Dr. Stupak on SSRIs and Suicide

  • by: |
  • 02/15/2008
Here's Bart Stupak, head of the Health subcommittee on Energy Commerce, who is running the series of show trials on the FDA and the pharmaceutical industry (only anti-industry and FDA malcontents need testify) on the "link" between SSRIs and suicide:

"SSRI’s have not been proven effective in treating adolescent
depression. To the contrary their use may actually increase the suicide rate of its young
patients. In response to these reports of increased suicide rates with SSRI use, FDA
officials suppressed their own post marketing surveillance, prohibited FDA employees
from discussing the report, and launched an investigation to find the person who leaked information to the press. Today, SSRI remain on the market without a clear medical benefit to the patient."

Setting aside the recent tragedy in Northern Illinois where the gunmen went off his meds, went on a shooting spree and killed himself. ...Stupak's statement is not only scientifically incorrect, it is downright misleading and dangerous. There should be a black box warning around everything Stupak says regarding medicines, particularly SSRIs which have been shown to benefit patients and are associated with a decline in suicides. And again, there is no link to SSRIs and in increase in suicides, rather some unclear evidence based on an unvalidated measure called suicidality that includes just talking about self harm in general.

Stupak held several fear-drenched hearing about antidepressants in 2003-2004. He is partially responsible for the decline in SSRI prescription use and the corresponding increase in adolescent suicide. So the question is:

And this guy is head of the Health subcommittee? Why is he being taken seriously? Why isn't he being held accountable?

Here's Bart Stupak on the "link" between SSRI's and suicide


Center for Medicine in the Public Interest is a nonprofit, non-partisan organization promoting innovative solutions that advance medical progress, reduce health disparities, extend life and make health care more affordable, preventive and patient-centered. CMPI also provides the public, policymakers and the media a reliable source of independent scientific analysis on issues ranging from personalized medicine, food and drug safety, health care reform and comparative effectiveness.

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