Sinead O’Connor’s Past Psychiatric Drug Use

In this is an article from 2013 Irish singer, Sinead O’Connor talks about how psychiatric drugs (prescribed for bi-polar) and psychiatric misdiagnoses wrecked ten years of her life. She recently had a kind of mental breakdown on her facebook page, after threatening suicide twice, and it seems now her facebook account has been disabled.

I wonder was Sinead prescribed more psychiatric drugs (anti-depressants perhaps) in recent times, and maybe she is having more side effects? or withdrawals and that’s why her behavior is again spiraling?

Personally, I think Sinead is a very sensitive soul, and a great musician. It seems she has been treated very shoddily by the psychiatric system too and I hope she can get proper holistic help.

The singer said she was brought to the edge by her medication and is trying to wean herself off them

Ian West/PA Wire
Sinead O’Connor

Sinead O’Connor has revealed doctors have discovered she doesn’t have bipolar disorder and said: “I can now get my life back.”

The Nothing Compares 2 U singer was falsely diagnosed with the illness eight years ago.

And Sinead was left suicidal, suffering mental health breakdowns, and wanting to self harm because of the drugs she was prescribed.

She said: “They are extremely debilitating drugs. Tiring to the extreme. Ironically, extremely depressing. They can cause suicidal or self-harm type thinking. They can mess up your menstrual cycle very badly and cause you to be incapacitated for a week before.

“[They] f**k up your liver, your kidneys, your eyes, your appetite, your entire way of thinking and generally your entire life. “

Sinead, 46, said she was diagnosed after she gave birth eight years ago.

She said: “When my third child was 5 months old I became distressed over something extremely traumatic that happened. At the time I had not been working for some years and was taking care of the three children by myself. and doing a very good job of it too, even if I do say so myself.

“I could possibly have been somewhat post-natal but I was certainly distressed because of the aforementioned traumatic event.”

But the Bray star recently underwent three new diagnoses at hospitals around the country, and all found she definitely didn’t have biopolar disorder.

Sinead – who recently started a feud with Miley Cyrus – has to continue taking the drugs she was prescribed until she can slowly wean herself from them.

She said: “ It is dangerous to stop suddenly or over the course of a year at least.

“This is because of how these drugs affect receptors in your brain. They are the same drugs, some of them, that are used to treat epilepsy.”

And Sinead has revealed that when she cancelled her tour last year it wasn’t because of biopolar disorder as many believed but because she had tried to stop taking her medication cold turkey.

She said: “When I became ill and left the last tour it was because I stopped the drugs too quickly and without medical supervision.

“The illness was in fact what happens when you don’t go about coming off these meds properly.

“I’m delighted to be able to say that after ten years of poisoning myself with these drugs and having to live with the extremely difficult side-effects of them I can shortly begin the very, very slow indeed, process of getting them out of my system and my life and getting my life back.”

Medicating a non-existent disease.

Here’s a recent clip of Sinead O’Connor speaking on her treatment by an Irish Psychiatrist. Sinead says that she was misdiagnosed with Bipolar Disorder and subsequently prescribed ‘toxic’ doses of Lamictal (400mgs) and Amitriptyline (200mgs). She describes her psychiatrist as a horrible ‘b’ who did not inform her of the side-effects while on the drugs, or while coming off them.

Dishing out the pills is always the first-line treatment for people that psychiatry see as ‘abnormal’. Sinead O’Connor is perfectly normal by the way, and fabulously outspoken; she didn’t need fixing! Strange that dangerous drugs can be given to a person for years for an ‘illness’ which didn’t exist. Never mind all that comes with that, not least the weight gain, depersonalization, worsening depression and huge expense; would any other profession get away with such sloppy work? Reported adverse effects of these drugs on the RxISK website: Lamictal and Amitriptyline.

The full video can be viewed here.

The Psychiatrist & the Rockstar: State of Mind interviews Sinead O’Connor

In my adolescent 90’s playlist there’s a Song (yes, song with a capital S) that wholly deserves it’s place of honor not only for the wonderful ballad (not surprising, seeing as the composer is a certain genius from Minneapolis formerly known as Prince) but above all for the singer’s performance that spears the listener straight in the heart, it pierces the left ventricle and bleeds five minutes and ten seconds of pure emotions.

The song’s called Nothing Compares 2 U and the singer is the Irish bad-girl with a shaved head called Sinead O’Conner.

The piece, which came out in 1990, was a worldwide phenomenon helped along by the minimalist video clip featuring only the singer’s angelic face moved to tears by the time she hits the final notes (Sinead was thinking to her mother, died in a car crash five years previously, while singing Nothing Compares 2 U).

The following years were characterized by even more excellent music and peppered with resoundingly blatant provocations (most famously when she ripped up a photo of the Pope on Saturday Night Live) which earned her the label of activist and heretic; Rock’s answer to Joan of Ark.


In 2005 she surprised the masses by releasing her excellent reggae album “Throw Down Your Arms”, followed by the more intimate “Theology” in 2007, which dealt with her passionate relationship with spirituality.

At the start of 2012 her new album “How About I Be Me (and You Be You)?” was released.

This should have been followed by a tour which was cancelled due to a serious relapse into a depressive phase of the bipolar disorder that Sinead has suffered from, for 8 years. (Editor’s Note: According to DSM-IV criteria , it is most likely Bipolar II disorder). The deep depressive state was characterized by an attempt at self-harm by overdosing on prescription drugs having previously launched a desperate cry for help from her fans on twitter.

On hearing this news, I got the idea for an interview on Skype, each from their own home, me in Modena and her close to Dublin.

Sinead kindly took some time out from her schedule as a busy mother of four to speak to me. Despite the impersonality of online conversation, I felt as though on the other side of the screen I was talking to someone authentic, who isn’t ashamed to share their own fragilities and is extremely precise when describing her own journey towards healing.


GP: Well Sinead, first of all I want to thank you for your kindness and willingness in giving this interview. I must confess, I was really surprised that you accepted. I don’t know how much you want to talk about yourself specifically, but I would like that our talk be of some help for people who struggle everyday against depression.

S: I am interested in the issue obviously…well the only reason I am qualified to speak is because I have direct experience.

GP: So…you have been diagnosed with bipolar depression, haven’t you?

S: Yes I was diagnosed 8 and half years ago, but it took 12 years to get the right diagnosis.

GP: Did your disorder start with a manic state or with a depressive state?

S: I don’t get the highs and the manic particularly, I get the lows. When I was younger though, I had a very bad temper, that’s my being a bit of a manic; not in a happy way, but I was like… fuck that!

GP: A young rebel…

S: I have always had a good functioning in my artistic life, but I had  problems mostly in my private life, I got very angry with my boyfriends and stuff…I would probably have good reasons to be angry but the volume would be too high, just getting to some level of wounding that perhaps was not appropriate to the actual offence committed.


GP: So you never had a proper manic episode?

S: I did have once where I was addicted to shopping, that’s unheard of for me because I fucking hate shopping, but I did actually about two years ago. That was as manic as I ever got. I bought a lot of clothes.

GP: Do you think that your experience of depression has been of some inspiration for your creative process at some point?

S: I think the other way round. I don’t agree with this romantic fantasy that people who suffer from depression are more likely to be artists. I find that I am more creative when I am happy actually.

I think that music has been a great help to me and this has been confirmed by every psychiatrist I have seen. I would probably be dead if not for music. They think that the reason that I have this depression is for what I went through growing up. I have also Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, and I wouldn’t have survived that if not for music. So I think for me, music was a soothing thing and it was also a place where you could say all the stuff that you couldn’t say anywhere else. When I grew up in Ireland in the seventies there was no such thing as therapy…I mean we didn’t even have cappuccinos until 1998! So for me music was therapy, it was also the place where one could speak about himself, where he was allowed to speak about his traumatic experiences. I grew up in a situation of extreme abuse, but there was no chance to talk about it, so music became the escape if  you like.

GP: In which way has music helped you? More in the creative process of song writing or more in the cathartic process of performing?

S: I think all of it. I think in the first place hearing the music inside of you is very soothing, very comforting. For me there always been, if you like, a spiritual connection between myself and music. What I like about  being a musician is that I find the thing soothing, but I also give the soothing to other people; I guess for some people particularly, I think people who come from abuse and/or people who have mental illnesses, have terrible self-esteem problems. And for me I have always found being a musician, a work and a place where I find a lot of self-esteem. I feel that I was a useful contributor to society, and that I couldn’t be a contributor to society in any other way.

I think when you have a mental illness you can feel very bad about yourself because you are always fucking up in life and making music perhaps makes you feel you are not such a dreadful person and there is something you can do that is not fucked up… because there is a terrible lack of self esteem that comes with mental illness, especially if you live, like I do, in a society such as Ireland, where having mental illness has a dreadful stigma.

And also I suppose is very cathartic to do a  show to the masses and you get to make magic in a manner that you can’t do in regular life, but I suppose that self esteem effect is one of the most powerful.

GP: I think that the problem of stigma in mental health is as important as the illnesses themselves. Can you tell me something more about the stigma situation in Ireland?

S: Well I suppose in some ways, all over the world “crazy” is a term of abuse and I think that is something that should be stopped. In Ireland “crazy” is a term of abuse and people are terrified of anything that they conceive to be crazy. And the people believed to be crazy won’t be treated compassionately, they will treat you horribly and use it as a reason to dismiss anything you would think, do, say or feel, so you’re rocking into a self esteem trap. I had a letter from a man back in January, an old man aged 73, he lives in Goolen (Ireland), I was thinking about him this morning, he has been taking antidepressants for 30 years and he has not told his wife and his adult children because of the stigma. That is Ireland, you know. We are very ignorant about the nature of mental illness. People assume all over the world for example that schizophrenia means you have a lot of personalities, like multiple personality disorder, but it is not. It is completely different.

When you have mental illness you don’t have a plaster or a cast or a crutch, that let everyone know that you have the illness, so people expect the same of you as from anyone else and when you are different they give you a hard time and they think you’re being difficult or they think you’re being a pain in the ass and they’re horrible to you. You spend your life in Ireland trying to hide that you have a mental illness. I’m always checking with my friends “Do I seem crazy?”, “Am I being crazy?”, and I shouldn’t have to keep checking, if I’m being crazy I should be left in fucking crazy peace! You have to hide what you are and it’s really stressful and very bad for your self esteem. Because it’s not obvious to people that you are ill, they treat you as if you’re a pain in the ass, then you beat yourself up and you are already beating yourself  up as a part of mental illness, you know.

I mean, I understand that we are actually complicated people but we are also dreadfully simple, but you know it’s a hard world where there is this gap between the supposedly sane  and the supposedly insane, the sane are not familiar with the insane, which in itself is insane. We are all stuffed behind these kind of, you know, the actual bars that don’t exist anymore, the metaphorical bars do exist.

GP: I know that you have always had a difficult relationship with the Catholic Church. What do you think about the attitude toward mental illness of the Catholic Church today? Is there acceptance and compassion for the mentally ill?

S: (laughs) If there was acceptance of the mentally ill in the Catholic Church, the entire Curia would resign! You need the best psychiatrist in Italy to take a little time in there! The very top guys are insane. They are more insane than the lot of us put together. If they investigate mental illness they have to start out by checking themselves into hospital. Anybody who can claim that paedophilia and the ordinance of women are equal has a mental problem. When one criticizes the Church, what we usually mean, especially in Ireland, are the top guys. We all know that 99.9% of priests and nuns are incredible people, that do a lot to help people of all kinds. But the regular priests down the road haven’t got the training to go around the country breaking statements, all the poor priest can do is mop up the mess, which is usually suicide, ‘cause stigma leads to suicide. Because of the stigma, people don’t stay in treatment and they don’t get the help they need, because they know they are gonna be treated like shit.


