Pharmaceuticals Anonymous

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

ODC, Tourette's and Methylation

"Obsessions, compulsions and anxiety are NOT
mental illnesses, nor are they a bad habit,
nor due to a weak character...they are biological!
Something which has a physical origin and
something that can be reversed."

Dr. Walsh on OCD

NIH abstract

Natural treatment of OCD

Dr. Sarah Myhill on Methylation
Has a methylation vitamin therapy protocol.

The Feingold Diet

More to come...

Monday, December 28, 2009

Death by Pharmaceuticals: Brittany Murphy's Meds Leaked

TMZ and Huffington Post have leaked a list of some meds found with Brittany Murphy at the time of her death.

Brittany Murphy's bedroom had a lot of prescriptions drugs in it at the time of her death over the weekend, and TMZ has the list.

In a lengthy article detailing how Murphy went to the bathroom, was found collapsed by her mother 30 minutes later and was put into the shower by her husband in an effort to revive her before 911 services arrives, is the list, as detailed by investigators at the scene.

According to the notes, the medications included Topamax (anti-seizure meds also to prevent migraines), Methylprednisolone (anti-inflammatory), Fluoxetine (depression med), Klonopin (anxiety med), Carbamazepine (treats Diabetic symptoms and is also a bipolar med), Ativan (anxiety med), Vicoprofen (pain reliever), Propranolol (hypertension, used to prevent heart attacks), Biaxin (antibiotic), Hydrocodone (pain med) and miscellaneous vitamins.

The notes say, "No alcohol containers, paraphernalia or illegal drugs were discovered."

See the article at Huffington Post

UPDATE: NPR weighs in on safety concerns regarding the number of psych drugs that American adults are combining.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Institutional Child Abuse - Apologising for Serious Wrongdoing

From the Government of Canada

Institutional Child Abuse

This paper was prepared for the Law Commission of Canada under the title Apologising for Serious Wrongdoing: Social, Psychological and Legal Considerations. The views expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Commission. The accuracy of the information contained in the paper is the sole responsibility of the author.
Ce document est également disponible en français sous le titre La présentation d'excuses relatives à une faute grave: considérations sociales, psychologiques et juridiques.

Apologising for Serious Wrongdoing: Social, Psychological and Legal Considerations

Susan Alter
Researcher, Law Commission of Canada

Final Report for the
Law Commission of Canada

May 1999


I. Outlining the Issues
II. Why Apologies are Necessary
III. Two Kinds of Apologies Requested in Cases of Abuse
IV. What Goes Into Making a Meaningful Apology?


Thursday, December 17, 2009

Heart Surgeon Admits Huge Mistake

We physicians with all our training, knowledge and authority often acquire a rather large ego that tends to make it difficult to admit we are wrong. So, here it is I freely admit to being wrong. As a heart surgeon with 25 years experience, having performed over 5,000 open-heart surgeries, today is my day to right the wrong with medical and scientific fact.
I trained for many years with other prominent physicians labeled “opinion makers.” Bombarded with scientific literature, continually attending education seminars, we opinion makers insisted heart disease resulted from the simple fact of elevated blood cholesterol.
The only accepted therapy was prescribing medications to lower cholesterol and a diet that severely restricted fat intake. The latter of course we insisted would lower cholesterol and heart disease. Deviations from these recommendations were considered heresy and could quite possibly result in malpractice.
It Is Not Working!
These recommendations are no longer scientifically or morally defensible. The discovery a few years ago that inflammation in the artery wall is the real cause of heart disease is slowly leading to a paradigm shift in how heart disease and other chronic ailments will be treated.
The long-established dietary recommendations have created epidemics of obesity and diabetes, the consequences of which dwarf any historical plague in terms of mortality, human suffering and dire economic consequences.
Despite the fact that 25% of the population takes expensive statin medications and despite the fact we have reduced the fat content of our diets, more Americans will die this year of heart disease than ever before.
Statistics from the American Heart Association show that 75 million Americans currently suffer from heart disease, 20 million have diabetes and 57 million have pre-diabetes. These disorders are affecting younger and younger people in greater numbers every year.
What are the biggest culprits of chronic inflammation? Quite simply, they are the overload of simple, highly processed carbohydrates (sugar, flour and all the products made from them) and the excess consumption of omega-6 vegetable oils like soybean, corn and sunflower that are found in many processed foods.

Take a moment to visualize rubbing a stiff brush repeatedly over soft skin until it becomes quite red and nearly bleeding. Let’s say you kept this up several times a day, every day for five years. If you could tolerate this painful brushing, you would have a bleeding, swollen infected area that became worse with each repeated injury. This is a good way to visualize the inflammatory process that could be going on in your body right now.
Forget the “science” that has been drummed into your head for decades.
The science that saturated fat alone causes heart disease is non-existent.
The science that saturated fat raises blood cholesterol is also very weak. Since we now know that cholesterol is not the cause of heart disease, the concern about saturated fat is even more absurd today.
The cholesterol theory led to the no-fat, low-fat recommendations that in turn created the very foods now causing an epidemic of inflammation. Mainstream medicine made a terrible mistake when it advised people to avoid saturated fat in favor of foods high in omega-6 fats. We now have an epidemic of arterial inflammation leading to heart disease and other silent killers.
What you can do is choose whole foods your grandmother served and not those your mom turned to as grocery store aisles filled with manufactured foods. By eliminating inflammatory foods and adding essential nutrients from fresh unprocessed food, you will reverse years of damage in your arteries and throughout your body from consuming the typical American diet.

Dwight Lundell, MD

Monday, December 14, 2009

US Kids Represent a Psychiatric Goldmine

WHY are we drugging our children?

From the article:
Saturday 12 December 2009
by: Evelyn Pringle, t r u t h o u t | Report

Prescriptions for psychiatric drugs increased 50 percent with children in the US, and 73 percent among adults, from 1996 to 2006, according to a study in the May/June 2009 issue of the journal Health Affairs. Another study in the same issue of Health Affairs found spending for mental health care grew more than 30 percent over the same ten-year period, with almost all of the increase due to psychiatric drug costs.

On April 22, 2009, the US Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality reported that in 2006 more money was spent on treating mental disorders in children aged 0 to 17 than for any other medical condition, with a total of $8.9 billion. By comparison, the cost of treating trauma-related disorders, including fractures, sprains, burns, and other physical injuries, was only $6.1 billion.

In 2008, psychiatric drug makers had overall sales in the US of $14.6 billion from antipsychotics, $9.6 billion off antidepressants, $11.3 billion from antiseizure drugs and $4.8 billion in sales of ADHD drugs, for a grand total of $40.3 billion.

The path to child drugging in the US started with providing adolescents with stimulants for ADHD in the early 80s. That was followed by Prozac in the late 80s, and in the mid-90s drug companies started claiming that ADHD kids really had bipolar disorder, coinciding with the marketing of epilepsy drugs as "mood stablizers" and the arrival of the new atypical antipsychotics.

Parents can now have their kids declared disabled due to mental illness and receive Social Security disability payments and free medical care, and schools can get more money for disabled kids. The bounty for the prescribing doctors and pharmacies is enormous and the CEOs of the drug companies are laughing all the way into early retirement.

Psychiatric Drugs Explained

During an interview with Street Spirit in August 2005, investigative journalist and author of "Mad in America," Robert Whitaker, described the dangers of psychiatric drugs. "When you look at the research literature, you find a clear pattern of outcomes with all these drugs," he said, "you see it with the antipsychotics, the antidepressants, the anti-anxiety drugs and the stimulants like Ritalin used to treat ADHD."

"All these drugs may curb a target symptom slightly more effectively than a placebo does for a short period of time, say six weeks," Whitaker said. However, what "you find with every class of these psychiatric drugs is a worsening of the target symptom of depression or psychosis or anxiety, over the long term, compared to placebo-treated patients."

"So even on the target symptoms, there's greater chronicity and greater severity of symptoms," he reports, "And you see a fairly significant percentage of patients where new and more severe psychiatric symptoms are triggered by the drug itself."

Whitaker told Street Spirit that the rate of Americans disabled by mental illness has skyrocketed since Prozac came on the market in 1987, and reports: (1) the number of mentally disabled people in the US has been increasing at a rate of 150,000 people per year since 1987, (2) that represents an increase of 410 new people per day and (3) the disability rate has continued to increase and one in every 50 Americans is disabled by mental illness.

The statistics above beg the question of how could this happen when the so-called new generation of "wonder drugs" arrived on the market during the exact same time period. The truth is, the "wonder drugs" cause most of the bizarre behaviors listed by doctors to warrant a mental illness disability.


