well, I agree that “failing is where we are already” is correct - I do think that the risk of false positives is pretty dramatic and it would be a Very Bad Thing if it is implemented and what it nets are primarily non-dangerous or not-ill people with a fondness for firearms.
A whole lot of “Minority Report” in that article.
Where’s my foil hat?
Here you go @45IPAC
This is my perception of part of what is contributing to mental issues today. I am not a doctor, just expressing what I have researched and observed.
Doctors are prescribing SNRI (examples: Pristique, Cymbalta, Effexor), SSRI (examples: Lexapro, Paxil), and NDRI (Wellbutrin) medications with no understanding of how these medications are going to affect the patient. Every one of these medications has start-up and cessation side effects that make many patients have suicidal and/or aggressive ideations. In addition many go through “waves” and “windows” of mental and physical periods that are so bad they even have a name: Protracted Antidepressant Withdrawal Syndrome (PAWS). A quick internet search will report these symptoms last for weeks, but in reality they can last for years, totally debilitating the individual both physically and mentally.
There is DNA testing available that are able to predict which antidepressants are absorbed as intended for any given individual (example: GeneSight). The tests are not perfect, but they are better than shooting in the dark – no pun intended. Regardless, antidepressant DNA testing is rarely used to assist in selecting which drug(s) might be beneficial for the patient. Instead the patient is sent on a roller coaster of different ones to see how they might work out. Sometimes they get lucky, sometimes they don’t – here try one of these …
Absorbing as intended is a more complicated concept than it might look on the surface. Let’s use water soluble Vitamin B as an example. If you give your body more Vitamin B than it needs, it just flushes the excess out and all is well. Antidepressants are more like your fat soluble vitamins – give your body too much fat soluble vitamins and they become toxic. Still not such a big deal as side-effects (fat soluble vitamins) are just muscle weakness, fatigue, nausea, diarrhea, and bleeding. Side effects are a little more serious with antidepressants.
So, lets say you are prescribed 30mg/day of Cymbalta, but your body does not utilize “as intended”. Your body builds up a residual available supply of Cymbalta that is eventually too much for you to handle. This could take months or years to occur. You start having panic or anxiety attacks. The Doctor ups your script to 60mg a day. You see where this is going. I personally think it is a crime for a doctor to prescribe antidepressants without a DNA test to provide guidance. But, what do I know?
This whole gun violence issue is media inflated. Homicide by guns have dropped 43 % since 1992. Mass shootings overall are down over the last 40 years. CAFE standards which since 1975 have forced automakers to build lighter vehicles with thinner sheet metal and no more chassis’ have been responsible according to several studies including one from Harvard have killed over 140,000 people that would have lived in a heavier vehicle and over 600,000 maimed or crippled. The gun issue being pushed by leftist and the media are an effort to disarm law abiding citizens since none of the proposals would affect gun crimes or mass shootings.
Having had a family member go through a full meltdown, and watched as doctors yanked them off one drug and put them on another with no regard for withdrawal times and protocols and no treatment for side effects, I’d agree that its criminal, abusive, and malpractice. It’s also commonly accepted practice and theres no appetite among doctors to give the second opinion needed to get any legal traction on it. And it will absolutely make swiss cheese of your brain.
That said, among school shooters the antidepressant drugs dont appear to be a major component of what went wrong. I haven’t seen reliable stats on other mass shooters, but while I think it’s a problem, I’m not sure how prevalent it actually is.
I think @KED may be right that the problem is one of distortion of the risk and prevalence of the problem, exacerbated by the 24/7 news cycle notoriety and its consequent fallout… copycat shooters.
@KED — I’ve not seen these stats before. Can you point me to the sources where I can read more? Thanks.
If we’re ever going to do anything serious to reduce mass shootings and spree killings it’s going to have to start with some reforms with respect to mental health and access to guns.
As long as we put due process first and foremost I’m willing to give serious consideration to any proposals to deal with the problem.
Shooting after shooting we see in the days following that most of these guys were “ticking time bombs” most of whom had long been identified as violent and mentally ill yet nothing was done.