GP: The stigma again…

S: Yes…for example: I checked into hospital about 2 years ago because I wanted to make doubly sure that the diagnosis was right. While I was in the hospital (I was there for 2 weeks), there was a woman about my age who had been there for 6 months. She wasn’t that unwell, and I was talking to her one day about why she was there and she showed me her arms, they were all cut. Her mother had died of cancer and she’d nursed her. Nothing had happened to this woman before, but the night her mother died, she probably lost her mind and she sliced up her arms. But the reason she stayed in the hospital so long was that in the village that she came from, they wouldn’t have her back, she couldn’t have her job back, none of her friends wanted to talk to her, she was a pariah in the village because she had done this to her arms, everybody thought she was mad. So she couldn’t go back to her town and she was based in the hospital.

GP: How many times have you been admitted to the hospital?

S: I took myself to the hospital twice. The first to get a clear diagnosis. The second was last year when I was taken off medication very stupidly and I got very sick, I couldn’t eat or sleep.

GP: Why did you stop the medication, was it for the side effects?

S: I was getting a lot of pressure from people in show business about my being overweight because of medication, I was on 200 mg of amitriptiline.  When I said this to my doctor, for some reason she took me completely off medication and she didn’t really supervise properly. The mental health system here is really terrible. After I was taken off medications, I got sick, but I didn’t realize I was sick. Then I got carried away with loosing weight so I wanted to pretend I was not sick. It was not my choice to be off medication, but the psychiatrist took me off, so I thought it was ok. Unfortunately in my case, because of what I do for living, here in Ireland is very hard for me to find a doctor who can just deal with me as a person, that can get beyond Sinead O’Connor. I had to go to England to find a psychiatrist for my case.

GP: How long were you without medication?

S: I was off medication from August last year until April. I was told to come off by the doctor, so it took me a long time to know I was sick because when you stop those meds it takes a long time to get sick, so I didn’t know what the fuck was going on.

GP: Nine months without medication is really a long time…weren’t you warned by the psychiatrist about the possible risks of relapse?

S: Because of what I do for living, in Ireland all that the psychiatrist did was to complain about the stuff that was in the newspapers instead of talking about my sickness. The same psychiatrist was very involved in the Church’s public struggle in Ireland … on the opposite side to me.

At the same time as coming off meds, when I was going to her, she complained to me that she didn’t like what I was saying about the Church in the newspapers, so we fell out and I was left stranded. Then in Ireland the mental health system is so shit that you can’t get an appointment with the doctor for treatment for months, so I would wait for another doctor to tell me the same shit. One doctor sent me home with anti-histamines and told me to take 100 mg every night. So I said “ok!”. In Ireland people think doctors are God, they don’t question them. But this meant I was sick for three more fucking months! And the funny thing is that it was a private doctor, and the only alternative is to go to the fucking hospital. Nobody wants to go to the hospital, the worst thing that can happen if you are sick is to leave your family and your children, that’s the only thing that make you feel safe.

GP: It sounds strange…in Italy you can choose a private doctor and pay more, but you can see the doctor more often.

S: Here you have six weeks in agony, but unless you want to check into hospital, you are fucked. Moreover, here people don’t have money. I have, but the guy next door can’t pay for a private psychiatrist and can wait up to six months for a consultation. I’ll give you an idea about how bad our system is: a friend of mine works in a child drug counselling service, run by the National Health Service for children aged between 12 and 18, and there is a fridge in the toilet! That is the picture of the health system in Ireland.

GP: I can imagine you really had terrible times. Was it in the last months when you couldn’t finish the tour?

S: Yes, I almost died. It was in June this year that I was very sick, like never before. I was put on carbamazepine in April and I had a very unusual reaction that made the symptoms worse. Now I feel better taking 200 mg of lamotrigine and 100 mg of quetiapine. Now I also take very high dose of vitamin B12, prescribed by the psychiatrist. They have just discovered that it helps with the depressive phase of bipolar disorder.

GP: Have you ever tried psychotherapy?

S: Yes, fucking never stops, I still do. At the moment I have counselling every week. From July to August this year I also worked for 12 weeks with a therapist at a Suicide Prevention Centre in Dublin. They are fantastic. One of the main symptoms when I was very sick was the constant suicidal thinking and I found that many therapists are not specifically trained in the area of suicidal thinking, so you can go on for years and it is not fixed. Because I was not on medication the suicidal thinking got worse and worse and I actually made an attempt in January, and then there were three more attempts. The therapists in the Suicide Prevention Centre just work on suicidal thinking. They don’t just talk about killing yourself, they help to rebuild your life, they help you to focus on  what life do you want. I saw them once a week for individual sessions. While you do that you don’t do any other therapy.

GP: What do you mean by rebuilding your life?

S: They helped me identify a number of issues, the “off-switch” was one, learning how to fucking do nothing, just sit the fuck down and put energy out. Then you sit down and realize how tired you were, when you have  depressed or suicidal thinking you don’t know how tired you are.

Then they focused on the thing with me that I am too inclined to take on board other people’s negative opinions of me. If ten people stood in a room and nine said you are fucking great and one said you’re an asshole, that would be what I’d worry about and believe in, that person, getting depressed if someone says I’m an asshole. They were able to teach me, which I hadn’t learned before, how to really not give a fuck about them. And then another important thing is fun, I mean “What are you doing just for fun?”, “Are you doing anything just for fun?”. They made me put together a bucket list, so first of all you deserve better, to hang out all the people that make you feel like  shit, then you need to rest your body, to take time for yourself and they made me put together a list of the things I would like to do in my life, and that was great! They very quickly put you out of the misery part and start to build a fun life. It’s quite witchy how therapy works, it’s a kind of subconscious, you don’t know how the fuck they’ve done it but suddenly you start living differently and thinking differently. I’ve been able to build the life I want, do you know what I mean? When you have a mental illness I think it is important to work with prevention services when one of your symptoms is suicidal thinking.

GP: Did you struggle with interpersonal problems that drove you to think about suicide?

S: In that period I was not on medication, and in the same time a lot of awful stressful things were happening. If I had been on medication perhaps I would have responded differently. In my case it was purely the sickness that made me think suicide but it was a compulsion. I got to the point that the physical symptoms of bipolar disorder made me feel as if I was walking under water.

GP: Walking under water…really gives the idea of how you could have felt…well Sinead, I think you were really exhaustive and brave in telling your difficult story, and I want to thank you on behalf of State of Mind and of all the people who have to face mental illness every day. 
Per saperne di più:


What Did They Prescribe Christopher Harper Mercer? (The Oregon Shooter).


According to Christopher Harper Mercer’s (the Oregon shooter’s) mother:

“She said that ‘my son is a real big problem of mine’,” Alexis Jefferson, who worked with Harper at a care center in 2010, told the Times. “She said: ‘He has some psychological problems. Sometimes he takes his medication, sometimes he doesn’t.

Anytime I hear of a mass murder, a murder suicide, or a very violent suicide, I immediately think of psychiatric drugs. I do this because I know, from first had experience, that psychiatric drugs are extremely dangerous. They made me aggressive, hostile, and suicidal, as a young man, and they can push anyone over the edge. There are thousands of first hand patient reports of how these mind bending medications can literally destroy you psychologically. Homicide, violence and violent suicides are not hallmarks of depression, but they are common side effects of psychiatric medication. People, are still largely ignorant of these side effects though, and doctors and psychiatrists don’t warn or monitor people properly.

… the gunman’s mother sometimes confided the difficulties she had in raising her son, including that she had placed Mr. Harper-Mercer in a psychiatric hospital when he did not take his medication.”

Oregon Killer’s Mother Wrote of Troubled Son and Gun Rights,  New York Times, October 5, 2015

….”This confirms, at least, the Oregon shooter’s access to psychiatric drugs.  Young people sometimes throw their drugs together and take them randomly as if they were recreational. Additionally, Mercer was also known to have graduated from a high school for youngsters with emotional and behavioral problems…” (Peter Breggin: Mad In America)

If the recent BMJ study into Paroxetine (Paxil/Seroxat/Aropax) and it’s links to an increase in suicide in under 18’s, and the recent study which linked all the SSRI’s to an increase in violence, doesn’t wake people up to the dangers of all psychiatric drugs, then I don’t know what will… psychiatric drugs can be particularly dangerous in withdrawal, or over the long term and it seems that the Oregon shooter was perhaps coming off his the drugs at the time of the shooting, however the details are unclear at this time.

We don’t know yet either, what drugs Christopher Harper Mercer was prescribed, or his psychiatric history etc… however we do know that there have been far too many murders, suicides, killing sprees and school shootings linked to these drugs.

These are very toxic medications..

An influential study which claimed that an antidepressant drug was safe for children and adolescents failed to report the true numbers of young people who thought of killing themselves while on it, re-analysis of the trial has found

Study 329, into the effects of GlaxoSmithKline’s drug paroxetine on under-18s, was published in 2001 and later found to be flawed. In 2003, the UK drug regulator instructed doctors not to prescribe paroxetine – sold as Seroxat in the UK and Paxil in the US – to adolescents.

But experts who have obtained the original data say the study is still referred to in the medical literature and needs to be retracted.

Young people taking antidepressants such as Prozac and Seroxat are significantly more likely to commit violent crimes when they are on the medication, but taking higher doses of the drugs appears to reduce that risk, scientists said.

In research published in the PLoS Medicine journal, the scientists said that while their finding of a link does not prove that such drugs cause people to be more violent, further studies should be conducted and extra warnings may be needed in future when they are prescribed to people aged 15 to 24.

What Did They Prescribe Cathriona White?

It will be interesting to see what medication Cathriona White was prescribed..

Coroner Releases New Information About Jim Carrey’s Ex’s Death

Coroner Releases New Information About Jim Carrey's Ex's Death

New details have emerged in the death of Jim Carrey’s ex-girlfriend Cathriona White.

Friends found White dead in her Sherman Oaks home on Monday.

Assistant Chief Coroner Ed Winter told Us Weekly that there were pills next to the makeup artist’s body, and confirmed that a suicide note at the scene mentions Jim Carrey.

The Coroner’s Office has not yet named the type of medication found at the scene, nor whether the suicide note was addressed to Carrey.

The autopsy is not complete, and toxicology results could take up to ten weeks.

According to People, White’s mother, stepmother and sister are traveling from Ireland to L.A. to claim Cathriona’s body.

Helen O’Driscoll thinks parents should be told of children’s medication

Ms O’Driscoll told the Irish Independent she was “totally shocked” by the number of medications Jonathan was on.

“I found a lot of tablets after Jonathan had passed away, God speed him. He seemed to be on a lot of tablets. But his inquest heard that it was reckoned he hadn’t taken any medication at all for about a week before it happened.”

The mother of twin boys who were stabbed to death by their older brother, who then took his own life, says she thinks parents should be better informed of their children’s medication.

It emerged that 21-year-old Jonathan O’Driscoll had been off his tablets for a number of days before he stabbed nine-year-old twins, Thomas and Patrick, more than 40 times each at their home in Charleville, Co Cork, last September.

Doctors do not have to inform parents of their children’s medication once they are no longer minors.

Their mother Helen O’Driscoll says she would have monitored Jonathan if she had known.

Helen said: “I think the age barrier of confidentiality for an adult, they call them adults now from 18 upwards, I think that should stop.