To read more about the astonishing rise in mental illness in America since the introduction of psychiatric drugs, go to this PDF by Robert Whitaker: Anatomy of an Epidemic,

Another valuable in-depth resource on these matters is Vera Hassner Sharav's AHRP - Alliance for Human Research Protection - here.

To see our previous posts and links about the drugging of children, search for "children drugs" in our SEARCH box in the upper right hand corner of the blog.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

NYT: Menopause, as Brought to You by Drug Companies

DEAD ASS LAST AWARD Pictures, Images and Photos
Mare's urine, you say?

From the article:

PREMPRO is a combination of Premarin, an estrogen drug derived from the urine of pregnant mares and first approved by the Food and Drug Administration in 1942, with an additional hormone, progestin.

Part of the Premarin saga shows how a drug maker successfully and cannily expanded a franchise whose central ingredient is horse estrogens into a billion-dollar panacea for aging women. Yet several hundred pages of court documents also raise questions about another aspect of Premarin’s trajectory: how Wyeth worked over decades to maintain the image and credibility of its hormone drugs even as the products were repeatedly under siege.

Pfizer representatives say court documents paint an unfair picture of Wyeth’s practices and that plaintiffs’ lawyers have cherry-picked documents for out-of-context comments to sway juries.

Still, the documents offer a snapshot of Wyeth’s efforts. Taken together, they depict a company that over several decades spent tens of millions of dollars on influential physicians, professional medical societies, scientific publications, courses and celebrity ads, inundating doctors and patients with a sea of positive preventive health messages that plaintiffs’ lawyers say deflected users’ attention from cancer concerns.

Update: a video on hormones and cancer that Big Pharma does not want us to see:

Friday, December 11, 2009

U.S. Sen. Grassley: Grassley works for disclosure of drug company payments to medical groups

Three Cheers for Senator Grassley!



WASHINGTON --- Senator Grassley has asked 33 medical groups for information about the financial backing they get from the pharmaceutical, medical device and insurance industries.

“These organizations have a lot of influence over public policy, and people rely on their leadership. There’s a strong case for disclosure and the accountability that results,” Grassley said.

Grassley said his inquiry follows a review of industry support for the National Alliance on Mental Illness, where he questioned the organization’s national office and state chapters. The Alliance subsequently adopted a new policy of publicly releasing industry support over $5,000. “It’d be good for the system if other organizations would follow NAMI’s lead in this area,” Grassley said.

For several years, Grassley has conducted extensive oversight and sought disclosure of financial ties with industry from research physicians, medical schools, medical journals, continuing medical education, and the patient advocacy community. He has worked to expose cases where there was vast disparity between drug-company payments received and reported by leading medical researchers. In response to Grassley’s work, the National Institutes of Health is working on new disclosure guidelines for federal grant recipients.

Grassley is also working for congressional passage of reform legislation he has sponsored with Senator Herb Kohl. Their bipartisan Physician Payments Sunshine Act would require annual public reporting by drug, device and biologic manufacturers of payments made to physicians nationwide.

“I’m interested in transparency,” Grassley said. “Letting the sun shine in and making information public is basic to building people’s confidence in medical research, education and the practice of medicine,” Grassley said.

This week, t he senator’s letters of inquiry were sent to the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, the Alzheimer’s Association, the American Academy of Allergy Asthma and Immunology, the American Academy of Dermatology, the American Academy of Family Physicians, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, the American College of Surgeons, the American Dental Association, the American Diabetes Association, the American Dietetic Association, the American Heart Association, the American Hospital Association Inc., the American Medical Association, the American Psychological Association, the American Society of Anesthesiologists, the American Society of Colon and Rectal Surgeons, the American Society of Consultant Pharmacists, the American Society of Health–System Pharmacists, the American Society of Hypertension, Inc., the American Society of Nephrology, the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, Children and Adults with Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder, Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance, the Heart Rhythm Society, Mental Health America, NARSAD, the National Association of Chain Drug Stores, the National Organization for Rare Disorders, the North American Spine Society, Screening for Mental Health Inc., the National Center for Mental Checkups at Columbia University (TeenScreen), The Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, and the American Cancer Society.

Here is the text of Grassley’s letter.

December 7, 2009

Dear _________________:

The United States Senate Committee on Finance (Committee) has jurisdiction over the Medicare and Medicaid programs and, accordingly, a responsibility to the more than 100 million Americans who receive health care coverage under these programs. As Ranking Member of the Committee, I have a duty to protect the health of Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries and safeguard taxpayer dollars authorized by Congress for these programs.