Those who are a clear threat need to be arrested, adjudicated, committed and evaluated and then either put into some form long term custodial treatment or prison.
I think most of them could probably be dealt with in a supervised living arrangement like we have for the retarded where they live pretty well independently but with on site supervision, counseling and training.
Only a fraction are so seriously troubled and dangerous that they need to be locked up in state mental hospitals or prisons.
We have a lot of people blaming the drugs used to treat mental illness rather than the mental illness that is being treated which is completely bassackwards.
We definitely went through a period in the 90’s where drugs like Prozac were being heavily abused to try and treat normal teenage development instead of teaching discipline to placate public schools and that was wrong on numerous levels.
Teachers and school nurses demanding that kids be medicated or kicked out of school was an abuse of power and a violation of every ethical code I can imagine but we’re well beyond that time.
Unfortunately psychiatry and psychology are still in their infancy as our understanding of the human brain and it’s physiology are still woefully poor but we’re making strides every day.
There’s also a serious problem with the two professions being infested with ideological leftists that seem to have lost their own grip on reality in many ways thinking that somehow we’ll all be better off by treating the mentally ill as normal and asking the rest of us to give up our own rights to make the world safer for them. Again, that is completely bassakwards…
We need serious reforms within both those professions and in the mental health systems as well as the judicial system.
It does no god to identify these problem people and then have the judiciary dump them back on the street where they inevitably just get worse and worse and eventually harm themselves or others.
Unfortunately there are no easy answers and it’s going to take systemic changes from the ground up.
A lot of people are getting help for mental illness, but the drugs used to treat them are causing more problems than solutions. It’s not bassackwards if the treatment is causing the problems to worsen.
Anti-depressants can cause suicidal thoughts in a lot of people. Those are people who are seeking help for depression and the medication they’re prescribed is making it worse.
Who determines someone is a clear threat? A judge? A psychiatrist? A teacher? A parent? “Those who are a clear threat” is exactly what the red flag laws are trying to address, however there is no way to know if someone is really a clear threat. This is back to the discussion of Minority Report, we cannot predict someone’s future behavior nor should we be punishing someone for something they might do in the future.
Not everyone with special needs requires supervised living arrangements. There are varying levels of mental disability and no two people are alike.
No, if they were actually causing more problems than they are solving they would all have long ago been pulled off of the market. A small percentage of patients have negative side effects.
We’ve had a system in place for committals for over a hundred years.
Your family or the DA puts you in front of a judge and requests a 72hr eval by at least two psychiatrists, you may have your own as well if you desire.
At the end of the eval there is a 2nd hearing where their findings are presented to the judge and the judge decides if there is to be a longer commitment.
Following the 2nd, there is another hearing at which time the status is again determined and if a long term commitment is ordered there are periodic reviews at six month or yearly intervals or whatever the judge decides to reevaluate whether the patient needs to remain in custodial care.
For some, they are causing more problems than they are solving. And for others those same drugs are helping them immensely, that’s why they’re not taken off of the market. That is why there are so many different types of anti-depressants. People don’t all react the same to different medications.
For instance, please do not give me penicillin because I am deathly allergic to it. But for someone else, it’s a lifesaver.
You’re very right when you say we when through a time when Prozac was being abused, but that doesn’t mean some didn’t need it.
It is a very small percentage of the population that is committing mass shootings.
just going to say that is not true… there is big money invested in some of these drugs and they are not easily challenged and removed. Additionally, if doctors don’t follow things like stepdown protocols, it’s on the doctor not the drug company. My personal experience is that multiple doctors completely ignored any stepdown protocol and simply pulled one drug and started a different one. The variety of drugs and classes of drugs prescribed for my family member over a 2 year period, and the frequency with which they were changed, and the absolute disregard for withdrawal side effects is absolutely part of what destroyed this person’s brain… every change exacerbated symptoms. A large number of those symptoms were textbook withdrawal issues, and then different drugs were prescribed to address the emergent symptoms and the underlying problem was never addressed.
