Monsanto Roundup Lawsuit

Citizens Commission on Human Rights Award Recipient (Twice)
Humanist, humorist

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Guest Post: My Trip Through the Polypharmacy Blender II

The following is a guest post from Rory Tennes. It's a follow-on from a previous guest post he wrote for David Healy on RxISK.


A couple years ago I wrote my story and posted it on www.RxISK titled: “My Trip Through The Polypharmacy Blender”

Below is a short summary followed by an update on my life as it is now. Many thanks to Bob Fiddaman who kept encouraging me to finish this after several starts, fails, and stalls. It is difficult to write due to having to relive the painful emotions of what I had to survive and live through while telling this account of my life.

In short, I was ill, injured and in constant pain. I went to my doctors for help and they proceeded to drug me into oblivion. I had been in pain for a long time, years in fact and it was getting worse, interfering with my ability to work and function in every area of life. I went to my PCP or family doctor because after all, he knew me well and I could trust him. After a quick and mostly verbal exam, he diagnosed me with fibromyalgia and started prescribing medications. They helped a little but not much so he kept adding and changing medications. Little did I know that he, like the majority of doctors, did not know much about the drugs he was prescribing and what they actually do to a person, physically and emotionally do to a person. He, like most doctors and patients, believe what we have been told about prescription drugs. They are safe, effective and the “side effects” are mild and rare.

Nothing could be further from the truth.  The “side effects” are not mild and they are not rare. Drug companies have done an excellent job of deceiving most of us about the truth of what these chemicals actually do inside a body. I began to have emotional and behavioral problems after a few short months of “treatment” with medications so my doctor sent me to a psychiatrist. That was another huge mistake, one that cannot be exaggerated enough. The shrink added more drugs on top of what I was already taking, completely ignoring the drug interaction warnings and completely neglecting to inform me of what to watch out for. The more he drugged me the worse I became. My emotions, my behavior, my life spiraled out of control and I was at the point of suicide to end the horror of what my life had become.

Five major drug interaction warnings for serotonin syndrome. Seven for seizures and blackouts and he said nothing to me. Neither did any other doctor I was seeing nor any of my pharmacists. No one said a word about it until I specifically asked my family doctor when I went to see him out of desperation and as a last stop before ending my struggle the only way I could think of ending it.

I asked my PCP if he saw a problem with my medications because I was not getting better but getting worse and I was at the end of my rope. When he saw the list he panicked, literally panicked.

“Who prescribed this? You can’t take all of these drugs together. This is lethal! You have to stop. Serotonin syndrome. You have to stop now!” All of my doctors saw my medication list each time I visited them. That is what we are told to do, bring your medication list to every doctor appointment.  He was the first to say anything about my medications and I suspect it is only because I specifically asked him about it.

So I did. I stopped five of the medications cold turkey that day, five that he checked off on the list of more than ten prescriptions. That was the beginning of my recovery. A long and painful recovery that is still in progress.

Three Years Later

The pain was not fibromyalgia, it was autoimmune arthritis. It has a long scary name but basically, it is a form of rheumatoid arthritis that is serum negative for rheumatism. Undifferentiated Spondyloarthropathy or USpA. It is not uncommon, just not well recognized at the time and often misdiagnosed or undiagnosed as in my case. Because it was undiagnosed for 30 plus years it really made a wreck of my spine and shoulders. Three multi-level spinal fusions repaired the worst of the damage but there remains a great deal of structural damage and a good deal of daily pain.

The wreckage left by the disease is much easier to bare than is the wreckage left by the “treatment” by the western medicine model that uses pharmaceuticals and the damage they cause to lives and relationships and reputations.

What Is Left Over?

My marriage did not survive the ordeal and now I am no longer in touch with two of my three children due to the events related to my “treatment”. There is no doubt these events are related, in fact directly caused by my “treatment”. These events, behaviors, are spelled out in black and white in the FDA and in the drug company self-administered test research data and warnings. Spelled out clearly and precisely and then often followed by the phrase, "these side effects are mild and rare". Be advised, that phrase is well crafted to intentionally disarm the natural human self-preservation instinct we all have. The instinct to pay attention, to be alert to a possible danger and to act when we experience the afore-described phenomena. The phrase is very effective. Even effective on the professionals who prescribe and distribute those drugs because most of them do not consider the side effects important enough to mention to the patient. After all, the findings come from those who are educated and in authority so it must be true.

A side note; “Side effect” is a term created by drug manufacturers. Drugs do not have side effects. There is no such thing as a side effect. Drugs have effects. If one has a reaction as a consequence of taking a drug it is an effect of the drug. Calling it a side effect is intended to make you think it is unintentional, inconsequential and therefore not important. It really didn’t happen or really does not matter because that was not the reason you took the medication. The term is an intentional disarming tool created and skillfully used by drug companies.

Another phrase often used by drug companies is, “your doctor has determined the benefits outweigh the risks of using this medicine.” Did your doctor actually say that?  Does your doctor actually know that is true, is it a fact or at least a realistic expectation?

Interestingly the doctors are just as susceptible as we are to the power of suggestion of these phrases. The truth is our doctor often does not know what the risks are. They have not bothered to research the risks, instead relying on what the drug company sales representative verbally told them in the office sales pitch about the drugs.  Sadly, that is as far as most doctors go with research on the tools they use to treat you with.

What Is Left Of My Life Now I Am Alone?

I have a few friends and a few family members who understand and support me. I now have a criminal record as an abuser. Something completely opposite of my true character. That is what the drugs are capable of doing. They can and do change a person to someone they are not.

Take a person who is ill, injured and in pain, put them on mind-altering chemicals that cause serotonin syndrome, akathisia, and disinhibition and see what you get. You get a person stuck in the fight or flight mode. A person who is in survival mindset and who has lost control over how they act regardless of what they know to be right and wrong. Contrary to the belief of many, even professional councilors, it is possible to cause a person to lose the ability to choose how to act 100% of the time and choose how to behave at all times. If you think that is not true try it yourself. It is entirely possible and even very likely that if you alter a persons brain chemistry that person will lose the ability to choose how to behave. They may be able to choose most of the time but not all of the time.

So today I carry around a criminal record as an abuser even though my true identity is nothing like that. My life up until this point had a nearly spotless record save a few traffic tickets, most of which originated in my youth. I was an upstanding, law-abiding citizen, so much so that I had a license to carry a handgun concealed on my person if I chose to do so.

Now during the period of "treatment" in the form of drugging with as many as 12-14 psychoactive pharmaceuticals at a time, all legally prescribed and taken as directed, I was a menace to society. Not so much to society really but more to myself and to the people I loved the most and who bore the brunt of my drug-induced and akathisia driven behavior. Chemically altered, I was not myself and I was helpless to do anything about it.

Seeking Justice

Now having some time to somewhat recover from the drugging and from the emotional turmoil, I wanted to do something to help myself and other individuals and their families, possibly saving them from a similar fate or worse than the one I had to endure. At first, I had anger toward the doctors whose negligence caused my and my families suffering. I went after a way to try to recoup some of the monetary loss caused by their mistakes and at the same time hopefully dissuade the doctors and pharmacists from being so careless in the future. I contacted some 20 law firms, presented my evidence to them and asked if they were interested in representing me in a lawsuit. All of them said I had a strong case, most of them said I had an 80-90% chance of winning. However, they said, because of Tort Reform in Texas limiting the maximum award amount to $250,000, it would not be profitable enough for them to pursue a lawsuit. They said it costs about $100,000 to prosecute a medical negligence case and that there would not be enough money left over to make it worth their while to take the case. It's not that I couldn't win, just that they could make more money on other types of cases.

OK, I thought, I'll go to the Texas Medical Board first and try to obtain a ruling or sanction against the psychiatrist first, then threaten a lawsuit and force him to settle without a trial. Surely that would work in my favor. Wrong again. I filed a complaint and waited for an answer. After two months waiting, I received a letter with a two-sentence denial stating there was not enough evidence to show the 'good doctor' was negligent in his treatment. I was really surprised because I was very careful and methodical in putting together all the evidence. I had my medical records from him and all my doctors including his notes from each appointment, pharmacy records, testimony from my wife who attended most of my appointments, everything I needed to show that he prescribed multiple medications that I should never have been taking simultaneously. Records showing cold stops and starts with multiple psych drugs simultaneously, multiple drug interaction warnings, no instructions about side effects to watch for, reporting from my wife and I about my condition involving anger and aggression. It was all there in black and white.

Stunned, I filed an appeal, went to Austin for the hearing and testified with all of my evidence which was very clear and sufficient to show negligence.

I was stunned again with a ruling that there was not enough "clear evidence" showing negligence. I could not even get validation that anything wrong was done. I could not get the powers that be to acknowledge I had been treated incorrectly. I could get no validation that the doctors and pharmacists had done anything wrong. The evidence was there. It was clear and condemning, even in the doctor's handwritten notes.

You see, the Medical Board is made up of doctors and healthcare providers and they protect their own. They too may one day need the protection of their peers so they are not about to stain the water by punishing one of their own.


So here I sit today. My life completely uprooted, burnt and in ashes from the firestorm of "treatment" I received because I did what I was supposed to do. Go to your doctor and follow his/her instructions. And there is nothing I can do about it. I cannot even get validation that anything was done incorrectly. What irks me even further is that these healthcare professionals were paid well to practice medicine in this way. They were compensated well, praised for their work, respected by the community and their peers while all the while making me out to be the bad guy, the one who was sick. I trusted them and paid them to destroy my life.

The justice system is just as bad. They believe what they are told by professionals in the medicine and healthcare system. Furthermore, they feel compelled to dish out justice when something wrong is done but they suffer from a systemic flaw that does not allow them to find the real culprit. The pressure is on them to do something and they automatically take the easy and most obvious route at dishing out punishment directed at the most obvious offense, even though the offender may not be the one truly at fault. The offender may be a victim as well. But, it is easy, safe and more economical to focus on the most glaring, the most currently popular and trending knee-jerk, emotion-triggering act. Physical abuse. They go home with a win in their pocket and a sense of accomplishment without being questioned by anyone and without ever having to ask the difficult question. Why? What caused this? Who is responsible for this? What contributed to this?

For this, they are compensated and praised by everyone. That praise cements their conviction that they were right, that they did the right thing. Besides, even if they did know or even suspect that the prescriptions were the cause they face a huge uphill battle against wealthy pharmaceutical companies who hire expert lawyers. Lawyers who know how to obfuscate and twist the truth so there is doubt enough to absolve them of guilt. A win would be hard to get and a loss would not look good on a prosecutors record.  That record of wins is how they are graded and compensated so getting at the truth is not their first priority, winning is. That is a systemic flaw preventing true justice being done.

I am left wondering how many times this has happened to unsuspecting people. People who still probably do not know what went wrong. People who are left thinking they are at fault when in fact the fault squarely rests on the healthcare providers and the pharmaceutical companies who peddle this poison and intentionally mislead doctors and the public about what the drugs actually do. It is 10 months since my trip to Austin and the humiliating experience of being blamed again for what was clearly not my fault. I am just now beginning to feel like I can pick myself up and try to salvage a life from this mess. Just now groping to find the will to get up every day and find a positive attitude so I can move forward.  I'm still not sure what I want to do or even what I am capable of accomplishing. I want to continue to try to make a difference, if for no other reason than to possibly help prevent some other persons and families from having to suffer this kind of hell. Just not sure what to do at this point. Somehow I have to find a way to support myself since my wife divorced me and took away the last bit of security I had in this world. After supporting myself I will have to dig up the energy and will to continue trying to make a difference. That is hard to do because I have been having to swallow the bitter pill of defeat each time I made an effort to do something.

Lessons To Be Learned

One invaluable lesson I have learned is to trust no one and no institution until they earn that trust. Not healthcare, not the justice system, not the Medical Boards or any other consumer safety organization and certainly not any business institution such as pharmaceuticals who have a profit margin at stake. If I sound jaded or angry it is because I am. I am with good cause to be angry, not just because of what happened to me but because this continues to happen every day to other good people who often never learn the truth. My Dad was one of those good persons. He died thinking he was sick, but that is another story to tell. A life completely destroyed by negligent treatment by healthcare as it is today.

Lives are being destroyed for the sake of profit and the guilty go unpunished.

Rory Tennes

Saturday, November 18, 2017

Malcolm Young (AC/DC)

It is with a heavy heart that I write this.

AC/DC, particularly, Malcolm Young, have been so inspirational for me throughout my life.

I remember being a spotty 14-year-old kid at a local disco. For weeks I listened to Anita Ward, "Ring My Bell", Olivia Newton-John, the Bee Gees, and other disco-type songs that just didn't cut the mustard for me.

I was waiting for something that I could tap my foot to. The DJ then spun a disc. 'Na-na-na-na-na-na-na.' I didn't have to wait to hear the lyrics, the intro was enough. "A Whole Lotta Rosie", off the album, "Let There Be Rock" reeled me in, so much so that I joined a small circle of dandruff-shakers in the middle of the dancefloor.

The rest, as they say, is history.

I went home and listened to the album that, unbeknownst to me, had been purchased by my elder sister.

It was 1978 and AC/DC had been kicking ass for a number of years. Armed with pocket money that I saved I headed toward Birmingham city centre some weeks later and purchased 'Powerage', an AC/DC classic that, to me at least, has never been any band.

Nothing but AC/DC for me.

