What if… just what if… you were given a wrong diagnosis? Did you know that in a shocking study, it was found to be that 88% of the time, second opinions rarely agree with your first diagnosis? Were you also aware of the fact that If you are a female, statistics reveal that you your chances of being misdiagnosed are greater than a male. What if you even got several 2nd opinions that agreed or disagreed with your original diagnosis? What if the meds you were given have side effects that have been attributed to your diagnosis, yet were actually caused by the medications or treatment you were given? What if those side effects caused even more problems that were also blamed on that diagnosis and now you are taking more medications and going through more tests… perhaps even getting treatments that don’t seem to be making you any better? You’re getting worse and getting worse fast. Now, you have that original and potentially wrong diagnosis plus have been given an iatrogenic (doctor caused) disorder by ‘polypharamacy’. Polypharmacy means a disorder caused by too many drugs negatively interacting by causing too many additional conditions that were never there in the first place. Perhaps all of this is upsetting to you and you have revealed that upset to your doctor. Chances are that your doctor will now treat you for secondary depression, anxiety, insomnia or even psychosis, from your ‘reaction’ to all that is supposedly wrong with you. Now what? M
Have you ever considered that, maybe, just maybe, nothing is wrong with you at all and that whatever condition you may have had would have possibly run it’s course on it’s own or could have been easily treated with a natural alternative method? Could you have possibly been sucked into the vortex of iatrogenic harm (harm by doctors)? Have you been misdiagnosed and now this misdiagnosis has possibly snowballed you into hell where there are no answers… nothing makes sense even to your doctors… and you are now being treated only symptomatically with drugs that are making you worse? Could you now be suffering from something ‘doctor caused’ – aka an Iatrogenic disorder?
When you are sick, it is not always easy to find the right path forward. When your regular health care provider recommends surgery or a major treatment, it might be a good idea to get a second opinion after the Mayo Clinic reported that your doctor is wrong 88 percent of the time.
Even though the path to becoming a physician is long, with four years of college to get a bachelor’s degree, another four years of medical school, and three to seven more years of residency and fellowship training, experienced and well-trained doctors may still not get your diagnosis right. A second opinion may give you not only peace of mind, but also a second chance at survival.
When it comes to your health, two brains work better than one
The Mayo Clinic researchers examined 286 patient records of individuals who had decided to consult the Mayo Clinic’s General Internal Medicine Division in Rochester for a second opinion between 2009 and 2010. The group consisted of patients referred by nurse practitioners and physician assistants, along with an equal number of randomly selected physician referrals.
To determine the extent of diagnostic errors, the team compared the referring diagnosis to the final diagnosis. The researchers found that only 12 percent of patients received a correct first diagnosis, while nearly nine out of ten people (or 88 percent) who go for a second opinion, walk away with a refined or entirely new diagnosis from what they were first told. In 21 percent of all analyzed cases, the diagnosis was completely different than the first one, while 66 percent of patients walked away with a redefined diagnosis.
“Effective and efficient treatment depends on the right diagnosis. Knowing that more than 1 out of every 5 referral patients may be completely [and] incorrectly diagnosed is troubling — not only because of the safety risks for these patients prior to correct diagnosis, but also because of the patients we assume are not being referred at all,” said lead researcher James Naessens, Sc.D., a health care policy researcher at Mayo Clinic, in a statement.
Medical errors, now the leading cause of death in the US
According to a controversial study from Johns Hopkins University, medical errors, including misdiagnosis, are the leading cause of death in American hospitals. ProPublica, however, noted that this number might be higher since doctors don’t list medical errors on the death certificate, so the actual number of fatalities might be inaccurate.
With thousands of diseases, some with similar symptoms, it is not always easy to get a straightforward diagnosis from the first doctor’s visit, hence why a second opinion is so crucial to one’s health and survival. If we can learn anything from the Mayo Clinic’s study, then it is the fact that medical practices and diagnosis should be a more collaborative process. Doctors and other health care providers should work more closely together to make sure patients get the right diagnosis and proper treatment as fast as possible.
