https://www.irishnews.com/magazine/science/2019/05/30/news/call-for-patients-to-be-warned-over-potential-antidepressant-withdrawal-symptoms-1631105/

“……Patients seeking treatment for depression should be informed of the potential for “severe and long-lasting withdrawal symptoms” when coming off medication, leading doctors have said.

The Royal College of Psychiatrists said official guidance on halting medical treatment for depression needs to reflect “the full range of patients’ experiences”.

Guidelines from the National Institute for Health Care Excellence (Nice) – which are currently being consulted on – suggest most people should be able to halt antidepressant use over four weeks…..”


 

“…..This led to a row with campaigners in which one of its experts was attacked as a “pharma whore” and “worse than Hitler”. After spending a year speaking to patients, the college has accepted that some of its critics have a point. “As psychiatrists, we are duty-bound to take on board the concerns of patients who’ve experienced more severe and long-lasting side effects of these medications,” said Wendy Burn, the college president….”

https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/wean-patients-off-depression-pills-say-doctors-qnh2sj3nm

 

Interesting news today about the Royal College of Psychiatry UK changing its tune on the severity of withdrawal symptoms. Although I welcome this U-turn on advice from UK psychiatry, I am not comfortable with how they are trying to take credit for what effectively has been a patient-led-activist movement (mostly online) for the past 2 decades. I am also not comfortable with this U-turn being almost 30 years too late (Seroxat for example- was first licensed in 1991).

Since SSRI’s were first licenced in the 90’s people have been complaining about severe withdrawals, particularly online. There have been numerous SSRI forums, websites, blogs and you-tube videos/documentaries etc all attesting to the severity of withdrawals. This phenomenon has been well known for decades, and has always been much more common than has been reported by mainstream psychiatry.

Since last September, I basically badgered the Royal College, Wendy Burn, and her associates on Twitter. Firing off information and tweets at every opportunity for her to read and for her colleagues to think about. My activism culminated in a controversial post where I said that one of the grand-dukes of UK psychiatry (and Pharma Funding) Dr David Baldwin was a Pharma Whore.

The UK press caught hold of this and the Royal College spun them a yarn, which led to headlines such as these:

DB@DB1

 

The ‘worse than Hitler’ quote came from a comment (left on the David Baldwin post) by an SSRI damaged person who regularly reads my blog. See it here:

https://truthman30.wordpress.com/2018/09/09/professor-david-baldwins-lovefest-with-the-pharmaceutical-industry/

Whilst I welcome this u-turn on the severity of withdrawals (something I have been campaigning on for 13 years), I don’t welcome the Royal College trying to take credit for it. It has been because of the Pharma-Whoring ( and lies and spin) from the Royal College (and the APA: American Psychiatric Association) that patients have been duped about the harms of SSRI’s for many decades. Just because they are admitting it now, doesn’t wash away all the death, destruction and disablement of vulnerable people (that they have been responsible for) for almost 30 years.

Where is the apology for not warning people sooner?

UK psychiatry head- Wendy Burn- defended David Baldwin on Twitter when he was under fire for the “Pharma Whore’ debacle in the media, yet David Baldwin (and others of his ilk) are directly responsible for the misinformation about SSRI’s for many decades (and were paid handsomely for it by their Pharma sponsors too).

Where is the apology from people like Baldwin? David Nutt? Guy Goodwin? Andrea Cipriani, Carmine Pariante etc?

(all known Pharma compromised people who have taken Pharma Money to defend SSRI’s in the media for decades)

For more on this , see the following links-

https://truthman30.wordpress.com/2018/09/12/what-constitutes-a-pharma-whore-and-what-doesnt/

https://holeousia.com/2019/05/29/letter-to-professor-andrea-cipriani/


The Royal College should be apologizing to all those who have been harmed by SSRI’s , -and who have been harmed- by the Royal College’s own protocols of playing down harms and not listening to patient’s concerns. The college should also be ashamed of how Pharma has utterly corrupted its key opinion leaders over many decades.

It is because of campaigners like myself, Bob Fiddaman, Altostrata (from Surviving Antidepressants forum), Seroxat Secrets, MadinAmerica, Joanna Moncrieff, Luke Montague, Leonie Fennel, James Davies, Peter Breggin, Kevin P Miller, David Healy, Fiona French, Kristina Gehrki,  Dr Alec Grant, Marion Brown, Peter Gordon, Jill Davies, Robert Balfe, Peter Kinderman,  Wren Cage, Leigh Fanner, Dropthedisorder, Michael Hengartner, John Read, Dr Terry Lynch, Andy D’ Alessio, Kelly Martin,  Aine, Lucy Johnstone, Alyne Duthie, CEP, James Moore, Sarah Hancock, Ann Marcos, Aunty Psychiatry, Brian (from antidepaware) and many many more people* and organizations (too many to mention) who have been fighting (both online/Twitter and off-line) for recognition of the severity of SSRI side effects and withdrawals for many decades now- that this U-turn from UK psychiatry has come about.

