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  /   Tuesday March 23, 2004  

The FDA wants manufacturers of antidepressants to carry warnings of a risk of suicide when starting antidepressants. It appears that manufacturers are going to comply. Although I am concerned about the way they are often given out like candy, as a pharmacist, I have mixed feelings about the warning.

Do people on antidepressants commit suicide? I’m sure they do if they have depression. As the article mentions, it’s hard to say if the drugs actually worsen the depression or if this is something that they would have likely done anyway. I wonder if the patients who had the problems were told what to expect from the medication. Every antidepressant that I know of takes about 3-4 weeks to start working. There are patients who stop taking their antidepressants after a week because “they don’t work.”

Compliance is also an issue. Do we know that those patients who contemplated or attempted suicide were taking their medication? Studies have shown that patients who have severely painful diseases are no more compliant with therapy than other patients.

Then again, these drugs really aren’t for everyone. I was amazed at the number of prescriptions for them we filled when I did my retail rotation in school. The problem with them is that they don’t solve the underlying problems. Sometimes, the emotions are so strong that people need relief before they can begin to deal with the other problems. Other people have a genuine brain chemistry problem. However, these drugs are overused.

Category: Posts imported from Danger! Falling Brainwaves, Uncategorized



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