My first live experience was 1979. AC/DC played Stafford Bingley Hall. I was down the front, I even got the thumbs up from Bon. Months later they played the Birmingham Odeon, a gig where they brought on strippers for the song, "The Jack."

I saw them religiously every time they toured and have been lucky enough to appear as an extra in two of their videos (Are You Ready and Rock Or Bust)

Malcolm was the nuts and bolts of AC/DC. I've always said, Malcolm is one of the best guitarists in the world, I've even put his guitar abilities ahead of Angus.

Yeh, in those early days I always watched Angus on stage but later I always turned my attention to Malcolm. Standing at the back, to the left as I looked at them. Occasionally moving forward for harmonies and backing vocals...then returning to his spot for more foot-stomping riffs.

He'd been ill for some time. Dementia had caught up with him along with other illnesses that the band and family kept 'in-house'.

Inevitability doesn't make life any easier and although Malcolm and I never met in person, today's news is still hard to accept. His riffs put a fire in my belly and helped me many times during my darkest hours of battling through Seroxat addiction.

He was the riff master, he always will be.

Rest in peace, you fucking legend!

Bob Fiddaman

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Business as Usual Means Bad News for Consumers

As an advocate for drug safety, I sometimes feel as if I'm pissing in the wind. Today is one of those times. (For American readers, the Cambridge Dictionary describes pissing in the wind as "trying to do something when there is no hope of succeeding.")

This week President Trump nominated Alex Azar as the next Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). Azar is former senior vice president of corporate affairs and communication for US pharmaceutical giant Eli Lilly. This US announcement comes on the heels of similar incestuous behavior by the UK government which recently announced Andrew Witty, former head of GlaxoSmithKline, has been selected to head its new pathway, 'Accelerated Access Review' (AAR). Days later, GSK's website highlighted another kick in the teeth for British drug consumers: Patrick Vallance, who is currently GSK's president of research and development, will become the UK government's new Chief Scientific Adviser.

What a sick few weeks for health consumers. Three top executives from Big Pharma land positions that are supposed to better protect health consumers by ensuring scientific information is accurate, and drugs are safe and effective. These three appointments should prompt Britain and US residents to take notice and be on full DEFCON alert. I'm certain families across the globe who have lost loved ones to Prozac and Paxil won't be jumping for joy at this week's announcements, and I imagine their dead relatives are turning in their graves.

Lilly & GSK are two companies that have frequently been sued by consumers who were harmed by their dangerous products. Further, both companies have engaged in abhorrent and illegal tactics to peddle their pills. Some of these unscrupulous behaviors include paying doctors to prescribe, bribing government officials, and fraudulently marketing drugs for unapproved uses. But apparently, this type of leadership is rewarded by governments that prefer corporate collusion to consumer care.

GSK and Lilly have paid billions in fines and lawsuits because their illegal activities caused the suffering and deaths of countless innocent men, women, and children. In 2009, Lilly was fined $1.42 billion to resolve a government investigation regarding off-label promotion of the antipsychotic Zyprexa. Zyprexa had been approved for the treatment of certain psychotic disorders, but Lilly admitted to promoting the drug in elderly populations to treat dementia. The government also alleged that Lilly targeted primary care physicians to promote Zyprexa for unapproved uses and “trained its sales force to disregard the law."

Similarly, in 2012, GSK agreed to pay a fine of $3 billion to resolve civil and criminal liabilities regarding its promotion of drugs and its failure to report safety data. This is the largest healthcare fraud settlement in the United States to date. The company pled guilty to misbranding the drug Paxil for treating depression in patients under 18, even though the drug was not approved for children. GSK also pled guilty to failing to disclose safety information to the FDA about the diabetes drug Avandia. These pharmaceutical companies don't mind paying a couple of billion dollars here and there for criminal violations because shady criminal behavior reaps more sales profits than does subsequent fines. This unethical behavior is just part of pharma's business plan.

Back to Those Incestuous Appointments

Alex Azar has had previous connections to the US government. He was deputy secretary of Health and Human Services under George W. Bush and served as the chief operating officer for two years. In that role, Azar oversaw such agencies as the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the National Institutes of Health, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. In May 2007, Azar became senior vice president of corporate affairs and communication for Lilly. This revolving door employment agency is standard US practice. Corporate execs leave the industry for cushy jobs in government, then they leave government for industry and lobbying jobs, etc.

This incestuous fox guarding the hen house is commonplace and will continue to put consumers at great risk. It was US President George W. Bush who named Eli Lilly President and CEO, Sidney Taurel, as a Homeland Security Advisory Council member in 2002. Further, soon after the Homeland Security Act was signed in 2002, New York Times columnist Bob Herbert discovered what had been slipped into the Act at the last minute. On November 25, 2002, he wrote, “Buried in this massive bill, snuck into it in the dark of night by persons unknown…was a provision that incredibly will protect Eli Lilly and a few other big pharmaceutical outfits from lawsuits by parents who believe their children were harmed by thimerosal.” (Thimerosal is a mercury-based preservative that is used in vaccines. It was developed by Lilly in the 1920s and by the 1990s its use was widespread)

In 2003, Bush appointed Taurel to the President’s Export Council. The same year, “60 Minutes II” aired a segment on Lillygate and Prozac. Lilly's patent for Prozac had run out so they began marketing a new drug, Prozac Weekly. According to 60 Minutes II, Lilly sales reps gained access to “confidential” patient information records and mailed out free samples of Prozac Weekly. Regulations, proposed under Bill Clinton and later implemented under George Bush, contained a provision that allowed healthcare providers the right to sell a person’s confidential medical information to marketing firms and drug companies.

Bush was later rewarded for his job placements and overseeing provisions when he left the White House. He went straight to Eli Lilly headquarters where he served as an Eli Lilly Board of Director.

You scratch my back, I'll scratch yours, huh?

Assuming he's confirmed, Azar will oversee 11 agencies including the FDA, Center for Disease Control (CDC), National Institutes of Health (NIH), Administration for Children and Families (ACF) and Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS).

When Patrick Vallance of GSK takes over the role of UK Government Chief Scientific Adviser, he will oversee science and technology-related activities and recommend policies to the Prime Minister and  Cabinet. He will also sit as chair of the UK’s Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies.

Witty's new title is self-explanatory. He will head a new UK government initiative known as 'Accelerated Access Review' (AAR) where his role is to get new drugs and devices on the market quickly.

If you want to know more about how Lilly operates, I highly recommend John Cornwell's book, "The Power to Harm: Mind, Medicine, and Murder on Trial." It's a jaw-dropping insight regarding how far Lilly went to cover up the deadly ADRs caused by their lucrative drug, Prozac. If you want to know how GSK operate, well, there are more than 2,000 posts about GSK's shenanigans on my blog alone.