Helen went on to state that she didn’t know how sick Jonathan was, saying that she didn’t know how much medication he was on: “No I did not know.

“I think their parents have the right to know if they’re suffering with some sort of a problem or if they have whatever kind of sickness that they have… They’ll look more clearly.

“Whereas, if you don’t know what he is taking or what medication he’s on, you don’t know what’s from day to day.

“They reckon he didn’t take any medication for about a week when he died.”

What Meds Did They Prescribe Jonathan O’ Driscoll?

Despite engagement with the mental health services and an improvement in his health in the weeks before last September’s tragic murder-suicide, Jonathan stopped taking his medication just days before he stabbed his twin brothers to death, and took his own life.

It sounds to me that Jonathan O’ Driscoll was in a severe withdrawal from either the anti-psychotic, anti-depressant, or both?

What psychiatric meds was he prescribed? What dose(s) was he on, and for how long? and furthermore what was the last  (apparently new/experimental) drug which the psychiatrist (Robert Burns) prescribed? and why did he think it was a good idea to keep increasing the dose?

Jonathan’s story is very typical of how vulnerable young people become ensnared in the psychiatric system. It’s a clear illustration of how the psychiatric meds (the psychiatrists and GPs prescribe), produce worsening side effects; which leads to an increase in anxiety and other mental health symptoms. The person’s condition deteriorates, another drug is then prescribed, more (mis)diagnoses follow- irrational behavior and out of character events start happening etc. Eventually- the individual tries to stop the meds suddenly and goes into severe withdrawal psychosis: mania, akathisia and de-personalization soon follows. Basically the drugs turn the individual into a toxic timebomb.

Then they lose their grip on reality, become aggressive, hostile etc. In some tragic cases-like Jonathans- they commit murder, suicide, or murder and suicide together, and often they murder those closest to them- wives, daughters, brothers, parents etc. These cases all have the hallmark of psychiatric drug induced crimes. They are well documented now, and there are many many examples.

Most of these psychiatric meds can induce homicidal and suicidal reactions and- in withdrawal- the side effects can become particularly intense- so why do psychiatrists not warn people? (the drug companies even admit these homicidal/suicidal side effects in their PIL’s yet psychiatry continually blames the person suffering from side effects -this implicates their ‘illness- and not the drug!).

Jonathan was a victim of the Irish psychiatric system, that much is abundantly clear. He also was a psychiatric drug casualty. Broken and failed by the system which is supposed to heal and help people like him.

Depression doesn’t cause murder-suicides, but prescribing vulnerable people lethal psychiatric drugs and not warning them of the side effects and withdrawals certainly does!

Withdrawal from anti-psychotics and anti-depressants can push people over the edge..

They make you edgy and aggressive when you first go on them, even worse after a few months/years, and then the withdrawal literally snaps your sanity into smithereens..

I know because I’ve been there…

It’s interesting that the coroner decided to err on the side of caution, and record an ‘open verdict’ in this case, I wonder was this because of the involvement of psychiatric drugs (and the frightening and dangerous withdrawal syndromes which they produce?).

“Like many young men he stopped taking the medication and became unwell again prior to his death,” consultant psychologist Dr Robert Burns said.

I also find it interesting that the last psychiatrist (Dr Robert Burns) seemed to think it was a good idea to try a new drug on Jonathan, and also to increase the dose, what was this new drug? why did he try it on Jonathan? Jonathan was prescribed many medications, it seems, prior to his death for a few years, so Robert Burns saying that ‘like many young men, he stopped taking the medication and became unwell again prior to his death’- is a simplistic way of saying it was nothing to do with the meds.

Many psychiatrists get away with human experimentation because the mentally ill are the most vulnerable demographic in society, and the psychiatrist’s view is perceived as the logical, rational side of the equation, however it’s quite often the psychiatric ‘treatment’ (or mistreatment) which is the most dangerous factor in these cases. The late Irish doctor- Dr Michael Corry- was a leading figure who challenged the psychiatric establishment regularly, and Dr Terry Lynch and Dr David Healy continue to do so, however most psychiatrists refuse to engage with the notion that these drugs can- and do- cause a multitude of problems. It’s much easier, and much more convenient, to just blame the ‘mental’ patient and exonerate the drug- that way psychiatry takes no blame, and the tools of their trade- the psychiatric drugs- remain blameless also.

The website antidepaware has been documenting medication induced violence, murder and suicides, in England for some years now, it’s well worth checking out, as is SSRI stories (an American website collecting similar SSRI antidepressant related events in the media).

SSRI Stories is a collection of over 6,000 stories that have appeared in the media (newspapers, TV, scientific journals) in which prescription drugs were mentioned and in which the drugs may be linked to a variety of adverse outcomes including violence.

Leone Fennell has been campaigning on these issues on her blog for years now, check it out here:

Jonathan O’Driscoll Googled ‘murder in Charleville’, inquest hears

Court told man who fatally stabbed his brothers researched killing on internet

 Jonathan O’Driscoll. Photograph: UTV/PA Wire Jonathan O’Driscoll. Photograph: UTV/PA Wire

Jonathan O’Driscoll (21) typed the words ‘murder in Charleville’ into an online search prior to stabbing his nine-year-old twin brothers to death.

Examinations of his computer and mobile phone gave gardaí an indication of his “state of mind”, Det Supt Sean Healy told an inquest into the three deaths in Mallow.

He also conducted another online search with the words ‘Irish Law, stabbing with a knife’, the inquest heard.

A third search of the ‘science of suicide by hanging’ was found on his laptop, Det Supt Healy said.

The inquest heard how Jonathan O’Driscoll, who was fostered by Helen and Thomas O’Driscoll when he was three days old, doted on his younger brothers.

He grew up in a “loving and caring home”, was officially adopted at 15 and was healthy and happy until he was involved in a road traffic incident in 2012.

After this incident, his behaviour changed and he grew quiet and depressed. He was badly affected by the break-up of a relationship and his mother described him as heartbroken.

“He was quiet in himself, he was heartbroken after her,” Mrs O’Driscoll told the inquest.

Jonathon O’Driscoll grew curious over his birth family and began to believe his adopted mother Helen had information she was not sharing with him.

“He pushed me against the wall. It was out of character but I wasn’t going to take it,” she said.

She said she obtained a barring order against her son, but it was lifted after 10 days because he was “crying and ringing to apologise every day”.

The inquest heard how doctors became concerned for Jonathan O’Driscoll’s mental health and he was prescribed anti-depressant and anti-psychotic medication.

However, a postmortem revealed no evidence of medication in his system.

Consultant psychologist Dr Robert Burns said the medication had helped. “But like many young men he stopped taking the medication and became unwell again prior to his death,” Dr Burns said.

Dr Molloy, who had prescribed anti-depressants, referred Jonathan in April 2013 to the North Cork Mental Health Services, but he failed to engage with its home-based crisis team, failed to attend a July appointment, and continued intermittent visits to his GP’s practice.

However, a locum GP was so concerned about Jonathan’s mental health during a visit in February 2014 that he referred him for an urgent psychiatric assessment.

Jonathan complained of paranoia, he claimed his home was bugged, and he said he was avoiding certain chippers in case his food was poisoned.

During a series of visits to the mental health services, it was decided that Jonathan did not require admission and he was prescribed anti-psychotic drugs in April 2014, and was referred by a GP again in May for another urgent psychiatric assessment.

Consultant psychiatrist Dr Bobby Burns met Jonathan in July 2014 and said he felt his patient was displaying signs of early onset schizophrenia or psychosis. He prescribed a new drug, with the dose due to increase incrementally over several months, and Jonathan’s mental health improved over the coming months.

But at yesterday’s inquest, it was confirmed that Jonathan had stopped taking his medication in the days before the murder-suicide.

A Few More Things .. Before I Take a Long Break From Blogging…

What the hell were these idiot psychiatrists thinking?

“…A man with a history of mental illness killed his landlord and consumed part of his body two days after he came off his medication under the direction of a psychiatrist in Dublin..”

The Central Criminal Court has been told the medical professionals treating Saverio Bellante (36) in his native Italy believed he should remain on the medication for life.

After the dose of his anti-psychotic medication Olanzapine had been gradually lowered when he came to live in Ireland, the medication was stopped on the advice of a consultant psychiatrist on January 9th, 2014.

“…I have estimated in my book, ‘Deadly Medicine and Organized Crime’, that just one of the many preparations, Zyprexa (olanzapine), has killed 200,000 patients worldwide.”

-Peter Gøtzsche (Internationally respected Danish Professor of the renowned Cochrane research group in Denmark).

Is it no wonder that this guy had a complete psychotic break-down? Did the psychiatrist not realize that Zyprexa (Olanzapine) is one of THE most horrific psychiatric medications out there? I’d go as far as to say it’s just as bad as Seroxat.

In fact, it might even be worse.

I worked with a woman who was prescribed it and I witnessed her literally change into a shell of herself before my very eyes over a period of a few months. She turned into a zombie, her tongue would dart out of her mouth like a lizard, she looked like she was startled all the time, her face would contort, and spasm when she tried to do facial expressions, and her eyes were like pins, she was hallucinating half the time, half asleep the other half of the time and basically out of her head all the time on that disgusting drug. Long term psychiatric patients get worse from this type of psychiatric treatment because the drugs turn them into zombies, I saw it with my own eyes, and I was on Seroxat too, so I understand these drugs. I know the damage they cause. They are lethal! Absolutely lethal!

Robert Whitaker has written extensively about psychiatric meds literally killing patients every goddam day, when is the mainstream media going to wake up to this fact!

“The jury were told that two days before the murder he had attended an out-patient appointment at a Dublin clinic where the anti-psychotic medication Olanzapine he had been on was stopped. The psychiatrist for the prosecution Dr Stephen Monks said Mr Ballante had told him he had attended the clinic since arriving in Ireland in 2011. He attended every two months. Mr Bellante said he had been told that he would have to remain on medication for the rest of his life by doctors in Italy. However, medical records show that between January 2012 and January 2014 Mr Ballante’s anti-psychotic medication was gradually reduced in 2.5 milogramme steps up until 9 January 2014 when it was reduced to zero. Mr Ballante was also on a second medication: a mood stabiliser, sodium valproate. Following blood tests after the murder this was found to be lower than the therapeutic measure generally given. However, Dr Conor O’Neill, psychiatrist for the defence, told the court that one or more doses had perhaps been missed and this medication isn’t the one that keeps psychotic symptoms in check.

Secondly, what the hell was he being prescribed an Epilepsy drug for on top of his Zyprexa withdrawal? Sodium Valporate doesn’t stabilize moods (like it says in the article). The brand name is Epilim, the chemical name is Sodium Valporate- I know this because my younger brother was prescribed it when he was a child. My mother had the good sense to get him off it because he was having fits of rage on it, and mood swings. He was like a demon, and we were all actually terrified of him even though he was just a small child! He would go nuts on EpliIm and it made his fits worse! Now he’s ultra healthy, eats only a very specific healthy diet of whole foods and he goes to the gym most days, and guess what? he doesn’t need meds anymore and has no Epileptic fits anymore.

It seems to me that psychiatry is hell bent on using people for their sick agenda of human experimentation. We’re all just lab rats to them, and the result is- murders, suicides, murder-suicides, and life long psychiatric patients on drug merry go rounds, who never ever get better. Why? Because these drugs are toxic poisons that’s why!

The cure for all ‘psychiatric illnesses’ is not psychiatry, psychiatry compounds the traumas through psychotropic drugs and creates customers for life, and in many cases those customers have a short life, because these meds are killers.

