbutrin (an antidepressant) and Zyban (an anti-smoking drug) in the U.S. and Europe. Excerpt:

“It seems that instead of dampening desire, Wellbutrin can increase libido and suppress appetite, earning it the nickname of the ‘happy, sexy, skinny pill’.  

Sounds like the perfect pill, if it actually worked. In case anyone was contemplating doing a bit of self-diagnosing and self-medicating via the internet (as the article reports many U.K. women are doing), there are other factors that just might put you off. In fact, some crucial Wellbutrin-related adverse effects were omitted from the article, f0r example, some very serious psychological effects: unusual thoughts and behaviors, increased risk of suicidal behaviour, aggression, delusions, seizures, hallucinations, paranoia, confusion and manic episodes.

In reality, this so-called ‘happy, sexy, skinny pill’ has been plagued with problems. Following significant incidences of seizures, Wellbutrin was taken off the market shortly after its initial approval – but re-introduced a few years later at a lower dose. In 2009, following numerous suicides, the FDA (US Medicine’s Regulator) was so concerned about the psychological effects of Wellbrutin/Zyban in smokers, that they ordered a further black-box warning to be attached. The following year (2010), a study by Moore et al ‘Prescription Drugs Associated with Reports of Violence Towards Others’ found Wellbutrin to be one of the 31 drugs disproportunately associated with violence.

Furthermore, as for being nickednamed the ‘happy, sexy, skinny pill’ there is one main reason for this – money. In fact, GSK actively promoted Wellbutrin as ‘the happy, horny, skinny pill’ and paid handsomely for promoting the drug for unapproved uses. In an action taken by the U.S. justice department, allegations included a myriad of wrongdoings, including that GSK hired PR firms to promote off-label use, paid doctors, organised sham advisory boards, sham ‘independent’ medical education events and provided samples to pediatric psychiatrists for unapproved use in children (despite knowing it increased the risk of suicide in this age group).

On one particular radio show, well-known tv-doc, Drew Pinsky, said it was possible that Wellbrutin could have caused a female caller’s ’60 orgasms a night’ (Sure, you’d be worn out – and I’m not entirely sure why this wouldn’t be conceived as a downright affliction). Anyway, dear Dr Drew never clarified this or mentioned that he was paid, very, very handsomely, for his services to GSK. In the months before the radio show, GSK indirectly paid him $275,000 – a fact not disclosed to the listeners. Thus, an internal GSK report determined that the media campaigns pushing Welbutrin’s ‘happy, horny, skinny’ effects, reached a total audience of 387 million. It would be surprising if anyone hasn’t heard of it, even on ths side of the Atlantic.

In case you need further convincing, in 2012, GSK was fined 3 billion dollars for these illegal and dubious practices, including for the off-label and harmful promotion of Wellbutrin in children and adults. Nevertheless, as the sales for Wellbutrin during that same period, were reportedly $5.9 billion, GSK made a tidy profit. The collateral damage of  harmed kids and unsuspecting consumers went seemingly unnoticed.

So, I would be very careful of that so-called miracle cure – you just might get more than you bargained for. ‘Sickness’ is a very lucrative business and all pharmaceuticals companies are corporate entities, ones that are totally reliant on sickness, not health. GSK just so happens to be bigger than most and one that has shown itself time and again to use greater bullying tactics.

Telegraph Article – Could Antidepressants be Killing your Sex Life?

New York Times – Suicide Warnings for 2 Anti-Smoking Drugs.

Prescription Drugs Associated with Reports of Violence Towards Others, Study.

Justice Department Complaint, courtesy of KHN, here.

New York Times – Glaxo Agrees to pay $3 Billion in Fraud Settlement.

GSK: Glaxo, Study 329 and Keller..

Study 329

                                                        Study 329.

Let me explain a little about Study 329. This was a study done in the 90s to study the efficacy of paroxetine (aka Paxil/Seroxat) in teenagers. The study was conducted by Professor Martin Keller (et al) of Brown University and funded by GlaxoSmithKline (GSK, makers of Paroxetine). The findings that Paroxetine was ‘safe and effective for adolescents’ led to the widespread medicating of children with Paroxetine and other Selective Serotonin ReUptake Inhibitors (SSRIs).