Unreported Terror & Risk

These appointments are scary and put citizens at greater risk of being harmed by unsafe, ineffective drugs, many of which should never have been approved. In both the UK and the US, we see frequent media reports about terrorist threats and acts, but we almost never hear news about pharma created deaths. When was the last time you heard a news report or read an article highlighting that prescription drugs are the fourth leading cause of death? In America, I chalk this up to the lucrative drug advertisements that essentially pay for TV news production. In the UK we don't have drug ads, but we still have pharma money negatively influencing government policy and political appointments.

Hiring CEO's of criminal corporations to protect citizens is wrong. But these types of crimes pay. If you don't like the status quo, you can petition your respective government and share your disgust. I'm sure they'll be happy to send you a form letter response within 30 days...

So, back to pissing in the wind: It's understandable I'm disgusted by this week's news. It's easy to throw up my hands when hearing such outrageous appointments. But sometimes those who've lost a loved one to pharma help me persevere. As one mom whose child died from pharma products recently said, "To the world, my child was just one person, but to me, she was the world. If my advocacy saves even one child, I have saved someone else's world."

In other news involving incestuous revolving doors, the FDA has now approved a new "digital pill." The pill contains a sensor that digitally tracks whether or not patients have ingested their medication. And what pill has this sensor been embedded into? ~ aripiprazole, (Abilify) a drug used to treat multiple mental mood disorders, including bipolar disorder and schizophrenia.

On top of this, the commissioner of the FDA, Scott Gottlieb, is opposing a natural plant, Kratom, (mitragyna speciosa) that could help people effectively treat an addiction caused by opioids.

More on the aripiprazole and kratom scandals next week.

Bob Fiddaman

Tuesday, November 07, 2017

Shoddy Journalism Puts Lives At Risk!

TV evangelist, Pat Robertson, has entered the David vs. Goliath arena with his comments regarding Sunday's mass killing by 26-year-old, Devin Patrick Kelley. Kelley, who shot and killed 26 people and left more than 20 wounded at a Southern Baptist Church in Texas, had received mental health "treatment" which undoubtedly involved doctor's prescriptions. Robertson, via Media Matters For America, told viewers, "We understand a lot of these shootings, the people involved, have been taking antidepressant drugs and that may well be the cause of these factors. But something is definitely going on."

Robertson added, "I hope and pray that they don't politicize this thing and start talking about gun control and all that because it won't be necessary, but I do think there's got to be a thorough investigation into the effects of antidepressants on these sorts of events. So many of these mass killings, and almost every one, as I said before, has had some nexus to antidepressants, so we need to see what we're giving people."

Robertson's plea for an investigation prompted an opinion piece on the Newsweek website by self-proclaimed science writer, Kate Sheridan, who states Robertson's assertion is incorrect.

Sheridan, who appears to have no medical background regarding antidepressants, backs her claims touting a study published in 2012 that examined 14 years of data from the Netherlands and supposedly found a significant negative association between violence and antidepressant use.

What Sheridan failed to point out was the limitations of the quoted study, further, the study was based on assumptions and not, as she incorrectly stated, science.

The study's authors summarized:
Detailed information on individuals who committed a form of lethal violence was not available. Future research should attempt to overcome this difficulty by obtaining additional information on autopsy reports from suicide decedents, an approach used in previous studies (Barber et al. 2008). In addition, detailed data per type of antidepressant per age and gender category were only available for the period 2002–2008. By applying average fractions of users per antidepressants, we were able to calculate the total number of users by gender and age group for the period 1996–2001. This approach, however, is based on the assumption that the fraction of users per antidepressants remains fairly stable over time. This assumption might have caused a wrongful estimation of actual use per age and gender category.
In an attempt to further support to her position, Sheridan quotes Antonio E. Puente, president of the American Psychological Association, who claims, "A complex combination of risk factors, including a history of domestic violence, violent misdemeanor crimes and substance use disorders, increases the likelihood of people using a firearm against themselves or others. Calling this shooting a ‘mental health problem’ distracts our nation’s leaders from developing policies and legislation that would focus on preventing gun violence through a scientific, public health approach."

Why she added this quote to her opinion piece slightly baffles me as Puente makes no mention of antidepressants. Puente was actually responding to a tweet by President Trump who labeled the Texas shooting as a "mental health" problem.

What's striking is that the American Psychological Association have, by their own admission, received money from pharmaceutical companies, the manufacturers of the drugs Sheridan seems to defend.

If Sheridan cared one iota about science, she could have reported that more than 27 global drug regulatory warnings on psychiatric drugs cite ADRs to include mania, hostility, violence and--wait for it--even homicidal ideation! (1) Add to this the warnings the FDA are hiding from the public regarding prescription-drug induced homicides (2) and you can understand why even TV evangelists are now voicing concern from their pulpits. If religious organizations are truly concerned with protecting human life, more ministers should be shouting from the mountaintop "We demand a thorough investigation!"

Perhaps Sheridan's blinkered views on antidepressant-induced homicide may be better served if she were to review the hundreds of documents obtained by Andrew Thibault via the Freedom of Information Act. These documents can easily be accessed on the website should Sheridan have showed such interest.

The public doesn't yet know whether Texas shooter Devin Patrick Kelley was on or withdrawing from psychiatric medications. In other mass killings, information surrounding prescription drugs as "treatment" has frequently been withheld from the public. What is known, however, is that a high percentage of mass shootings are carried out by health care consumers who are on, or withdrawing from, psychiatrist-prescribed pills. Here are just a few:

 - South Carolina church shooter, Dylann Storm Roof, was on the benzodiazepine anti-anxiety drug Xanax.

- Santa Barbara college shooter, Elliot Rodger, was on Xanax.

- Aurora Colorado theater shooter, James Holmes, was taking the SSRI antidepressant Zoloft.

- Germanwings Airlines co-pilot Andreas Lubitz,  who intentionally crashed his plane and killed 144 passengers, had been on Lorazepam, an anti-anxiety drug, as well as an unnamed antidepressant.

Geert Michiels was on or withdrawing from Paxil when he purposely drove his coach into a brick wall killing 28 passengers, 22 of whom were children.

The list is endless and will continue to grow as long as shoddy journalism such as Sheridan's continues.

Sheridan is, in essence, telling consumers and healthcare professionals to ignore the 27 global drug regulatory warnings regarding psychiatric drugs. By neglecting to report the 1,531 known cases of drug-induced homicidal ideation, she keeps her readers--and the general public--in the dark. Sheridan's article puts many lives at risk. But her dangerous and intentional ommissions help sell papers, keep pharma advertisers happy and retain her "scientific" sources for future quotes. 

Bob Fiddaman

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Karma Catches up with Dr. Graham Emslie

Disgraced Psychiatrist, Dr. Graham Emslie

It's no secret several unethical doctors pretended to write the Paxil 329 Study. Adding their names to the shady ghostwritten article was sequentially responsible for persuading doctors to prescribe Paxil off-label to children and adolescents despite that the drug is dangerous and ineffective.

