Prozac doesn't work better than placebo

Reply Tue 26 Feb, 2008 10:11 am
i must say i get so frustrated reading media reports of this today...so much damage can be caused by there inaccurate portrayal of the facts.

I have sat and analysed the literature and a few main points i feel must be stressed...

1. This is in mild-moderate depression ONLY. In severe depression anti-depressants have a clinically significant role. I only fear this bad press will cause many patients to have doubt in the medical system and seriously put back their recovery by abruptly stopping their treatment on the back of this

2. They DID find they were better than placebo in moderate depression, however this was not as high as previously thought. (1.8 points higher on Hamilton Rating Scale of Depression). It is the small size of this increase that is scientifically intriguing. Again, as mentioned, does this suggest an overprescribing attitude, thus diluting the effect on real diagnoses? Nevertheless, this was compared to a placebo, not to controls without intervention. Therefore the extent to which active ingeredients in antidepressants play is questionable, but it is undisputed that "intervention" has a significant impact on recovery. I can only hope people do not fear going to seek medical advice due to this sensationalised issue.

3. It has been long known that CBT, exercise etc are as effective in mild-moderate depression as medication, and all forward thinking doctors now offer patients the choice as to which route they would like to progress down. This is undisputed. Therefore this study told us little more than we already knew about this, but due to media grabbing headlines, many who would significantly benefit we lose faith. In depressed patients, one of the most important prognostic variables is to maintain hope. By these media headlines, they have undermined that one shred of hope many of these vulnerable people are clinging onto.
0 Replies
Walter Hinteler
Reply Tue 26 Feb, 2008 10:17 am
Thanks for your report, and welcome to A2K, irishgirlie.

irishgirlie wrote:
i must say i get so frustrated reading media reports of this today...so much damage can be caused by there inaccurate portrayal of the facts.

That's why I gave a link to the original study (though it wasn't done properly the first time I did so Embarrassed ).
0 Replies
Bella Dea
Reply Tue 26 Feb, 2008 10:34 am
dlowan wrote:
Bella Dea wrote:
I can say with 100% certainty that Prozac changed the way I behaved. I got very angry and violent.

I think that these drugs only work if you have a chemical imbalance. Otherwise, it probably is all in your head.

Lol! That's where the chemical imbalance would be.

LOL You know what I mean. Razz
0 Replies
Walter Hinteler
Reply Wed 27 Feb, 2008 01:55 am
Still a big topic in the (European) papers:

In the 20 years since its launch, 40m people worldwide have taken the so-called wonder drug - but research revealed this week shows that Prozac, and similar antidepressants, are no more effective than a sugar pill. So how was the myth created? Psychoanalyst Darian Leader traces the irrepressible rise of the multibillion dollar depression industry, while others explore the clinical and cultural impact of Prozac, its perceived personal benefits - and sometimes terrible costs


The Guardian: The creation of the Prozac myth
0 Replies

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