All so called ‘psychiatric disorders’ come from trauma, and you cannot medicate trauma away with mind bending, health damaging, psychotropics! If you could then we’d all be on them and we would be getting better wouldn’t we? but guess what? Nobody ever gets better on long term psychiatric drug treatment. In what other medical specialty would you find that people actually get worse the longer their treatment goes on!

Only in psychiatry do you find that, because psychiatry is a fraud.

Some notes on the horrific Zyprexa drug…

Like Seroxat- Zyprexa causes similar symptoms- and like Seroxat- the withdrawal syndrome is horrendous, cruel and inhuman…

Zyprexa Withdrawal Symptoms: List of Possibilities

Below is a list of symtpoms that you may experience when coming off of Zyprexa. Keep in mind that not everyone will experience every single symptom listed below. You may experience a few of the symptoms or many and the severity of withdrawal will be influenced by individual factors.

  • Anxiety: Many people report very extreme anxiety when they quit Zyprexa. This is a drug that many people find calming and when taken away, a person can feel extremely anxious. Do your best to practice relaxation exercises and recognize that the anxiety is part of withdrawal.
  • Appetite changes: While on Zyprexa, many people experience significant increases in appetite. A person may feel as if they are never full and/or are transforming into Hulk as a result of the food that they eat. When coming off of Zyprexa, most people experience decreased appetite.
  • Bipolar symptoms: Some people may experience a reemergence of Bipolar symptoms (e.g. mania) when they quit taking this drug. If you have Bipolar disorder and are on this medication, proceed slowly and with caution when withdrawing.
  • Concentration problems: If you find it very difficult to concentrate on tasks such as reading, writing, and/or work, you are not alone. Many people have major difficulties with focusing when they are going through withdrawal. This symptom tends to improve over time as your brain adapts to functioning without the drug.
  • Confusion: When you experience a bunch of uncomfortable physical symptoms accompanied by foggy thinking, concentration problems, and emotional disturbances, this can result in a state of confusion. If you feel confused often, just know that this will improve over time.
  • Crying spells: The depression that people experience when quitting an antipsychotic like Zyprexa can be very tough to deal with. This may result in a person crying excessively because they feel so down in the dumps.
  • Depersonalization: Do you feel unlike your old “normal” self? This is because your neurotransmitters are out of balance and have changed since you took the medication. It will likely take your brain some time to reset its homeostatic functioning.
  • Depression: Many people report extreme depression when they stop taking this drug. The depression is thought to be a result of lowered levels of dopamine and serotonin. You should eventually experience some lift in mood after some time off of the medication.
  • Diarrhea: Some people experience diarrhea when they discontinue this medication. This isn’t an extremely common symptom, but one that has been reported. If this is the case, you may want to consider some over the counter Imodium.
  • Dizziness: Among the most common withdrawal symptoms from any psychiatric medication is that of dizziness. It is common for people to feel very dizzy, especially if the tapering was done too quickly. Dizziness will eventually lessen over time as the brain functioning readjusts.
  • Fatigue: Most people report excessive tiredness and general fatigue when they come off of Zyprexa. You may have a difficult time performing everyday tasks because your energy level is so low. Just know that your energy level will eventually return as time passes.
  • Hallucinations: There is evidence pointing to the fact that some people experience psychotic symptoms as a result of withdrawal. This is thought to be a result of changes in dopamine receptor functioning and dopamine levels.
  • Headaches: Some people experience splitting severe headaches when they come off of this medication. Having headaches accompanied by dizziness can be a very difficult one-two punch. Just know that these should subside after your body restores proper functioning.
  • Insomnia: This drug tends to calm people down and in many cases makes them sleepy. When coming off of it, the opposite can be true. Some people report such intense anxiety and an inability to fall asleep.  Insomnia may persist for quite some time after your last dose.  It should improve as you make some lifestyle changes and your neurotransmitter levels change.
  • Irritability: Do you notice yourself becoming increasingly irritable? If you feel more irritable than normal and little things set you off, it may be a result of withdrawal. Neurotransmitter levels are in fluctuation, which is thought to lead to people feeling irritable.
  • Memory problems: It is very common to experience poor memory functioning upon drug discontinuation. It isn’t well known as to why these drugs can lead to memory problems. With that said, most people do experience improvements in memory with time off of the drug.
  • Mood swings: Some people experience pretty severe mood swings upon discontinuation. One minute you may feel as though the withdrawal is over, the next you may feel swamped in a state of deep depression. For this I’m not referring to “bipolar” mood swings, rather just unexpected changes in mood.
  • Muscle cramps: Those who have taken this medication over the long term may experience muscle cramps and/or weakness during the withdrawal process.
  • Nausea: Many people report intense nausea during the time in which they discontinue their medication. The nausea can be severe to the point that a person also vomits. In general, the nausea after the last dose shouldn’t last more than a couple weeks.
  • Panic attacks: Some individuals report experiencing heightened anxiety to the point of panic attacks. In other words, a person experiences such high arousal that everyday activities lead to intense feelings of panic.
  • Psychosis: It has been documented that withdrawal from antipsychotics can cause psychosis. It is not very common to experience this upon withdrawal, but it does happen. Obviously this may signify the reemergence of schizophrenia, but in those without schizophrenia, it can be part of withdrawal.
  • Restlessness: If you feel especially restless for no apparent reason, it is likely due to the withdrawal that you are experiencing. The changes in neurotransmitters, elevated level of arousal, and anxious thinking can make a person restless.
  • Suicidal thinking: It is extremely common to feel suicidal during your withdrawal. You may experience suicidal thoughts that seem as if they will never subside. Over time, these should gradually subside. If you feel suicidal and cannot cope with these thoughts, please seek professional help.
  • Sweating: Many people sweat intensely when they withdraw from psychiatric drugs – this antipsychotic is no exception. If you notice that you are sweating profusely throughout the day and wake up sweating in the middle of the night, just know it’s part of the process.
  • Vomiting: Feel flu-like to the point that you are nauseous and keep vomiting? Some people have reported intense vomiting spells during the first week or two when they initially quit this medication. To reduce this symptom, be sure to wean off of Zyprexa as gradually as possible
  • Weight loss: Taking this drug is known to increase appetite and slow metabolism, which leads to many people gaining weight. Zyprexa is one of the worst drugs for trying to keep weight off – most people eat way too much food on this drug in particular. When you stop taking it and stay off of it for awhile, you should also lose the weight that you gained.

More than half a million people age 65 years or older die every year in the West from psychiatric drug use, and the worst part is that these death pills aren’t even effective at treating either mental illness or depression. Researchers from Denmark’s Nordic Cochrane Centre found that the benefits of psych drugs are minimal at best, and that most people who currently use them would be better off just ditching them entirely.

Published in The BMJ (British Medical Journal), an eye-opening paper by Professor Peter Gotzsche reveals that most antidepressants and dementia drugs are generally useless when it comes to providing tangible relief. The drugs are also vastly overprescribed, he says, and they come with such a high risk of adverse effects that it isn’t even worth it for the average person to try them.

Meanwhile, hundreds of thousands of people are dying every year from the normal and prescribed use of psych meds like selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), which are linked to causing extreme depression and provoking users towards suicide or even homicide. Add to this the fact that most psych meds have never been shown effective, matching or not even reaching placebo in terms of their efficacy, and there’s no legitimate reason for their continued use.

The other thing I wanted to blog about before I take a rest is GSK’s latest corruption scandal in Romania which is just hitting the headlines.

This article from Reuters sums it up nicely:

Drugmaker GlaxoSmithKline, which was fined a record 3 billion yuan ($483 million) for corruption in China last year and is examining possible staff misconduct elsewhere, faces new allegations of bribery in Romania.

GSK confirmed it was looking into the latest claims of improper payments set out in a whistleblower’s email sent to its top management on Monday. A copy of the email was seen by Reuters.

The company is already probing alleged bribery in Poland, the United Arab Emirates, Lebanon, Jordan, Syria and Iraq.

The latest allegations say GSK paid Romanian doctors hundreds, and in one cases thousands, of euros between 2009 and 2012 for prescribing its medicines, including prostate treatments Avodart and Duodart and Parkinson’s disease drug Requip.

According to the email, the doctors were notionally paid for speaking engagements, but in three out of six cases, including the most highly paid one, they did not give any speech. The other three medics gave only one speech each, despite receiving multiple payments.

GSK also provided doctors with many international trips and made payments to them under the guise of participation in advisory boards, the email said.

The company said it would look “very thoroughly” into the claims, which cover a period before its pledge in December 2013 to stop paying doctors to speak on its behalf or to attend international conferences.

“We do receive letters of this sort from time to time. We welcome and support the opportunity for people to speak up if they have any concerns,” GSK said in a statement. “Sometimes we do find things and we act on it; sometimes our findings do not substantiate the matters being raised.”

The China scandal, which involved alleged bribes totaling hundreds of millions of dollars, hit GSK’s sales in the country, although Chief Executive Andrew Witty, reporting quarterly results on Wednesday, said its Chinese business was stabilizing.

The sender of the Romania email said its contents would be passed on to the U.S. Department of Justice and the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), which are investigating GSK for possible breaches of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.

An SEC program provides cash incentives for whistleblowers to report corporate malpractice.

Now why is the media not mentioning the fact that GSK are operating under a so called corporate integrity agreement since 2012; a pact which was originally initiated by the US department of Justice because of GSK’s record breaking 3 Billion dollar fine for fraud (you can read the hundreds of pages of fraud and corruption in the Dept of Justice complaint here).

And you can read through the 122 page corporate integrity agreement here.

I haven’t read though all of it, but I’d be pretty damn sure than the gist of the agreement was that GSK would agree that they would stop being a corrupt, sociopathic, fraudulent company, and start to behave themselves. I reckon that’s reasonable considering they just don’t seem to be able to police themselves, and they also have a knack of destroying patient’s lives with dodgy drugs. It’s only right that they should be forced to comply isn’t it?

So did they behave? No of course not, because GSK are systemically corrupt as all these multiple corruption scandals over several years clearly illustrate.

Corruption IS their business model!

They’ve been doing it for decades, and these fines are just the cost of doing business!

They don’t give a rats ass about patient health, fines, corporate integrity, ethics, or anything else..

They care only for profit!

I expect more GSK scandals over the coming months (they are never ending), but I am taking a break for while. I just wish that more people would speak out, and maybe some journalists would grow some balls and take this rat infested corrupt cartel to task and not leave it to us bloggers to do all the hard work all the time!

So, did GSK break its corporate integrity agreement?

The following articles are worth reading in regards to a possible answer to that question:

Bribery, Business Strategy and Plausible Deniability

Can business strategy in itself be a red-flag of corporate corruption?
In one word,  yes, and I discuss how in a recent guest blog (May 19, 2014) in Ethic Intelligence’s “Experts Corner.” 
I ask, if strategy is pulled back at the C-Suite, does it expose an executive message of strict anti-bribery compliance, while the economics of the sales forecast and corresponding personal incentive packages speak to a “win over everything else” mentality?

A gap in the debate As I shared in the Q and A, I am concerned about the lack of discussion with respect to the corruption risk that front line international sales and marketing personnel face. Specifically, I draw attention to how corporate business strategy can directly contradict, through sales growth plans and incentive compensation packages, the messages of anti-bribery compliance. Such a situation leaves the sales force to decide “what does management really want, compliance or sales?”  While in past  writings I have discussed “compliance as bonus prevention” in the context of  incentive compensation, in the Q and A with Ethic Intelligence, I discuss the role of business strategy as a stand alone red-flag, of which compensation is a sub-set.

