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« No Increase in Criminal Convictions in Hans Asperger's Original Cohort | Main | Milestones, Memories, Life and Death »

Patterns In Chaos: Child Psychiatry, Violence and Autism

Wakefield2By Andrew J. Wakefield

Patterns in chaos: understanding acts of “senseless” violence (also available at The Academic Integrity Fund site.

At the Royal Free Hospital, London, in 1996 my gastroenterology colleagues and I were reliably informed by our attending child psychiatrist, that acts of extreme violence, such as the tragedy of Sandy Hook Elementary School, were perpetrated more commonly by those with Asperger’s syndrome (AS). Like so much that child psychiatry has had to offer - then and since - this assertion is misleading.

In support of his statement, the Royal Free’s child psychiatrist, Dr. Berelowitz, cited the example of Martin Bryant who had recently been imprisoned for committing 35 murders and causing 37 serious injuries in Tasmania in April 1996, in what became known as the Port Arthur Massacre. Bryant, according to Dr. Berelowitz and later, Wikipedia, had AS. Both sources turn out to be incorrect: the report of Paul E. Mullen, Professor of Forensic Psychiatry at Monash University, Melbourne, Australia, who examined Bryant in prison in May 1996, tells the story. In his criticism of an earlier diagnostic assessment by a Dr. Sale, Dr. Mullen wrote:

“Mr Bryant craves the attention of others. He desires relationships but fails to effectively communicate with others unlike the patients with Asperger's who are blandly indifferent to others. Mr Bryant also lacks, in my opinion, the central features of this condition, which are repetitive activities, unusual skills with all absorbing obsessive interests and problems with motor coordination. He also showed marked delay in the acquisition of language skills and required remedial therapy for this language deficit which is contrary to the picture found in those with Asperger's Syndrome.”[1]

While my experience of 18 years suggests to me that many with AS are not blandly indifferent to others, Bryant’s speech delay precludes this diagnosis. In addition, Bryant had an IQ of 66 – well below the average or above average IQ that experts consider necessary for this diagnosis.[2].

More recent reviews of the relevant medical literature do not support an association between an increased risk of violence and AS.[3]. This fact is crucial, lest the wider community stigmatize a population of individuals that are already poorly served and badly misunderstood by many. This does not mean, however, that those with AS are not at increased risk of violence under certain circumstances, as discussed below.

A further Web-based review (see below) of acts of violent crime similar to those seen in Port Arthur, Colombine, and Connecticut reveals that the majority of cases are not associated with any evidence of an ASD diagnosis in the perpetrator at all. So what do these tragedies have in common?

A common denominator

As with all tragedies of this nature, many try to make sense of the “senseless.”  In the case of Martin Bryant, Dr. Mullen failed. He concluded his expert psychiatric report with the following:

“The enormity of Mr Bryant's crimes call out for some explanation equally dramatic and extraordinary. It is not to be wondered at that the media have either attempted to portray Mr Bryant as afflicted by a dramatic mental illness, such as schizophrenia, or to be some kind of evil genius. In my opinion the origins of this terrible tragedy are not to be found in a single dramatic and sufficient cause, but in the interaction and combination of a range of influences and events. We may never know fully the intentions and state of mind which led to the killings, but a number of the contributions are apparent.”

But clues to the likely origins of this particular tragedy were there – as they always are – in the “patient’s” history; Mullen simply missed them. Bryant was taking tranquilizers for anxiety and sleep disturbances. From Mullen’s report, he was using these inconsistently, “on three or four occasions per week.” In a separate section of his report Dr. Mullen also documents that:

“During the 12 months prior to the offences [Bryant’s] alcohol consumption rapidly increased. He reports that in the six months prior to the tragedy he typically drank every day. He would have his first drink in the morning and then drink more heavily in the afternoon and evening.”[4]

These factors – erratic compliance with tranquilizers and alcohol abuse – are related and crucial. The risk of adverse reactions to tranquilizers is greatly potentiated by alcohol due, in part, to shared metabolic pathways in the liver. The preferential metabolism of alcohol will lead to impaired metabolism of the tranquilizer. Adverse reactions to psychotropic drugs including tranquillizers are also more common in those with existing mental illness, and violence is a well-recognized adverse reaction.  

Alarmingly absent from Mullen’s otherwise detailed report are the following: i. the name of the prescription “tranquillizers” that he was taking; were they “major” or “minor”? ii. any reference to the very real potential for interaction between such drugs and the large amount of alcohol that Bryant was consuming in the months prior to the attack, and iii. any mention of a violent psychotic reaction to these drugs - particularly in combination with alcohol - playing any role at all in his crime.  

The combination of alcohol and ad hoc use of tranquillizers will have produced widely fluctuating drug levels. Fluctuations in drug levels put patients at particular risk of adverse reactions. This phenomenon is also well recognized for the second generation antidepressants, selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) for which the Physician’s Desk Reference [PDR] states:

"Adverse reactions are most likely to occur when starting or discontinuing the drug, increasing or lowering the dose or when switching from one SSRI to another.”

The PDR goes on to list an array of established central nervous system reactions including: Mania, Hallucinations, Personality Disorder, Psychosis, Alcohol Abuse and/or Craving, Hostility, Paranoia, Delusions, and Impulsivity.

Taking any tranquillizers, as Bryant did on “3 or 4 occasions a week”, in combination with large amounts of alcohol, is a recipe for disaster. Had this been recognized, as it should have been, and had the role of prescription psychotropic drugs in such events been flagged at that time, future disasters might have been avoided.

This brings us back to the common denominator, the one and only consistent feature of successive killing sprees, psychotropic prescription medications.[5]

Prescription meds and violence

In 2011 the Institute for Safe Medication Practices published in the journal PloS One an analysis of data from the FDA’s Adverse Event Reporting System. The article identified 31 drugs that are disproportionately linked with reports of violent behavior towards others.[6]

The authors wrote:

“We identified 1527 cases of violence disproportionally reported for 31 drugs. Primary suspect drugs included varenicline (an aid to smoking cessation), 11 antidepressants, 6 sedative/hypnotics and 3 drugs for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder….