Our relentless campaigning (in particular – on Twitter in recent months) has forced them to recognize the seriousness of the harms of SSRI’s.

This is where credit is due.

 

*if I have missed anyone… let me know!

 

 

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16 thoughts on “30 Years Too Late: The Royal College Of Psychiatry Changes Its Tune.

  1. Thank you Truthman for sharing this narrative (timeline) that forms the actual basis behind this position statement by the British Psychiatric establishment.

    I want to confirm my view that I consider this U-turn as nothing but welcome. I have written to the President, Vice-President and CEO of the Royal College of Psychiatrists to say so.

    Yes, it has taken 30 years to get to this U-turn. What hell/terror it has been – for over these three decades – for anybody struggling with harmful experiences of these prescribed drugs to be believed and to find help. Many have died in the full realisation that they will never be believed as anything other than “ill”. This is the very stigma that psychiatry argues it “fights”.

    It interested me that the “pharma whore” term featured again in today’s newspapers. Whilst this is not a term I have ever used, I have been one of the leading advocates for full transparency of competing financial interests. My career has suffered as a result. It is my view that “fully informed consent” for prescribed medications is IMPOSSIBLE without full transparency of such competing financial interests. Yet the Royal Colleges continue not to support legislation that would make such full transparency.

    This “U-turn” is welcome, but it is clear to me that the control of the narrative of science remains firmly in the hands of those in power.

    Dr Peter J. Gordon
    GMC: 3468861

    1. Well done on speaking out Peter!
      Well done to all of us with “lived experience” who have revealed ourselves and our lives on social networks, blogs and in person, without fear or favour, to bring about psychiatric system change!

      1. I don’t know who you are, being anonymous, have never met you. I don’t read your blog but got a link via a friend which is why I commented; won’t do so again.

      2. You can comment no problem, and I can add your name to the list no problem. I never had a problem with you, but as far as I remember you did have one with me (not that it bothers me- I never did this for popularity I did it because I was prescribed a hideous SSRI- Seroxat and wanted to warn others about it). And yes I am anonymous, if you are familiar with how hard hitting my blog is, you’d probably understand why….

      3. I can take if off if you want, to be honest couldn’t care less what you do or think….
        Took your name off and blocked you..
        Haven’t a clue why you are so angry and bitter at those on the same side as you but don’t really care to find out why..

  2. Congratulations and thanks to T30 and others for all the sacrificial work that has gone in to get us to this point.

    Burns continues to be a shameful disgrace.
    Look at the very last paragraph (why is it these heartless toe-rags get to always have the last word) from the article in the above link:
    Mrs Burn said: “Antidepressants can be very effective for treating moderate to severe depression, particularly in combination with talking therapies, and what we want is guidance that best supports their use.”

    Once again these pharma whores get to have the final say. The agenda is clear they want to continue using these mental thalidomides ! That’s like saying well we want to continue giving thalidomide (which works best with talking therapies) to pregnant woman and want some guidance to do so.
    Burns is still living in denial and refusing to accept the truth. That is you have harmed millions. Is that all you have to say ….As T30 says what about an apology for the millions of lives damaged!
    Ad’s are not effective for treating anything. No good can come from their ingestion. This combo with talking therapies is another cop out and another pharma lie! When the drug withdrawal hits the fan its all the therapies fault!. Once you are on them you are addicted and dependence sets in regardless of what one does or doesn’t talk about. So what you are saying is you have been pushing these drugs with absolutely no idea of what you were doing. Then with such ignorance wouldnt it be best to just not prescribe. Dont you think access to drug trial data might be right for you and the patient?
    The best guidance for the use of these drugs is to just say NO’ . Do not prescribe or use them for any new cases and start tapering those trapped on them. A tapering that will, in a massive number, take years. Not months.

    And I still cant get over that jaw dropping number of 70.9 million ad prescriptions in 2018. The way I understand that (and i hope someone corrects me if i am wrong) is that as prescriptions are renewed every three months then that number divided by 4, that is, 17.5 million people is the number of individuals that are being prescribed these life altering poisons. That’s massive.

    ” After spending a year speaking to patients, the college has accepted that some of its critics have a point.”
    So you spent the last year speaking to patients and I assume listening for once …what on earth then was going on for the prior 29 years….no listening, just drugging and lies.You’ve been spoken to for 30 years by patients and what have you done certainly not listened or cared.

    “As psychiatrists, we are duty-bound to take on board the concerns of patients who’ve experienced more severe and long-lasting side effects of these medications,” said Wendy Burn, the college president….”
    Then Wendy why have you not applied such a duty of care until now? Burns you have failed in your duty bound obligations. Not that you care.

  3. There is another worth thanking for this latest outcome and I believe it’s the Daily Mail.
    What a most awesome organisation. I bet pharma must be fuming they couldn’t shut them up.

  4. …and thanks also to The Times ! What a wonderful newspaper. A paper in which one doesn’t read about history but one which makes history.
    Thankyou The Times for tabling comments that shook a few consciences.

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