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Dr. Cheney Warns Against Long-term Use of SSRIs and Stimulants

Discussion in 'General ME/CFS News' started by Nielk, Dec 4, 2011.

  1. Nielk

    Nielk

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    Dr. Cheney Warns Against Long-term Use of SSRIs and Stimulants

    by Lucy Dechne Ph.D.



    The Massachusetts CFIDS/ME & FM Association Summer 2001 UPDATE



    Dr. Cheney is warning patients and physicians against long-term use of SSRIs (Prozac, Zoloft, Paxil, etc.) and stimulants such as Ritalin and Provigil. Both SSRIs and stimulants cause neurons to increase their firing. Taken over 10+ years or so, these medications can lead to the loss of brain cells, causing neurodegenerative disorders. Many doctors have recently seen a sudden increase in patients with neurological symptoms and most have been on Prozac or a similar drug for about ten years. Dr. Cheney is seeing this in his own practice [although neurological problems may be a natural result of CFIDS/ME after more than a decade. Most of the participants didn't use these medications (or at least weren't using them at the time of the study.)-L.D.]



    Dr. Cheney recommends patients and physicians read the book Prozac Backlash: Overcoming the Dangers of Prozac, Zoloft, Paxil and Other Antidepressants by Joseph Glenmullen, M.D., a psychiatrist at the Harvard Medical School. Dr. Cheney explains that SSRIs are designed to stop the reuptake channel of serotonergic neurons from "vacuuming up" excess serotonin. Often too much serotonin is left floating in the intersynaptic cleft between neurons. The only way the body can get rid of the excess serotonin is to oxidize it. Unfortunately, this turns into a toxic compound that, over time, kills both the sending and receiving neurons. Dr. Cheney stated, "What starts out as an attempt to increase serotonin and reduce symptoms ends up with the destruction of the serotonergic system itself. It takes about a decade, more in some, less in others." [I will point out that the evidence that this occurs is still not definitive, it is only suggestive. However, patients should consider this possibility when staying on such medications for a long time. A good article discussing the situation is "The Serotonin Surprise," Greenberg. (Discover July (2001): 64-69.)-L.D.]



    (Source: Dr. Paul Cheney)
     
  2. Sing

    Sing Senior Member

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    That is very important information. Why are these drugs dispensed like candy? Because the drug companies can get make a ton of money, and because, historically, psych patients have been giving brain destroying drugs and treatments with no legal consequences. There seem to be next to no standards for safety in the realm of psych meds. Am I wrong? Let me know. I'd be happy to hear it.
     
    leela, anne_likes_red and Nielk like this.
  3. gregf

    gregf Senior Member

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    Is that date Summer 2001 or 2011 ?
     
  4. Marg

    Marg Senior Member

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    My my how things change! I remember reading in the CIFIDS Chronical in the 90's that Prozac was his favoite. I remember taking the article to my then doctor. Luckily I could not take it even in a elixer starting at one drop. I ended up in the ER with the rest of them with a rapid heartbeat. Yes, my body knew something was not right..
     
  5. Dreambirdie

    Dreambirdie work in progress

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    There's a documentary about this called THE MARKETING OF MADNESS. Psychiatrists who pedal these drugs should all be locked up in a psych ward for a month, and made to ingest several dozen of these pills themselves, so they can experience the effects and side effects firsthand. Maybe then, they will THINK TWICE before handing them out like candy.

    [video=youtube;Y1nbZCNDgbY]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y1nbZCNDgbY[/video]
     
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  6. HowToEscape?

    HowToEscape? Senior Member

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    Prozac can be nasty, destructive stuff and the effect is subtle, until after it happens.

    Does anyone know if the brain damage from Prozac and other drugs in it's class can be reversed? Very important question for me.
     
  7. Sing

    Sing Senior Member

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    That is a very powerful video documentary, Dreambirdie! I would also recommend looking up the books of the psychiatrist Peter Roger Breggin, M.D., the Harvard-trained psychiatrist who has been blowing the whistle on the practices of the industry his whole career. He writes very well and documents the whole history up to the current situation in a series of books. I've personally had two family members whose lives were destroyed by psychiatric treatment, but taking a word to the wise, never went to a psychiatrist myself, got stuck with any label, or involved myself with those drugs. I certainly could have, as most of us could, or have done. --Perhaps some people have been helped, sometime--I should not make a blanket judgement or dismissal--but all I'm saying is, in the memory of those who have been lost: A WORD TO THE WISE.....
     
  8. Nielk

    Nielk

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    For me, personally, the road of taking antidepressants has been a horror. I believe it eventually made me sicker and certainly wasted precious time when I should have been taking care of resting and treating my "real" symptoms.
     
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  9. August59

    August59 Daughters High School Graduation

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    I blame the doctors and and pharmaceutical companies as they started promoting these meds for off label use from the beginning. On the other hand these drugs when administered correctly have save peoples lives and kept families together. It's sort of like giving someone who has never shot a pistol in their entire life and then gives them a .44 magnum to play with without instructions. I'm pretty sure Family Phyicians and General Phyicians prescribe these drugs at a much higher volume than phyciatrist do.

    I still don't see how a pharmaceutical company can get a drug approved when there literature plainly states that the mode of action is unknown! Well, yes I geuss I do know - lobbyist!
     
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  10. anniekim

    anniekim Senior Member

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    I've been on a ssri for six years. I've been bed bound and housebound during all this time. With a life so limited, the ssri has helped me stay reasonably cheerful and sane. It is worrying though to read the above ......
     
  11. heapsreal

    heapsreal iherb 10% discount code OPA989,

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    I have gone down the AD road a few times and never had any great results and more side effects then anything else. What i dont understand is that ssri's are suppose to help by increasing serotonin but side effects occur, now i dont think its extra serotonin doing the harm, maybe something else is doing this as using things like 5htp and tryptophan which help increase serotonin dont have side effects like ssri's?? Maybe ssri's increase serotonin too much??

    I think they need to develop reliable tests of transmitters like serotonin etc or doctors need to test for them before prescribing them. Maybe many people with supposed depression have good neurotransmitter and doctors cant/dont want to investigate patients further as it would take longer then a 10 min consult. Heres your prozac/zoloft good bye and have a nice day??

    Now i will watch the video above.

    cheers!!!
     
  12. Dreambirdie

    Dreambirdie work in progress

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    From my understanding (which is limited, as I am in no way an expert on pharma drugs) SSRI's do NOT increase serotonin, but rather INHIBIT the REUPTAKE of SEROTONIN into the pre-synaptic cells of the nervous system. That keeps the serotonin that your body has already made circulating and prevents it from being used up, but it doesn't encourage your body to make any more. Which doesn't sound good to me at all. In fact....

    Studies suggest that the popular drugs are no more effective than a placebo. In fact, they may be worse.
    http://www.thedailybeast.com/newsweek/2010/01/28/the-depressing-news-about-antidepressants.html

    I remember back in 1989, when there was a BIG (and possibly deliberately manufactured) *SCARE* about L-tryptophan being "contaminated," and it was quickly taken off the market and banned by the FDA. Just a couple years before that, in 1987, Prozac had been approved for use by the FDA. After the tryptophan ban, the push to make Prozac a household name began, and one of the big news magazines had a photo of a Prozac pill on it's cover. It sure doesn't sound like coincidence to me. But I am happy that tryptophan was made available again for consumers by 2002. Definitely a healthy victory. And now the news magazines have a VERY different cover story.

    [​IMG]
     
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  13. Dreambirdie

    Dreambirdie work in progress

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    And one more very fascinating thing about serotonin that I just read on wikipedia:

    "Approximately 90% of the human body's total serotonin is located in the enterochromaffin cells in the gut, where it is used to regulate intestinal movements. The remainder is synthesized in serotonergic neurons in the CNS where it has various functions."

    So having a GUT feeling about something is really not a metaphor at all.
     
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  14. heapsreal

    heapsreal iherb 10% discount code OPA989,

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    Well its indirectly increasing serotonin i suppose.
    Anyway watching all of the other videos linked to the one in this thread is very interesting. I can see why psychs want to put cfs/me into a psych condition, to increase drug profits. Scary when other psychiatrist are saying that they cant actually diagnose many of these psych conditions other then using behavioural studies, which would put 99.9% of people with some type of psych diagnoses and a script for a drug. I think these meds can help people but like many people mention, they are handed out to easily. Many of these different psych diagnoses are made up from normal response to situations people, there a psych diagnosis for people who spend too much time on the internet and many others??? Atleast with cfs/me we can actually test and find abnormalities, which psychs like to ignore dont exist??
     
  15. Sallysblooms

    Sallysblooms P.O.T.S. now SO MUCH BETTER!

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    It is odd that more doctors do not test n.transmitters and treat with supplements. Works very well. That should be the first thing, then drugs if they have to.
     
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  16. liquid sky

    liquid sky Senior Member

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    I don't think there is a really accurate test for neurotransmitters.
     
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  17. heapsreal

    heapsreal iherb 10% discount code OPA989,

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    Agree sally. I also dont understand also why many docs say adrenal fatigue is just made up when testing cortisol and dhea as well as other hormones shows this condition does occur, but i suppose treating adrenal fatigue takes away from them being able to use AD's etc
     
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  18. justinreilly

    justinreilly Senior Member

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    GPs prescribe these at ridiculous rates. I think only psychiatrists should prescribe them. As we well know, psychiatrists being in charge of things certainly doesn't guarantee the right thing will be done, but at least they have some training in the area.

    I recommend Dr. Breggin's books too. I read 'talking back to ritalin' which was informative about the possible side effects like psychosis which prescribing doctors don't typically tell you about.
     
    Sing likes this.
  19. justinreilly

    justinreilly Senior Member

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    This is a good point. I read somewhere else only 5% are in the brain. SSRIs are only called "anti-depressants" because this is the market for SSRIs. They have lots of other effects on the body (considered side effects when used as an anti-depressant).
     
  20. justinreilly

    justinreilly Senior Member

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    Excellent point. I went to a very high-priced Park Avenue psychiatrist and he said the fact that my cortisol was at 5% of normal didn't matter at all and that if you aren't in the ICU with Addison's there's no way low cortisol short of that could have an effect on my health. He said my symptoms were all due to ADD; i had never had any doctor mention (or diagnose me with) ADD and i had just first met him 20 minutes before! Then he took out ICD 9CM and showed me neurasthenia under 'neurosis' and said i had a mental disorder! he gave me a ritalin script and said that should get me better.
     

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