One of these despicable 'experts' was Dr. Graham Emslie (67), a psychiatrist based in Dallas, Texas. Emslie received research support and consultant money from several drug companies, including GlaxoSmithKline, the company for whom he agreed to add his name to the ghostwritten 329 Study. Emslie's dishonesty participation in the 329 Study put children at risk of harm and death despite that Emslie claims his clinical expertise is in child and adolescent depression.

In 2009, Emslie was investigated by the US Senate Finance Committee, led by Senator Chuck Grassley, as one of many medical academics with serious conflicts of interest and financial ties to Big Pharma. The Senate committee was concerned these conflicts resulted in fraudulent research that promoted prescriptions of harmful and ineffective drugs to unsuspecting consumers and without adequate safety warnings. (Source)

Today Karma Catches up with Emslie

Recently Emslie has been reprimanded by the Texas Medical Board after it learned one of Emslie's patients, an unnamed male, died by suicide whilst under the "care" of Emslie. The doctor demonstrated a lack of due care in several areas. Emslie's punishment was far lighter than he should have received for likely contributing to the suffering and death of his patient, but at least the Texas Medical Board took some action regarding Emslie's careless remote prescribing.

On the 25th August 2017, the Texas Medical Board heard evidence surrounding Emslie's conduct and charged Emslie with breaching the medical standard of care. It was learned Emslie prescribed stimulant and sedative medications to the patient for several years without appropriate evaluation, monitoring, and medical record-keeping. The patient went on to kill himself. Emslie claimed he knew the patient who was the brother of an acquaintance of Emslie's daughter.

When asked for the 17-year medical records of the now-dead patient, Emslie told the Texas Medical Board the records could not be produced. Emslie claims he only kept "scant" records scribbled on a notepad. The board was also told that Emslie regularly prescribed benzodiazepines and amphetamines over the telephone without physically examining his patient. (remote prescribing)

Further, Emslie also assisted the patient in "pharmacy shopping" to ensure drug refills could easily be obtained at various pharmacies. Despite that the patient's history included a "drinking problem," Emslie did not refer his patient to an addiction specialist for alcohol dependence nor does it appear Emslie adequately informed the patient regarding the possible ADRs associated with Emslie's prescriptions and alcohol consumption.

Despite all of the above conduct, Emslie does not think he erred in the care of his patient.

The Texas Medical Board imposed a range of disciplinary actions against Emslie, none of which, in my opinion, fit Emslie's crime.

Emslie received a "public reprimand" (whoopy-doo) and 8 consecutive monitoring cycles of his clinical practice. The board also imposed 24-hours of  "continuing medical education" for Emslie. Emslie was ordered to pay costs to the Texas Medical Board. However, no costs for the funeral of his deceased patient were imposed.

The agreed order, signed by the disgraced Emslie, can be obtained by contacting me via email.

Special thanks to Jan Eastgate of the Citizens Commission on Human Rights for alerting me to Emslie's latest scandal.

Bob Fiddaman

Friday, September 29, 2017

Dolin Vs GSK: Personal Vendetta or Bigger Picture?

Andrew Bayman - King & Spalding
Source: Google Images

Jury finds for plaintiff.
Defence appeals and asks for new trial.
Judge rejects defense motion for new trial.
The defense now rejects the decision of Judge.

The never-ending saga between the multi-billion dollar pharmaceutical corporation, GlaxoSmithKline, and grieving Chicago widow, Wendy Dolin, has taken yet another twist, one that was anticipated yet it shines a deplorable light on Glaxo and their hired attorneys from Atlanta, King & Spalding.

After losing their case against Dolin (Back story) Glaxo filed motions for a new trial citing amongst many things, that the judge, who led the trial, didn't allow them witnesses, didn't allow evidence to be brought in, didn't instruct the jury correctly. Further, they claimed that Dolin's expert witnesses were wrong and, unbelievably, the jury was too.

Being present at trial I witnessed Glaxo's attorneys, King & Spalding out of Atlanta, GA. They set their stall out early on by blaming everyone but the company they were representing. Stewart Dolin's Dr, Stewart Dolin's state of mind, another pharmaceutical company (Mylan), and the FDA. The laborious, and often quite funny, cross-examination of plaintiff witnesses by King & Spalding's "deadly duo", Andrew Bayman and Todd Davis was, for want of a better word, embarrassing.

Bayman, at times, looked like he was going to blow a gasket whilst the sleek, nae smarmy, Davis all too often blundered - his southern twang often sending the majority of jurors into a comatose state.

So, now, it appears once again that Glaxo doesn't wish to play ball with Dolin, or indeed the judge and jury, who awarded Dolin $3 million, to date she has not seen a penny of this.

Glaxo, via King & Spalding, has now posted a supersedeas bond of $3,037,400 to the court which will delay the $3 million owed to Wendy Dolin. (Nice)

To put this in laypersons terms, Glaxo are now rejecting Judge Hart's decision not to grant them a new trial and, by filing new documents and a supersedeas bond of $3,037,400 they are saying it's a matter of law that Judge Hart made the wrong decision in not permitting them a new trial.

The points they are making with the "new" files (now sent to the Court of Appeal) have already been addressed at trial, the jury heard the points, weren't convinced so returned a verdict against them.

King & Spalding, in particular, Andy Bayman, simply won't accept anything that doesn't fit into their belief system.

Imagine, if you will, the following scenario:

Bayman is like the kid in a classroom of 40 or so pupils who is told the answer to a question was successfully answered by 39 pupils, only one pupil got the answer wrong (him) - but he's having none of it and he's being urged to stand his ground by his parents, even though his parents know he is wrong too. The parents, in this case, being GSK and other pharmaceutical companies counsel.

I say other pharmaceutical companies counsel because the verdict has serious ramifications for other pharmaceutical companies whose patents have expired on their brands of antidepressants too.

King & Spalding are not just representing Glaxo, they are, in essence, representing other major pharmaceutical companies who were all waiting anxiously in the wings for a verdict of no liability in the Dolin case. Either that or Andrew Bayman has some sort of vendetta against Wendy Dolin? It's not often that one woman can take on the might of a pharmaceutical company and beat them. Maybe this is (excuse the pun) too much of a bitter pill to swallow for Bayman and he's taking it all very personally? Maybe he cannot accept that he had his chance and blew it - embarrassing himself in the process and, of course, letting down all of the other interested parties who were probably told the verdict would be favorable.

I find it difficult to accept that Bayman would take things personally. As much as I despise the pre-trial antics of King & Spalding (See here) I can't think for one minute why Bayman would have such a bee in his bonnet, other than the fact that he has let down the whole of the industry by failing to win a case that, presumably, he thought was a slam dunk!

When the verdict came back it opened the floodgates for other possible litigation against the bigger pharmaceutical companies and that, ladies and gentleman, is, more than likely, the real reason why Glaxo have chosen to pay $37,000 over the initial award of $3 million to try and hammer Stewart Dolin's widow into the ground.

Wendy Dolin, via her acclaimed team of Baum, Hedlund, Aristei & Goldman and Rapoport Law Offices, continue to show dignity - There's no shouting from the rooftops, "Give us what you owe us", nor, indeed, any form of gloating that they were successful at trial.

Glaxo now wants to hit the big stage, the 7th Circuit Court, where, once again, the spotlight will be thrown on a condition known as akathisia, a condition that can be induced in some people who take brand named antidepressants and, indeed, generic versions of the said brands.

Glaxo played down this condition during its clinical trials of Paxil, they played down the condition after the clinical trials and they continued to play down the condition during the Dolin trial.

What King & Spalding fail to see is the attention they are drawing to the condition that, for many, is an unknown word. To have the whole subject of akathisia played out on a big stage is a dream come true for advocates such as myself and, I'm sure the same can be said for Wendy Dolin and others left to mourn the loss of their dead children, husbands, and wives.

The Dolin trial was originally played out in Chicago, it drew local media attention once the verdict came through. I'm salivating at the prospect of the media attention akathisia will get once Glaxo takes it to the 7th Circuit Court.

This is one instance where I believe Glaxo, probably through bad legal advice, have shot themselves in the foot.


Bob Fiddaman

Back Stories

Coverage of the Dolin Trial

Dolin v GSK - Opening Arguments

Dolin Vs GSK - Day Two - "Jack-In-The-Box"

Dolin vs GSK - Healy 'Rocks Da House'

Dolin Vs GSK - JP Garnier Video Deposition

Dolin Vs GSK - The Dunbar Tape

Dolin Vs GSK - Day 4 - Slam Dunk

Dolin Vs GSK - 8.9 Suicide Increase For Adult Paxil Users

Dolin Vs GSK - Day 6 - Ass Kicking Semantics

Dolin Vs GSK - Day 7 - Abraham Lincoln

Dolin Vs GSK - Day 8 - Get to the Point, Todd!

Dolin Vs GSK - Glenmullen Nails It!

Dolin Vs GSK - "Babes"

Dolin Vs GSK - Wendy's Cross and GSK's Petition

Dolin Vs GSK - Robert "Bling Bling" Gibbons

Dolin Vs GSK: Suicide Prevention Warning "Futile", Claims GSK Exec

Dolin Vs GSK : Jury shown List of the Dead in Paxil Clinical Trials

Dolin Vs GSK: Last Man Standing & The Return of Dr. Healy

Dolin Vs GSK: Closing Arguments

Dolin Vs GSK - The Verdict

Exclusive: Interview With Wendy Dolin

From Chicago to New York - The Legacy of Stewart Dolin

Dolin Wins...Again

Friday, September 15, 2017

Dolin Wins...Again

GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) has been delivered a devastating blow by Judge William T. Hart in their efforts for a new trial against Plaintiff Wendy Dolin who, earlier this year, won her case against GSK after a jury found that GSK had not properly added adult suicide risk warnings to the label of paroxetine, the controversial antidepressant popularly known by its brand names of Paxil, Aropax and Seroxat.

Hart pulled no punches after GSK tried desperately in vain to blame his decisions during the trial, a trial in which they blamed everyone but Paxil for the death of Stewart Dolin.

GSK wasn't happy with the verdict decision by the jury so immediately filed motions for a new trial claiming, amongst many things, that...
 - The jury wasn't reasonable enough because they didn't return a verdict in favour of GSK.
 - Stewart Dolin's Dr should have told Stewart about the Paxil suicide risk in adults, even though GSK never made this clear on the labeling
 - It wasn't their responsibility to change the label, it was the FDA's
 - Stewart killed himself because of an underlying illness, in any event, he took a generic version of their drug and even though they (GSK) were responsible for the label of that generic drug doesn't mean they should be held liable
 - Dolin's expert witness testimony wasn't reliable
 - There is no causal link between Paxil and suicide
 - The judge never instructed the jury properly
So, every possible excuse under the sun then. In not accepting defeat graciously GSK, via their hired suits of King & Spalding have made themselves look like spoiled little brats, and we all know how to treat spoiled little brats, right?

Well, Judge Hart does. He looked at their limp-wristed motions and answered them in stylish fashion. Pay particular attention to his stance of whether or not Paxil can cause suicide.

Regarding Stewart's doctor failing to warn about the adult risk of suicide in adults taking Paxil, Judge Hart ruled that Stewart's Dr was not aware of the suicide risk, further, the Paxil label did not adequately warn of an increased risk of suicide for adults taking Paxil.

He told them they did not provide the court, or indeed the jury, with evidence that the FDA would never have allowed such a warning on the label, adding that because Stewart took the generic form of Paxil does not mean that GSK cannot be held liable.

He disagreed with their claim that Dolin's expert witnesses were unreliable by merely counteracting it with "they were reliable."

He went on to tell GSK that there were no errors in instructing the jury.

Most damning of all was the following...
"There is a causal link between Mr. Dolin’s ingestion of paroxetine, his side effects, and consequent suicide."
For years pharmaceutical companies and global medicine regulators have claimed that correlation does not equal causation - However, unlike Stewart Dolin's widow, Wendy, and her legal team of  Baum Hedlund Aristei & Goldman PC, and David Rapoport and Matthew Sims of Rapoport Law Offices PC., regulators never investigate the suicides so they can always claim that correlation does not equal causation - if they actually went out and spoke to doctors and the grieving family members, they may learn a thing or two.

So, what happens now? Will GSK walk away licking their wounds and cough up the $3 million awarded to Wendy Dolin back in April, or will they retain the services of King & Spalding once again to take this matter to the Supreme Court? King & Spalding had nigh on 6 weeks to cross-examine, they did so with inane questions that were more designed to try and catch witnesses lying rather than strike home the point that Paxil does not cause some adults to kill themselves. They failed on a humungous scale and they may, if given the go-ahead from GSK, try their embarrassing tactics on a bigger stage, that of the Supreme Court. At what point does GSK or, indeed, King & Spalding not realise that the whole of the industry is in a complete state of apoplexy watching their comedic performance? Seriously, Messrs Bayman and Davis, along with the bald-headed guy who filed his fingernails at the King & Spalding table in court, should be up for Best Comedy Performance by a legal team in 2017. That's one presentation I would attend, if only to give them a much-deserved standing ovation as they went to collect their award.

