studies and reports aren't exactly giving pharmaceutical companies
a clean bill of health when it comes to medicines formulated
to relieve depression in children. In fact, some of the potential
dangers associated with these medications are actually prompting
U. S. Senate, House and FDA investigations. It's something
you should pay attention to!
Two medical journals recently published the results of trials
of antidepressant drugs administered to children. The first
study found that previous investigations have "exaggerated
the benefits" of antidepressant use in children, and that
antidepressant drugs "cannot confidently be recommended as
a treatment option for childhood depression."
Ironically, another study found that more and more children
are being prescribed antidepressant medication: Between 1998-2002,
use by boys increased by 34%, and by girls by 68%. Even worse,
preschool children were the fastest-growing group - Among
preschool girls, use doubled, and in boys, use increased more
But that's not all. The House Energy and Commerce Committee
and the Senate Finance Committee have proposed an investigation
based on FDA activity, and - not to be outdone - the FDA is
initiating its own probe concerning reported links between
antidepressants and suicide, with results scheduled for release
in summer 2004.
In short: Be careful. As with any childhood health condition,
make sure your doctor performs a comprehensive evaluation
and discusses conservative management, rather than just "prescribing."
If not, in trying to combat your child's depression, you may
just well cause your own!
For more on pediatric health, visit www.chiroweb.com/find/archives/pediatrics/
Jureidini JN, et al. Efficacy and safety of antidepressants
for children and adolescents. British Medical Journal,
April 10, 2004;328.
Delate T, Gelenberg AJ, Simmons VA, et al. Trends in the
use of antidepressants in a national sample of commercially
insured pediatric patients, 1998 to 2002. Psychiatric Services