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  1. Researchers Warn of “Brain Atrophy” In Children Prescribed Antipsychotics

    In a new commentary, researchers discuss the evidence that antipsychotic medications may cause brain atrophy—especially in children, whose brains are still developing. The article was written by Tarun Bastiampillai, Peter Parry, and Stephen Allison at Flinders University in Australia, and was published in the Australian and New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry (ANZJP). The authors write that it is accepted wisdom in psychiatry that children are more susceptible to the adverse effects of...
  2. Everybody Loves Weed, Midterms Suggest

    A lot was at stake in the 2018 midterm election, including weed. Though the issue of legalization didn't dominate campaigns to the extent that healthcare, immigration, and flat-out racism did, cannabis continued to crawl toward full legalization. Even though 58 percent of Americans support legal cannabis, it's still prohibited on a federal level. A lack of action from Congress has led individual states to gradually phase out prohibition, and that trend continued on Tuesday. Marijuana...
  3. Flooding The World With Psychiatric Drugs Could Boost The Burden of Mental Disorders

    To reduce the rising burden of mental disorders around the world, the Lancet Commission on Global Mental Health and Sustainable Development has declared a need to increase psychiatric services globally, which should include an effort to “reduce the cost and improve the supply of effective psychotropic drugs for mental, neurological, and substance use disorders.” While reducing the burden of mental disorders is certainly a laudable goal, we believe that implementing this plan will increase...
  4. Psychiatrist Over-Medicated Hundreds of Children In His Care

    New Mexico Attorney General Hector Balderas Unlike many doctors, Albuquerque psychiatrist Edwin Bacon Hall, 74, accepted patients on Medicaid and saw them in a timely manner. He often treated foster children, who were sent his way with the approval of their legal guardian, the Children Youth and Families Department (CYFD). On at least one occasion in his office, he prescribed drugs while dressed as a clown. But what really drew attention was his habit of handing out pills. “Hall has been...
  5. "Agitated" Patients Enrolled In Clinical Trials Without Consent Given Ketamine And Antipsychotics

    A Minneapolis hospital tested powerful antipsychotics and the potent anesthetic ketamine on emergency room patients without their knowledge or consent, violating regulations on human research, federal inspectors have determined. Based on those findings, a health watchdog group on Monday urged federal regulators to suspend all clinical trials at the hospital. In a letter to the Food and Drug Administration and the Department of Health and Human Services office that protects human research...
  6. Psilocybin Granted Breakthrough Therapy Status By FDA For Treatment-Resistant Depression

    In an extraordinary step forward for the psychedelic drug research community, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has just given psilocybin therapy for treatment-resistant depression a Breakthrough Therapy designation. This classification suggests the treatment has demonstrated significant potential in early clinical evidence, allowing the FDA to assist and expedite subsequent development and review processes. The FDA's Breakthrough Therapy designation was created in 2012 as a way of...
  7. How psychedelic therapies are making a comeback

    Psychedelic drugs have long been outlawed. Now psychiatrists want to bring them back. Dyani Lewis reports. On a sweltering New York evening in August 2016, Jesse Noakes finally found relief from years of mind-numbing depression. As he sat on the sofa facing the therapist his gloom melted away, replaced by feelings of clarity, warmth and enthusiasm. “It was magical,” he says, “something that I was so, so desperate for.” The Australian writer had spent his 20s cycling from one...
  8. Why psychedelics could be the new class of antidepressant

    Growing evidence suggests that hallucinogenic drugs can help quell depression. Following the government’s review of medicinal cannabis last month, Jack Dutton asks whether we are at a turning point in drug policy. In a lab in Basel in April 1943, Swiss scientist Albert Hofmann accidentally touched his hand with his mouth while he was synthesising a chemical intended to stimulate respiration and the nervous system. After ingesting the drug, he realised he had made something far more potent:...
  9. The FDA and Adulterated Supplements—Dereliction of Duty

    The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) plays an essential role in ensuring the safety of vitamins, minerals, botanicals, probiotics, amino acids, and glandular extracts sold as dietary supplements in the United States. While the FDA does not assess the safety of supplements prior to market, the agency is tasked with identifying and removing adulterated and hazardous supplements from the marketplace.  ⸻  Credit: ShutterstockAdulteration of dietary supplements typically involves 1 of 2...
  10. Two-Thirds Of Schizophrenia Patients Do Not Remit On Antipsychotics

    A new analysis of antipsychotic treatment of schizophrenia (published in Schizophrenia Bulletin) has found that two-thirds of patients treated this way do not experience symptom remission. Additionally, one in five did not experience any improvement at all. The research was led by Myrto Samara, Adriani Nikolakopoulou, Georgia Salanti, and Stefan Leucht, working through the Institute of Social and Preventive Medicine (ISPM) at the University of Bern, Switzerland. The authors note that...
  11. Review: Antidepressant Withdrawal Is Common, Potentially Severe And Long-Lasting

    New research by Dr. James Davies and Dr. John Read compares the results of a systematic review of the incidence, duration, and severity of antidepressant withdrawal with current clinical guidelines in the US and the UK. The researchers found that more than half of antidepressant users experienced withdrawal and that, in nearly half of these cases, effects were severe. Their results contradict existing clinical guidelines, which regularly claim that antidepressant withdrawal is typically mild...
  12. Recovering ice addicts treated with ADHD medication in Australian trials

    A drug prescribed to treat an attention deficit disorder is being used to help methamphetamine users kick their addictions in trials across New South Wales, South Australia and Victoria. The drug lisdexamfetamine, also known as lisdex, is often used to treat Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), but researchers believe it could help people reduce their dependence to the drug ice. Trials are already underway in New South Wales and South Australia, and soon Victoria will join them...
  13. USA - Drug overdose epidemic has been growing exponentially for decades

    Death rates from drug overdoses in the US have been on an exponential growth curve that began at least 15 years before the mid-1990s surge in opioid prescribing, suggesting that overdose death rates may continue along this same historical growth trajectory for years to come. These findings suggest that, to be successful, prevention efforts must extend beyond control of specific drugs to address deeper factors driving the epidemic. Death rates from drug overdoses in the U.S. have been on an...
  14. Fact or Fiction: Can You Really Sweat Out Toxins?

    There are plenty of good reasons to work up a sweat. Detoxifying your body isn’t one of them. Sweating is a bodily function that used to be taboo, with women in particular being told they don’t sweat, they glow. But look at any fashion magazine or beauty blog today, and you’ll find that sweat is in style. From infrared saunas to hot yoga, towel-soaking activities are being touted not only as relaxation tools, but also as ways to stay healthy by flushing out toxins. Too bad you can’t sweat...
  15. Scientists take big step toward finding non-addictive painkiller

    Coastal Plains Toad (Incilius nebulifer)CREDIT: DYP With the support of the National Institute on Drug Abuse, scientists at Wake Forest School of Medicine have been working to find a safe, non-addictive pain killer to help fight the current opioid crisis in this country. And they may have done just that, though in an animal model. Known as AT-121, the new chemical compound has dual therapeutic action that suppressed the addictive effects of opioids and produced morphine-like analgesic...
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