What surfaced later was that the study was in fact ghostwritten by a PR company for GSK and that far from being ‘well tolerated’ in children, Paroxetine actually caused children to become suicidal – a matter which was hidden by the drug company. If the SSRI era will stand as one of the most shameful in the history of medicine (David Healy), then Study 329 will as stand the most shameful in the history of Brown University and evidenced based medicine. The integrity of medical professionals and medical journals who publish ghostwritten articles that subsequently causes harm (in this case to children) must also be called into question. According to Shelly Jofre of the BBC, in one year alone, the lead author, Professor Keller, earned half a million dollars from drug companies, including GSK.

It’s interesting to note that the journal in question, The Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, has consistently refused to retract the study. Furthermore, Brown University, despite huge controversy (and huge fines for GSK), has refused to reconsider its position and back a retraction. GSK’s fraudulent marketing of Paroxetine (and other drugs) led to the largest health care fraud settlement in U.S. history – 3 billion dollars.

I wrote to the President of Brown University, Christina Paxson (in 2013), regarding the University’s inaction with Study 329. She replied:

“As you note, there have been questions raised about Study 329 for a number of years.  The U.S. Justice Department’s settlement with GlaxoSmithKline and, most recently, the decision by the editors of the Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry not to retract the original paper have brought it back into the news. Brown University takes allegations of research misconduct very seriously.  Research integrity is a core value for Brown, and the University has put in place policies and procedures that respond forthrightly to any credible allegation of impropriety.  These policies and procedures support thorough and impartial reviews as warranted while preserving confidentiality for all participants.  I realize that the University’s concern for the integrity and confidentiality of the process can be misconstrued as inactivity.  I am satisfied that the University does not hesitate to take action when warranted.”

Hmm..

So there you have it – a little background into Study 329. So why bring it up now?

Study 329 has been re-written by a team of independent experts, including David Healy and Micky Nardo (aka 1boringoldman) et al. Having spent years trawling through the data of the original study, they have now rewritten its true findings. Yesterday, in what was a momentous occasion for parents who have lost a child to Paroxetine, the British Medical Journal (BMJ) published Restoring Study 329: efficacy and harms of paroxetine and imipramine in treatment of major depression in adolescence’. 

You will be shocked to note that GSK intentionally hid the hugely increased risk of suicidality in children, subsequently causing many deaths. The re-analysed trial found that Paroxetine “is neither safe nor effective for adolescents with depression”; that at least 12 out of 93 children taking the drug had developed suicidal thoughts (Reuters); with one child being admitted due to severe suicidal and homicidal ideation towards his parents (New York Times).

I don’t like using bad language, or to be more truthful, my mother doesn’t like it (I know, I know, I’m feckin 50), yet occasionally nothing else will suffice. GSK, the absolute sociopathic ba**ards, put childrens’ lives at risk, causing many to kill themselves and leaving their parents to endure a pain and grief that no human being should ever have to suffer – for profit. Furthermore, Brown University has actively allowed this situation to continue rather than admit it was wrong. Shame on all concerned.

For more information see Restoring Study 329, Davidhealy.org and 1boringoldman.

See also GSK‘s mission statement.. ‘to help people to do more, feel better, live longer’. For the sake of my poor mother – no further comment!

GlaxoSmithSwine

Integrity: the quality of being honest and having strong moral principles; moral uprightness (Oxford Dictionary).

Ah yes, you remember GlaxoSmithKline? Remember the line in their Irish ‘Better Together‘ campaign “GSK wants to be healthcare partner of choice, valued for our expertise and trusted for our integrity.” In my last post about GSK, I wondered exactly what ‘integrity’ they meant. Bear in mind GSK were fined $3 BILLION in the US for, among other things, illegally promoting their drug for children; despite being aware that the drug could cause the same children to become suicidal.