I am not alone While I might have thought I was alone in expressing this concern, I recently came across an article by Professor Mak Yuen Teen, published in the Singapore Business Times on May 21, 2014, but also on his blog Governance for Stakeholders, titled “Plausible deniability and graft by MNCs.” By way of background, Professor Mak is an Associate Professor of Accounting at the NUS Business School, Singapore. For his full (and impressive) CV, see here.

In his article, Professor Mak first calls attention to  the recent reports of GSK bribery in China, and GSK’s public reaction as calling the conduct “outside of our processes and controls…” (The Guardian, July 22, 2013). However, Professor Mak goes onto demonstrate the  reporting relationship between Mark Reilly, former head of GSK China (and subsequently charged by Chinese officials), and his supervisor, Abbas Hussain, President of Europe, Emerging Markets and Asia Pacific, who is part of the “corporate executive team of GSK.

As Professor Mak states, with this relationship “direct involvement in the scandal has moved up the chain of command of GSK.” However, notwithstanding the discussion and relevancy of  the “rouge employee” GSK script, there is a far more interesting element to Professor Mak’s writing as relating to corporate strategy.

“Did you wake up from a 10-year nap?” Professor Mak references an on-line comment to the GSK allegations as above, and asks “whether he (GSK CEO Andrew Witty) and the board ought to have at least asked some probing questions when GSK China was reporting strong sales growth over the years proceeding the scandal.” And that is where compliance gets separated from the reality of international sales growth.  Clearly, GSK executives were aware of two basic facts:

  • There was a robust anti-bribery program in place at GSK, as referenced in  public statements. Professor Mak makes reference to a 29 page anti-corruption document, and Tom Fox discusses the GSK Corporate Integrity Agreement (here).
  • There was high sales growth in China.

Therefore, was it in fact what I have called a “zero-sum” game of compliance and sales?  Could those two factors have co-existed?  In other words, and I don’t think is unique at all to GSK, “was it a case of don’t ask, don’t tell,” at the C-Suite, as Professor Mak remarks. When the regional sales numbers were reported into management was it all “high fives,” or did someone ask “hey, how did you get there?” I would ask the same of those who read this, who have been in those rooms, when the sales figures are shared.  What is the message?

Professor Mak focuses on complex multinational corporations (MNCs), where corporate executives are separated from the front line of sales by a deep and wide organizational chart. He asks, “should only executives such as Reilly take the fall while senior management and the board escape accountability…” and “can they really claim that they did not know what was going on…?”  I completely agree with Professor Mak, in that it is a long way from the C-Suite, where compliance programs commence, to the front line of international sales and marketing; however, does that distance justify the escape from accountability in not challenging the “reporting of strong growth in markets well known for corruption.”

Professor Mak thinks not, and makes a compelling case, which is reflective of my own view.  I repeat his conclusion in  its entirety and in bold (just to make sure you get the message):

“It is time for senior management and boards of MNCs to stop hiding behind business conduct codes and anti-corruption and compliance programs, and a “plausible deniability” defense, and address more fundamental questions about the benefits and costs of doing business in highly corrupt countries, their business practices, and how they reward, retain and promote their employees.” From my perspective, it would appear that the “default” for compliance and sales growth in low integrity countries, remains “zero-sum.” Maybe it is time that GSK listen to its own Chief Medical Officer James Shannon whom I referenced in a prior post, when he stated (in an interview with Reuters) that “sometimes you have to step backwards to move forward..” and that it is time for “an entire rethink about our business practice.”

Friday, November 4, 2011

GlaxoSmithKline: Born Again Ethically?

GlaxoSmithKline, a drug company based in the E.U., agreed in 2011 to pay $3 billion to settle the U.S. Government’s civil and criminal investigations into the company’s Medicaid pricing practices and sales practices, including illegal marketing of Avandia, the diabetes drug linked to coronary problems. The settlement amount surpassed the previous record of $2.3 billion paid by Pfizer in 2009. Even so, it is doubtful that $3 billion proffered enough of a punch to motivate either Glaxo’s board or CEO to do what would be necessary to extirpate a corporate culture perhaps too comfortable with cutting corners.

Although $3 billion is a lot of money, the settlement removed “legal uncertainty”—something particularly important to investors. Les Funtleyder, a health-care strategist at a brokerage firm, explains. “I know $3 billion sounds like an astronomical number, but when you live in the world of worst-case scenarios, like investors do, $3 billion is a welcome relief. At least you have certainty.” Accordingly, the drug company’s stock rose 2.96% on the day of the announcement (November 3, 2011) to $44.55 (near its 52-week high) amid a broader market advance of about 2 percent, according to the New York Times.

The market’s verdict may give one pause in believing the statement of the company’s CEO, Andrew Witty. He said that the matters that had been under investigation no longer “reflect the company that we are today.” He went on to say, “In recent years, we have fundamentally changed our procedures for compliance, marketing and selling in the U.S. to ensure that we operate with high standards of integrity and that we conduct our business openly and transparently.” So why did a spokeswoman for the company say on the very same day that negotiations were continuing with the government over whether to include a corporate integrity agreement in a separate case regarding complaints about manufacturing quality at a plant in Cidra, P.R. that had since closed? To be sure, the agreement could provide further penalties for other violations in manufacturing, but prime facie, why should a company’s management that had come to see the light on the importance of business ethics not also see the importance (from at the very least a PR standpoint!) of embracing an integrity agreement?

Just one year before that of the $3 billion settlement announcement, the U.S. Justice Department had accused Lauren Stevens, vice president and associate general counsel of the company, of obstruction of justice and making false statements. To be sure, Stevens was subsequently acquitted of all six charges, but the charges alone point to the possibility of a corporate culture existing that disvalues business ethics. It is very unlikely that such a noxious culture can be eviscerated and replaced wholesale in a year without an extensive replacement of executives on down.

Suggesting that the company’s management would not have had sufficient incentive to radically challenge the operative values at the company, Patrick Burns, the spokesman for Taxpayers Against Fraud, asked, “Who at Glaxo is going to jail as a part of this settlement? Who in management is being excluded from doing future business with the U.S. Government?” For a company with a market value of more than $110 billion and sales of $43 billion in the year ending September 30, 2011, $3 billion with “legal certainty” does not proffer the sort of disincentive that is necessary to get major stockholders on the backs of a board to clean house in terms of a new management. To expect an existing staff (including upper echelons) to suddenly value integrity contradicts the nature of the human personality; replacing the managers wholesale would be necessary. So rather than settling for “legal certainty” on one of the legal matters then facing the company (questions of whether Glaxo violated the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act were still at issue), investors should have taken note of whether Glaxo’s board had demanded a corporate cleaning of management or simply taken the CEO’s words of least resistance at face value, as if adding procedures and announcing a newly discovered interest in integrity were sufficient.

How often do corporate boards prioritize, much less even mention the need to do what is necessary to radically change a sordid corporate culture? Given that the financial benefits of an ethical climate can be fuzzy while the costs of unethical practices can be discounted mentally due to their apparent low probability (which hides the high risk, which includes bankruptcy), a real kick is typically needed to commence real change sufficient to shift a corporate culture to a new ethical equilibrium. Typically, this requires a transfusion of new blood in and old blood out. Merely adding new blood while retaining even just some of the old can enable the stygian infection to spread to the new. Given what is required to expunge a squalid culture, it is indeed much easier to simply accept at face value the PR-ready asseverations of a seemingly-contrite “born-again” CEO and be done with the matter.

Click to add a question or comment on GlaxoSmithKline regarding its legal settlement and corporate culture with respect to business ethics.

Source: Duff Wilson, “Glaxo Settles Cases with U.S. for $3 Billion,” The New York Times, November 4, 2011. Additional Info on the Cidra plant settlement:

And one last thing..

What do former US Attorney General Eric Holder, GSK, and the firm- Covington & Burling- have in common?

One big huge stinking- revolving-door- syndrome, that’s what!

More on this when I return..

He was one of President Obama’s longest-serving cabinet members. Former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder will return as a partner at the law firm he had left to become the nation’s top law enforcement official, his new employer said in a statement.

Holder, who led the Justice Department from 2009 to 2015 and was one of President Barack Obama’s longest-serving cabinet members, will return to Covington & Burling, where he was previously a partner from 2001 to 2009, the law firm said.

At Covington & Burling’s Washington, D.C., office, Holder will focus on complex cases “including matters that are international in scope and raise significant regulatory enforcement issues,” the law firm said.

Justice Department scores victory for health consumers

July 3, 2012
British drug maker GlaxoSmithKline didn’t have much to cheer about this week with its guilty plea to criminal charges of illegally marketing drugs and withholding safety data from U.S. regulators.

But Glaxo didn’t have to endure a lot of gloating from U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, whose Justice Department extracted the record settlement. Just as his staff was settling the record-breaking fraud case, Holder became the first Attorney General in U.S. history to be held in contempt of Congress. Holder was taken to task by a congressional committee for withholding documents relating to a botched gun trafficking operation known as “Fast and Furious.’’ On Monday, Holder said the contempt charge was a sham, claiming Republicans have made him a “proxy” for President Obama as the election year heats up.

As The Washington Post reported, Holder said the congressional panel was seeking “retribution against the Justice Department for its policies on a host of issues, including immigration, voting rights and gay marriage. He said the chairman of the committee leading the inquiry, Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.), is engaging in political theater as the Justice Department tries to focus on public safety.’’

Whatever the views on those hot-button issues, there’s plenty of evidence to suggest that Holder’s Justice Department has been consistently aggressive in pursuing cases against Big Pharma.

“In 2009, Pfizer Inc. agreed to pay $2.3 billion to settle a federal investigation into whether it promoted the painkiller Bextra off-label,’’ the Wall Street Journal reported. Eli Lilly & Co. agreed to pay $1.4 billion to settle similar charges involving its antipsychotic medicine Zyprexa.’’ And this week’s Glaxo settlement, which still needs judicial approval, was the company’s fourth settlement in the past few years.

Glaxo officials said “we have learned from the mistakes that were made.”

The settlement amounts to another victory for health-care consumers after last week’s U.S. Supreme Court decision upholding the Obama administration’s landmark health-care reform act.

October 26, 2010 6:48 PM
Covington Advises GlaxoSmithKline on $750 Million FCA Settlement

Posted by Brian Baxter

GlaxoSmithKline has agreed to pay $750 million to settle criminal and civil complaints accusing the company of selling tainted drugs from a shuttered Puerto Rican factory, The New York Times reported Tuesday afternoon. The settlement, which is the fourth-largest ever paid by a pharmaceutical company in U.S. history, calls for GSK to pay $600 million in civil penalties and $150 million in criminal fines as a result of quality control problems at the plant between 2001 and 2005.

Covington & Burling litigation partners Geoffrey Hobart and Matthew O’Connor and special counsel Mona Patel represented GSK in the matter. The firm is longtime outside counsel to the company, having advised GSK on its $253 million acquisition of Laboratorios Phoenix this past June.

The federal government began its own investigation of GSK in 2004 after Cheryl Eckard, a former global quality assurance manager at GSK, filed a qui tam (whistle-blower) suit under the False Claims Act against her employer in U.S. district court in Boston.

“She came to our law firm after having heard about our success in other qui tam lawsuits,” says Neil Getnick, Eckard’s lawyer and a managing partner of New York’s Getnick & Getnick. One of those suits was the $257 million Medicaid settlement Getnick helped extract from Bayer Pharmaceuticals in 2003.

