Saturday, 21 May 2016

David Healy - Hearts and Minds: Psychotropic Drugs and Violence

Mechanisms of antidepressant-induced violence

"A link between antidepressant use and violence needs a plausible clinical mechanism through which such effects might be realised. There are comparable data on increased rates of suicidal events on active treatment compared to placebo."

"In the case of suicide, several explanations have been offered for the linkage. It is argued that alleviating the motor retardation of depression, the condition being treated, might enable suicides to happen, but this cannot explain the appearance of suicidality in healthy volunteers."

"Mechanisms linking antidepressant treatment, rather than the condition, to adverse behavioural outcomes include akathisia, emotional disinhibition, emotional blunting, and manic or psychotic reactions to treatment. There is good evidence that antidepressant treatment can induce problems such as these and a prima facie case that akathisia, emotional blunting, and manic or psychotic reactions might lead to violence."

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