If I were GSK I'd take a long, hard look at those they hire to defend cases for them. In this instance, King & Spalding, the legal outfit from Atlanta have not only embarrassed themselves, they have embarrassed GSK too. (If that's possible) They have all the traits of narcissism, believing that they are all-empowering. GSK's grandiose sense of self-importance obviously rubbed off on the King & Spalding team when they opposed the judge in this case. Their sense of entitlement is all too plain to see, as is their lack of empathy and unwillingness to recognize or identify with the feelings and needs of others. Finally, their arrogance is staggering - The jury was wrong, Dolin's experts were wrong. the judge was wrong.

It will be very interesting to see how this will now unfold. Will GSK take a look at King & Spalding and think, 'well, that was another bag of money wasted at our stakeholder's expense', or will they continue to argue that black is really white and everybody else is wrong? King & Spalding didn't just fail GSK by losing this case and the chance for a new trial, they failed every other single pharmaceutical company waiting anxiously in the wings to see if they could themselves be held liable in potential future litigation.

As a blogger writing and researching GSK for the past 11 years it gives me great pleasure to write about them and all their failings, their dystopia is my utopia.

Here's another ditty to them.

Sing to the tune of Hot Chocolate's 'So You Win Again' (Lyrics beneath video)

"Dolin Wins Again"

Just to admit one mistake
That can be hard to take
I know you've made them all
Like fools, you come back for more
Being the fool you are
I figured in all your plans, Glaxo
Your endless motions didn't say
About the Paxil deaths, you hid away.

Dolin wins again, she wins again
Here you stand again, the loser
And just for fun you took Stew's life and run,
And now you've been outdone

You can't refute her
But now you know that you're the fool
Who lost your case, you lost it all
If you come back, you'll lose again
And I am proud to say
The Press will have a field day
Now she's the one who's crying
Because of your denying
When will her heartache end?
Will her whole life depend on fading memories
You took his life so stop now, please

Dolin wins again, she wins again
Here you stand again, the loser
And just for fun you took Stew's life and run,
And now you've been outdone

2017 (C) - Fid Chocolate 
(Original lyrics by Russ Ballard 1977)

Coverage of the Dolin Trial

Dolin v GSK - Opening Arguments

Dolin Vs GSK - Day Two - "Jack-In-The-Box"

Dolin vs GSK - Healy 'Rocks Da House'

Dolin Vs GSK - JP Garnier Video Deposition

Dolin Vs GSK - The Dunbar Tape

Dolin Vs GSK - Day 4 - Slam Dunk

Dolin Vs GSK - 8.9 Suicide Increase For Adult Paxil Users

Dolin Vs GSK - Day 6 - Ass Kicking Semantics

Dolin Vs GSK - Day 7 - Abraham Lincoln

Dolin Vs GSK - Day 8 - Get to the Point, Todd!

Dolin Vs GSK - Glenmullen Nails It!

Dolin Vs GSK - "Babes"

Dolin Vs GSK - Wendy's Cross and GSK's Petition

Dolin Vs GSK - Robert "Bling Bling" Gibbons

Dolin Vs GSK: Suicide Prevention Warning "Futile", Claims GSK Exec

Dolin Vs GSK : Jury shown List of the Dead in Paxil Clinical Trials

Dolin Vs GSK: Last Man Standing & The Return of Dr. Healy

Dolin Vs GSK: Closing Arguments

Dolin Vs GSK - The Verdict

Exclusive: Interview With Wendy Dolin

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

From Chicago to New York - The Legacy of Stewart Dolin

Wendy and Stewart Dolin

Death by Deception

A couple of cracking pieces were published in the New York Times (NYT) 48 hours ago about Paxil and the Dolin vs. GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) trial. The articles covered Paxil-induced akathisia and the flawed logic GSK vainly tried to use to defend its Chicago product liability case. (Paxil is a SSRI that, for many unsuspecting consumers, is neither safe nor effective.) Rabin adeptly highlights Paxil-induced akathisia, a serious condition caused by SSRIs that often precipitates iatrogenic suicide. Paxil's drug label, like most SSRI labels, states akathisia is a "feeling of inner-restlessness" and, well, that's about it. But Rabin rightfully communicates that akathisia is "a state of acute physical and psychological agitation."

I tip my hat to Rabin and her balanced, informative articles as major news outlets rarely cover pharma topics without being influenced by industry funding and shady spokespersons. Many organizations that freely provide "expert" sources for quotes and soundbites take drug money and/or have strong industry ties. These include the Science Media Centre, the MHRA, the FDA, National Alliance for the Mentally Ill (NAMI) and the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP).

In addition, many newspapers fail to require that authors and sources ethically disclose conflicts of interests. We recently saw this when The Guardian published Mark Brown's article, 'Antidepressants work, so why do we shame people for taking them?' but failed to inform readers of any conflicts of interest the author and sources may have to the pharmaceutical industry and "mental health" organizations. When a reader asked The Guardian if it follows any journalistic standards for ethical disclosure, The Guardian responded with censorship, removed the comment from public view and absurdly claimed the reader failed to "abide by our community standards."

Click images to enlarge

Apparently, The Guardian believes the Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ) doesn't have appropriate community standards either. The SPJ code states ethical journalism should "serve the public" and "avoid conflicts of interest, real or perceived." Authors should "disclose unavoidable conflicts."

For all the above reasons, it is refreshing to see Rabin's NYT reporting. Lawsuit Over a Suicide Points to a Risk of Antidepressants.' and 'Suicide Data Incorrectly Reported in Drug Trials', Suit Claimedhave received many comments in the past 48 hours. Some readers share their own experiences with prescription drug-induced akathisia and ignorant doctors. Others refuse to accept that SSRIs can cause unwanted deaths. Many deniers do so because it's difficult to realize their trusted doctors may unwittingly be poisoning them. Other deniers may believe SSRIs like Paxil are helping them when in actuality, the symptoms they experience upon stopping these drugs are caused by withdrawal and not by any underlying illness

Intentional Omission & Labeling

Can you imagine if GSK and other pharmaceutical companies accurately described akathisia on Paxil, Prozac, Zoloft et al. labeling? Few people would buy these products. GSK argued at the Dolin trial that they did everything in their power to change the labeling but the FDA wouldn't let them. Boo hoo and not true: GSK had an opportunity to meet with the FDA, and GSK declined. Pharmaceutical marketing purposefully hides the truth about akathisia because companies want to cover up this deadly adverse drug reaction (ADR). Companies carefully craft SSRI labels and instruct young, pretty drug reps to downplay akathisia when talking to doctors about the products they peddle. Their profitable game of semantics creates a deadly game of Russian Roulette for unsuspecting consumers. However, the public is becoming increasingly aware of fraudulent marketing and akathisia. This progress is due in part to the families of SSRI victims who actively advocate for akathisia awareness and Informed Consent.

