Secret Report Surfaces on Antidepressants and Suicide

In a follow-up to the blog entry I posted in April, the British Medical Journal reported that internal memos and a secret government report about the negative effects of antidepressants in children--suppressed by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration--have surfaced publicly. The published documents confirm earlier news accounts that a government expert with the FDA's Office of Drug Safety, Dr. Andrew Mosholder, found that children taking antidepressants were twice as likely to become suicidal as children taking placebo. He reportedly urged the agency to follow the lead of British health authorities by warning doctors that the risks of the newer antidepressants, except fluoxetine, might outweigh the benefits when used in children.

Further, the FDA has subsequently acknowledged to the BMJ that Dr. Mosholder was prevented from presenting his report at an advisory committee meeting in February and was told that if he was asked any questions during the meeting he could respond to queries only by using a prepared script approved by his supervisors.

British Medical Journal August 2004 Volume 329 (PDF)

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