Despite the pervasiveness of diagnostic errors, which could be fatal, little attention has been given to improving the system of referrals. Dr. Naessens stated that referrals to advanced specialty care for undifferentiated problems are an essential component of patient care. While getting a second opinion might push the diagnostic costs up, a misdiagnosis could lead to delays in treatments and complications, which may result in the death of a patient.
Dr. Naessens, however, is pleased to see that the National Academy of Medicine is taking steps to improve diagnostic processes and error reduction. They called for dedicated federal funding and plan to further investigate the occurrence of diagnostic mistakes and find new ways to improve the process.
Today, I want to show you how accepting those dangerous prescriptions from your doctor is causing you to be equal to a heroin/cocaine abuser. Once you know that your doctor is giving you dangerous medications, it is up to you to make a change in your life or suffer torment, withdrawal, organ failure, seizures, stroke, heart attack and an early death.
We all know that when a person struts down to his or her drug dealer, we know that they’re willingly, knowingly and purposely after a high and are bound and determined to get it. We also know that they are fully aware that if they get caught using, they will spend some time in jail. Another known factor is that – most of the time – people sell their bodies in order to get that high because, without it, they will get violently sick and possibly die from withdrawal. Another given is that they are knowingly risking their lives every single time they use. Overdose, as everyone knows, is all too common.
So, what about Rx drugs that your doctor gives you?
- More people die from doctors’ prescription drugs than do people using Heroin and Cocaine combined.
- Prescription drugs such as Opiates, Benzodiazepines, Hypnotics (sleeping pills) and Stimulants (just to name a few categories) should NEVER be prescribed for more than 3 days – if at all. Antidepressants, antipsychotics and other psychotropic drugs should NEVER be prescribed by anyone other than a board certified psychiatrist; even then, you must consider whether or not this person needs to be hospitalized and evaluated in a mental health unit as these drugs cause suicidal and homicidal ideations.
- Doctors that offer you these drugs, outside of a hospital facility, and for more than 3 days, are basically drug dealers who wear white coats.
Do the patients who use Rx drugs seek after the same high as street drug users do?
- Absolutely YES! The addictive Rx drugs given to you by your doctor do not keep their intensity. In other words, the dose you take today will not have the same effect on you when you continue to take it for 2 weeks. That means that your doctor will most likely increase the dose or add another drug to potentiate (make stronger) it’s effect. As a matter of fact, many doctors, in order to keep you addicted, will add certain specific other drugs that will give give their patients the equivalent of a very potent ‘heroin high’.
- Dosages are raised by doctors or additional drugs are added because every few weeks, the effect and euphoria (or high) of these drugs dissipates. Keep in mind that these drugs, while becoming less effective, are stored in the body’s vital organs. This is the reason people ‘accidentally’ overdose and never see it coming.
Is it possible that Rx drug users could end up doing prison time or have to sell their bodies?
- Yes! It happens every day of the week. Why, you ask? The reason is that laws are getting tighter and doctors are being squeezed not to prescribe these types of drugs… especially Opiate painkillers. These days they can face professional discipline for misconduct, malpractice suits for iatrogenic addiction and death, and criminal criminal charges. So, what do the people do who are on these drugs and now suffer withdrawal? They hit the streets and buy heroin! Heroin is an opiate. Whether they are 12 or 90, they will start shooting up because the withdrawal is unbearable and they don’t want to be hospitalized for 14 days to detox. As we know, this is illegal. Being illegal, these people who have graduated from pills to heroin are now conducting themselves as other heroin abusers do, so they easily can and do end up with criminal charges.
What about withdrawal and accidental overdose? My doctor would never put me on drugs that would cause harm to me!