Getnick, who advised Eckard along with partner Lesley Skillen, says that Eckard’s case against GSK stands on its own. While previous whistle-blower settlements against large pharmaceutical companies such as Pfizer and Novartis focused on the pricing and marketing of drugs, Eckard’s suit involved claims of how those drugs were made. (Scott Tucker of Boston’s Tucker, Heifetz & Saltzman served as local counsel to Eckard.)

“This is the first whistle-blower recovery for pharmaceutical manufacturing violations,” Getnick says. “This case is far more serious because it focuses on the quality of the drugs that were being produced, and specifically says that what was once the largest plant in the world for GSK was producing and releasing adulterated product. So this is not only a case of financial concern, but also one of patient safety, and that’s what separates it from every one up until now.”
Eckard stands to receive $96 million from the settlement paid by GSK, according to a Justice Department statement. Skillen notes that that GSK’s factory in Cidra, Puerto Rico, produced about $5.5 billion in pharmaceutical products annually for the London-based drug giant.

The GSK subsidiary pleading guilty to the charges, SB Pharmco Puerto Rico, entered a guilty plea on Tuesday. Getnick says that the state governments and the District of Columbia covered under the settlement will now execute their own 51 agreements, which could add to the whistle-blower windfall Eckard stands to receive.

The Justice Department filed its notice of intervention in the case on Tuesday, adopting the complaint filed by Eckard’s lawyers.

“This is one of the rare, if not unique, situations in a case of this size and dimension that the government did not feel the need or desire to substitute their complaint on top of the one that the relator and relator’s counsel filed,” Getnick says.
Covington’s Hobart did not respond to a request for comment.

GSK outside Counsel Eric Holder- now Attorney General ?

Discussion in ‘GlaxoSmithKline‘ started by Anonymous, Feb 3, 2009 at 11:18 AM.

  1. Anonymous
    Anonymous Guest
    OK, GSK– thought you were wise asses, getting Daniel Troy formerly Cheif Counsel for the FDA, who pissed on patients rights on the governments dime. Now you rold attorney, Eric Holder comes from defending you to go to the AG office. Sources close to Holder say that even though he may have prostituted himself for big Pharma, including also Merck and Pfizer…that he now knows the ins and outs of how you do business. It does not look good for you hopefully under Holder as AG. He has seen the corruption, knows what you do and how you do it. If you are being investigated as alleged by the Department of Justice, he will be watched by all groups interested in cleaning up the industry.
    The fraud and corruption….and yes murder for big bucks and market share will come to a halt. If it does not and he goes easy on the crooks like GSK…it will be a rough road for him. Many Senators know what he did in private practice and all are pushing for criminal as well as civil punishments that finally fit the crimes. WE will see if the small multimillion dollar fines continue and then companies go about business as usual, making money and showing that crime does pay. Hopefully some Senior Executives responsible for gross unethical, illegal and immoral conduct will be jailed and the “death sentence” given to companies who have defrauded Medicare and other Federal programs for billions of dollars.
    Only time will tell what Eric Holder will do, but look out, he seems to be honest and follows the letter of the law. If he does that, patients and payors alike will be well served… and you, GSK should be up the proverbial creek. There is not a single drug that you sell that this country cannot do without, period.

Former General Counsel of GlaxoSmithKline Joins Covington & Burling as Senior Of Counsel


March 6, 2002 – LONDON, U.K.- International law firm Covington & Burling is pleased to announce that James Beery, who recently retired as Senior Vice President and General Counsel of GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), one of the largest pharmaceutical companies in the world and the UK’s second largest company, will join the firm as Senior Of Counsel from 18 March.
    Mr. Beery practiced law in London, New York and Tokyo for more than twenty years before joining SmithKline Beecham plc (SB) as General Counsel in 1994. Following SB’s £114bn merger with Glaxo Wellcome in 2000, he served as General Counsel of the combined company, with more than 500 legal staff and global responsibility. GSK operates in more than 100 countries.
    Mr. Beery, a graduate of Harvard College and Stanford Law School and a former US Marine, says “Covington attracted me as a firm with a strong academic tradition and an unmatched life sciences practice.” During his break following retirement from GSK, Mr. Beery helped teach a course at Stanford Law School, and he intends to continue his relationship with Stanford while at Covington. “As a general counsel, one gains a different perspective regarding both business and the practice of law. I hope that my industry experience will bring value to Covington and its clients.”
   “Jim’s arrival is wonderful news for our clients and the firm. He would have been a great asset at any international firm, particularly one like ours which focuses on Life Sciences” says Stuart Stock, managing partner, “ We are delighted Jim chose Covington.” “Jim is joining our London office as it enters a new stage of growth and development. Our expanding corporate and regulatory Life Sciences lawyers will enjoy calling on his industry expertise”. says Kurt Wimmer, Managing Partner of the London office.

Conor Cusack on depression: ‘I was fuelled with medication to the point that I didn’t know day from night and reality from unreality’

Conor Cusack on depression: ‘I was fuelled with medication to the point that I didn’t know day from night and reality from unreality’

As a teenager with mental health issues, Conor Cusack found the Irish psychiatric system dehumanising and ineffective, but in psychotherapy he found a safe space to express the emotions he had suppressed for years

Conor Cusack

Published 02/03/2015 | 02:30

Conor Cusack - found space to express his emotions in psychotherapy Open Gallery 3
Conor Cusack – found space to express his emotions in psychotherapy

For some, it’s the first time they have felt the safety that coheres with their need to be able to share a part of their previously silent, inner worlds – worlds they are the sole inhabitants of.

American poet Maya Angelou, said, ‘There is no greater agony than the bearing of an untold story within you’. To witness these people embracing their vulnerability and seeing the relief they feel after expressing their story and hidden pain, which is invisible to the naked eye, is always a humbling and sacred thing to share with another human being.

Recently, after one of these talks in a community hall, Derek, a man of 72 years, approached me when the place was almost empty. He had waited until all the others had left. I can understand why he waited until the others had departed: Derek carries within him the fears of a previous generation, where people that exhibited any form of emotional distress could be locked in an institution and fuelled with medication, never again to be seen in public life.

There is a lot of support and awareness being created nowadays for young and middle-aged people, but the older generation seems to be forgotten about amidst the fresh conversation around the emotional wellbeing of our people.

Conor Cusack pictured in Cork Open Gallery 3
Conor Cusack pictured in Cork

Derek told me how he had began to experience depression about six months ago. Like most people, he suffered in silence. His days were slowly becoming ones of quiet desperation. To add to his difficulties, his true love, his wife of 45 years, passed away only recently.

This all led Derek to the point where he felt the only way out of his suffering was to end his life. A week before, he took his shotgun from his shed and walked down to the river bank near his home. To use his words, “As I wrapped my lips around the barrel of the shotgun and placed my finger on the trigger, my pet dog came rushing into view and the thought flashed through my mind ‘Who will look after the dog when I’m gone’.” It was enough to snap Derek out of his suicidal frame of mind and give him a reason to live.

Derek’s story reminded me of going through the Irish public psychiatric system as a teenager. It was a system that was cold, impersonal, dehumanising and ineffective for me. I was spoken to and not with; little or no authentic listening occurred. Psychiatrists put an intellectually sounding label on me, but that did little to reflect the immense depth, complexity and vastness that existed within me. It offered little validity to my story or to the wisdom of my symptoms.

I was fuelled with medication to the point that I didn’t know day from night and reality from unreality. A psychiatrist wanted to pump electricity through me in the ‘crazy’ idea that it would help me to deal with the issues I had in my life. I still wonder as to how a vulnerable 19-year-old, whose life was in chaos and who felt so isolated, still had the dignity to tell this guy to go ‘f**k’ himself and his electro shock therapy.

I am not against medication. Everybody finds their own solutions, and whatever works for them and whatever they are comfortable with, is all that matters. Medication can help in certain situations to alleviate some of the physical symptoms that arise from a person’s emotional challenges, but it’s my belief that medication on its own is not the most effective solution in the long-term.

I got to know another patient of these services at that time, an elderly man named John. We shared a common bond, like soldiers that have fought in a battlefield. But our war was internal, both of us fighting our own individual war – inwardly suffering but united in our grief and sense of hopelessness about our lives and our future.

John was a warm man. He lived alone, having been abandoned by his family many years before due to his emotional difficulties and the immense stigma that existed in his youth around these issues.

I remember clearly when I called to John’s house for the first time. I had left the psychiatric system and was working with a psychotherapist (a word that could never do justice to the man) who, through unconditional love, was creating a safe space where my vulnerability could find expression and I was finally able to express what had been de-pressed within for years.

It was a summer’s evening with a blue, cloudless sky, the type you love as a hurler. As I drove along the secluded road home after another therapy session, a wonderful, profound feeling flooded through my body. It was the first time that I touched on that place that exists in us all, that place that houses our real selves, a place of pure joy, love, hope and peace that encourages you to go into the world and live your life from the inside out; to see yourself through the authentic lens of yourself, as opposed to the false eyes of others.

It was the first time in many years that I felt I was going to regain my wellbeing. I was so ecstatic that I drove to John’s house to hug him and tell him that there was a way out of his darkness. The vibrant peace I was now feeling could be his peace, the hope I now had could be his hope. I knocked on his door but there was no answer. A neighbour came out and my heart sank when she told me he had ended his life a few days before. I sobbed uncontrollably.

John had nobody, only a ‘hope’-less psychiatric label that left him feeling disempowered and fatalistic about his life. John never got to experience the wonderful things I have discovered about myself and this world we inhabit over the last 13 years; the powerful freedom that flourishes when you pull back the veils of illusion and see the world anew from the solidity and sanctuary of your own real self; where new possibilities come alive that were previously only full of dead landscapes; where you dissolve the old cages that confined you in an unlived life.

The journey home to your real self is full of rewarding but difficult learning. It’s the road less travelled, but in the words of Robert Frost, ‘The one that has made all the difference’. We have neglected the sacredness of our inner worlds with tragic outer consequences. Never before has it been so easy to connect with others through technology, but the greatest challenge for us is to connect more deeply with our real selves and the inner worlds we so often flee from.

No matter how technologically advanced our world becomes, the cravings of the human soul, spirit and heart will never change: the inward yearning of each human being to be valued and appreciated for their own unique and sacred presence; the desire to love whom we want to love and to be loved, the deep longing for unconditional belonging; the craving to remove our masks and be who we really are and not the false image we portray to the outer world.

The aspiration to be free to live our own lives and not those of our parents, teachers, religions or communities, will always dwell in the heart of each of us. There is no pill or psychiatric label that will ever satisfy those human needs.

We will look back in a few years time with horror at the current solutions we use for people experiencing emotional difficulty. This includes over medicalisation; the shamefully inadequate training for our GPs, who are often the first port of call for a person in distress. It includes the lack of emphasis in our educational systems that affects students’ awareness of valuing themselves – this will far more determine their effectiveness in their personal and professional lives than their knowledge of geography, maths, physics and so on.

Within the GAA and the Gaelic Players Assocation (GPA), a new breed of warrior has emerged among inter-county hurlers and footballers. These ‘Warriors of the Light’ are bringing visibility to issues in our communities. By sharing their stories, and with immense support from the GPA, they have shattered the cultural caricature of pity that people with wellbeing difficulties have been characterised with.

They are empowering fellow players and their influence is rippling out beyond the GAA field to the wider communities. The days of the strong, silent man are over: the real strength now is in embracing your vulnerabilities. These players are illuminating the path so others can emerge from the darkness of depression, anxiety and addiction, through projects like the award-winning #wewearmore campaign.

Niall Breslin is one of those. Niall and I have worked together, and one of the most interesting events was when we spoke at the Mindfield arena at Electric Picnic last August.