Outside the Chicago court house with mothers and wives whose loved ones were lost due to SSRI-induced akathisia and a lack of Informed Consent

My previous coverage of the Dolin trial (links at the foot of this post), showed the ineptness of GSK's attorneys, King & Spalding. It was clear from day one that Wendy Dolin's attorneys--Brent Wisner and Michael Baum of Baum, Hedlund, Aristei & Goldman and David E. Rapoport and Matthew Sims of Rapoport Law Offices P.C.--are more talented lawyers than the clowns from King & Spalding. That they were able to bring the Dolin case to trial was an accomplishment in and of itself given the complexities of this ground-breaking case.

Some might not understand how one can sue a pharmaceutical company who didn't make the actual pill responsible for the victim's death. But Wendy's attorneys correctly looked at the labeling issues. Just who, exactly, is responsible for the product label? It is GSK, the makers of Paxil. The verdict is a landmark result, and one can see why GSK is disturbed. The Dolin verdict opens the door for other Paxil and generic Paxil victims to sue for suffering and death caused by GSK's drug and labeling. The successful Dolin verdict also may lead to similar lawsuits filed by victims of other generic drugs and mislabeling. Wendy's team had all the odds stacked against them, but they succeeded. It shows how compassion can play a vital role in successfully taking these cases to trial. I believe compassion and compelling evidence swung the jury.

King & Spalding offered no compassion nor compelling evidence during the trial. But GSK attorney, Andy Bayman, did utter some words he may now regret. He asked the jury, “Don’t you think if these medicines caused suicide someone would have spoken up?” The jury's verdict showed Bayman and GSK that the dead are speaking up through a very skilled team of compassionate attorneys.

Victim Blaming

I've covered the abhorrent criminal behavior of GSK for 11 years. However, when I attended the Dolin trial I was still a bit surprised to see just how unscrupulous GSK can be. The company is a tight ship run by dodgy captains and crew-members more befitting to a pirate movie starring Johnny Depp. (But the GSK movie would have to carry an R rating or 18 certificate.)

GSK and their ill-prepared attorneys futilely tried to blame everyone for Stewart's death. They claimed it was the FDA's fault. They claimed it was the doctor's fault. They claimed it was Stewart's fault. They claimed Dolin was mentally ill and, hence, jumped in front of a train after a normal business lunch. What I saw at the trial was shameless victim blaming--a PR tactic akin to the mental health industry's recent imaginary "pill shaming" campaign.

During the Dolin case, it emerged that 20 subjects died by suicide in Paxil clinical trials, and 80% of these deaths were consumers over the age of 30. All were taking Paxil and not placebo at the time of their deaths. Paxil, like other SSRIs, does not discriminate by age when it comes to causing akathisia. It, like other SSRIs, does not discriminate by age when it comes to creating withdrawal ADRs. I was flabbergasted when Dolin's brilliant attorneys showed the following display in court. I think the jury was surprised too, as Wendy's attorneys vividly highlighted the truth.

Plaintiff's Exhibit 347

GSK didn't vigorously deny its product causes akathisia and suicide. They focused more on keeping evidence out instead of downplaying the evidence that was already in. During the trial when Paxil withdrawal and birth defects were mentioned, GSK's legal clowns repeatedly objected. Heaven forbid the jury to hear that Paxil not only can cause violent, unwanted deaths, but that Paxil also causes harm to fetuses and severe withdrawal ADRs.

Since the Dolin verdict, I've been at loggerheads with British drug regulator, the MHRA, to learn why there is no stringent warning for adults taking SSRIs. It is bizarre that a regulator would refuse to place a suicide warning on a drug that causes akathisia and death. When I've requested data from the MHRA, they play the pharmaceutical industry's game of semantics or ask that I pay for information. They made the payment request claiming it will take them too much time to research and reply. This information should be free and available to the public.

Nevertheless, the public is increasingly becoming aware of akathisia--a word with a melodic rhythm that sounds like some sort of sweet tasting pudding, not a condition that causes suicidal thoughts and suicide. GSK, Pfizer, Eli Lilly, et al. have known about akathisia for decades but choose to hide the truth to make a buck. They could use some of their dollars to wipe their blood-stained hands after each avoidable death their greedy business plan creates. But some people don't mind blood on their hands and would never waste an ill-gotten dollar.

Preventing Prescribed Suicide

As for Stewart's widow, Wendy, she continues to bang the drum for drug safety. A $3 million award from the jury, of which she has not yet seen a penny, doesn't dampen her resolve to ensure other families don't bury loved ones whose avoidable deaths were precipitated by prescriptions. For more information about akathisia, see the Medication-Induced Suicide Prevention and Education Foundation in Memory of Stewart Dolin website. MISSD is a non-profit organization whose mission is to raise awareness and educate the public about the dangers of akathisia. In October, MISSD will hold its third annual fund raising event in Chicago.

September is National Suicide Prevention Month, organizations such as AFSP and NAMI could join MISSD to reduce deaths caused by prescription drugs. However, given that the pharmaceutical companies are some of their biggest financial donors, it is doubtful they will ever earnestly work to reduce iatrogenic suicides.

AFSP's financial report is here. One of their largest donors, Johnson & Johnson, was forced to pay a $2.2 billion fine for fraudulently marketing the antipsychotic Risperdal to children. (Source)

NAMI's financial report is here. They conceal the amount of drug money they take, but one of their biggest "supporters" is Pfizer Pharmaceuticals, makers of the SSRI Zoloft. Pfizer was forced to pay a $2.3 billion fine for "misbranding" and provided kickbacks to health-care providers to encourage them to prescribe drugs including Zoloft. (Source)

Bob Fiddaman

Coverage of the Dolin Trial

Dolin v GSK - Opening Arguments

Dolin Vs GSK - Day Two - "Jack-In-The-Box"

Dolin vs GSK - Healy 'Rocks Da House'

Dolin Vs GSK - JP Garnier Video Deposition

Dolin Vs GSK - The Dunbar Tape

Dolin Vs GSK - Day 4 - Slam Dunk

Dolin Vs GSK - 8.9 Suicide Increase For Adult Paxil Users

Dolin Vs GSK - Day 6 - Ass Kicking Semantics

Dolin Vs GSK - Day 7 - Abraham Lincoln

Dolin Vs GSK - Day 8 - Get to the Point, Todd!

Dolin Vs GSK - Glenmullen Nails It!

Dolin Vs GSK - "Babes"

Dolin Vs GSK - Wendy's Cross and GSK's Petition

Dolin Vs GSK - Robert "Bling Bling" Gibbons

Dolin Vs GSK: Suicide Prevention Warning "Futile", Claims GSK Exec

Dolin Vs GSK : Jury shown List of the Dead in Paxil Clinical Trials

Dolin Vs GSK: Last Man Standing & The Return of Dr. Healy

Dolin Vs GSK: Closing Arguments

Dolin Vs GSK - The Verdict

Exclusive: Interview With Wendy Dolin

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