- Think again, my friends! Remember that nasty thing called ‘GREED’? Greed causes those who have the love of money to do crazy things. Just because some people have an MD, DO, PA, or NP after their names doesn’t mean they don’t or can’t love money! People who love money look for ways to make that money in a cushy, easy way. What’s easier than addicting patients to drugs? State laws mandate that these patients MUST come into the medical office monthly in order to get more pills. Insurances pay upward of $880 per 5 minute visit for the patient to get a new Rx. Multiply that by the average number of patients doctors have in the US per month. I’m not going to figure out the statistics for you… you can google that if you want; however, what I will tell you is that in 2012 (the most recent statistics available form the CDC), 259,000,000 (million) prescriptions were written for just Opioids alone!!!!!!!!! You do the math on how lucrative it is for doctors to prescribe these drugs and how they only have to spend 5 minutes with a patient to make upwards of $880.00 per month per patient. Don’t you wonder how your monster doctor affords all of those luxury vacations… new cars… huge houses (and multiple homes)… designer clothes… private schools… etc? I guess you’ve been reading my words here because you guessed it… it’s by prescribing addictive and mind altering drugs! Voila! One American dies every 19 minutes here in the US from a prescription overdose from addictive drugs prescribed by their doctor. IATROGENIC DEATH is now the #1 cause of accidental death in America. To me, it’s no accident when doctors know what these drugs do and prescribe them anyway. Even after a patient has experienced a massive overdose, their doctor will prescribe them to that same patient again when they get home from the hospital. That’s egregious since the chance of overdose is GREATER after an overdose has already occurred. For many, it only takes just one pill!!!
Motto of my post today? NEVER TRUST YOUR DOCTOR!
- Do the research – Look up the drugs yourself and ask your pharmacist for a package insert so that you can see all facts about the drugs.
- ask questions of pharmacists, naturopaths, google ‘dangers of (name of drug)’ and see what others have experienced and what remains hidden from patients.
- allow a window of time before accepting any Rx or procedure in order to get other opinions from doctors who are naturopaths.
- *******NEVER start with these drugs and you’ll never get addicted, you’ll never get dead before your time, and you’ll never suffer the evil ravages of taking them.
- Look for an MD or DO who is a Naturopath… seek natural alternatives.
- For pain, google LDN… an awesome way to control pain, many diseases and helps you sleep. It doesn’t ’cause’ anything in your body… it enables your body to heal itself.
By Gary G. Kohls, MD, guest to Natural Blaze
I recently had a dialogue with a person who had emailed me about a friend of hers who had been mis-treated for years by drug-prescribing psychiatrists. The psychiatrists – and their alarming and illogical drugging – had made him worse and worse and eventually totally disabled over the years. Because of the high probability that the drugs he had taken over the years – known to be both neurotoxic and addictive – were also brain-damaging and dementia-inducing, we discussed some things that perhaps could be helpful (see the information below).
The obvious major problem, according to the person who contacted me, was the fact that the patient had been continuously over-dosed with irrational cocktails of a multitude of dangerous psychiatric drugs. Since there were a number of lessons that I thought my readers could benefit from learning, I decided to make the letter into a Duty to Warn column.
Below is the essence of my last communication with the friend of the over-drugged patient.
“What a mess your friend’s so-called healers have made of his brain!! They are guilty, guilty, guilty of “first doing harm” rather than first doing NO harm (per the Hippocratic Oath). You tell me that he has been on SSRI antidepressants, psychostimulants, anti-psychotics, tranquilizers and mood stabilizers, which are the five categories of psychotropic drugs. A psychiatrist who has been using such a variety of drugs doesn’t know what he is doing , but what is worse is that he trusts the totally untrustworthy, amoral psychiatric drug companies way too much!
“No human being on earth would have responded any other way than how your friend has responded, what with being prescribed unknown combinations of brain-altering, brain-damaging synthetic drugs. Note that Big Pharma never does research involving more than one drug at a time even in the rat labs! What must come out of such corporate pseudo-research is bad science and therefore bad medicine!
“Below is the partial list of medications that you mentioned in your letter that your friend had taken at one time or another, usually, of course, in a cocktail of other drugs, any combination of which – as I mentioned above – has never been tested in either pre-clinical (animal lab) or clinical (human) trials for either safety or efficacy, either short-term or long-term.
“Zoloft, Effexor, Wellbutrin, Xanax, Concerta (36mg), Lamictal (as high as 900 mg), Lithium (only about a week as his psoriasis acted up), Depakote, modafinil, Ambien, Abilify, Zyprexa, Valium.”