I have never had any difficulty with public speaking so I was quite relaxed, but Niall was not. I could see the anxiety build in him as the time to go on stage neared. By the end of our talk, the arena was bulging with people outside unable to get in. It reinforced our belief that there is an urgency in our country for more open discussion of these core issues of the human experience, and to see real change.

After witnessing Niall’s anxiety, and considering how often he puts himself through it with all the events he partakes in, my love for him has soared. My1000Hours has come about through his incessant pursuit of developing ways for people to empower themselves to manage the challenges they are experiencing.

I look forward to journeying the challenging road ahead, the road less travelled but the one that will make a difference for all of us.

Aurora Shooter James Holmes And Psychiatric Medication (Setraline/Zoloft And Clonazepam/Benzo)

Some news out recently from the James Holmes (cinema shooter) trial in Colorado. Two psychiatric medications were found in Holmes’ apartment- Setraline/Zoloft and Clonazepam (a Benzo). The article from CNN doesn’t say what dose Holmes was prescribed of these meds, however Zoloft and Benzos do have serious side effects which included ‘worsening depression’, ‘personality changes’, psychosis, etc etc. It is not known at this point in the trial of James Holmes whether the side effects of these medications have played a part in causing Holmes to murder 12 people and injure scores of others in this horrific mass murder cinema shooting. However, psychiatric medications have long been linked to violence, aggression, suicide, murder, and murder suicide and it will be interesting to hear what the psychiatrist who prescribed these meds to Holmes (Lynne Fenton) says when she testifies…

3. Prescription medicine in Holmes’ apartment

While Holmes’ defense team has not cross-examined any of the survivors who have taken the witness stand, they did question an Aurora police detective who searched Holmes’ apartment.

Detective Thomas Wilson collected several items from the apartment on Paris Street on the day after the shooting.

Wilson seized receipts, a wall hanging, a vehicle title and a backpack, among other evidence — mostly mundane, everyday items that most college students would have hanging around.

However, there were a couple of items the defense chose to point out, some medications collected from a medicine cabinet in Holmes’ bathroom. They included sertraline and clonazepam, both apparently prescribed by an L. Fenton, according to the prescription labels.

“And you recognize that L. Fenton to be the psychiatrist at CU,” defense lawyer Katherine Spengler questioned, emphasizing that Holmes had sought mental health help while he was a grad student at the University of Colorado.

“Yes, ma’am,” Wilson responded.

Sertraline is typically used for depression, obsessive-compulsive disorder, panic attacks and social anxiety disorder, according to the U.S. National Library of Medicine. Clonazepam may be used to treat seizures, panic disorders and anxiety.

It’s unknown exactly why Holmes’ had been prescribed these medications. In opening statements, the defense asserted that Holmes lives with schizophrenia.

Dr. Lynne Fenton is expected to testify at some point.

What will Dr. Lynne Fenton say about her former patient James Holmes?


By Maria L. La Ganga contact the reporter

Lynne Fenton was the mental health professional who treated Holmes longest and is expected to testify at trial

Some of the mystery surrounding the Aurora, Colo., theater massacre has been cleared up — at least as far as the prosecution is concerned — as the sixth week of trial begins to wind down.

Large swathes of James E. Holmes’ strange brown notebook have been read aloud in open court, and the entire volume has been released to the public. Victims, whose names were blacked out of otherwise open court documents, have testified about their pain and loss.
James Holmes speaks: ‘I just considered them numbers really, not people’
James Holmes speaks: ‘I just considered them numbers really, not people’

The jury has heard the 27-year-old acknowledged shooter, who killed 12 people and injured 70, talk about what happened in Theater 9 of the Century 16 multiplex via 22 hours of video recordings played over the last week in Division 201 of the Arapahoe County Justice Center. The entire trial is being live-streamed.

But one voice that has yet to be heard is that of Dr. Lynne Fenton, the psychiatrist who treated Holmes the longest and was the last mental health professional to see him before the July 20, 2012, rampage during a midnight showing of “The Dark Knight Rises.”
James Holmes wanted to kill ‘as many people as possible’ in Colorado theater rampage

Holmes faces 166 charges, including first-degree murder and attempted murder. He has pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity.

Fenton was medical director of the student mental health service at the University of Colorado’s Anschutz Medical Campus in Aurora, where Holmes was a graduate student in the neuroscience program.

Fenton saw Holmes several times over the first half of 2012. Their last appointment was on June 11, 2012, around the time he was dropping out of school.

James Holmes’ sealed notebook gets mentioned by prosecution, and defense
James Holmes’ sealed notebook gets mentioned by prosecution, and defense

On July 19, Holmes mailed the psychiatrist his brown, spiral-bound notebook. But she never received the slim volume, with her troubled patient’s plans to “kill as many people as possible” and his strange ramblings.

Fenton is expected to testify during the five-month proceeding, although it is not clear which side she will testify for and whose case she will help most. An exhaustive gag order keeps everyone involved in the trial from speaking outside the courtroom.

But the prosecution has played the video recordings of court-appointed psychiatrist Dr. William Reid prodding Holmes in an effort to assess whether the defendant is sane.

And during those interviews, Holmes talked about his relationship with his former doctor. She was afraid of him, he said, and called campus officials with her concerns about safety. He said he never told Fenton about buying guns and protective clothing and planning a massacre.

Fenton had prescribed Holmes sertraline, a generic version of Zoloft used to treat depression, panic disorder and obsessive-compulsive disorder; and Clonazepam, usually prescribed to treat anxiety and panic attacks.

The drugs may have had an unfortunate side effect, as was evident in the recorded interviews.

Reid: What about the psychiatry with Fenton made the fear go away?

Holmes: I thought the drug sertraline helped reduce anxiety and fear.

Reid: It sounds a little like you’re saying, if you hadn’t had the medication, the shootings never would have taken place.

Holmes: I’d say it was a possibility.

Once Holmes left school, his insurance would not cover his sessions with Fenton, he said. One way he communicated his money problems, he told Reid, was to slide $400 in burned $20 bills into the notebook before he mailed it.

“Money was a factor with me not continuing the therapy,” Holmes said. “If I stayed and got further treatment I might have not done the shooting.”

The Tragedy Of Jonathan Rhys Meyers

 “Multiple times in the past, Rhys Meyers has claimed he’s given up alcohol and put his wild ways behind him — and again, as he works on Dracula, this is the case. He has stopped drinking, has reportedly been treated for depression and everyone on set claims he is heavily committed to the project.”

Irish actor Jonathan Rhys Meyers hit the headlines today because some very tragic looking paparrazi pictures seem to have caught him on an alcoholic bender. While Jonathan’s demons, rehab stints, and long-time battle with alcohol have been tabloid fodder for years, I can’t help but wonder, is he on SSRI anti-depressant’s, and is it perhaps the SSRI meds which could be either driving this thirst for alcohol,  perpetuating it- or both?

Some articles online suggest that the actor has been ‘treated’ for depression in recent times and considering that depression ‘treatment’ usually means ‘medication’ (SSRI’s)- it could be appropriate to speculate that the poor guy is on SSRI medication and possibly has been for years. If this is the case he is possibly unaware that SSRI’s can induce alcoholic tendencies and also if you drink on an SSRI, the drunkenness becomes 10 times more potent, and often on SSRI’s this results in blackouts, hangovers from hell, and a whole lot of trouble.

I know this because I’ve been there.

I sincerely hope that the poor guy can get some proper help for his emotional pain, because judging by the pictures, if he’s receiving medication like SSRI’s as a ‘treatment’ it’s clearly not doing him any good. Furthermore, in many of his benders, it seems that his behavior has gone beyond your typical drunk-state and into something that is very familiar to anyone who has taken SSRI’s with alcohol. The SSRI mixed with alcohol state is very scary because you behave ten times more aggressively, and you become much more disinhibited than if you were drinking alcohol without an SSRI and often you also don’t remember anything at all from the incidents. SSRI’s mixed with alcohol are a lethal and dangerous combination and many people are unaware of the link.

Whatever is happening with Jonathan Rhys Meyers, I hope that he can get some proper information and help and I wish him the best.,,20507132,00.html

“Accidental overdoses are on the rise, and deaths due to overdoses have increased significantly in the last 10 years,” Dr. David Sack, M.D., CEO of Promises Treatment Centers, explains to PEOPLE. “This change is due to the epidemic abuse of prescription narcotics which are highly lethal when combined with alcohol or other drugs.”

“A source said: ‘It was the opinion of those present that he tried to take his life.’

In the past, he has spoken of his alcohol problem, admitting: ‘When I do drink I’m like Bambi. I’m all over the place like a 16-year-old kid.’

Scotland Yard today confirmed: ‘Officers were called by London Ambulance Service to a residential address following reports of man refusing treatment.

‘Police and London Ambulance Service were in attendance and a 33-year old man was taken to a central London hospital for treatment.’

Rhys Meyers has also been arrested twice at airports in drink-related incidents in the past.

He was arrested at Dublin Airport and arrested for being drunk and in breach of the peace in November 2007. The charges were subsequently dropped.

He was also detained by police in June 2009 at the Charles De Gaulle airport in Paris after allegedly assaulting an bar staff employee while drunk.



Out of my mind. Driven to drink

Author: Anne-Marie

(This story epitomizes what is all about. It shows one woman extraordinarily getting to grips with a problem she has on treatment. The hope when is up and running is that we will be able to make it easier for people like Anne-Marie to engage with their doctors to solve problems like this. Unfortunately even though clearly a drug-induced problem Anne-Marie does not want to be identified – DH).

I have been asked to write this story to raise awareness about a strange side effect of treatment and my efforts to get to the bottom of it.

Before my problems began I had been working as a health care assistant at my local hospital in Surrey for five years. I enjoyed my job. I had a stable life. I owned my own home and car.

Following the sudden and devastating death of my father I became anxious and over a period of a year developed a fear of choking which got worse to the point that I was avoiding food and losing weight. I realized I needed help.

I went to my GP and was prescribed paroxetine 20mg in liquid form because I couldn’t swallow the tablets. I had nausea, dizziness, felt spaced out and detached but was assured by my doctor that these symptoms would settle down.

After a few months things did start to improve. I noticed my eating had returned to normal. I felt much more energized and more confident and was able to complete a day’s work without feeling drained and exhausted. I started socializing again.

the warning reassured me it was safe enough to have a few drinks with friends

To begin with I was concerned about drinking alcohol on the medication. I checked the patient information leaflet which gave, what seemed to me, to be a mild warning that “although it is always advisable to avoid alcohol whilst taking medication there is no known interactions with Paroxetine and alcohol”. This reassured me that it was safe enough to have a few drinks with friends.

At first I was only having a few glasses of wine but slowly over time I drank more and more. I began saying and doing things I had no memory of later. I got banned from restaurants and bars in my local town and became an embarrassment to my friends. Eventually some of my close friends and family distanced themselves from me. I was losing everyone around me and losing control of my life but I just didn’t care. I felt like I was in a dream and that none of this was real.

I became verbally aggressive and my behavior was reckless. On one occasion I climbed out of a velux window and onto my roof. I was not trying to kill myself. I didn’t even consider the dangers of what I was doing.

I began to get into trouble with the police, in the main for continual nuisance phone calls to the police station. This happened on a regular basis when I was drinking. Sometimes I would ring them 20 to 30 times a night on their non-emergency number with only a very vague memory of doing so. It resulted in me getting arrested on numerous occasions.

