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… in the case of depression would be the practice of giving depressed people multiple anti-depressants. A recent study suggests that

Combination antidepressant treatment using 2 antidepressants appears to offer no advantage over monotherapy in patients with major depressive disorder (MDD) and may even do more harm than good, new research suggests.


A public policy group in England responds to the amazing statistics on British women and their use of antidepressants:

These shocking figures reveal an escalating crisis in women’s use of anti-depressants. We know from working with women and girls in our centres that anti-depressants have a role to play but they are too readily prescribed as the first and only remedy. Three in five women are offered no alternatives to drugs at their reviews and one in four currently on anti-depressants have waited more than a year [to be considered for psychotherapy].

Margaret Soltan, July 8, 2011 1:19PM
Posted in: march of science

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4 Responses to “Polypharmacy…”

  1. dmf Says:

    same here in the good old usa, can’t tell you how many folks are on meds and are getting no symptom relief but still take them, if they mention this to their providers (which rarely happens without prompting) than they often get a 2nd script on top of the 1st, the worst are folks coming out of alcohol/substance abuse in-patient units who have whole laundry lists.
    as for the 2nd study how hard would it be for medical providers to ask about the stressors in their pt’s lives? too hard apparently.

  2. Bernard Carroll Says:

    This is the price we all are paying for the missteps by the psychiatric guild over 30 years ago. What was called the psychiatric bible (DSM-III) has had a ruinous effect on clinical practice and on psychiatric research. I have called the present situation an epistemologic quagmire, here: http://hcrenewal.blogspot.com/2009/04/in-defense-of-psychiatric-diagnoses-and.html

  3. Nancy Wilson Says:

    In an editorial accompanying the AJP report, Dr. Carol Tamminga, chair of psychiatry at UT Southwestern, envisioned “…a good era when we can talk with high expectations about personalized and preemptive psychiatric approaches….” (When Is Polypharmacy an Advantage? Am J Psychiatry 168:663, July 2011). Not surprisingly, Dr. Tamminga glosses over the department’s failures.

    John Nardo, MD, has written extensively about the escapades of UT Southwestern psychiatry faculty, here:


  4. Erin O'Connor Says:

    When health care resources are scarce and rationed, time-consuming treatments such as talking therapy go out the window. It takes seconds to write a script, and then the patient can be defined as being treated. That’s certainly a piece of the explanation here, though not the whole of it.

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