For the last three years, the Committee has been looking into various aspects of the pharmaceutical industry, including consulting arrangements, and industry funding for Continuing Medical Education (CME). My inquiry was spurred, in part by press accounts documenting the lack of transparency in the relationships between the pharmaceutical industry and nonprofit organizations. For instance, in April 2008, The Wall Street Journal reported that industry representatives, including ten major drug companies, formed a coalition to promote looser restrictions on off-label marketing. [1] The coalition asked the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) to speak in favor of this issue.

On October 6th of this year, I sent letters to all fifty state chapters of NAMI asking them to disclose income from pharmaceutical companies. In that letter, I explained that NAMI National receives almost two-thirds of its funding from the drug industry. [2] I learned recently that a few days after I sent those letters, one of the founders of NAMI and member of the NAMI National Board of Directors emailed his resignation, stating that he was shocked at NAMI’s reliance on pharmaceutical industry funding. In particular he said: “This financial dependency presents a number of problems.”

In response to my concerns, NAMI began to disclose publicly on its website, any amount of funding exceeding $5,000 that it received from pharmaceutical companies and other foundations. This decision in favor of transparency by NAMI is encouraging.

In April of this year, the Institute of Medicine issued a report endorsing transparency and stating that protections against conflicts can be established without inhibiting productive relationships between medicine and industry to improve medical knowledge and care. I am hoping you can assist me in this effort by providing additional insights into these relationships as well as any changes in transparency that your organization may be planning for in the future. Operating with transparency sends a message that there is nothing to hide.

Accordingly, I would appreciate an accounting of industry funding that pharmaceutical, medical device companies, foundations established by these companies or the insurance industry have provided to the (Organization) (The term “industry funding” means any transfer of value, including but not limited to grants, donations, and sponsorship for meetings or programs, etc.) This request covers the period of January 2006 to the present.

Because reporting practices vary widely from one charitable organization to another, I would appreciate you also placing this income into a chart, detailing annual amounts of industry funding. For each year, please provide the following information for (Organization) :

1) Year;

2) Name of company;

3) Amount of funding; and

4) Reason(s) that the funding was provided.

In addition, please explain (Organization) policies for accepting industry funding and the disclosure requirements of your top executives and board members by answering the following questions. For each question, please respond by first repeating the enumerated question followed by the appropriate answer. Again, this request covers the period of January 2006 to the present:


Please describe the policies for accepting industry funding and whether or not (Organization) allows companies to place restrictions or provide guidance on how funding will be spent.


If (Organization) allows companies to place restrictions on industry funding, then please explain all restrictions and/or guidance for each transfer of value from industry. For every transfer of value with a restriction, please provide the following information: year of transfer, name of company, and restriction placed on funding.


Please explain what policies, if any that(Organization) plans to adopt to ensure transparency of funding in order to provide a greater public trust in the independence of your organization.


Please explain your policies on disclosure of outside income by your top executives and board members.


Please provide the disclosures of outside income filed with your organizations by your top executives and board members.

In cooperating with the Committee’s review, no documents, records, data or information related to these matters shall be destroyed, modified, removed or otherwise made inaccessible to the Committee.

I look forward to hearing from you by no later than December 21, 2009.


Charles E. Grassley United States Senator Ranking Member of the Committee on Finance


The New York Times December 8, 2009

Grassley Seeks Details on Medical Financing by Gardiner Harris

A top Republican senator, Charles E. Grassley, has sent letters to the American Medical Association, the American Cancer Society and 31 other disease and medical advocacy organizations asking them to provide details about the amount of money that they and their directors receive from drug and device makers.

Such financing amounts are often considered proprietary by the organizations and their directors, but critics contend that the industry’s sway over such groups leads them to lobby on the industry’s behalf.

Mike Lynch, a spokesman for the A.M.A., said the organization had received the senator’s letter and would respond. Mr. Lynch said industry financing made up less than 2 percent of the organization’s budget.

Steve Weiss, a spokesman for the American Cancer Society, sent an e-mail message stating that the society “holds itself to the highest standards of transparency and public accountability, and we look forward to working with Senator Grassley to provide the information he requested.”

Kate Meyer, a spokeswoman for the Alzheimer’s Association, which also received a letter from the senator, said the organization “was going to answer all of his questions,” but she would not immediately say what share of the organization’s financing comes from drug or device makers.

