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Ohio school shooter--Will the mainstream media even look for the prescription drug connection?

Health Impact News Editor Comments: The article below was written by Dr. Mercola prior to the recent shooting incident in Ohio, as was the Fox News story above on school shootings and antidepressant drugs which was filmed in 2007. As the details from the current school shooting in Ohio become clearer, will there once again be a connection to antidepressant drugs? News sources are reporting that this student shooter “was not a student at Chardon High School. He attended the nearby alternative school Lake Academy in Willoughby, which serves at-risk students. Students may have been referred to the school because of academic or behavioral problems.”


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By Dr. Mercola

A Canadian judge has ruled that a teenage boy murdered his friend because of the effects of Prozac.

The ruling will not be appealed.

The decision has revived the debate regarding the widespread prescription of antidepressants to young people.

Justice Robert Heinrichs ruled that the 15-year-old boy was under the influence of the medication when he stabbed and killed a close friend.

He was sentenced to 10 months on top of the two years he had already spent in jail.

"Prozac is meant to curb the effects of depression, but Justice Heinrich concluded it set off a steady deterioration in the young murderer's behavior," CCHR1 reports.

"He had become irritable, restless, agitated, aggressive and unclear in his thinking," the judge said.

"It was while in that state he overreacted in an impulsive, explosive and violent way. Now that his body and mind are free and clear of any effects of Prozac, he is simply not the same youth in behavior or character."

Should Antidepressants Carry Black Box Warning for Homicidal Tendencies?

In 2004, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) decided SSRI antidepressants must carry a black box warning that the drug can cause suicidal tendencies. But what about violence and homicidal tendencies? Despite mounting evidence that antidepressants and certain other drugs can induce violent behavior and has led to the tragic death of spouses, family members and friends, the FDA has done nothing to warn or curb the use of such drugs.

According to CCHR2:

"It is well documented that psychiatric drugs, particularly antidepressants, can cause a host of violent side effects including mania, psychosis, aggression, violence, and in the case of the antidepressant Effexor, homicidal ideation ... [P]eople with no prior history of violence (or suicide) became homicidal and suicidal under the influence of antidepressants. ... However, despite all the documented violence-inducing side effects of these drugs, the FDA has never issued black box warnings on antidepressants causing violence or homicide despite the fact that at least 11 recent school shootings were committed by kids documented to be on or in withdrawal from psychiatric drugs."

The expert testimony in this case was supplied by Dr. Peter Breggin, an outspoken critic of psychiatric drugs. The featured article quotes him as saying:

"These drugs produce a stimulant or activation continuum... That continuum includes aggression, hostility, loss of impulse control … all of which are a prescription for violence."

Other still feel the link between antidepressants and homicide is thin, but I can't help but wonder if that's just because they're refusing tolook at the evidence and give it the attention it deserves. The CCHR website includes a helpful search feature3, allowing you to search for all sorts of reports and research relating to psychiatric drugs and their side effects. It took 13 years before the FDA finally agreed SSRI's can cause suicidal thoughts and behavior. How many decades-worth of evidence will have to mount up before the apparent link to uncontrolled violence and homicide is addressed?

Your Genes May Predispose You to Homicidal Side Effects of Antidepressants

Interestingly, in related news, a 2011 study published in Pharmacogenomics and Personalized Medicine4 has found that certain genes may predispose you to homicidal behavior following exposure to antidepressants. Both sudden withdrawal from antidepressants and continuing to take them was found to worsen the problem. According to the study's authors:

"... The results presented here concerning a sample of persons given antidepressants for psychosocial distress demonstrate the extent to which the psychopharmacology industry has expanded its influence beyond its ability to cure.

... [T]he Sequenced Treatment Alternatives to Relieve Depression (Star *D) study ... found that antidepressants were only marginally (2.7%) more efficacious compared with placebos. The same meta-analyses documented profound publication bias, inflating their apparent efficacy as well as bias in failing to report the negative results ... The authors argue for a reappraisal of the current recommended standard of care of depression." [Emphasis mine]

What they discovered is that many people being treated with antidepressants can't metabolize them due to common genetic mutations, which can cause severe drug interactions and akathisia (a movement disorder characterized by a feeling of inner restlessness). Some researchers and physicians believe that akathisia is the chief symptom that triggers impulsive violence in certain individuals who take antidepressant drugs. This is thought to be an extreme form of akathisia. Homicidal impulses and murderous behavior due to akathisia is now being called "homicidal akathisia."

Forensic psychiatrist and lead author of the study, Dr. Yolande Lucire, is now campaigning to introduce ways of minimizing over-prescription of antidepressants by taking genetics into account. Of 129 subjects, more than 120 of them were diagnosed with akathisia/serotonin toxicity caused by psychiatric medications. The authors further explain:

"They were tested for variant alleles in CYP450 genes, which play a major role in Phase 1 metabolism of all antidepressant and many other medications. Eight had committed homicide and many more became extremely violent while on antidepressants. ... All those described [in the paper] were able to stop taking antidepressants and return to their previously normal personalities."