That’s the doctors, as well as the drugs. That is the real way this is done, but because the report of the side effect is going to be specifically excluded from the statistics - since the doctor didn’t follow protocol - the impact of the drug is not evaluated in determining the drugs safety. Some f these drugs are fads, some are heavily marketed to doctors - without sufficient emphasis on their risks and side effects - and in that environment it is not possible to conclude the drugs are “safe”.
Yes, “For Some”, not for the vast majority being treated.
The drugs in question are being prescribed to people with depression and anxiety disorders, those conditions when severe lead to murders and suicides.
Those drugs when given to “normal people” don’t cause psychosis, but occasionally drugs intended to help psychiatric patients do no good at all or may even have the exact opposite effect making the condition worse.
It isn’t the drug that is the cause though, it’s the underlying condition.
There are certain common drugs I can’t either like Tylenol III with Codine as it makes me absolutely psychotic, I have the equivalent of a violent acid trip where demons are coming to kill me. but that’s a whole different class of drugs.
I spent a good portion of my life in Pharmacies and have a deep background in Pharmacology and I simply hate to see the drugs blamed for the problem when it’s the underlying condition they are prescribed to treat that is the problem.
Unfortunately medicine is still at least as much art as it is science.
All it takes is one class action lawsuit to get a whole class of drugs taken off of the market and the FDA monitors closely the trials and any subsequent reports of side serious side effect reports as do armies of plaintiff atty’s looking for a rich pay out.
Even a small number of people with serious side effects can justify getting a drug taken off of the market.
We had a wonderful drug on the market back in the 90’s called Seldane but a handful of serious reactions to it when taken in combination with another drug got it jerked from the market overnight simply over the threat of lawsuits.
Your family member’s problem was a problem with the prescribers/doc’s involved who failed to follow the best practices and common protocols.
Sometimes those problems arise simply because of patients going to multiple doctors and not eveyone being aware of what the patient was already on. We had a similar circumstance with a close family friend who was using multiple doctors and multiple pharmacies, not purposely but it ended up causing him to completely lose his mind in a few months ending up first in a long term nursing home and finally a mental institution.
Dad got involved along with a friend who was an internal med’s specialist and they figured out the combination of nearly a dozen drugs he was on was the whole problem.
They carefully weaned him off and detoxed him over the course of six or eight weeks and he walked out completely normal and remained sane and healthy until his natural death nearly thirty years later at the age of almost a hundred.
Medical mistakes like yours and ours are the third leading cause of death in the US.
Evaluating doctors and care is like self defense, if something doesn’t feel right, or is making the hair on your neck stand up something is probably wrong and you should take appropriate action quickly.
Not going to go around on this anymore, and by the way, you are not in a position to judge what happened. You were not there, you did not witness what I did, or interact with the doctors. You have no basis for forming an opinion on what happened.
Dealing with the FDA, including what gets included or excluded for reporting and study stats is a chunk of what I do for a living. I do know what I’m talking about on both the personal and professional fronts.
@wildrose you know we have a mutual respect. And you also know there’s a line. And I’m finding you over it. Not going to box on this any further. Just being clear and direct so you’ll hear me.
I can only go off of what you told us on the subject.
My personal experience is that multiple doctors completely ignored any stepdown protocol and simply pulled one drug and started a different one. The variety of drugs and classes of drugs prescribed for my family member over a 2 year period, and the frequency with which they were changed, and the absolute disregard for withdrawal side effects is absolutely part of what destroyed this person’s brain… every change exacerbated symptoms. A large number of those symptoms were textbook withdrawal issues, and then different drugs were prescribed to address the emergent symptoms and the underlying problem was never addressed.
I’ve got a lot of experience there particularly dealing with both the doctors and drug reps and the companies involved. Our family ran pharmacies from 1928 until my father died in 2012 including two very large hospital pharmacies filling well north of 500 scripts a day so I know quite a bit about the approval process and monitoring that follows.
Nothing personal about it, just sharing information and discussing.