Reprinted from www.libertylobby.org, home of The SPOTLIGHT archive
Prozac Makers Suppress Drug Horror Stories
The most commonly prescribed antidepressant drugs in use today are Prozac or drugs which work on the same principle as Prozac -- Zoloft, Luvox, Paxil, Celexa, and Sarafen (the most recent addition to the Prozac family that is being prescribed to women with PMS).
These drugs are classified as "selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs)" and are designed to block the metabolism of serotonin, thereby increasing brain levels of this neurotransmitter. Medical research and experience have shown that the theory behind the use of these drugs is invalid.
People who are diagnosed psychotic or schizophrenic or suffer mood disorders, organic brain disease, mental retardation, autism and Alzheimer's disease commonly have elevated level of serotonin. Conversely, people who are anxious, suicidal, violent, reckless, impulsive, hostile, substance abusive, exhibitionistic and experience nightmares and insomnia have low levels of the metabolism of serotonin (which also produces high serotonin).
SSRIs increase brain levels of serotonin and decrease the metabolism of serotonin leading to any or all of the above results.
Dr. Candace Pert of the Georgetown University Medical Center and former head of the brain chemistry department of the National Institute of Health and Dr. Soloman Snyder, a neuroscientist from John Hopkins University, co-developed the serotonin binding process in the mid 1970s. Their work led to the development of SSRIs.
Dr. Pert accuses the medical profession of oversimplifying the action of these drugs by claiming they only produce their effects on the brain.
"I am alarmed at the monster that John Hopkins neuroscientist Solomon Snyder and I created when we discovered the simple binding assay for drug receptors 25 years ago," said dr. Pert on the October 20, 1997 edition of Time magazine. "Prozac and other antidepressant serontonin-receptor-active compounds may also cause cardiovascular problems in some susceptible people after long-term use, which has become common practice despite the lack of safety studies."
An excerpt from a letter to Dr. Ann Blake Tracy, author of Prozac: Panacea or Pandora? Supports Dr. Pert's concerns that long-term use of SSRIs can cause long-term health complications.
"I caught the last part of your presentation on Radio Station KEX in Portland while flipping trough the dial last night. I was flabbergasted to hear you speak of the horrible potential side effects from Prozac, which I have been taking for approximately four years, particularly since I have been diagnosed recently with cardiomyalgia, severe artery disease, congestive heart failure and also fibromyalgia. I was a very 'well' person prior to taking Prozac and am now exhausted all the time, with horrible aching joints and considerable pain and a massive heart problem. The adverse cardiovascular effects from Prozac, the one drug in this class of drugs out long enough to have some what of a track record, are listed in the drug information sheets put out by the manufacturer. The 'frequent' effects listed are hemorrhage and hypertension. The 'infrequent' effects include very serious adverse effects: congestive heart fallure, myocardial infaret, tachycardia, angina pectoris, arrhythmia, hypotension, migraine syncope and vascular headache."
Serotonin receptors exist throughout the body as well as in the brain which is why every aspect of out body's physiology is affected by these drugs.
But even more revealing is the studies on Prozac leading to its licensing nearly 20 years ago. The following came from Eli Lilly's own studies on Fluoxetine (Prozac):
Prozac induced violence and suicide? The following factors were brought to the attention of the FDA but were ignored, discounted or trashed by them: 1) Lilly's analysis improperly excluded 76 out of 97 suicides. Dr Bruce Stadel, Chief of the FDA Epidemiology Branch in 1990 stated that, "it is inappropriate in a safety analysis to exclude such a large proportion of cases." 2) Lilly admitted that its clinical trials were not designed for the prospective evaluation of suicidality" and that their trials specifically excluded patients with current suicidal ideation. 3)Lilly admitted that the rating scale used to assess suicidality in clinical trials was inadequate.
Since Prozac has been approved, however, the homicidal ad suicidal horrors of SSRIs have been forever imprinted on American culture. Every school shooting from Littleton, Colorado, to the most recent in Santee, California, can be traced to the use of these drugs.
Ingri Harkins writes for The Idaho Observer.