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Off-Label Use of Neurontin Leads To Suicides

If you want to get a truer sense of the poor, and sometimes lethal, excuse that passes for conventional medicine in this country, consider the very interesting and bumpy path of Neurontin over the past three years. It began with a court case in which Warner-Lambert staffers promoted the drug in examination rooms. Most recently, Pfizer (the mega-pharmaceutical that bought Warner-Lambert) pleaded guilty to illegally marketing Neurontin for treating ailments for which it wasn't approved before August 1996!

So I was bit surprised, after all these shenanigans, to read the FDA has begun an investigation into whether epilepsy drugs also increase a patient's risk of suicide, the same kind of analysis the agency mandated when they examined those same mortality risks associated with young children and teens taking antidepressants.

Why? The very same off-label concerns that got Pfizer's hands slapped last year, especially considering anti-seizure drugs are being used far more regularly to "cure" bipolar disorder, pain and other conditions.

This chain of events started about a year ago when a New York attorney filed a petition asking the FDA to place a black box warning on Neurontin, citing 25 reports of suicides from the agency's own database. And last month, the attorney followed up with 258 reports of suicides blamed on Neurontin, and has already filed 72 lawsuits against Pfizer.

And the worst thing of all, in my mind, is that depression and bipolar disorders can be treated naturally, safely and without medication. Here's how:

MSNBC April 21, 2005

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