New Civilization News: Study Finds, Drugs Offer No Benefit in Curbing Aggression    
 Study Finds, Drugs Offer No Benefit in Curbing Aggression11 comments
picture4 Jan 2008 @ 15:17, by Gerald Vest

Most people seem convinced that since the body inevitably shows the "ravages" of Time, similar ravages must therefore affect the mind, the spirit. Not true. What is most important is that in our lives we have learned through the mind, the mind that is our spirit, and that is what will remain even when the body breaks down.
(_Growing Young_, Ashley Montagu)

This "NY Times" article is a remarkable finding by British researchers that will certainly challenge conventional mental health treatment in this country and others. I suspect that the Big Pharmas are clamoring around to see how they can squelch this research and/or find ways to cover up their own studies that were suppose to be scientific and offer evidence based practice methodologies.

This study should also draw attention to all of the other psychotropic drugs and products created by the pharmaceutical companies. Congress and the FDA should call for investigations of their science, for their marketing practices, for their corporate political behavior and their greed. This is not the first drug that has proven to be of little value, useless and harmful to the consumer. It is especially fraught with corruption and abuse because those persons most vulnerable--mental health patients/clients--are not able to determine what is the best treatment for their pain, anguish and suffering. They depend upon psychiatry, mental health programs, and medicine to give them the treatment that has a scientific basis of validity and reliability and offers best practice interventions.

This "NY Times" series of articles also discuss psychiatry and concerns that the public and others should be aware of: [link]

For those of you who have followed my logs related to "Stop Drugging our Kids" and others describing the Big Pharmas' practices, this is just one more headline that will probably be overlooked while psychiatry continues to drug their patients while Big Pharmas go about their business, passing off their research as scientific evidence and paying off their professional customers and politicians. Hmm, I wonder why I am becoming so cynical in my "old age" when I feel as though I am "growing young" and spirited. "But the routine prescription of the drugs for aggression, they concluded, “should no longer be regarded as a satisfactory form of care.”

Finally, I am adding an additional article introduced in the International Journal of Mental Health Systems that describes the failures of the Diagnostic Statistical Manual(DSM) as a psychiatric system or model used to assess or measure depression and schizophrena. This is another remarkable article that questions the validity and usefulness of a system that is commonly used by mental health professionals. The authors recommend other system approaches that can be more helpful and effective for evaluating and treating patients suffering with depression and schizophrenia. "Classification in Psychiatry: Does it Deliver in Schizophrenia and Depression?"
[link]

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Drugs Offer No Benefit in Curbing Aggression, Study Finds
By BENEDICT CAREY, NY Times

Published: January 4, 2008

The drugs most widely used to manage aggressive outbursts in intellectually disabled people are no more effective than placebos for most patients and may be less so, researchers report.

The finding, being published Friday, sharply challenges standard medical practice in mental health clinics and nursing homes in the United States and around the world.

In recent years, many doctors have begun to use the so-called antipsychotic drugs, which were developed to treat schizophrenia, as all-purpose tranquilizers to settle threatening behavior — in children with attention-deficit problems, college students with depression, older people with Alzheimer’s disease and intellectually handicapped people.

The new study tracked 86 adults with low I.Q.’s in community housing in England, Wales and Australia over more than a month of treatment. It found a 79 percent reduction in aggressive behavior among those taking dummy pills, compared with a reduction of 65 percent or less in those taking antipsychotic drugs.

The researchers focused on two drugs, Risperdal by Janssen, and an older drug, Haldol, but said the findings almost certainly applied to all similar medications. Such drugs account for more than $10 billion in annual sales, and research suggests that at least half of all prescriptions are for unapproved “off label” uses — often to treat aggression or irritation.

The authors said the results were quite likely to intensify calls for a government review of British treatment standards for such patients, and perhaps to prompt more careful study of treatment for aggressive behavior in patients with a wide variety of diagnoses.

Other experts said the findings were also almost certain to inflame a continuing debate over the widening use of antipsychotic drugs. Patient advocates and some psychiatrists say the medications are overused.

Previous studies of the drugs’ effect on aggressive outbursts have been mixed, with some showing little benefit and others a strong calming influence. But the drugs have serious side effects, including rapid weight gain and tremors, and doctors have had little rigorous evidence to guide practice.