…Acts of violence towards others are a genuine and serious adverse drug event associated with a relatively small group of drugs. Varenicline, which increases the availability of dopamine, and antidepressants with serotonergic effects were the most strongly and consistently implicated drugs.”

The top ten offenders[7] – all prescription drugs - include: the antidepressants Desvenlafaxine (Pristiq) (x 7.9 more likely to be associated with violence than other drugs), Venlafaxine (Effexor), a  drug related to Pristiq. Both are also used to treat anxiety disorders (x 8.3), Fluvoxamine (Luvox) (x 8.4), Paroxetine (Paxil), an SSRI antidepressant (x 10.3), Fluoxetine (Prozac) (x 10.9), the tranquilizer Triazolam (Halcion), also used to treat insomnia (x 8.7), the attention deficit disorder drugs Atomoxetine (Strattera) (x 9), and Amphetamines: (Various, x 9.6). Also included are the antimalarial Mefoquine (Lariam) (x 9.5) and Varenicline (Chantix) the anti-smoking medication (x 18).

The heart of the matter: Big Pharma and Psychiatry - a liaison dangereuse

Aberrant behavior is at the heart of the current crisis. This behavior – not on the part of perpetrator however - is characterized in the following reports, just a few of many.

Johnson and Johnson

“Johnson and Johnson settles five Risperdal Suits”[8]

“The former commissioner of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, David Kessler, says Johnson & Johnson and its Janssen subsidiary broke the law in marketing the antipsychotic drug Risperdal for use in children and adolescents.”

“The promotion of non-approved uses in the most vulnerable children of powerful drugs is most concerning. Janssen's promotion of Risperdal, a powerful drug, for non-approved uses in the most vulnerable children is deeply troubling."[9]

(CBS/AP) LITTLE ROCK, Ark. - An Arkansas judge has fined Johnson & Johnson (JNJ) and a subsidiary more than $1.1 billion after a jury found the companies downplayed and hid risks associated with an antipsychotic drug.[10]

“Judge Tim Fox found nearly 240,000 violations under Arkansas' Medicaid-fraud law over Risperdal. Each violation came with a $5,000 fine, setting the total penalty at more than $1.1 billion.”

“Lies”

“Jurors returned a quick verdict Tuesday in favor of the state, which had argued that Janssen Pharmaceuticals Inc. lied about the potentially life-threatening side effects of Risperdal.”

Glaxo SmithKline

“Glaxo Agrees to Pay $3 Billion in Fraud Settlement[11]

“Criminal” acts

In the largest settlement involving a pharmaceutical company, the British drugmaker GlaxoSmithKline agreed to plead guilty to criminal charges and pay $3 billion in fines for promoting its best-selling antidepressants for unapproved uses and failing to report safety data about a top diabetes drug, federal prosecutors announced Monday. The agreement also includes civil penalties for improper marketing of a half-dozen other drugs.”

“The three criminal charges involved [psychotropic drugs] Paxil, Wellbutrin and Avandia and included a criminal fine of $1 billion.”

Inducements and Fraud

“Prosecutors said the company had tried to win over doctors by paying for trips to Jamaica and Bermuda, as well as spa treatments and hunting excursions. In the case of Paxil, prosecutors claim GlaxoSmithKline employed several tactics aimed at promoting the use of the drug in children, including helping to publish a medical journal article that misreported data from a clinical trial.”

Lack of individual accountability

“No individuals have been charged in any of the cases. …critics argue that even large fines are not enough to deter drug companies from unlawful behavior. Only when prosecutors single out individual executives for punishment, they say, will practices begin to change.”

“What we’re learning is that money doesn’t deter corporate malfeasance,” said Eliot Spitzer, who, as New York’s attorney general, sued GlaxoSmithKline in 2004 over similar accusations involving Paxil. “The only thing that will work in my view is C.E.O.’s and officials being forced to resign and individual culpability being enforced.”

Fines - The “cost of doing business”

Despite the large amount, $3 billion [fine] represents only a portion of what Glaxo made on the drugs. Avandia, for example, racked up $10.4 billion in sales, Paxil brought in $11.6 billion, and Wellbutrin sales were $5.9 billion during the years covered by the settlement, according to IMS Health, a data group that consults for drugmakers.”

“So a $3 billion settlement for half a dozen drugs over 10 years can be rationalized as the cost of doing business,” Mr. Burns[12] said. Mr. Burns and others have said that to institute real change, executives must be prosecuted criminally or barred from participating in the Medicare and Medicaid programs, an action known as “exclusion.” 

Abbott Laboratories

Abbott Labs to Pay $1.5 Billion to Resolve Criminal & Civil Investigations of Off-label Promotion of Depakote[13]

“Criminal misdemeanor”

“[The] Company Maintained Specialized Sales Force to Market Drug for Off Label Purposes…”. 

“Abbott has pleaded guilty to a criminal misdemeanor for misbranding Depakote in violation of the FDCA.”

Side effects “downplayed”

 “Not only did Abbott engage in off-label promotion, but it targeted elderly dementia patients and downplayed the risks apparent from its own clinical studies,” said Acting Associate Attorney General Tony West.  “As this criminal and civil resolution demonstrates, those who put profits ahead of patients will pay a hefty price.”

 A “Catcher in the Rye”

For President Obama to become a “Catcher in the Rye”[14] – a savior in this relentless tragedy – he must take the Pharmaceutical Industry head on. Through the Department of Justice, he has made a start. However, fines should be a multiple of Pharma’s revenues and not some nominal settlement that does little to discourage their insatiable greed. Individuals within offending companies need to be held accountable and face criminal prosecution.

Obama must meet the autism tragedy head on and deal with the proximate cause of the epidemic – unsafe and untested vaccination practices. The treatment of autism spectrum disorders must start with an understanding of these disorders as primarily  medical conditions with toxicological, immunological, gastrointestinal, and nutritional[15] issues front and center. Through the Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee and the CDC his administration has been a dismal failure.