The letter is part of Mr. Grassley’s long-running investigation into the influence of drug and device makers on the practice of medicine. Mr. Grassley, an Iowa Republican, has also long been interested in how charities get and spend their tax-deductible contributions.

“These organizations have a lot of influence over public policy, and people rely on their leadership,” he said. “There’s a strong case for disclosure and the accountability that results.” Earlier this year, Mr. Grassley sent a similar letter to the National Alliance on Mental Illness. The group told the senator that more than two-thirds of its donations came from the pharmaceutical industry. In response to the disclosure, Dr. H. Richard Lamb resigned from the group’s board.

Dr. Lamb joined the board of the organization in 2005, when he was “shocked to learn that approximately half of NAMI’s income comes from the large pharmaceutical companies,” he wrote in a resignation letter that Mr. Grassley made public. Alliance officials assured Dr. Lamb that the situation would change. “However,” Dr. Lamb wrote, “very little has changed, right up to the present day.” In an interview, Dr. Lamb said that NAMI’s dependence on the drug industry made some actions impossible. For instance, Dr. Lamb said that NAMI should consider warning against the use of some mental health drugs with life-threatening side effects. But Dr. Lamb said the organization could not consider such a move because it could threaten much of its financing.

Michael J. Fitzpatrick, the organization’s executive director, promised that the industry’s share of the group’s fund-raising would drop significantly next year.

Mr. Grassley’s request that organizations provide details about the outside income of directors may cause some consternation. While a few large patient advocacy groups have provided general guidance about their reliance on industry, almost none have given such details about their leaders.

Senator Grassley is looking at Pharma funding of universities too.
For Immediate Release
June 24, 2009

"Grassley seeks information about medical school policies for disclosure of financial ties

WASHINGTON --- Senator Chuck Grassley has asked 23 medical schools for information about their policies for conflicts of interest and requirements for disclosure of financial relationships between faculty members and the drug industry.

Grassley sent his request to the 23 educational institutions that did not respond to an earlier request made by the American Medical Student Association for the same information. In that case, the schools reportedly replied to a survey by answering either "no response" or "decline to submit policies." Of the 149 schools asked, 126 provided information to the student association.

"There's a lot of skepticism about financial relationships between doctors and drug companies," Grassley said. "Disclosure of those ties would help to build confidence that there's nothing to hide. Requiring disclosure is a common sense reform based on the public dollars and public trust at stake in medical training, medical research and the practice of medicine."

Grassley has been working to achieve uniform and universal disclosure of the money that pharmaceutical, medical device and biologic companies give to physicians. He has conducted extensive oversight of financial relationships, especially among doctors who conduct research with the $24 billion awarded annually in federal grants by the National Institutes of Health. Institutions receiving these federal dollars are required to track financial relationships, but Grassley has found enforcement of those requirements often to be either lax or in violation. Grassley also has sponsored reform legislation that would require payments from the drug industry to be publicly reported. Senator Herb Kohl is the cosponsor of the "Physician Payments Sunshine Act," S.301.

The 23 schools receiving Grassley's letter are: the Arizona College of Osteopathic Medicine, Edward Via Virginia College of Osteopathic Medicine, Medical College of Georgia School of Medicine, Northeastern Ohio University College of Medicine, Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine, Rocky Vista University College of Osteopathic Medicine, Tulane University School of Medicine, University of Florida College of Medicine, University of Nevada School of Medicine, Albany Medical College, Chicago College of Osteopathic Medicine, Dartmouth Medical School, Howard University College of Medicine, Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine, Louisiana State University School of Medicine - New Orleans, Meharry Medical College, Morehouse School of Medicine, New York College of Osteopathic Medicine of the New York Institute of Technology, Ponce School of Medicine, San Juan Bautista School Of Medicine, University at Buffalo School of Medicine, University of Medicine and Dentistry New Jersey - New Jersey Medical School, University of South Carolina School of Medicine. The text of the letter is below."

NYT: Poor Children More Likely to Be Given Antipsychotics

"Do too many children from poor families receive powerful psychiatric drugs not because they actually need them — but because it is deemed the most efficient and cost-effective way to control problems that may be handled much differently for middle-class children?"


Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Video: Simply Raw - Reversing Diabetes in 30 Days

"Let your food be your medicine"

Simply Raw: Reversing Diabetes in 30 Days is an independent documentary film that chronicles six Americans with 'incurable' diabetes switching their diet and getting off insulin.