“This is a very significant finding by some very prominent psychiatrists” — one that directly challenges the status quo, said Johnny L. Matson, a professor of psychology at Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge, co-author of an editorial with the study in the journal Lancet.

While it is unclear how much the study by itself will alter prescribing habits, “the message to doctors should be, think twice about prescribing, go with lower doses and monitor side effects very carefully,” Dr. Matson continued, adding:

“Or just don’t do it. We know that behavioral treatments can work very well with many patients.”

Other experts disagreed, saying the new study was not in line with previous research or their own experience. Janssen, a Johnson & Johnson subsidiary, said that Risperdal only promotes approved uses, which in this country include the treatment of irritability associated with autism in children.

In the study, Dr. Peter J. Tyrer, a professor of psychiatry at Imperial College London, led a research team who assigned 86 people from ages 18 to 65 to one of three groups: one that received Risperdal; one that received another antipsychotic, the generic form of Haldol; and one that was given a placebo pill. Caregivers tracked the participants’ behavior. Many people with very low I.Q.’s are quick to anger and lash out at others, bang their heads or fists into the wall in frustration, or singe the air with obscenities when annoyed.

After a month, people in all three groups had settled down, losing their temper less often and causing less damage when they did. Yet unexpectedly, those in the placebo group improved the most, significantly more so than those on medication.

In an interview, Dr. Tyrer said there was no reason to believe that any other antipsychotic drug used for aggression, like Zyprexa from Eli Lilly or Seroquel from AstraZeneca, would be more effective. Being in the study, with all the extra attention it brought, was itself what apparently made the difference, he said.

“These people tend to get so little company normally,” Dr. Tyrer said. “They’re neglected, they tend to be pushed into the background, and this extra attention has a much bigger effect on them that it would on a person of more normal intelligence level.”

The study authors, who included researchers from the University of Wales and the University of Birmingham in Britain and the University of Queensland in Brisbane, Australia, wrote that their results “should not be interpreted as an indication that antipsychotic drugs have no place in the treatment of some aspects of behavior disturbance.”

But the routine prescription of the drugs for aggression, they concluded, “should no longer be regarded as a satisfactory form of care.” [link]


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11 comments

4 Jan 2008 @ 21:26 by a-d : Thanks Jerry!
Comes as "no big surprize", but needs to be said over & over again, since it is
very important to burst this SICK bubble of The -so called- Benefits of Pharma Pills -deception! There really aren't that much benefits, that it would justify the evils done daily by them!

" We have this Pill" OK, so 999 of a thousand to whom we gave this Pill, has died from taking it. But saving (that ) ONE, is enough for us" (and totally justifies our actions/the administering this drug")
Yeaaahhh... this makes sense! But this was exactly the attitude the Big Pharma had, when the first -considered successful- Pyscho Pharmaca named Hibernal;
[link] showed up to replace Psycho Surgery practices...which are all now making a vengeful Come Back; [link]

Say No To Psychiatry: Site Index link: [link]

Psychiatric treatments are harmful. All psychiatric treatments are harmful. Psychiatric drugs, ECT (electric shock) and brain surgery (lobotomy) each harm the individual and society. This sometimes goes against what we have been taught or indoctrinated into believing, and also against what we would often like to believe. Taking a pill as a "cure" obviously is easier than confronting and dealing with the actual personal reasons for one's difficulties with their own mind and life. The alternative requires personal responsibility, control and can take time, but the final results far exceed the quick fix (drugs, shock, etc.). In fact, the "psychiatric" methods "fix" nothing at all and actually make things worse.

The field of psychiatry is rooted in German experimental psychology, racist eugenics theories, and anti-human materialistic opinions parading as scientific facts. The promotional activities and tremendous profits of the major drug companies and affiliated financial interests play no small part in understanding the development and success of modern psychiatry. The result of modern psychiatric theories and methods is the denial of everything comprising man's "inner" personality of thoughts, feelings, values, hopes, dreams, intentions, goals, and ultimately, life itself.

Much of modern education and all aspects of the social sciences are rooted in flawed modern theories of psychology. This has had and continues to have disastrous effects on individual people and society.