 I began to feel that something was very wrong

After getting arrested several times I began to feel that something was wrong. I started taking time off work. I got cravings for alcohol that were so intense I felt I was possessed. I would start drinking and couldn’t stop. I’d continue until I was either arrested or I collapsed into a coma. Things were getting very out of hand. I felt alone with my problem and couldn’t understand why I was behaving like this. I felt that no one understood what was happening to me or cared.

I began to research on the internet to find an answer and I found other people reporting cravings for alcohol on SSRI medication on many websites. This really shocked me. Yet no one in the medical profession seemed to be taking any notice of it. Why? The first time I saw a psychiatrist I was told that it was due to my drinking problem.

 terrible overwhelming uncontrollable cravings 

I knew I was drinking too much but I also had terrible overwhelming uncontrollable cravings for alcohol. I printed some of the information from the internet out and gave this to my doctor and tried to explain that I thought the medication was giving me intense cravings for alcohol.

My doctor was very sympathetic but not convinced. Again I was told that I had a drink problem and was in denial. He did however agree to change my medication and prescribed me 20mg of citalopram. I was referred to my local drug and alcohol clinic.

Following the switch to citalopram over the course of a couple of months, I felt less aggressive. However my cravings for alcohol were as strong as ever and I still couldn’t stop drinking. Things spiraled further out of control. I spent time in prison, was suspended and eventually sacked from the job I loved. Even a couple of alcohol free months in rehab, where I was provided with overwhelming help and support, wasn’t enough to stop the pattern continuing as soon as I returned home.

By now I had given up on the experts … who accused me of denial

By now I had given up on trying to tell my medical team that I thought it was my medication that was causing the problems. I was accused of being in denial over the alcoholism but I was certain that these intense cravings for alcohol were being induced by the SSRI.

Before I had searched for others with similar problems, now I began searching for answers. First I googled alcohol cravings induced by paroxetine and then by citalopram. The first web pages I came across were from the depression forums and similar websites where people where sharing their stories about the same alcohol cravings and looking for answers. I came across the International Coalition for Drug Awareness, the Seroxat Users Support Group and the Seroxat Secrets website where many people were reporting the same thing.

I decided to start looking at research papers but I couldn’t find any on SSRIs and alcohol cravings. I then read a message on one of the forums that mentioned a Yale study from 1994 that had a link to serotonin. This pointed me toward reading about alcoholism and the serotonin system.

There were no easy answers to this.

I read many papers that I only vaguely understood. I had to learn all about serotonin receptors, transporters and neurons to understand the research papers I was reading. I had to leave it several times and go back to it as my head was hurting trying to understand it. I nearly gave up looking several times but couldn’t because I knew the answer was there somewhere. I learnt that there were seven serotonin receptors and was very disappointed to learn that there were even more receptors connected to these receptors. There was also only one receptor though that had a gateway to dopamine which was the S-3 receptor. I now needed to learn what all these different receptors did and to see if any were connected to cravings for alcohol. There were no easy answers to this.

Had I really been like this for ten years?

I wanted to wean myself off citalopram. I knew it was ruining my life. In the first month I couldn’t believe the change in me. I felt as if I had been given back my sight and hearing again. I felt in awe of everything around me. Had I really been like this for ten years and hadn’t realized it? Almost immediately the cravings for alcohol reduced by about 50%.

But withdrawal wasn’t easy and I went through two months of distress with extreme mood swings, panic attacks, sensitivity to noise, feeling like I had the flu with aches and pains. I couldn’t cope with this so went back to my GP and was put on mirtazapine 15mg, which was later upped to 30mg as I was experiencing restless leg syndrome at the lower dose. (I had seen on the internet that another woman had a similar experience as me on 15mg mirtazapine which disappeared at 30mg).

I realized that mirtazapine may have the answer

My cravings went completely. I realized that mirtazapine may have the answer. I knew it worked differently to the SSRIs.

I looked up medications for alcoholism and came across a drug called ondansetron, which works by blocking the S3 receptor and eliminating cravings. I discovered that mirtazapine also blocked S3 receptors.

I searched for alcoholism and S3 receptors and found that the S3 was the only serotonin receptor that had a gateway to dopamine and a paper ‘Functional Genetic Variants That Increase Synaptic Serotonin And 5HT3 Receptor Sensitivity Predict Alcohol And Drug Dependence’. I was amazed. It makes sense that if some people have a genetic link to alcoholism mediated through the serotonin system that SSRIs might increase this sensitivity and mirtazapine block it.

I have also just found another research article that was carried out on mice back in 1990’s that also found that if S3 was blocked in mice it stopped the mice from drinking alcohol.

I now know what happened to me

It’s taken me a lot of time, reading and learning but I now have understanding of why I had such intense cravings for alcohol whilst taking SSRIs.

It makes me angry that we never had warnings like they do in the United States. Why were we not being protected here in the UK with appropriate warnings in the same way? If my GP had known that SSRIs could cause cravings for alcohol in some people he would have taken me off these drugs at the very first signs of drinking.

This would have saved me years of suffering and maybe helped many other people too. I’m sure that this is a problem that is more common than people realize. In addition to all the people I have come across reporting these effects on various internet websites, I have met many people who have had similar problems or who know of people who have also had problems on these drugs.

People on these drugs are vulnerable anyway and it is worrying to think how many could be drinking to excess across the country because of a craving for alcohol caused by treatment. It’s absurd to give the impression these drugs are relatively safe with alcohol if the tablets cause some people to experience intense cravings. It’s worrying also that both the drug and alcohol can independently cause confusion, disorientation, hypomania, aggression, and obsessional and bizarre thoughts and behaviors and that the combination in some people can make this much worse.

 It has now made me look to other people’s experiences for information regarding drugs as they seem to be more accurate and honest in their findings than companies, regulators or doctors.

It’s crazy that patients have to get together on the internet to compare their side effects and discuss their problems because there is nowhere else to go. It has made me look to other people’s experiences for information now regarding drugs as they seem to be more accurate and honest in their findings than companies, regulators or doctors.

I didn’t realize until I came off the medication how bad I was. I feel ashamed and guilty for what I put people through. I have lost my job, had to move home, have a criminal record and lost the respect of family and friends. This could all have been avoided if there had been proper warnings in place and effective communications between different authorities.

I saw my retired GP in Asda recently and he asked me if I was back in Nursing. I told him no, I will never be able to go back now after what has happened to me. He said nothing and walked off. I didn’t mean to sound as if I was blaming him but I think he felt that was what I was doing. I felt guilty afterwards. I don’t blame my GP at all, I blame the drug companies and MHRA. What annoys me is that even the Department of Health wrote back to my MP basically laying the blame on the GP who they said should have noticed any changes in my behavior.

I want to tell my story as a warning to anyone who may be craving alcohol on SSRIs. I also want to tell people that sometimes it’s a mistake to leave it to the experts. And finally I want to tell doctors that your patients can often see that the information you are getting is wrong — we don’t blame you for this, we just want you to listen to us.

(The extraordinary twist in the tail here is how the regulator manages both to deny the existence of this problem and blame the doctor at the same time. This is becoming ever more common in modern healthcare systems — DH).

Since posting this it has become clear there are hundreds of people who have experienced something similar – if you have been one of them could you add your experience to this thread.

– See more at:

On January 22, 2008, Australian actor Heath Ledger was found dead in his apartment, overdosed on pills. Almost a year later in 2009, Michael Jackson suffered a cardiac arrest as a result of acute intoxication by propofol – a drug used to induce anesthesia and sedation -and thus also checked out, permanently. Later the same year Brittany Murphy was pronounced dead, after suffering from cardiac arrest caused by a cocktail of various over-the-counter drugs. These were sad years for Tinsel town.

Cases of drug overdose by celebrities have evinced a dark truth: drugs, alcohol, and depression make for lethal bedfellows in Hollywood. It shows that the charmed life of young actors is a misleading notion; under all that glitz and glam, many struggle with the demands of publicity, often turning to unadulterated intoxication as a release from the pressures of working in LA’s ‘dog-eat-dog’ world of film.

Hollywood nearly experienced another pill-induced loss on June 28, when Jonathan Rhys Meyers was rushed to the hospital after his purported attempt to join the ranks of his fallen predecessors. Paramedics answering a 999 call found him slumped on the floor, according to a report by tabloid newspaper The Sun.

The 33-year-old heart throb, who currently plays the brooding Henry VIII in Showtime’s racy period drama “Tudors” and has also starred in prominent movies like Match Point, Bend it like Beckham, and Velvet Goldmine has a history of alcohol abuse. Just recently in 2010 he enterd a rehab clinic after making it on ‘No Fly List’ of United Airlines since he was too drunk to function at JFK airport.

The 33-year-old was released the following morning on June 29 from the Central London hospital, revealed E-News. Those currently close to the actor are questioning the veracity of the possibility that the actor actually tried to take his life. Celebrity news website TMZ cited a source from the actor’s inner circle, claiming that Ledger was inebriated but had no intention of taking his life.

Still, many doubt the efficacy of this statement and instead believe that Meyers’ grip on the will to live is tenuous at best. The fact that he was disturbed in his intoxicated state was corroborated when Scotland Yard gave a statement London Ambulance Service that had to call officers following reports of a man refusing treatment. Again, the fact that Meyers refused treatment for over half an hour indicates a serious problem. It has not yet been confirmed whether the actor will be undergoing serious therapy for his alcohol and pill fueled suicide attempt.

Sources have also left the matter of the 999 emergency phone call unexplained. Several questions remains: Who called? Was Rhys Meyers found by someone else or did he call for ambulatory services himself? Actors have pulled worse celebrity stunts before- so was this orchestrated to get more attention from tabloids?

Speculation aside, the facts speak for themselves: Rhys Meyers’ drinking problem coupled with his five trips to rehab goes to show that the actor has a lot of demons to deal with. Furthermore, his career wasn’t exactly down in the dumps either; he has recently wrapped up the fourth and final season of “Tudors” in 2010. Also a big fashion name, Meyers has been the face of Hugo Boss men’s fragrance range since 2005 and was also chosen as the official face of the Versace men’s autumn/winter 2006 and spring 2007 collections. Again, it seems that the actor’s troubles don’t stem from his career.

Cork Murder Suicide Brother Was On ‘Medication’ For His Mental Health

Was it an SSRI? What dose? How long was this unfortunate young man prescribed drugs for his mental health problems? Was he monitored for emerging aggression, self harm, akathisia, suicidal thoughts, and homicidal side effects? (all well established side effects of SSRI drugs).

This tragedy has all the hallmarks of an SSRI (Psych Medication) Induced Murder-Suicide.

Somebody failed this family, and it seems that it was Irish psychiatric services.

These websites have thousands of documented similar cases of violence, murder and suicide from SSRI meds. 

These are very real side effects, which I have personally experienced. Mainstream psychiatry will not warn people about these effects because they protect the drugs, and they defend the drug companies who they are in cahoots with

Check out thousands of similar psych med horror stories here:

The parents had arranged for Jonathan (22), their eldest child, to pick up the twins from Banogue National School in nearby Croom. The twins had just gone into third class.

Jonathan, a troubled youth on medication for his mental health, didn’t have a job and was about to start a FAS course. So he was free to ferry the children around.

As the O’Driscolls prepared to return home from their shopping trip, Jonathan collected the children from school at around 3.15pm. The two younger children, aged three and five, were with him.

But in his teenage years, he seemed troubled and withdrawn. He didn’t have a job and lived in his own “apartment” in the family home. According to one source, in recent months, various life events seemed to combine to push him over the edge.

He had split up with his girlfriend. He was “on a lot of medication” and he had various health issues.

– See more at:



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