And for those at risk – young people receiving off-license mind-bending drugs, an urgent overview of individual indication, efficacy, compliance, and adverse effects must be undertaken, funded by the relevant players in the pharmaceutical industry and conducted independently of any other input from them. 

Tragically, predictably, there will be more events like that at Sandy Hook Elementary. The vast number of individuals with developmental disorders presages such events. This is not because of their diagnosis, per se, but rather I would suggest, because they may be at increased risk for adverse reactions (due to pre-existing conditions) and are being inappropriately medicated with drugs for which violence is a recognized adverse reaction. These drugs are being prescribed by a “mainstream” medical system that, through clinical neglect, has run dry on alternative treatments for autism spectrum disorders while enjoying Parma’s inducements way too much to look for any. 

My opinion is neither mine alone, nor is it new.  In attempting to make sense of the “senseless” it offers both tangible reasons and approaches to prevention. It is not enough that our hearts break for those affected; we are compelled to act. Perhaps inevitably, I am left with a mental image of Pharma lobbyists scaling Capitol Hill like an army of Orcs closing on Helm’s Deep. It’s a hideous sight.

 Appendix 1.

Red Lake, Minnesota – March 2005: 16-year-old Jeff Weise, on Prozac, shot and killed his grandparents, then went to his school on the Red Lake Indian Reservation where he shot dead 7 students and a teacher, and wounded 7 before killing himself.

El Cajon, California – March 22, 2001: 18-year-old Jason Hoffman, on the antidepressants Celexa and Effexor, opened fire on his classmates, wounding three students and two teachers at Granite Hills High School. He had been seeing a psychiatrist before the shooting.

Eric Harris, one of the killers at Columbine High School, was on the antidepressant drug Luvox. Court records show that the prescription for Harris had been filled ten times between April 1998 and March 1999.Three and one half months before the shooting, the dosage had been increased. The Physician’s Desk Reference records show that during controlled clinical trials of Luvox, manic reactions developed in 4 percent of the children given the drug.

Thomas Solomon, a fifteen-year-old at Heritage High School in Conyers, Georgia, shot and wounded six classmates. He was on Ritalin at the time.

Kip Kinkel, a fifteen-year-old at Thurston High School in Springfield, Oregon, killed his parents and two classmates and wounded twenty-two other students while on Ritalin and Prozac.

Notus, Idaho – April 16, 1999: 15-year-old Shawn Cooper fired two shotgun rounds in his school, narrowly missing students. He was taking a prescribed SSRI antidepressant and Ritalin.

In 1989, less than one month after taking his first dose of Prozac, Joseph Wesbecker massacred eight coworkers with an AK-47 before turning the weapon on himself.

Michael McDermott, convicted of killing seven co-workers, tripled his dosage of Prozac before the shootings. On the witness stand he said he believed that he killed Nazis and not his co-workers. He said an archangel appeared to him before the massacre, telling him that he could prevent the Holocaust if he traveled back in time to 1940 to kill Adolf Hitler and six German generals.

Brynn Hartman, wife of comedian Phil Hartman, shot and killed her husband and herself while on Zoloft.

Andrea Yates in Houston, Texas, drowned her five children while on Effexor and Remeron.

Christopher Pittman shot and killed his grandparents when he was age twelve. He claimed that a voice inside his head told him to kill his grandparents on November 28, 2001. Christopher had recently started to take Zoloft to treat mild depression.

Columbine, Colorado – April 20, 1999: 18-year-old Eric Harris and his accomplice, Dylan Klebold, killed 12 students and a teacher and wounded 26 others before killing themselves. Harris was on the antidepressant Luvox. Klebold’s medical records remain sealed. Both shooters had been in anger-management classes and had undergone counseling. Harris had been seeing a psychiatrist before the shooting.

Jeff Weise, age 16, had been prescribed 60 mg/day of Prozac (three times the average starting dose for adults!) when he shot his grandfather, his grandfather’s girlfriend and many fellow students at Red Lake, Minnesota. He then shot himself. 10 dead, 12 wounded.

Wahluke, Washington – April 10, 2001: Sixteen-year-old Cory Baadsgaard took a rifle to his high school and held 23 classmates and a teacher hostage. He had been taking the antidepressant Effexor. Paxil (which caused him to have hallucinations)

Thirteen-year-old Chris Fetters killed his favorite aunt while taking Prozac.

Twelve-year-old Christopher Pittman murdered both his grandparents while taking Zoloft.

Thirteen-year-old Mathew Miller hung himself in his bedroom closet after taking Zoloft for 6 days.

Fifteen-year-old Jarred Viktor stabbed his grandmother 61 times after 5 days on Paxil.

Springfield, Oregon – May 21, 1998: 15-year-old Kip Kinkel murdered his parents and then proceeded to school where he opened fire on students in the cafeteria, killing two and wounding 25. Kinkel had been taking the antidepressant Prozac. Kinkel had been attending “anger control classes” and was under the care of a psychologist.

Luke Woodham age 16 (Prozac) killed his mother and then killed two students, wounding six others.

In 1998 A Pocatello had a Zoloft-induced seizure that caused an armed stand off at his school.

Michael Carneal (Ritalin) a 14-year-old opened fire on students at a high school prayer meeting in West Paducah, Kentucky.

Andrew Golden, age 11, (Ritalin) and Mitchell Johnson, aged 14, (Ritalin) shot 15 people, killing four students, one teacher, and wounding 10 others.

Conyers, Georgia – May 20, 1999: 15-year-old T.J. Solomon was being treated with the stimulant Ritalin when he opened fire on and wounded six of his classmates.

Rod Mathews, age 14, (Ritalin) beat a classmate to death with a bat.

James Wilson, age 19, (various psychiatric drugs) from Breenwood, South Carolina, took a .22 caliber revolver into an elementary school killing two young girls, and wounding seven other children and two teachers.