Here's a book about the real antidot to psychiatric troubles of a/ny Human:
[link]  



5 Jan 2008 @ 00:23 by jerryvest : Hi Astrid...I don't know what to
say as we've been down this path many times and I thought that I was through discussing it any further. However, these recent research reports show the dangers of the big Pharmas; the misuse of these drugs, coding, and labeling, without adequate research and honest reporting of side effects by these greedy corporations. I know that there are very serious mental illnesses and the patients do need psycho-social-supportive care, acceptance, follow-up services, respect and quality treatment-empowerment. In fact, we might consider giving them room and board in our finest hotels and real care homes.

A large percentage of our street persons are vets who have given their service to our country and are now in need of comprehensive, integrative health practices. I once hitched my way around the country and met many of these warriors who have lost total faith and trust in our health services and shelters. I also have some friends and colleagues who work in veteran health programs who are working very hard to identify and provide resources for this population.

I think we need more support from our local police, volunteers and government programs to help identify and advocate for many of our disabled persons who are thrown in jail for using street drugs and booked for being vagrants. They have been part of our "throw aways" by our society and its time for our community mental health therapists, psychiatrists, social workers, counselors and teachers to step out of their comfortable offices, reach out to these human beings who are lonely, isolated, judged and committed to a life of incarceration,poverty of body, mind and spirit and offer them a helping "hand." Where have the out-reach workers gone? Who cares?

This is a great article in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette that describes a special court that the Allegheny County Mental Health Program developed for persons incarcerated with mental health disabilities that is very successful. I am fortunate to have a good friend and colleague (Ms.Edna Kalson) who shares my views about this population, formerly, Executive Secretary, Chartiers MH/MR Center, Inc., who sent this link to me. Do pass it along to others you know. Thanks, Edna, you are the best!!![link]  



5 Jan 2008 @ 01:22 by a-d : My idea reall y, was to
point out how those so called Psycho Pharmaca didn't do what they "promised" , when invented. And now we are back to Lobotomies and the rest of the really Medieval "Medical" practises in Psychiatry!.... We, The People, cannot let that happen!

It is high time for everyone to stop trying to bring forth andy GOOD Life sustainable change into our Communites by using the rules of a game rigged to make us the losers, regardless which of the given venues we choose: Petitioning, calling, writing letters to our constituents...geeewheeezzz.... these all SET UPS;TRAPS and ONLY once in a blue moon do the crooks make ONE Exeption, posting as EXAMPLE for the GOOD,CARING response from our leaders!...Don't we ever learn that that is all a Charade.

Like you said Jerry, it is up to all We,The People in each and every Community to take charge and stretch out that Helping Hand and not let the establishment peddle around with their phony solutions among us, We The People, via their INSTITUTIONS!!! DOWN WITH THE Government/Bureaucratic/ -INSTITUTIONS. THAT is where we start to find real Ideas, real solutions ( like the ones you suggested)

Now that we all know.... there should be nothing holding us back to choose Better Rules for the Game of Life!The first Rule is: "Do Unto Others....." and to always know & remember: God is no prospector of persons; ALL are equal in God's Eyes. After all we are all "His" creation!  



5 Jan 2008 @ 14:16 by jerryvest : Yes, I noticed that some of the
psychiatrists are returning to shock treatments. Seems that when they don't know what else to do and the drugs don't work, they return to the "Cuckoo's Nest" interventions. I've talked with 'patients' and psychiatrists who receive and administer these shock treatments and they report that it gives temporary relief. However, the long term effects are not taken into consideration with drugs and with these primitive treatments. They just don't get "it." That is, the use of integrative health practices--nutrition, home-like environmental settings, social supports, lots of physical interaction (healthy touch), genuine caring and interaction, relationship building (trust), freedom of expression, openness by therapist and clients, mindfulness, group work activities, several body therapies, including tai chi, chigong, kath state exercises, etc. Also, there are numerous therapeutic health practices that can include the arts--music, dance, art, theatre, photography & video. Several therapists that I know also use pets, gardening, and horses to promote nurturing, healthy relationships and boundary issues.