1) Pfizer’s Zoloft, GlaxoSmithKline’s Wellbutrin and Pfizer’s Effexor are powerful and addictive so-called “antidepressant” drugs (which should more accurately have been called “agitation-inducing” drugs (but that wouldn’t have been good for Big Pharma’s business model). Most of them have been classed by the pharmaceutical industry as “selective serotonin reuptake pump inhibitors (SSRIs) – a very deceptive term because they are NOT selective to serotonin and they mess around with more organelles in the synapses of the brain than the reuptake pumps).
(Other examples of such drugs include Forest Lab’s Celexa, Lilly’s Cymbalta,Forest’s Lexapro, GlaxoSmithKline’s Paxil, Pfizer’s Pristiq, Lilly’s Prozac, Jazz’s Luvox, Merck’s Remeron, Lilly’s Symbyax, Bayer’s Yaz, and Lilly’s Sarafem.)
2) McNeil’s Concerta is a psychostimulant drug identical to Novartis’s Ritalin. They are in the class of drugs (FDA-approved for so-called ADHD or somnolence, including – irrationally – sleepiness caused by sleep deprivation!). These drugs are powerful and highly addictive dopamine and/or nor-epinephrine reuptake pump inhibitors that temporarily boost the level of those two transmitters in the synapse but at the same time dysregulate dopamine receptors as well as dopamine reuptake pumps.
(Other examples of such drugs include Shire’s Adderall, Shire’s Daytrana, Novartis’s Focalin, Shire’s Intuniv, UCB’s Metadate, Mallinckrodt’s Methylin, Cephalon’s Nuvigil, Lilly’s Strattera, Shire’s Vyvanse, Cephalon’s Provigil (modafinil), caffeine, nicotine, dexedrine, “uppers”, etc, that commonly cause mania, psychosis and sleep deprivation in addition to many other dangerous symptoms that can make ignorant or too-busy physicians think that the patient is mentally ill; rather than psychiatric drug-intoxicated.)
3) Eli Lilly’s Zyprexa, Janssen’s Abilify and Glaxo’s Lamictal, all so-called “anti-psychotic” drugs (which should more accurately have been called heavily-sedating major tranquilizers, which are seriously brain-altering drugs). These drugs are dopamine, norepinephrine and often serotonin blocking drugs that make victims feel dead inside. These drugs are also brain-damaging and highly dependency-inducing drugs that are difficult to stop taking, partly because one of the serious withdrawal symptoms is psychosis. Patients who have been given such drugs for off-label reasons such as for sleeping (never having been psychotic before taking the drug) have been known to have hallucinations and acute psychotic attacks during the withdrawal period!
(Other examples of such drugs include the now-generic Haldol, Prolixin, Mellaril, fluphenazine, perphenazine, prochlorperazine, thioridazine, GlaxoSmithKline’s Thorazine, Lilly’s Zyprexa, Astra-Zeneca’s Seroquel, Janssen’s Risperdal, Bristol-Myers Squibb’s Abilify, Pfizer’s Geodon, Novartis’s Clozaril, Novartis’s Fanapt, Janssen’s Invega and Merck’s Saphris).
4) Roche’s Valium, Pfizer’s Xanax and Sanofi Aventis’s Ambien are benzodiazepine-type drugs, which are powerful and highly addicting. They are the so-called “minor” tranquilizers and sleeping pills.
(Other examples include Valeant’s Librium, Valeant’s Dalmane, Biovail’s Ativan, Lundbeck’s Tranxene, Pfizer’s Halcion, Roche’s Klonopin, Sepacor’s Lunesta, Mallinckrodt’s Restoril, Takeda’s Rozerem and King’s Sonata, any of which can cause somnolence, depression, lowered IQ and long-term brain damage and, when the dose is cut down, can cause serious withdrawal symptoms, including serious insomnia, agitation, psychosis and mania.)