Elizabeth Bush, age 13, (Paxil) was responsible for a school shooting in Pennsylvania

Jason Hoffman (Effexor and Celexa) – school shooting in El Cajon, California

Jarred Viktor, age 15, (Paxil), after five days on Paxil he stabbed his grandmother 61 times.



Chris Shanahan, age 15 (Paxil) in Rigby, ID, who out of the blue killed a woman. 



Jeff Franklin (Prozac and Ritalin), Huntsville, AL, killed his parents as they came home from work using a sledge hammer, hatchet, butcher knife and mechanic's file, then attacked his younger brothers and sister.

Neal Furrow (Prozac) in LA Jewish school shooting reported to have been court-ordered to be on Prozac along with several other medications. Kevin Rider, age 14, was withdrawing from Prozac when he died from a gunshot wound to his head. Initially it was ruled a suicide, but two years later, the investigation into his death was opened as a possible homicide. The prime suspect, also age 14, had been taking Zoloft and other SSRI antidepressants.

Alex Kim, age 13, hung himself soon after his prescription of Lexapro had been doubled.

Diane Routhier was prescribed Wellbutrin for gallstone problems. Six days later, after suffering many adverse effects of the drug, she shot herself.

Billy Willkomm, an accomplished wrestler and a University of Florida student, was prescribed Prozac at the age of 17. His family found him dead of suicide – hanging from a tall ladder at the family's Gulf Shore Boulevard home in July 2002.

Kara Jaye Anne Fuller-Otter, age 12, was on Paxil when she hung herself from a hook in her closet. Kara’s parents said ".... the damn doctor wouldn't take her off it and I asked him to when we went in on the second visit. I told him I thought she was having some sort of reaction to Paxil…")

Gareth Christian, Vancouver, age 18, was on Paxil when he committed suicide in 2002. (Gareth’s father could not accept his son’s death and killed himself)

Julie Woodward, age 17, was on Zoloft when she hung herself in her family’s detached garage.

Matthew Miller was 13 saw a psychiatrist because he was having difficulty and school. The psychiatrist recommended Zoloft for him. Seven days after beginning the Zoloft samples, his mother found him dead… hanging by a belt from a laundry hook in his closet.

Kurt Danysh, age 18 and on Prozac, killed his father with a shotgun. He is now behind prison bars, and writes letters, trying to warn the world that SSRI drugs can kill.

Woody ____, age 37, committed suicide while in his 5th week of taking Zoloft. Shortly before his death his physician suggested doubling the dose of the drug. He had seen his physician only for insomnia. He had never been depressed, nor did he have any history of any mental illness symptoms.

A ten-year-old boy from Houston shot and killed his father after his Prozac dosage was increased.

Huntsville, Alabama – February 5, 2010: 15-year-old Hammad Memon shot and killed another Discover Middle School student Todd Brown. Memon had a history for being treated for ADHD and depression. He was taking the antidepressant Zoloft and “other drugs for the conditions.” He had been seeing a psychiatrist and psychologist.

Kauhajoki, Finland – September 23, 2008: 22-year-old culinary student Matti Saari shot and killed 9 students and a teacher, and wounded another student, before killing himself. Saari was taking an SSRI and a benzodiazapine. He was also seeing a psychologist.

Dekalb, Illinois – February 14, 2008: 27-year-old Steven Kazmierczak shot and killed five people and wounded 21 others before killing himself in a Northern Illinois University auditorium. According to his girlfriend, he had recently been taking Prozac, Xanax and Ambien. Toxicology results showed that he still had trace amount of Xanax in his system. He had been seeing a psychiatrist.

Jokela, Finland – November 7, 2007: 18-year-old Finnish gunman Pekka-Eric Auvinen had been taking antidepressants before he killed eight people and wounded a dozen more at Jokela High School in southern Finland, then committed suicide.

Cleveland, Ohio – October 10, 2007: 14-year-old Asa Coon stormed through his school with a gun in each hand, shooting and wounding four before taking his own life. Court records show Coon had been placed on the antidepressant Trazodone.

Greenbush, New York – February 2004: 16-year-old Jon Romano strolled into his high school in east Greenbush and opened fire with a shotgun. Special education teacher Michael Bennett was hit in the leg. Romano had been taking “medication for depression”. He had previously seen a psychiatrist.

 


[1]http://kildall.apana.org.au/autism/articles/bryant.html

[2] http://www.autismresearchcentre.com/as_defined

[3] Newman SS and Ghaziuddin M. Violent Crime in Asperger Syndrome: The Role of Psychiatric

Comorbidity J Autism Dev Disord 2008;38:1848–1852

Ghaziuddin M, Tsai L, Ghaziuddin N.  Brief Report: Violence in Asperger Syndrome, A Critique. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 1991;21:349-354

[4] http://kildall.apana.org.au/autism/articles/bryant.html

[5] See, Appendix 1

[6] Moore TJ, Glenmullen J, Furberg CD (2010) Prescription Drugs Associated with Reports of Violence Towards Others. PLoS ONE 5(12): e15337. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0015337

[8] October 06, 2012|By David Sell, Inquirer Staff Writer. http://articles.philly.com/2012-10-06/business/34280657_1_risperdal-suits-j-j-antipsychotic-drug

[9] There are more than 400 individual Risperdal lawsuits pending around the country, with more than 80 filed in Philadelphia. Thursday's settlement might lead to settlements in some of those. J&J, based in New Brunswick, N.J., with divisions in the Philadelphia region, is in litigation on several levels. Though appeals are pending, it has lost cases in Louisiana ($258 million), South Carolina ($327 million), and Arkansas ($1.2 billion) in which the company was alleged to have promoted Risperdal inappropriately through taxpayer-funded Medicaid systems. J&J won its Pennsylvania case. After six days of trial testimony, it paid $158 million to settle in Texas. The company also is negotiating with the federal government on a case, with reports suggesting that J&J might pay more than $2 billion. Previously, the company agreed to pay $181 million to settle similar litigation with 36 states.

[10] http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-204_162-57412418/ark-judge-fines-johnson-johnson-more-than-$1.1b-in-risperdal-case/

[11] By Katie Thomas and Michael S. Schmidt. New York Times. July 2, 2012

[12] Spokesman for the whistleblower advocacy group Taxpayers Against Fraud

[13] http://www.justice.gov/opa/pr/2012/May/12-civ-585.html

[14] The Catcher in the Rye. J.D. Salinger

[15] See http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5lTGrAkW8hU

Comments

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MMR saves lives states:- "By the way, I am a microbiologist that is working on vaccine designs"

And what microbiologist is 'that'? You have chosen to write, what amounts to deliberate misinformation and publicly disproven allegations, under an assumed cybername on a thread which is weeks old.

'MMR Saves Lives'

Big deal - you are a scientist just perhaps but you don't know anything about the Wakefield Lancet paper. Virtually all the claims that were made against the three doctors at GMC relating to it were overturned in the English High Court last year when senior author Prof John Walker-Smith was completely exonerated, so no mis-reporting about referrals, no mis-reporting of data, no inappropriate or unauthorised investigations, the paper was not funded by the Legal Aid Board and was an early report as stated. Both histopathologist co-authors have written to BMJ at different times repudiating claims that the histopathology results were in any way cooked.

http://www.bmj.com/content/342/bmj.c7452/rr/635992

The imposture lies with the medical establishment.

MMR Saves Lives,

You say you like proof. Well, you've fallen for a line of bull when it comes to this one. Your allegations are completely false and his work has been reproduced many times since. I believe that you work hard and long hours and are under immense pressure. I think you need to take some time off, get some sun and do some reading about Dr. Wakefield. When you have the time to properly investigate, you'll be very surprised at what actually happened.

Incidentally, you do realize that he is the one who has approved the posting of your comments here.

How are you all still listening to a man that has been discredited by scientists all over the world??!!! The "study" that he bases his theory on was unethically performed ( on children none the less) and poorly designed and none of the science centers from around the world can validate it. In fact his work was so poorly done it has been completely discredited and he cannot even practice medicine in England. Get with it. This man profited off of the illness and misery of others and is a sham. There are thousands of ethical researchers remaining in this field that need your support instead of someone that is only out for profits. In fact this man had turned into one of the top cautionary tales and despised figures in the science field.

By the way, I am a microbiologist that is working on vaccine designs. I don't get paid much, I work long hours, and I am under pressure to produce results. However, unlike with "Dr" Wakefield, I do my best to produce valuable data using ethical methods. Yes it may take me longer to publish in the Lancet, but I do not want to cost any lives in the pursuit of my work. Yes, contrary to popular opinion we are driven by the desire to save lives and help people. Most of us are overworked and underpaid and our only reward is knowing that we are discovering new things to hopefully make the world better.

I am not saying that you should blindly believe anything. Scientist love proof and we work very hard to prove ourselves wrong instead of only trying to prove that we are right. Wakefield has lost our respect by not only taking a shortcut but by also profiting by it. In turn he has terribly hurt our field and in turn has hurt those that could benefit by our work. He will never again be trusted or respected by me and my colleagues . Thank You

Just read that the judge in James Holmes murder trial has ruled that he can be drugged as part of his psychiatric evaluation,
"doctors will be allowed to administer "such drugs as are medically appropriate" to ensure his lucidity, Sylvester ordered."

http://usnews.nbcnews.com/_news/2013/03/11/17272261-judge-rules-theater-massacre-suspect-james-holmes-can-be-drugged-for-psychiatric-exam?lite

I remember when a person couldn't be held to statements made or documents signed when under the influence of a drug. Whether Holmes is insane or not, is there a drug(s) that is known to be certain to "ensure his lucidity"? Even though he is charged with a terrible crime, is it morally right to mandate that he submit to forced drugging for purposes of a psychiatric examination (or for any purpose)?

As the father of an Autisic son, my wife and I have always followed with the link between Autism and the MMR vaccine as described in the study by Dr Andrew Wakefield. In the years ago when he first talked publicly of the link, we have always avidly agreed with his comments and the suggested link to secondary Autism and the MMR vaccine.

Our son is 20 years old now and he changed from being a normal child to someone else after he had this MMR injections. His life now as a 20 year old is difficult and our lives since his ASD diagnosis nearly 19 years ago have been very difficult and continue to be so. A snapshot of how our lives have been affected is on our ongoing blogg here. http://autisminyoungadults.blogspot.co.uk/

As a former special educator with 25 yrs experience and parent of a teen who developed mental illness (now an adult), I have to say that not all pharmaceuticals are bad and that there are also other factors to consider. It appears that some pharma drugs are worse than others. If it were not for the complex combination of meds my adult son is on, he would not be working, married, and living independently. We had to struggle mightily to make the insurance providers cover his early episodes - he had to be a danger to himself or others to be hospitalized. It did not matter to them if we thought he could become like that, we had to wait till he actually did something or said he was going to do it. That, right there, is a massive problem. In past decades, the person would get the help they needed BEFORE harming others or themselves. Not now. Also, they only get hospitalized for three days and then can be released very readily, if over the age of 18. No help to be had in three days, definitely. So changing that factor, and forcing insurance companies to provide inpatient treatment for those at risk (and defining that risk more liberally) is what is needed. The laws need to change to protect both the person and society from harm, rather than protecting insurers from paying out money for treatment - all the while, citing the "rights" of the mentally ill to be "free". They have the right to be treated and we have the right to be safe. After struggling with, and forcing the system to treat our son, he is doing very well. We maintain a conservatorship which he agrees with, in order to advocate for him in case his condition deteriorates at any time. I also think another factor in all these cases where people were harmed is obviously access to fire arms - in how many of the above cases did the student or perpetrator get weapons from their parents? I think that in the Lanza case, the mother made a massive error - keeping weapons of that sort in the home, locked up or not - with a sick son was being incredibly naive. A mistake that led to the killing of many others. I would not and never did keep weapons in the home with an ill person. So there are many factors to consider - medications, treatment, and access to weapons. I do feel that she was likely left to deal with a sick son and I know that must have been very difficult for her. Society does not provide support for that, especially at the ages over 18.