Another of the charges included actively concealing the dangers of the drug Avandia. An estimated 100,000 heart attacks, strokes, deaths and cases of heart failure’ were caused by Avandia before the drug was finally taken off the market. After agreeing to pay the $3 billion dollar fine, GSK boss Andrew Witty said he was “very sorry that we have had to deal with the echoes of the past” and “We’re determined this is never going to happen again.”

Well guess what? GSK has again been been found guilty of illegally promoting another of their drugs, this time their platelet drug Revolade. The Pharma Times reported on this story yesterday. It seems that GSK are sorry alright, sorry for getting caught!!

Integrity? I think GSK’s ‘PR’ department should really get a new dictionary; their current one must have misprints!

GlaxoSmithKline awarding the Irish media? No thanks!

‘RTE Radio 1’ has a Facebook page which proudly states “We’re delighted that RTÉ took home three awards at this year’s GSK Irish Medical Media Awards.” Two of the awards were won for documentaries, one on depression and another for clinical trials involving children.

Seriously though? That’s GSK; GlaxoSmithkline! Why is a pharmaceutical company (which has consistently been proven corrupt), sponsoring Ireland’s ‘Medical Media Awards’ and why is this acceptable?

Here’s an Irish article from 1998 which refers to Seroxat/Paxil called ‘Pill to melt shyness‘. The article states that people suffering from this ‘crippling’ illness ‘aren’t aware that they have such a condition’ and that ‘By itself, social phobia doesn’t bring on suicide but combined with other psychiatric illnesses victims are six times more likely than the general population to kill themselves‘. OK, so these poor unfortunate sufferers may go on to kill themselves from shyness and taking Seroxat should fix the problem? The article further states that the time this illness or ‘social phobia’ usually strikes is between the ages of 14 and 16 years old. Hang on a sec!! Panorama did a series of TV documentaries ‘outing’ GSK and the notorious Seroxat. They revealed, among lots of corrupt practices, that in one of GSK’s drug trials, adolescents were six times more likely to become suicidal after taking it. So the illness increases the risk of suicide by 6% and the cure by another 6%; a better mathematician than I would tell you, that’s not a good percentage for a so-called cure!

In July of this year GSK were fined $3 billion in the US for, among other things, illegally promoting this drug for children, despite being aware that the same drug could cause these children to kill themselves.

GSK’s ‘Better Together‘ campaign states…” to ensure Irish patients and consumers can get access to the health care they need, GSK recognise that we must work in partnership with Government, policy makers, healthcare professionals, patient and citizen groups.” I bet they do! Also this, “GSK wants to be healthcare partner of choice, valued for our expertise and trusted for our integrity.” What integrity is that exactly?

Ok, forgetting the fact that they have caused numerous ‘Seroxat induced’ deaths in children and adults; maybe it’s the ‘Avandia Scandal‘ integrity they’re talking about? Avandia is the drug that the FDA scientist ‘Dr. David Graham’ said ‘may have caused as many as 100,000 heart attacks, strokes, deaths and cases of heart failure’ before the drug was finally taken off the market. GSK still clung to the mantra the drug was safe though. Never admit anything? Surely GSK is the last company (apart from Lundbeck) that the Irish Medical Media should associate with? In my humble opinion, the medical media, whose job it is to investigate, should have done a little research into the company who was sponsoring these awards. Then they may have had some integrity of their own and told GSK to stick their awards where the sun doesn’t shine!

https://leoniefennell.wordpress.com/2012/07/04/irish-reports-on-gsks-fraudulent-marketing/

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/07/03/business/glaxosmithkline-agrees-to-pay-3-billion-in-fraud-settlement.html?pagewanted=all

http://fiddaman.blogspot.ie/2012/10/gsk-flying-flag-of-hypocrisy.html

Irish reports on GSK’s fraudulent marketing.

Following yesterdays news that GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) has been fined $3 billion for fraudulently marketing their products, I found the differences in Irish reporting and worldwide reports quite frightening. In the Irish Times and RTE News articles it reported, that among GlaxoSmithKline’s wrongdoing, was illegally marketing Paxil to children. OK SO FAR!

NO-WHERE in either Article does it say that the reason this marketing was so abhorrent, is because this drug increases the risk of suicide in children, a fact well known to GSK and the regulators (Under 25’s).

In contrast to the Irish reports, the New York Times and The UK Independent both include the fact that this drug can cause suicide in young people. I wonder why Irish people are not getting the same facts.

The other surprise was that no-where in these Irish Articles did it say that Paxil is marketed as Seroxat in Ireland. The Irish public would probably have never heard of Paxil but would certainly have heard of the publicity, mostly bad, surrounding Seroxat.

I recommend, that if anyone really wants to know the true appalling facts surrounding GSK, then there is no better place to get information than Bobby and Truthman’s websites.

Irish reporting: Irish Times Article and The RTE News Article.

UK and US reporting: UK Independent Article and The New York Times Article.

Interestingly Seroxat was again in the Irish papers (Irish Independent) this week, named as Seroxat not Paxil, here “Man attacked terrified party guest with sword after mixing alcohol and medication”.

Update: What I should have made clearer is that the European suicide warnings with these drugs are for under 25’s. If anyone has read the stories on this blog and others, age has nothing to do with a drug-induced suicide. Ask Brian PalmerRobert Raines or Donald Schell (Prozac, Celexa and Seroxat/Paxil)

Lucozade linked to Hyperactivity, sad but true!

Seroxat sufferers-stand up and be counted. Monday, March 08, 2010

Glaxo’s Lucozade Linked to Hyperactivity


The Mail Online is reporting that Lucozade manufacturers, GlaxoSmithKline, are struggling to find a replacement for the colouring agent Sunset Yellow, which is used in bottles of Lucozade.

A number of other suspect food colourings were found in Lucozade after a study by Southampton University, commissioned by the Food Standards Agency, identified ‘psychological harm’ caused by the additives.

The Mail writes:

The manufacturers, Glaxo-SmithKline, are struggling to find a replacement for the colouring agent Sunset Yellow, which is among a number of suspect food additives.
Until the chemical is removed, the company has decided to put a warning label on Lucozade bottles which reads: ‘Sunset Yellow may have an adverse effect on activity and attention in children’.

That the drink, which is marketed with images of sports activities, is to carry a health warning may be embarrassing for the company.

They found that healthy children became hyperactive when fed a cocktail of the additives.

The Mail adds:

A GSK spokesman said the drink was not marketed at children under 16, adding: ‘Due to technical difficulties, we have not yet been able to remove Sunset Yellow, although our efforts continue.

This news comes on the back of a particularly bad week for GlaxoSmithKline after they came under pressure on the footsie. Rumours of a $1bn and $6bn liability regarding the company’s diabetes drug Avandia, after it emerged recently that the FDA is investigating the cardiovascular risk profile of the drug.

Read the new book, The Evidence, However, Is Clear…The Seroxat Scandal, Link. By Bob Fiddaman

Pharmaceutical Company Penalties: Worst Offenders sees Glaxo sit top of the pile with almost double the financial penalties imposed on them compared to their closest rivals, Pfizer. Nice Company!

https://leoniefennell.files.wordpress.com/2010/12/11.jpg?w=259

GlaxoSmithKline (GSK)

GlaxoSmithKline (GSK)

I don’t really want to go off track about Lundbeck and Shane. I really just want people to be aware that this company (GSK) has other products which  include CALPOL, ribena and Lucozade. Would you trust them with your babies health?

Wednesday, July 21, 2010
by Mike Adams, the Health Ranger
Editor of NaturalNews.com

Sometimes the degree of fraud that takes place in the drug industry is so mind-boggling that it’s hard to determine whether drug regulators and the media are paying attention at all. For the past several months, drug giant GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) has been under scrutiny for tampering with clinical trial data for its diabetes drug, Avandia. Reports show that the company lied about Avandia’s safety in order to get the drug approved and keep it on the market. But despite numerous pieces of credible evidence and witness testimonies that have all come forward — all of which reveal GSK’s deception — an FDA advisory panel is still recommending that Avandia remain on the market.