5) Abbott’s Depakote and the generic lithium are so-called “mood stabilizer” drugs. Depakote could have caused your friend’s liver failure. Most “mood stabilizers” (except for lithium) are drugs that were designed and marketed as anti-epilepsy drugs, for which they were approved by the FDA. However, they have been heavily marketed (often illegally) as “mood stabilizers” or drugs that might help pain perception or anxiety but they have also been found, upon withdrawal, to cause agitation, insomnia and even grand mal seizures, even if the patient had never had a seizure before. (Other examples include Pfizer’s Neurontin, Pfizer’s Dilantin, Ortho-McNeil’s Topamax, Pfizer’s Lyrica and UCB’s Keppra).
6) Of course your friend was probably also using the over-the-counter (OTC) psychoactive substances caffeine and nicotine. The heavy use of such addictive “food substances” such as coffee, caffeinated soda pop, NutraSweet-laden “diet” pop and tobacco by patients on “anti-psychotics” is legendary.
“Those unfortunates that have been labeled with a psychosis and then forced to take “anti-psychotics” are almost always addicted to these OTC psychostimulants as well. Drugs that block dopamine and nor-epinephrine will make patients feel so numb and dead inside that they will do anything to overcome the dopamine and nor-epinephrine under-stimulation. And so, not only will they be dependent on the toxic prescription drug, they will also be addicted to the toxic stimulant substance. De-ciphering what drug is doing what is very difficult and time-consuming to figure out, and so most ignorant and too-busy doctors never try. They just keep prescribing the drugs and keep their fingers crossed, hoping that they will never have to face the inevitable withdrawal syndromes.
“Of course when the inevitable happens and such unlucky patients can’t afford the prescriptions anymore, can’t afford health insurance premiums, can’t afford the deductible fees, can’t afford the co-pays, loses health care for any other reason or somehow just quits or cuts down on the drugs (because they know they are being sickened by them), the patient will probably wind up in a mental hospital where another new mental illness label will be falsely applied and a new cocktail of brain-damaging and addictive drugs will be forced upon the patient again.
“Most physicians (and all physician assistants) do not understand the exact mechanism of action of the above drugs nor do they know how to help get their patients off the drugs when they start to understand the adverse effects that occur with ALL of these medications.
“It is important to remind ourselves that none of these psychiatric drugs were ever tested in the animal labs in any combination of two or more drugs, which is also true for the human trials!
“And there are hardly any long-term trials done either (most animal lab experiments last fewer than a week in length and most human anti-depressant trials lasted – on average – 6 weeks in duration, even though most humans are told to take them the rest of their lives!)
“Also none of these drugs were ever tested in sequential trials (one drug following another) for safety or efficacy!
“So your friend has been experimented upon by a system that knows next to nothing about what happens at the synapse level of the human brain, especially long-term. His psychiatrists have been cavalierly drugging him – on a trial and error basis, no less – with a multitude of dangerous and addictive chemical substances and combinations of substances that never came anywhere close to curing him.
“Indeed, these neurotoxic substances have instead made him worse with every cumulative dose. As we discussed, I believe that there is a good chance that his initial diagnoses were likely to have been in error.
“In other words, he might have only been experiencing a temporary, albeit perhaps overwhelming, emotional issue that could have been cured with non-pharmaceutical means such as good psychotherapy. But instead, he was probably quickly mis-diagnosed (because, unfortunately, he saw psychiatrists who have immense power and authority over their patients) with a “permanent”, “life-long”, “incurable”, “probably inherited” “mental illness” that would make him a permanent patient of the psychiatric and pharmaceutical industries, who would be the ones to profit by prescribing and supplying the “necessary” drugs (that would be endlessly dealt out to him on a trial and error basis).
“Of course, if that scenario of erroneous diagnosis is true, your friend has been also been mis-treated. To de-cipher the situation in retrospect would require a series of thorough history-taking clinic visits and a slow tapering off of the brain-damaging drugs (along with close attention to his mal-nourished and drug-sickened brain and body plus good psychotherapy for whatever was the original emotional issue – as well as for the current psychological trauma from the mis-treatment he has received).