I agree Lou - have thought there's something fishy about this from the beginning and also the Colorado theater shootings. Here we have a quiet young man that no one knows suddenly going on a rampage killing little kids - babies - extremely aberrant behavior. All tracks are covered up: his mother, who would be the only witness, found dead. His computer, which would likely give insight into who he was, what he was doing and with whom he was associating, found destroyed. The media reports have been based on circular speculation.

In Colorado, we have a former boy scout leader type who has been responsible for and good with kids on camping trips in the past, a neuroscience Phd student, suddenly loses it and goes on a rampage. I would like to know just what experiments this neuroscience student participated in at the university. His photo is frightening - like someone that has had something done to his mind. http://usnews.nbcnews.com/_news/2012/12/10/15822673-court-hearing-in-colorado-theater-shooting-zeroes-in-on-james-holmes-notebook?lite

Meanwhile, there is a gag order on the case.

Thank you, Dr. Wakefield, for connecting the dots. An excellent book on how little we know about psychotropic drugs is Daniel Carlat's "Unhinged: The Trouble with Psychiatry". And, while incredibly difficult to watch, Manette Loudon's "The Drugging of Our Children" http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=26e5PqrCePk is painfully insightful.

"Martin Bryant who had recently been imprisoned for committing 35 murders and causing 37 serious injuries in Tasmania in April 1996, in what became known as the Port Arthur Massacre."

There is absolutely no question that the SSRIs are proven to incite violence and suicide. Any poor child or person subjected to SSRIs and other "psych drugs" is in trouble from day one, Just as a baby injected with the hep B poison is in trouble.

However in the case of Martin Bryant only one very important fact should be considered. Martin Bryant did not, could have not, committed the murders. Martin was framed. His government was in on the framing. Please confirm this; it will take some time but it is very important that you do because the very same thing is likely going on here in the USA with the most recent incidence occurring in Newtown.

"Throughout history - it has been true that the lone assassin has been behind many mass killings. But in recent times he has also been not so alone.......governments and intelligence agencies have been known to prey on and use simple and sometimes ill people to massacre innocent victims in order to gain greater control of the masses. Investigative journalist Joe Vaills has painstakingly put together the evidence that the young man, Martin Bryant, did not, if at all, act alone during the murderous rampage at Tasmania's Port Arthur......in fact according to the video evidence, this was physically impossible."The Strategy"

http://www.whale.to/b/viallspam.html


Adam Lanza was reportedly on meds and also into gaming. He played one game called "Call of Duty" which features an end of the world scenario with a Zombie attack. It can be played with multiple playrers so investigators should be able to find his online gaming partners and get information about Adam's online activities from them. To what extent was Adam Lanza influenced by online gaming combined with the use of medication and access to assault weapons? Perhaps those zombies became real in Adam's mind.

Call of Duty: World at War:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Call_of_Duty:_World_at_War


What`s the difference between a syringe and a gun ? the gun kills less...Fact...


Angus

And forget not the number one defender for all the Med`s Pharma ..worldwide..Yes it`s BrianDeer


...http://briandeer.com/solved/slapp-deer-declaration.pdf


DECLARATION OF BRIAN DEER IN SUPPORT
OF DEFENDANTS’ ANTI-SLAPP MOTION TO DISMISS
1. My name is Brian Deer. [Personal information redacted] I make this declaration
based on personal knowledge of the facts stated in this declaration, all of which are true and
correct. The documents attached to this declaration as exhibits are true and correct copies
thereof.
Personal Background
2. I am a graduate of the University of Warwick, England, with a Bachelor of Arts in
Philosophy, and I have been a professional journalist ever since.


SO FOLKS!! A JOKER WITH A MASK NO MEDICAL QUALIES...

..


About the computer - all we know is that it was destroyed. We don't know who is responsible and why they did it.

Bayaeramom,I knew a person who was diagnosed Schizophrenic ..as he said to me ..if you were on the meds I was on you too would be seeing John Wayne fighting with world war Spitfires,…. Indians fighting with Adolf Hitler...gladly this person stopped the meds and is back to normal but the drugs screwed him up completely..Punching concrete walls and feeling no pain...is that the way to treat humans, and….. that’s a cure..

Angus

Note: I want to make it abundantly clear that I think what these two radio DJ's did was atrocious (not to mention not the least bit funny); I think it's fairly clear by now, that most around the world found this prank to be ill conceived. But having said that, I couldn't help but wonder why this poor woman would take her own life. When I read that all she'd done was hand the phone over to another one of the nurses, and that it was THAT nurse who gave out the information about the Duchess, I couldn't help but wonder what caused this woman to become suicidal. I thought that, well, perhaps she was just an extremely sensitive person.

But when I found this recent article, stating that she'd been on heavy doses of anti-depressants for quite awhile - some 9 months - it was then that I started understanding just what may have been the real issue. She certainly seems to have been a lovely, if not somewhat unstable person to begin with. The prank was enough to send her over the edge, but she was also on heavy anti-depressants - at least at one point not that long ago - so I don't think my new found assumption that perhaps this bit of information as to her suicide helps to further explain what happened, is too much of a stretch.

I think our mainstream news media needs to start asking some very critical questions regarding the state of our mental health care system - around the world.

I can't help but feel there is a biological component to ALL mental health issues. Just my own opinion, though...

Media Scholar,

Not sure who were directing your question; if it was me, I think my point is clear.

After learning about the dangerous side effects of psychotropic drugs I can't help but suspect that the use of these drugs to treat the symptoms of autism behaviors will increase. And unfortunately, the intertwining of these drugs into the autism standard of care will create and is already creating the Iatrogenic Autism Tragedy Round 2.

Dr. Wakefield:
Thank you for article.

I am hoping that it is read everywhere!

Louis

Media Scholar;
I think that it was also stated that the hard drive on the computer was smashed.

Seems to be a lot of thinking going on for some one that has aspergers, in a drug induced psychosis and the mother was reported telling her friends he was getting worse.