The film follows each participant's remarkable journey and captures the medical, physical, and emotional transformations brought on by this diet and lifestyle change. We witness moments of struggle, support, and hope as what is revealed, with startling clarity, is that diet can reverse diabetes* and change lives.

Additional wisdom is provided by Morgan Spurlock, Woody Harrelson, Anthony Robbins, Rev. Michael Beckwith, and Doctors Fred Bisci, Joel Furman, and Gabriel Cousens.

And don't miss the related videos at the link.

The Sweetest Poison of All

Want some more sugar in your tea? You won't after you read

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Lilly ‘Ghostwrote’ Articles to Market Drug, Files Say (Update2)

By Elizabeth Lopatto, Jef Feeley and Margaret Cronin Fisk

June 11 (Bloomberg) -- Eli Lilly & Co. officials wrote medical journal studies about the antipsychotic Zyprexa and then asked doctors to put their names on the articles, a practice called “ghostwriting,” according to unsealed company files.

Lilly employees also compiled a guide to hiring scientists to write favorable articles, complained to journal editors when publication was delayed and submitted rejected articles to other outlets, according to documents filed in drug-overpricing suits against the Indianapolis-based company, the largest manufacturer of psychiatric medicines.

Drugmakers’ use of ghostwriters has created “a huge body of medical literature that society can’t trust,” said Carl Elliott, a University of Minnesota bioethicist who has written about the practice.

Lilly sought to make Zyprexa “the number one selling psychotropic in history,” according to a 2000 plan distributed to its product team. The memo was among more than 10,000 pages of internal documents unsealed last month in lawsuits by insurers and pension funds seeking to recoup money spent on the drug. They allege Lilly exaggerated Zyprexa’s effectiveness.

More at link

Twelve Things We'd Say About Health

... if we weren't afraid of getting sued"

Movie Trailer: The Idiot Cycle

Official trailer for "The Idiot Cycle" feature length documentary produced by Emmanuelle Schick Garcia and Laila Tahhar. To be released Fall 2009.

From the site:
"It has now been scientifically demonstrated that there is indeed a link between chemical products and the appearance of diseases, such as cancers, infertility, degenerative diseases of the central nervous system and allergies."
CPME - Standing Committee of European Doctors, 2005
"There is little direct evidence of widespread ill health or ecosystem damage by the use of man-made chemicals."
Alan Perroy, Director General of the European Chemical Industry Council, in a 2001 letter to European Members of Parliament.

Once upon a time, a king accumulated most of the gold in his kingdom. His subjects were very poor, without land to grow food. When the subjects began to starve and watch their families perish, they realized they had nothing to lose.

They stormed the castle and found the king in a large room, cowering next to his mounds of gold, begging them not to steal his gold.

The subjects did not take the gold. But they left the room and locked the king inside.

Upon leaving they called out, "now you will be able to see the real worth of your gold."

The king, trapped in the room with no water, air or food, realized the gold was useless.

This story became the impetus for The Idiot Cycle - a film about cancer.

"Everyone should know that the 'war on cancer' is largely a fraud."
Dr. Linus Pauling, winner of the Nobel Peace Prize and the Nobel Prize in chemistry

Rough Aunties take Sundance by Storm

Warning: contains materials related to sexual abuse of minors, and may trigger for some.

"Sisters in Law director Kim Longinotto brings viewers an intimate portrait of change in Africa with this documentary following the efforts of five women in ensuring that the abused and forgotten children of Durban, South Africa still have a fighting chance despite getting a rough start in life. Thuli, Mildred, Sudula, Jackie, and Eureka are a multiracial cadre of women who have dedicated their lives to the common cause of helping the most vulnerable and disenfranchised components of their communities - the children. Together, these five women form a united force powerful enough to overcome social and racial divisions while doing battle against the destructive forces of corruption, greed, and apathy. In post-apartheid South Africa, it's the hope and energy of groups like the Rough Aunties that help to transform a nation while inspiring positive change." ~ Jason Buchanan, All Movie Guide

A movie has been made about the "Rough Aunties" - and it has taken the Sundance Film Festival by storm.

The film is reviewed here.

"Operation Bobbi Bear exists to:
Rescue and uphold the rights of sexually abused children.
Minimise their risk of HIV infection.
Help them towards wholeness."

Looks like one Rough Auntie is better for peace of mind than any number of tranquilizers. Make a donation and become a Rough Auntie:

Friday, December 4, 2009

London, Ontario - WOTCH

From the site:
"WOTCH Community Mental Health Services is dedicated to serving adults in South Western Ontario who live with serious mental illness. The skilled mental health professionals at WOTCH help clients achieve realistic goals and to live interdependently within the community.

With a history extending back to 1970, WOTCH (Western Ontario Therapeutic Community Hostel) is the lead agency in Middlesex County for mental health housing and is a strong component in the mental health support system in the areas of case management, community integration and life skills support, employment programs, treatment programs, clinical programs and women's mental health programs.

Approximately 120 employees provide service to more than 1,000 adult clients annually. WOTCH is a registered non-profit corporation and a registered charitable organization. WOTCH programs and services are governed by an independent Board of Trustees."

That's quite a lot of medico-social work jobs.

Here is the information on the site about what is offered at this program:
"Clinics and groups are offered to individuals as well as one-on-one assessments and interventions that include:

* Consultation Clinic with a psychiatrist
* Medical Clinic with a family physician
* Diabetes screening and self management program
* Free Foot care Clinics
* Collective Kitchen
* Nutrition Clinic"

We will enquire further as to the components of WOTCH "assessments" and the "nutrition clinic" to determine if they know about the 29 CAUSES OF SCHIZOPHRENIA.

Nutrition is the basis of good mental and physical health. "Nutrition Clinic"is last on this group's list, but Psychiatrist is first. We fear that clients in this program will be given drugs which merely substitute one problem for another - and necessitate yet another intervention, or morbidity and early mortality. See Anatomy of an Epidemic.

The staff have really nice clothes, though.

OBIT: Colin Downes-Grainger, Benzo Activist

Sad news - Colin Downes-Grainger, one of the best writers in the fight for sanity in pharmaceutical psychoactive drug use, has died. A terrible loss.
We will miss him very much. But his work remains.


Colin Downes-Grainger
August, 2007

"This book examines the question of how it is that medicine inflicts widespread damage through mind altering drugs in particular but also a range of other drugs. It goes into the reasons why so often dangerous drugs are sold to regulators and doctors as safe and it is left to patients to discover later that this is far from true. The history of tranquillisers has been pulled together to show that doctors are not as expert as they think they are when they prescribe, that drug companies routinely exploit the existing medical system in the UK, that politicians and regulators fail to protect public health while saying that they do and that the British legal system allows almost no possibility of redress.

The Department of Health has no idea how many have been affected by tranquillisers, SSRIs and many other controversial drugs, and it does not seem to want to know. But many thousands have told their stories in the media and on the internet. The thousands who died have sadly been unable to tell their stories. In respect of tranquillisers, some people who died or who were injured did not themselves take the drugs-they were killed or injured in accidents by those who had. The benzodiazepine story is most notable because of the huge numbers of people to whom tranquillisers were prescribed-and because many of them subsequently became very sick due to over-prescribing. The history of tranquillisers is a clear description of a system which out-sources drug production to profit motivated private enterprise but then maintains a system of drugs regulation which it is almost impossible to penetrate. Medicine, Pharma and politicians defend what happens to patients in order to defend the system they have jointly created. This is the reason why they show no desire to listen, and continue to learn nothing from the chequered history of drugs.

Prescription for Injury shows clearly what the UK government would not wish included in its description of 'our way of life' - including what benzodiazepines have done to a great many patients for nearly fifty years. The question might be asked, "Is the first duty of the state really the protection of its citizens?" If it is then government has failed to protect. This examination of the past raises the suspicion that the maintenance of a failing but profitable system and the avoidance of responsibility, is seen by government as being politically more desirable than the introduction of an efficient protective healthcare agenda. The only protections that patients have against drug disasters are the enlightenment of doctors, strictly honest science and effective regulation, but all of these health safeguards have regularly failed in the past, particularly with psychotropic drugs, and the true enormity of these failings is clearly illustrated by benzodiazepines. The book is now available online."

Click to download the PDF file here.

Thank you, Colin.

Nicotinic receptor - and Niacin

"AstraZeneca, the Anglo-Swedish pharmaceutical group, today announced its biggest deal of the year with a plan to tap into the global market for antidepressants, estimated to be worth more than $20bn (£12bn).

The company, headed by David Brennan, is teaming up with US biotech specialist Targacept, which is developing an antidepressant drug that works on the brain in a different way to selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) such as Prozac and Seroxat, known as Paxil in the United States.

Under the terms of the transaction, AstraZeneca will pay Targacept $200m and a further $1bn if the medicine gets regulatory clearance and meets certain sales targets. The drug will undergo final clinical trials over the next year and is expected to be filed with the US regulator, the Food and Drug Administration, in 2012.

The licensing agreement means that Brennan's company will contribute to further development costs and market the drug worldwide, providing it gets regulatory clearance.

According to AstraZeneca, the deal is significant because the new product could offer a new alternative to millions of people whose depression fails to respond to SSRIs. A recent study found that SSRIs did not work for up to two-thirds of patients."


"Targacept, Inc. is a biopharmaceutical company engaged in the design, discovery and development of NNR Therapeutics(TM), a new class of drugs for the treatment of multiple diseases and disorders of the central nervous system. Our NNR Therapeutics selectively target neuronal nicotinic receptors, or NNRs. NNRs are found on nerve cells throughout the nervous system and serve as key regulators of nervous system activity.

We currently have a robust clinical-stage product pipeline and multiple preclinical product candidates. Our most advanced product candidates are in development for major depressive disorder, attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder, Alzheimer’s disease and cognitive dysfunction in schizophrenia.

Targacept is located in Winston-Salem, North Carolina."

Nicotinic receptors indicate NIACIN - Vitamin B3 - which has health-restoring effects in ALL of the conditions
mentioned above. If Niacin does no harm and is cheap, why not try B3 first?

The Emperors New Clothes Pictures, Images and Photos
Image: The Emperor's New Clothes

NATURE: Pharmaceutical industry financial UNDERperformance

Pharmaceutical industry financial performance
Only 2 of the 14 large–cap pharmaceutical companies are predicted to have a positive net present value gap against a 5% compound annual growth rate in revenue for the period 2009–2015.

Oh noes...


Tuesday, December 1, 2009

USA: Pennsylvania Prisons Allegedly Bribed Judges to Sentence Kids

"Spread over two years of court cases, Wilkes-Barre, Pa., Judges Mark Ciavarella and Michael Conahan are accused of taking more than $2.6 million in payoffs to sentence minors to detention centers.

Dealing exclusively with private institutions, as Conahan had helped shutter the county-run center in 2002, the judges are alleged to have received bribes from detention facilities that were paid by the county on a daily basis.

Though they had agreed to contracts with the county, the centers would ultimately receive payment according to the number of offenders they housed.

The high number of incarcerations, the fact that many underage offenders were presented without an attorney and the excessive punishments doled out for small, often first-time offenses raised suspicions among the local legal community.

Both judges have been removed from the bench and are expected to plead guilty.

Although the Wilkes-Barre case is exceptional for the high number and value of the bribes paid, it is hardly an isolated case on the international stage.

According to a 2007 study conducted by Transparency International, of 62 nations surveyed, 25 found that 1 in 10 households reported having paid a bride to access their court system."

We ask: How many of these kids were put on psychotropic drugs?

To read the rest of the article and to access important documents regarding the case, please go to this link.

To read our previous entries on the prison industry, go here.

NYT: Mystery Shoppers Check Out Conditions in Psychiatric Ward

EDE, the Netherlands
Surrounded by manicured greenery, the closed-off ward of the complex, known as De Riethorst, recalls a suburban dental clinic, and its sunny gymnasium and carpeted hallways do little to suggest that it houses up to a dozen acute psychiatric patients, many of whom are there involuntarily.

And that is why the undercover participants were all experienced psychiatric nurses. “You couldn’t have done it otherwise,” said Edo De Vries, the director of De Gelderse Roos, which released the results of the project last summer.

It and Clearfields are working on a project for 2010, most likely to involve five to eight psychiatric hospitals in the Netherlands.

Mr. De Vries said the impetus for the project came in part from a pair of patient deaths last year in psychiatric facilities in Amsterdam — one involving a suicide, the other a man who choked on food while locked in an isolation cell. Several managers and staff members were fired as a result, and others were suspended.

“Of course, incidents can happen anywhere,” Mr. De Vries said. “But what if there is something structurally wrong that we don’t know about? We have to be more transparent, and I think this method is a good tool for that.”

The Rosenhan "Thud" Experiment