“I’m sorry to be so pessimistic, but honesty is the best policy. Your friend’s brain may be so messed up that he will never totally recover. His brain has already suffered enough damage to make him totally brain-disabled. But the fact that he had a good career prior to swallowing all those drugs, perhaps his prognosis is better than I fear. If he and his loved ones can educate themselves adequately, that will improve his chances. Please be aware that he might only be able to lower his medications to a minimum level to avoid serious withdrawal symptoms, or at least be willing to take many months or years to do the tapering.
“Also, because he has been on such a large number of drugs, he is at high risk of developing a psychiatric drug-induced dementia (an iatrogenic disease [doctor-caused] that his “doctors” will surely try hard to dismiss and mis-diagnose as Alzheimer’s Disease [of unknown origin] rather than implicate themselves as responsible for the dementia).
“I have had extensive experience with hundreds of similarly mal-treated “psychiatric” patients during my career, and I have been repeatedly angered over the injustices that had been done to them by well-meaning but poorly-informed physicians or physician assistants. A really good, committed lawyer that has no ties to Big Pharma or Big Medicine could have sued any of those mal-practicing doctors and drug companies – if there was any justice in this world and if the Big Pharma defense lawyers weren’t so well-paid and so cunning at making sure that justice is never done applied to the drug company’s victims.
“First of all very few lawyers want to go up against the raft of Big Pharma lawyers that every corporation has on retainer, and very few independent lawyers are eager to go up against the doctors in their own communities because it would be bad for their lawyer business.
“So what to do? It is important, first of all, to find a sympathetic, understanding, knowledgeable physician who is able and willing to write prescriptions for smaller and smaller doses of the offending drugs and will help in the slow tapering process.
“One caveat: the mechanics and neuroscience of tapering off psych drugs is NOT taught in medical schools, because Big Pharma has acquired too much influence on the medical education of our med students and the post-graduation education of licensed physicians. Big Pharma has also been very successful in indoctrinating (and in many cases bribe) academic researchers, authors of medical textbooks, medical school professors, politicians (especially the liberal ones) and the thousands of health journalists into believing the totally false notion of psych drug efficacy and safety, so that now the public also believes the dangerous myth (with lots of help from TV commercials).
“Therefore it is the rare physician who has the knowledge that there is such a thing as psychiatric drug-induced brain damage or psychiatric drug-induced dementia. And it also the rare physician that will have the inclination or the time to do what needs to be done.
“I would suggest that your friend’s caretakers to go to http://www.cchrint.org and view some of the videos there. Also, I would suggest reading some of the many of columns on the topic of mental ill health that I have written over the years. Many of them are archived at Duty to Warn and at Transcend.org.
“Good luck. Don’t give up. There is much justice-seeking to do. What you can learn will help increase the awareness of your friend’s tragic story. Perhaps future victimization from the psychiatric and psychopharmaceutical industries can be halted, so that others won’t have to go through the same things your friend has had to go through.
“Try to find some other folks with similar concerns that might want to get together with you to share information and learn more about you can do together, but don’t trust the National Alliance for the Mentally Ill (NAMI is a Big Pharma front group whose entire existence has been funded by the drug company’s hundreds of millions of dollars and never mentions the immense dangers of their drugs, nor the fact that those chemicals can cause dementia or addictions).
“Do trust, however, what you read on the website of the Citizens Commission on Human Rights (www.cchrint.org).”
Dr Kohls is a retired physician from Duluth, MN, USA. He writes a weekly column for the Duluth Reader, the area’s alternative newsweekly magazine. His columns deal with the dangers of American fascism, corporatism, militarism, racism, malnutrition, Big Pharma’s psychiatric drugging and over-vaccination regimens, and other movements that threaten the environment, health, democracy, civility and longevity of the populace. Many of his columns are archived HERE, HERE or HERE
DISCLAIMER: This article is not intended to provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.
Article Source: http://www.naturalblaze.com/2017/04/letter-victims-americas-psychiatric-psychopharmaceutical-industries.html?utm_source=Natural+Blaze+Subscribers&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=f6a54c1ec9-RSS_EMAIL_CAMPAIGN&utm_term=0_b73c66b129-f6a54c1ec9-388098541
Evidence continues to pile up about the serious risks of taking antidepressants, and a new study provides additional proof that these risks extend beyond the popular SSRI class of drugs. A study out of the University of Nottingham links some popular antidepressants to a higher rate of suicide and self-harm among people suffering from depression between the ages of 20 and 64.
While past studies have generally focused on antidepressants from a category known as selective serotonin re-uptake inhibitors (SSRIs), this one found that those taking other common antidepressants, such as mirtazapine, trazodone, and venlafaxine (Effexor), had even higher rates of suicide and self-harm than those taking SSRIs, which have also been connected to such outcomes.
Moreover, the researchers found that suicide and self-harm rates were the highest during the first 28 days of taking the antidepressants, and the effect remained 28 days after discontinuing the treatment.
The study, which was published in the British Medical Journal, involved 238,963 patients who had been clinically diagnosed with depression. The lead researcher, Dr. Carol Coupland, is calling for more studies into this connection and is urging doctors to consider these risks when prescribing antidepressants. She also suggests that doctors monitor patients very carefully within the first 28 days of starting antidepressants and 28 days after stopping the treatment.
The researchers caution people taking these drugs who are concerned about these results not to suddenly stop taking their medications without first seeking medical advice as the effects do continue even after quitting the drugs.
Unfortunately, doctors are prescribing antidepressants in greater numbers than ever, which means more and more people are being placed at risk of suicide or self-harm unnecessarily, not to mention the fact that many of the people behind high-profile mass shootings in recent years were on antidepressants at the time of their rampage. Doctors give these drugs out not only for depression but also many other medical problems, including insomnia, chronic pain, and migraines. In fact, the CDC reports that 11 percent of teenagers and adults are taking antidepressants. The risk of suicide and violent behavior is higher in everyone who takes antidepressants, not just those who have depression.
Even if your depression is so bad you are willing to take a chance with these harmful drugs, it’s important to keep in mind that many of them have been proven to be ineffective anyway. A study published in The Lancet found that only one out of 14 antidepressants – fluoxetine –worked better than a placebo. That study also noted a higher risk of suicidal attempts and thoughts among people taking venlafaxine than five other antidepressants. With more than half of all antidepressant studies being funded by Big Pharma, it’s important to seek out unbiased studies to learn the truth and avoid putting yourself at unnecessary risk.
Nevertheless, depression remains a very serious problem that affects many Americans, and it does need to be dealt with. While antidepressants are generally not a safe and effective solution, there are plenty of other ways to deal with depression that will not put your mental or physical health at risk. Talk therapy can be an effective way for people to equip themselves with the tools needed to cope with their feelings throughout their entire lifetime. Meditation and yoga have also been shown to help relieve depression. Eating a clean diet and working out regularly can also make a difference.
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The United States is embroiled in a fierce battle against opioid abuse. In 2014, there was a 3.4-fold increase in the number of opioid overdose deaths in America. The state hit hardest by the opioid crisis is West Virginia, where drug companies pumped 782 million pain pills into the state over the last 6 years.
In 2015, West Virginia had the highest rate of opioid overdose deaths in the country. Since 1999, overdose deaths have quadrupled in the state.
The Charleston Gazette-Mail obtained previously confidential drug shipping sales records sent by the DEA to West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey’s office. The paper used the records to disclose the number of pain pills sold to every pharmacy in the state, as well as the drug companies’ shipments to all 55 counties in West Virginia between 2007 and 2012.
Their findings, both astounding and infuriating, were documented in a report published in the paper on December 17.
One drug company shipped nearly 9 million hydrocodone pills to a single pharmacy in Mingo County over the course of 2 years. The rural, impoverished county has the 4th-highest prescription opioid death rate of any county in the U.S.
In Wyoming County, which has the highest overdose rate in the entire nation, shipments of OxyContin doubled. One privately-owned pharmacy in the town of Oceana received 600 times as many oxycodone pills as the Rite Aid pharmacy only 8 blocks away.
