Thursday, September 01, 2005

Europe Regulators: No More SSRI for Kids

This just in from a CCHR press release:

August 31 2005: Europe’s Committee for Medicinal Products for Human Use (CHMP) has just issued the strongest warnings against child antidepressant use to date following a review of clinical trials that showed the drugs cause “suicidal behavior, including suicide attempts and suicidal ideation and/or related behavior like self-harm, hostility (predominantly aggression, oppositional behavior and anger) and mood lability [instability] in children and adolescents.” Due to the drugs dangerous side effects, the agency said they should not be prescribed to any under 18-year-old.

Worldwide sales of antidepressants reached more than $19.5 billion in 2002, but evidence continues to mount that clinical trial data was withheld from drug regulatory agencies such as the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) during the approval process.

An estimated 17 million children worldwide are prescribed some form of psychotropic (mind-altering) drug, with 8 million of these in the United States. Up to 2 million American children are prescribed the drugs condemned by the CHMP: Paxil, Effexor, Prozac, Luvox, Celexa, Lexapro, Zoloft, Remeron, and Strattera, another type of antidepressant, prescribed for “Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder,” a diagnosis plagued by controversy because there is no physical means to test for or diagnose it.

Since 1991, the Citizens Commission on Human Rights, a psychiatric watchdog group, and independent doctors and researchers have raised the alarm about many of these drugs causing suicide and violent behavior. Nine out of 13 school shooters in the United States were taking antidepressants or “ADHD” stimulants known to cause aggressive behavior. In October, the FDA finally ordered that a black box label be added to antidepressant information warning that the drugs cause suicide in children and adolescents.


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