From my own life experiences from different sources with those with mental illnesses --once these guys give out a med the ones that prescribe the meds are harder to get a hold of than a the hardest medical doctor you can imagine.

if you were a psycharist and did not acknowledge Mrs. Lantz's problems as she called and called wouldn't you cover it up too?

Just wondering on a hard drive being smashed????

Dear Dr. Wakfield- thank you for this article, and all your work and sacrifice on behalf of the ASD community. I can only imagine how hard this journey has been on you and your family.

I know personally children who have had their gut issues healed directly as a result of you and your colleague's ground breaking research at RFH.

Now, it seems to me that your work is being properly acknowledged by the very groups that seek to discredit you:

http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/130/Supplement_2/S160.extract?cited-by=yes&legid=pediatrics;130/Supplement_2/S160

I am curious if you can comment on the JPEDs article, which appears to me to basically restate and re-open the issues which your team was the first to identify. Is this not a repudiation of BMJ/Deer's assertion that gut disease and ASD are not associated, certainly not in the Lancet work?

Wishing you and yours peaceful Christmas and New Year, and to the entire AoA community.

O/S

Thank you, Dr. Wakefield, for your unceasing efforts to help our children!

At least one newspaper reported that an FBI investigator said no psychiatric meds were found in the house.
-----------
And your point?

Just found this: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2252290/Royal-nurse-answered-hoax-Duchess-Cambridge-attempted-kill-twice-before.html

This article states, in part:

..."The nurse who committed suicide after answering a hoax phone call about the Duchess of Cambridge made two attempts to kill herself last winter and had been prescribed antidepressants."

"Jacintha Saldanha, who took her own life days after the call from Australian DJs pretending to be the Queen and Prince Charles, attempted to commit suicide last December with an overdose of pills during a family visit to India."

"She survived after being rushed to hospital but tried to commit suicide again just nine days later by apparently jumping from a building."

"Ms Saldanha, 46, spent several days in intensive care before receiving psychiatric treatment and being prescribed a course of powerful antidepressants for nine months."

This information came out in India's news media before it was picked up over here...go figure. I wondered about this - thinking that her suicide didn't make much sense, given that all she did was transfer the call that came in from these pranksters over to the nurse who was treating the Duchess. She gave out NO personal information about the Duchess' medical condition, so I couldn't figure out why she took her own life re: this prank call.

Now this all makes sense. And so it continues...


Andy,

Thank-you for your article.

Until individuals of these "BIG" corporations are found liable,then, as a parent(and my son's Autism is iatrogenic), I cannot move forward to help him.

Elizabeth Gillespie

Mum to 11 yr old, severely Autistic, non-verbal and vaccine injured son.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f80KL42nc0E&feature=relmfu
Deadly Prescription SSRI 3 of 8
Dr Tracy is interviewed on Secret Truth radio
Resume -
A study in 2009 said SSRI stories.com. was the most valid data available on SSRI- induced murder / suicide.* School shootings, family shootings, are increasing at an alarming rate.
SSRIs disrupt REM sleep and lead to REM Sleep Behaviour Disorder. [86% with REM Sleep Disorder are on antidepressants.] REM sleep will then happen while awake, but in a ‘dream state’. Increased Serotonin can create horrifying nightmares. This leads to these nightmare scenarios being enacted for real while in a ‘dream state’.
In 2008, drug companies were making $200million a day on antidepressants alone.
Coming of SSRIs has to be done very slowly indeed – shaving tiny bits off the pills. The same applies to raising the dose. If reduction is done too quickly, psychosis, hostility or suicide can result.

[*http://ssristories.com/]

Panacea or Pandora? Our serotonin Nightmare - by Dr Ann Blake-Tracy Phd
http://books.google.co.uk/books/about/Prozac.html?id=aEbqNK-_F2AC

Scotland - adult care and support learning-disability/ASD Cross party reference group minutes [Now deleted online]
Agenda Item 10: Criminal and forensic issues and ASD - Brief introduction - Dr Iain McClure
10.2 "It is vital that people are not misdiagnosed. A significant number of people may be being criminalised (i.e. their ASD is not picked up in criminal investigations of aberrant behaviour) and / or possibly admitted to forensic psychiatry units such as Carstairs and medicated for possible 'false positive' diagnoses e.g. for schizophrenia (which has many symptoms and signs on mental state examination that overlap with ASD) when they are in fact undiagnosed autism. Such scenarios may lead to possible miscarriages of justice, as well as inappropriate clinical management approaches."

http://bestpractice.bmj.com/best-practice/monograph/1066/diagnosis.html

“The most common cause of acute psychosis is drug toxicity from recreational, PRESCRIPTION or OTC drugs. Patients with structural brain conditions, or toxic or metabolic process presenting with psychosis, usually have other physical manifestations that are readily detectable by history, neurological examination, or routine laboratory tests.”

Paul Shattock in Autism File Magazine Issue 31 -
[He is now president of World Autism Organisation]
Adolescents and Adults with Asperger’s Syndrome
“Personally, I have come across literally hundreds of adults who have been diagnosed late in life and so many of them have been misdiagnosed as suffering from bipolar or dyspraxia or Tourette’s syndrome, the features of which constitute parts of the tapestry of Asperger’s. Worse still, many are diagnosed at some stage as having schizophrenia and have consequently been treated with powerful drugs which are completely inappropriate for Asperger’s and which can clearly make some of the symptoms worse. [And this is seen as evidence that higher doses should be given and so on…]”

http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/14651858.CD004677.pub2/abstract;jsessionid=98F5F2499D716AE4AE5A474D3082F2C1.d02t02
[Cochrane Collaboration]
"There is little evidence that SSRIs can help and children may suffer serious adverse effects as a result of taking the drugs."

http://www.scotsman.com/news/health/autistic_adults_locked_up_after_false_diagnosis_1_1359567 [Jan 2002]
"AUTISTIC adults have been wrongly diagnosed as schizophrenic and incarcerated for up to 30 years, Scotland on Sunday can reveal.
Experts fear up to 20 Scots have been mistakenly branded a danger to themselves or others and locked up in psychiatric hospitals where they are given inappropriate drugs.
Doctors and campaigners blame a lack of Scottish expertise in adult autism for the mistaken diagnoses and have called for an urgent government inquiry."

