|"Lifesavers or Active Placebos?"|
" . . . Marcia Angell, MD, Senior Lecturer on Social Medicine at Harvard Medical School and former Editor-in-Chief of The New England Journal of Medicine . . . contend[s] that clinical trials have failed to find antidepressants effective at all in mild to moderate depression; that many psychiatric drugs have devastating adverse effects, especially in children and when used long-term . . . Antidepressants and other psychiatric drugs, Angell charged, “are greatly overused, mainly because of the pharmaceutical industry’s influence on the psychiatric profession.” She also criticized the quality of clinical research in psychiatry as “especially poor” and the DSM as lacking validity, ever widening the scope of mental disorders and justifying “the use of psychoactive drugs.". . .”Harsh, Dr. Angell . . . I thought I was tough nut! But it sounds to me like all your words are bit, well I'll just leave this to the Professionals -
Peter Kramer, MD, Clinical Professor of Psychiatry and Human Behavior at Brown University and author of "Listening to Prozac" and "Against Depression" . . . offered a spirited defense of antidepressants in his op-ed rebuttal to Angell and others. “It is dangerous for the press to hammer away at the theme that antidepressants are placebos. They’re not. To give the impression that they are is to cause needless suffering." . . .The article continues to respond to each of the accusations, backing it all up with some pretty incredible research. Though, I think the most important point is summed up by Dr. Kramer. As for the over-prescribing caused by pharmaceutical's supposed death-grip on Psychiatry -
". . . in the August 1, 2011, issue of "Health Affairs", researchers from Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health found that much of the growth in antidepressant use can be attributed to prescribing by non-psychiatrist providers without any ac-companying psychiatric diagnosis. . . While there are data suggesting that both underuse and overuse of psychiatric medications occur. . .Thomas Insel, MD, director of the NIMH, said a more critical issue is that “only about half of those with major depression receive care."