In total, from 2007 to 2012, drug companies shipped 224,260,980 oxycodone pills to West Virginia. Wholesalers flooded the state with 555,808,292 hydrocodone pills during the same time period.
No wonder drug wholesalers and their lawyers fought against the Gazette-Mail getting its hands on those shipping records. They went so far as to bring court actions against the newspaper to stop it from publishing the numbers.
Former Delegate Don Perdue, a Democrat from Wayne County, said:
“These numbers will shake even the most cynical observer.”
Perdue, a retired pharmacist, added:
“Distributors have fed their greed on human frailties and to criminal effect. There is no excuse and should be no forgiveness.”
The Biggest Offenders Even as overdose deaths continued to climb throughout West Virginia, drug companies continued shipping mountains of pills into the state. The majority of the painkillers came from the nation’s 3 largest prescription drug wholesalers: McKesson Corp., Cardinal Health, and AmeriSource Bergen Drug Co. These companies supplied more than half of all opioid pills sold statewide during those 6 years.
McKesson, Cardinal, and AmeriSource spent a decade sidestepping rules requiring them to report suspicious orders for controlled substances in West Virginia to the state Board of Pharmacy, the newspaper found. Not that it would have mattered anyway; the board failed to enforce the same regulations that were established in 2001. Rather, the board gave glowing inspection reviews to mom-and-pop pharmacies in the southern counties that ordered more opioids than could possibly be taken by people with legitimate prescriptions for pain.
From 2007-2012, opioid overdose deaths in West Virginia skyrocketed 67%. While people were dying, the drug wholesalers’ CEOs raked in salaries and bonuses in the tens of millions of dollars. McKesson, the 5th-largest corporation in America, had the highest-paid executive in the country in 2012.
McKesson has had its fair share of run-ins with the law over its pain pill distribution.
The company was sued by the DEA and 6 other states in 2008 for supplying hundreds of suspicious hydrocodone orders to rogue pharmacies. McKesson settled the lawsuit by agreeing to pay more than $13 million in fines and monitor its pill supply more closely.
In January 2016, Attorney General Morrisey sued McKesson, alleging that the distributor violated West Virginia consumer protection laws and the Uniform Controlled Substances Act by flooding the state with tens of millions of pain pills.
In the lawsuit, Morrisey also alleged that between 2007 and 2012, McKesson delivered nearly 100 million doses of hydrocodone and oxycodone to the state. Of that total, 3.4 million doses went to Mingo County alone.
Drug wholesalers have defended themselves in court cases by pointing out that there wouldn’t be such a heavy demand for pain pills if there weren’t so many doctors prescribing them. Furthermore, the drugs would never reach patients’ hands without the willing participation of pharmacists.
McKesson General Counsel John Saia wrote in a company letter:
“The 2 roles that interface directly with the patient – the doctors who write the prescriptions and the pharmacists who fill them – are in a better position to identify and prevent the abuse and diversion of potentially addictive controlled substance.”
They do have a point, but it makes them no less guilty.
Year after year, McKesson and the other distributors shipped more and more pills into the state. McKesson supplied Mingo County with more hydrocodone pills in a single year – 3.3 million – than it supplied over 5 other consecutive years combined.
The potency of the pills being shipped kept increasing, too, according to DEA data.
Sam Suppa, a retired Charleston pharmacist who spent 60 years working at retail pharmacies in West Virginia, said:
“It starts with the doctor writing, the pharmacist filling, and the wholesaler distributing. They’re all 3 in bed together. The distributors knew what was going on. They just didn’t care.”
Between 2007 and 2012, McKesson, Cardinal Health, and AmeriSource collectively shipped 423 million pain pills to West Virginia, earning themselves a combined net income of $17 billion.
Over the past 4 years, the 3 companies’ CEOs collectively received salaries and other compensation of more than $450 million. Last year, McKesson’s CEO collected compensation worth $89 million. That’s more than the incomes of 2,000 West Virginia families combined.
Source: Julie Fidler of NaturalNews.com
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