Antidepressants Top List of Most Violence-Inducing Drugs

It's certainly worth paying heed to drug interactions such as violence and homicidal leanings, both as a patient and as a concerned parent, family member or friend. According to a 2010 study published in the journal PLoS One5, half of the top 10 drugs disproportionately linked with violent behavior are antidepressants:

Varenicline (Chantix): The number one violence-inducing drug on the list, this anti-smoking medication is 18 times more likely to be linked with violence when compared to other drugs[/*]

Fluoxetine (Prozac): This drug was the first well-known SSRI antidepressant[/*]

Paroxetine (Paxil): Another SSRI antidepressant, Paxil is also linked with severe withdrawal symptoms and a risk of birth defects[/*]

Amphetamines: (Various): Used to treat ADHD[/*]

Mefoquine (Lariam): A treatment for malaria which is often linked with reports of strange behavior[/*]

Atomoxetine (Strattera): An ADHD drug that affects the neurotransmitter noradrenaline[/*]

Triazolam (Halcion): This potentially addictive drug is used to treat insomnia[/*]

Fluvoxamine (Luvox): Another SSRI antidepressant[/*]

Venlafaxine (Effexor): An antidepressant also used to treat anxiety disorders[/*]

Desvenlafaxine (Pristiq): An antidepressant which affects both serotonin and noradrenaline[/*][/list]

Is Usage of these Drugs Ever Appropriate?

Depression, or more accurately, un-repaired emotional short-circuiting, can absolutely devastate your health and life. However, using antidepressants as the primary (or only) treatment option is simply not advisable, especially if the one suffering from depression is a child or teenager. Whereas severe depression can indeed progress to suicide if left untreated, antidepressant drugs have been shown to CAUSE both suicidal and homicidal thoughts and behaviors. As mentioned in the featured report, at least 11 tragic school shootings were done by children who were either on antidepressants, or going through withdrawal...

I believe this is an enormous price to pay for what amounts to highly questionable benefits.

Studies have found that up to 75 percent of the benefits of antidepressants could be duplicated by a placebo. So not only do these drugs not work as advertised, but the evidence is quite clear that most of these drugs do in fact increase your risk of suicide and violence. Since depression can be a terminal illness, why take a drug that will actually increase your risk of killing yourself—or someone else?

Please understand that I am not seeking to diminish the impact of mental illness. It is massively pervasive and responsible for tens of thousands of deaths every year and needless suffering in millions of others.

My clinical experience leads me to believe that the only appropriate use of these dangerous medications is as a last ditch effort when the patient is at a serious risk to themselves or others. (And, of course, they must be closely monitored for lethal side effects such as suicidal and/or homicidal thoughts and tendencies!) The drugs should be continued until the condition is under control and they are out of harm's way, and then carefully weaned. This is a very similar strategy to going to the ER and seeing an orthopedic surgeon for a cast when you've fractured a major bone.

You don't use that cast the rest of your life. You use it until your bone is healed.

The REAL tragedy is that most of the drug companies do NOT view antidepressants this way. There are enormous marketing efforts to classify normal behavior as aberrant or diseased, which then requires lifelong therapy with their drug solution.


Added: Feb-28-2012 Occurred On: Feb-28-2012
By: Lwe5113
In:
Science and Technology
Tags: ssri, prozac, violence, drugs, school shootings
Location: United States (load item map)
Views: 3044 | Comments: 44 | Votes: 3 | Favorites: 2 | Shared: 0 | Updates: 0 | Times used in channels: 1
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  • Good point. Great point. Even that pet chimpanzee that freaked and ripped its owner's face off was on Prozac. Seems strange but it's true.

    Posted Feb-28-2012 By 

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    • @ValleyBlacksmith no shit? I never heard that. crazy huh? The media never reports this crap, yeah, putting dangerous animals on antidepressants would make sense to the pharma industry.

      Posted Feb-29-2012 By 

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  • The trick is they are legal, no jail. Pot = Jail. Govt and wallstreet make the money and keep the game going. Nothing new.

    I went to the dentist a while back and was given the form to list the meds I was on. The whole fucking office was shocked I didn't take anything, it was fucking strange actually.

    Posted Feb-28-2012 By 

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    • @dcmfox I get the same reaction as well when I tell someone I do not take ibuprofen, aspirin, tylenol or anything like that. The last time I have ingested a pill was when I shattered my leg and the doctor gave me percocet in 2002.
      As you mentioned about the pot I think it is funny you mention jail. These pills are instantly legal and only are removed when a bunch of people die. Alcohol just keeps on killing along with cigarettes and it is totally legal, smoke a joint here in washington though More..

      Posted Feb-29-2012 By 

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    • @Miznojo

      Agreed, the internet will save us, I hope.

      Posted Feb-29-2012 By 

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  • Instead, big media will use this case to try and take our gun rights away.