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/1445688/Scandal-of-asylums-that-lock-up-the-sane.html
Scandal of asylums that lock up the sane. Nov 2003
“Up to 60 people are being held in hospital prisons for the criminally insane despite a recognition that they have been misdiagnosed and are not mentally ill. The patients, who were declared to be schizophrenic, are now accepted to have Asperger's syndrome, a mild form of autism which is not an illness and which is unresponsive to drugs.”


Remember when Anna Nicole Smith died of a drug overdose, a lot of the reporting was about what each of her doctors, all named publicly, had prescribed. Her medical privacy didn't seem to be an issue. Granted, hers was a drug overdose case, but, there is a stark omission in the reporting on Adam Lanza in that I don't hear any factual reporting about his medical care. Where are his doctors? Not that the public should be privy to all of his medical records, but surely those records would quickly end the speculation as to whether he had a relevant prescription drug history. What the public hears is that drugs weren't found in his house. So what? His computer was also destroyed.

Unfortunately, despite the President's good intentions, an increase in mental health services will add up to little more than more drugs. People need to rise up and adamantly demand transparency and accountability from all guilty parties - medicine, government, media, pharma - who perpetuate and feed off of this sadistic system. A new mental health care paradigm must be developed.

And you are so right. A bank robber isn't required to return only 10% of what he steals. Pharma's criminal fines should equal a stiff penalty added to every penny of profit made from the crimes, in addition to long prison terms for the offenders.

I would bet Adam was under the care of a physician. Probably a psychiatrist. I read an interview this morning of a former teacher she said he was very OCD. His brother tells the police on the day of the shooting Adam had a personality disorder. Aspergers diagnosis. Also, babysitter said he was on meds when he was younger. I would be very confident this boy has been taking meds for a long time when you add all that up.

Adam destroyed his computer. Do you think he could have disposed of some pill bottles?

He had 3 days to plan all this since his mother was off on a trip staying at a hotel 4 hours away

Has a doctor treating him or this family been found? I heard on a news report from earlier this week his mother had lupus. An autoimmune disease.


Dr. Berelowitz blaming AS, even incorrectly diagnosing Bryant with it to support his theory, and Dr. Mullen avoiding any consideration of the possibility of drugs as a contributing factor, raise suspicion in my mind about motive; that these aren't mistakes but deliberate posturing to protect the practise of prescribing them. My suspicion relies on them knowing full well how these drugs are contributing, but I'm pretty confident they do.

One of the poor kids killed had a form of autism

http://uk.news.yahoo.com/school-shooting-tributes-british-victim-015940766.html#y4CrtJn

"that Dylan - who had a form of autism that hindered his language development - would flap his arms when he got excited."

Also this article which states ...

"At least 42 percent of inmates have some form of learning deficiency, and, of those, 82 percent had indications of specific learning disabilities, especially in the area of auditory and visual discrimination."

http://www.eric.ed.gov/ERICWebPortal/search/detailmini.jsp?_nfpb=true&_&ERICExtSearch_SearchValue_0=ED269624&ERICExtSearch_SearchType_0=no&accno=ED269624

But then so much money is made in locking peole up from the food ,laundry etc probably not far behind Pharma...so why change ..they won`t unless America wakes up..The UK passed out years ago..

Angus

Andy

One of the things which is so vile about this is that pharmaceutical companies often engaged in criminal cover ups treat their negligence as a commercial risk - and no one person under the present system is ever going to be held to account. Also, unfortunately the ever expanding autism population is a vulnerable and often captive market. The recent initiatives of Autism Speaks of developing a new range products for a screened population are in this regard particularly troubling.

http://www.ageofautism.com/2011/05/1-in-38-autism-speaks-new-normal-is-the-biggest-business-bonanza-ever.html

http://www.ageofautism.com/2012/03/the-phoenicians-autism-recovery-denial-drug-profits-and-the-medias-flat-earth-2012.html

And if anything does go wrong they can always blame it on the condition.

John

Do note, though, that there is no evidence to-date that the shooter in Newtown was taking any medication. The rumor about Fanapt turned out to be false; the person who supplied that was an imposter claiming to be a family member. At least one newspaper reported that an FBI investigator said no psychiatric meds were found in the house.

Reading the numerous reports of the connection between prescribed psychotrophic drugs and senseless, inexplicable acts of extreme violence, is frightening.

My concerns regarding this possible connection was further heightened when I heard President Obama say .. "We are going to need making access to mental health at least as easy as access to a gun".

Shouldn't we first undertake a serious effort to explore whether or not those who already committed violent acts had been prescribed psychotrophic drugs .. to identify WHAT .. if any .. drugs are linked more often to these violent acts?

Consider another recent, inexplicable phenomenon .. Sec of Defense Leon Panetta reported that suicides are occurring at a rate of one a day in the military this year. From 2001 to August 12, 2012 the US military counted 2,676 suicides. The Dept of Veteran Affairs reports that 3,871 veterans who were enrolled in VA care (mental health?) killed themselves in 2008 and 2009.

Most studies of the military's recent high suicide rates identified "failed intimate relationships, occuppational, legal,financial .. and .. PSYCHIATRIC problems as top stressors for military members.

If I am not mistaken .. these figures only represent suicides .. they do not include acts of senseless violence that may have been committed.

In any event, the main-stream media has been AWOL in asking the critical question:

"Is there a connection between prescribed psychotrophic drug use and the growing numbers of senseless violence in the US .. as well as the growing numbers of military personnel committing suicide?"

If it can be proven the prescription of psychotrophic drugs has contributed to these recent suicide and violent acts .. we need to make certain that "easy access to mental health" is the RIGHT solution .. rather than exacerbating our problems.

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