I also have some teaching colleagues and therapy friends who take their classes out-of-doors so that nature can be a more obvious healer. I also have found that my students become more aware of themselves and can use more of their senses when we hold our classes in the fresh air.

I think that the 50 minute hour therapy session, as Freud and other psychoanalytic therapists used with their middle class 'patients,' in the early years of psychiatry, are no longer viable or effective approaches to emulate, especially for the clients who have serious mental, emotional, physical and spiritual conflicts/crises/trauma--creative and holistic activities are the best opportunities for empowering the healing process with this population. Clients who learn to give and receive touch (15-Minute StressOut), progressive and deep body relaxation, mindfulness, meditation and visualization exercises have the tools to prevent intense or negative body-mind-emotion-spiritual crises from occuring.

I miss some of our former, creative members here in the NCN who would also contribute their suggestions to this log. Thank you, Astrid. You are a great sport and creative member that I don't know what we would do without you!!! Thanks, Jerry.

I hope that these suggestions will help therapists who become frustrated and revert to drugs and antiquated and radical treatment measures that cause harm to their patients. It should be obvious to most therapists, by now, the 50 minute hour also fits into these dysfunctional methods that need to be abandoned. Again, it is very important that "outreach workers" get trained so that they can offer early intervention and prevention services in the community.  



12 Jan 2008 @ 17:46 by jerryvest : I am thinking about starting a
group to organize and improve our mental health system in America and use the many scattered resources--organizations, professionals, patients/clients and others to help with the design and plan.

I have been invited to work with our New Mexico professional organization(NASW-NM) to examine the impact of the DSM, Insurance Industry, Big Pharmas, psychiatry/psychology on our licensing requirements on social work. I have observed that the licensing boards that are appointed by the Governor determine the requirements for professional practice and for supervision, often without discussing them with the schools of social work and professional organizations. Consequently, these boards invariably determine the curriculum priorities that must be taught in order for the students to pass their exam requirments without realizing the impact of their decisions.

We have found that students who are taught psychiatric-psychological practices such as the DSM classification system (a flawed, unethical and unscientific program that classifies, codes and labels patients)as described in this log and several of my previous discussions, will pass the test. When special courses on the DSM are not included in the curriculum the student rate of failure is very high. However, why should our profession abdicate our valuable resources--ethics, values, skills, knowledge and best practice methods and replace them with questionable, unethical and irresponsible practices?

Perhaps the answer to this question is that money, power and control rules. I believe that once our public clearly see these corrupt relationships that exist with the mental health-insurance industries, the Big Pharmas, psychiatry and all of the related professional organizations that we can get the suppport to improve the quality of services and ethical health practices for our consumers. It is very unfortunate that these organizations and professionals have forgotten or ignored our primary premise and principles we agreed to when choosing social work as a profession--the dignity and respect we hold for our clients, our primary concern for our client, community and society and, 'cause no harm!'

I am looking for persons interested in joining this group, provide case examples, secure colleagues and others with integrity, recruit others interested in helping to build a new or integrative health plan, and offer creative ideas that we can put into action plans at the local, state, national and global levels.

"Social capital means more than a buzz word, more than invoking the mantra: It takes a village to raise a child. It means being willing to ask: what does it take to build, to restore, to sustain that village? It means building an infrastructure of trust and reciprocity and engagement, often in situations where distrust and alientation hold sway." (_No More Throw-Away People_ - Edgar S. Cahn)

All helping comments are invited for sure.  



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Other entries in
31 May 2010 @ 22:18: Our StressOut Mission and Activities
27 May 2008 @ 13:31: Another Critical Look at the DSM
4 May 2008 @ 02:25: Prototype Health Program for Wounded Warriors
21 Jan 2008 @ 20:58: What A Day Brings
16 Jan 2008 @ 14:31: Our Primary Concern is our Client ....
25 Nov 2007 @ 20:05: A Story about a Drug Representative of the Big Pharmas
14 Oct 2007 @ 14:27: Use of Touch & Integrative Methods
20 Jun 2007 @ 13:17: Alternatives for Mental Health Workers and their Clients
5 Jun 2007 @ 10:03: The US: One Big Drug Store
3 Jun 2007 @ 21:56: Serious Questions go Unanswered in Mental Health Movement



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