    Guess what; both columbine and virginia tech shooters confirmed on antidepressants.

    Posted Feb-28-2012 By 

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    • @Lwe5113 Guess what? After columbine and virginia tech, right winger gun nuts would constantly say their guns were going to be taken away. It never happens. Why would you think this time is going to be different?

      Posted Feb-28-2012 By 

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    • Comment of user 'MB-UK' has been deleted by author (after account deletion)!
    • @MB-UK they should take away those fucking pills, you can't keep fucking with peoples minds like that. Personally i think depression is BS, just people acting like bitches. They need to buck up and fight through tough times.

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    • Comment of user 'MB-UK' has been deleted by author (after account deletion)!
    • @stevecore

      Fear card on every issue. This isn't an issue. Obama hasn't mentioned guns at all. A congresswoman was shot for hell sake's and Obama said nothing about guns.

      Its the same fear shit with this crowd.

      Posted Feb-29-2012 By 

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  • Lets bury the dead first, blame can be passed later.

    Posted Feb-29-2012 By 

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    • @zindo interesting you went to blame. I was going for fixing a problem and its never too soon to work on that in my opinion.

      Posted Feb-29-2012 By 

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    • @Lwe5113 Either way he right. Let them RIP. Arm chair psychology can wait. My own will too for now.
      I had a rather shock myself though to be honest. Last night, reading Feb issue of Rolling Stone. Ran across an article called- "School of Hate". More or less about kids being bullied. The girl the article was about said how just 3 days into the new year, she heard that a boy having problems just committed suicide. The boys name was TJ Hayes. The boy from Chardon name was TJ Lane. I looke More..

      Posted Feb-29-2012 By 

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  • Guns are banned from schools, how did this happen?

    Posted Feb-28-2012 By 

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  • my dad would have beat my ass if i ever claimed depression

    Posted Feb-28-2012 By 

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  • I had been prescribed Xanax, It's the worst for Bursts Of Uncontrollable Aggression . Just glad a Dr, not my own, told me about it's terrible affects on one who does use it. I notice more and more Murders Committed while taking these medications . They are right ,,depression doesn't ever manifest into rage ,,it's the Medication that does it. I can only imagine how many are in prison for acts carried out while on the medication .

    Posted Feb-28-2012 By 

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    • @tripoly Zoloft is another drug that can make you into a monster. Wake up in the morning ready to fight someone only no one else is in the room. Its the doctors that are crazy.

      Posted Feb-28-2012 By 

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  • they are giving those drugs to kids these days like its candy, no real evaluation or mental help to adjust behavior, just prescribe pills, that'll do.

    Posted Feb-28-2012 By 

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  • The whole medicine industry is bull shit, they don't care about making people well. They only care about profits.
    They pay and bribe doctors to prescribe stuff that people don't need.

    Posted Feb-29-2012 By 

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  • Dangerous stimulants which fundamentally alter a child's personality and cause suicidal and homicidal tendencies are good.

    But pot is immoral and bad.

    Addictive drugs that turn our children into lifeless, dangerous zombies are not only morally acceptable, they are encouraged by our society.

    But if a kid has a toke there's a problem with him. We are a fucking dumb society.

    Posted Feb-29-2012 By 

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  • I'm pretty sure i can tell which liveleakers are on prescription meds by their posts. -AL- Larrythompson etc

    Posted Feb-29-2012 By 

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  • Comment of user 'DirtyUncleBerty' has been deleted by author (after account deletion)!
  • hmm....lock up yer guns much or is that big pharma's fault too?

    Don't get me wrong, many of the strong psychiatric medications given to kids can negatively interfere with thought life, but it's like these kids wake up and pull their own firearms right out of their parent's rooms and waltz on to school!!!

    Posted Feb-28-2012 By 

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  • Ok if these kids are on meds they are already fucked up.

    Posted Feb-29-2012 By 

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  • Oh my, I am not responsible. It was drugs, it was my bully, it was my neighbor.

    Bullshit. It was YOU, the defective you.

    Posted Feb-28-2012 By 

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  • People are uncomfortable with the idea that someone might not be entirely responsible for their actions. Messes up the whole concept of justice.

    Posted Feb-29-2012 By 

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  • Bad parenting.

    Posted Feb-29-2012 By 

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  • Well I will be damned a bunch of school shooters had already been identified as having mental health problems prior to killing their peers...and attempts were made to help medicate them and treat the mental health symptoms prior to their rampage...it must be the pills...before pills everything was just fine....that's why we put them on meds in the first place bc they were just normal teens what a crock of ..

    Posted Feb-28-2012 By 

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    • @bloodonthetracks Dude take 5 minutes and look at a website. ssristories.com with literally 5,000 stories of eratic and horrible violent crimes following the taking of antidepressants. These drugs aint good.

      Posted Feb-29-2012 By 

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    • @randir14 They didnt help.

      Posted Feb-28-2012 By 

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