In 2004 the U.S. Food and Drug Administration issued a black-box warning against the use of all antidepressants in individuals up to 24 years old due to concerns about the increased risk of suicidal thoughts and behavior.
Depression often presents differently in children and adults. The very condition that the antidepressants are supposed to treat is made worse by their use in the young because their brains are still developing.
A meta-analysis of 34 RCTs published by Oxford University in the Lancet in August 2016 says that only one drug among all antidepressants is statistically better than placebo and that is Fluoxetine or Prozac. The lead author, Dr Andrea Cipriani claims no influence of the pharmaceutical industry on these findings.
Prozac has made hundreds of court appearances and billions of dollars have been paid out in compensation lawsuits.
‘The idea that it’s been a major step forward for Prozac to select serotonin only is just hypothesis,’ says Malcolm Lader, professor of clinical psychopharmacology at the Institute of Psychiatry. ‘There’s no science behind it.’ Some SSRI users have reported agitation and an inability to keep still, a preoccupation with violent, self-destructive fantasies and a feeling that ‘death would be welcome’. In Germany, Prozac was initially refused a licence after trials resulted in 16 attempted suicides, two of which were successful.
For mild depression, talking therapies are recommended. Young people with moderate to severe depression are often believed to need medication. They need frequent and close monitoring. However, there are huge variations in practice. It is easier to write out a prescription at a brief consultation rather than delve deep into details. As for the usefulness and safety of antidepressants, the jury is still out.
Saagar was on Citalopram for a few weeks before he died. The GP investigator said he should have been on Prozac but she didn’t write it down in her report. The representative of the Psychiatric hospital was a Clinical Psychologist. She said she could not comment on medications. The mud is watery.
Lancet August 2016: http://thelancet.com/journals/lancet/article/PIIS0140-6736(16)30385-3/fulltext
Prozac and lawsuits:
History of Prozac: