Irish Psychiatrist Jim Lucey Admits That Diagnosis In Mental Health Isn’t About The Cause

Irish broadcaster Pat Kenny regularly carts out the Irish Biological Psychiatrist Jim Lucey on his radio show. I’ve been listening (and reading between the lines) of his interviews. They can be listened to (and downloaded) on this link:

One that is particularly interesting is “Does Depression Really Exist?“.

In this interview , Lucey admits that Psychiatric Diagnosis isn’t about addressing the cause, he says it’s about diagnosing the symptoms in order to label depression.

One listener asked a question, “would I be on Effexor for the rest of my life”? “I’m worried and I don’t know what to do”.

Lucey seems to think that if someone has 3 re-current depressions due to stopping treatment- which he calls re-lapses- that they should stay on medication.

What Jim Lucey doesn’t say is- SSRI medications – like Effexor- can cause a withdrawal syndrome which mimics and often increases symptoms of depression and anxiety- therefore how does a psychiatrist diagnose re-lapse and differentiate between re-lapse into depression and SSRI withdrawal induced depression?

While I don’t doubt Jim Lucey believes in the biological model of psychiatry – it amazes me how he fails to see the dangers of prescribing a one-size-fits-all model for depression. Not once does he offer other alternatives- such as changes in diet, exercise, alternative therapies, nutrition, psychotherapy etc.

Jim says recurring depression might need a mood-stabilizer such as lithium. Perhaps a recurring depression needs intensive talk-therapy- not merely chemical intervention? Ever consider that Jim, no?

What Jim Lucey doesn’t address is the cause of depression in the first place- many factors which he mentions- such as grief, life-changes, environmental factors etc- he brushes over these and sees the individual purely in terms of symptoms instead of focusing on the root-cause.


Until the root cause of the depression is dealt with- chemical band-aid psychiatric drugs will not aid an individual in overcoming their depression. I speak from experience..

Discussing Mental Health entirely in biological terms, and aiming to treat Mental Health solely in chemical treatments, is extremely limited and does a great disservice to sufferers of depression and anxiety. Chemical treatments have clearly failed the majority of mental health sufferers,  and perhaps it’s time that psychiatrists like Jim Lucey begin to see beyond the symptoms, the diagnosis and the ‘disease’, and into the essence of the individual.

The individual holds the key to their own recovery, but it seems psychiatrists like Jim Lucey are intent just on elevating their own status as experts on the human suffering of the patient, which is a process which while positive for his profession (in terms of validating the psychiatric ideology)- it results in dis- empowerment of the individual, therefore is negative for mental health sufferers.

On RTE radio  on Monday at the end of a debate on autism, Pat Kenny’s resident psychiatrist Prof Jim Lucey said Dr Gilsenan’s views were “a classic example of a single dimensional divide” that occurs in the suicide debate.

Not sure exactly what that means, but he went on to say there is “no evidence” that anti-depressants cause suicide, and referred to an “anti-psychiatry movement”. Prof Lucey instead preferred to blame alcohol for a rise in suicide. I was under the impression that we Irish had always drunk copious amounts, so why all of a sudden is it driving us to suicide? Perhaps the issue of alcohol mixed with legally prescribed drugs would be a more valid argument. Coroners up and down the country have been commenting on the number of cases where legally prescribed drugs are a factor in deaths.

Jim Lucey says that there is no evidence that anti-depressants cause suicide. This is blatantly untrue. Perhaps Mr Lucey would like to take a look at the tens of thousands of stories of SSRI induced suicide, murder and aggression on SSRI Stories-

or maybe he would open his mind and read about the coroners reports of SSRI induced suicides on this website: