Data Lacking on Psychiatric Drugs for Kids

By Abrad · Oct 2, 2006 · ·
  1. Abrad
    ( A new report from the American Psychological Association (APA), led by Ronald Brown, Ph.D., dean of the College of Health Professions, is sounding the alarm on children’s treatment for mental illness. Gaps in scientific knowledge about which treatments work best, a lack of clinicians trained to work with children, cuts in Medicaid funding and poor reimbursement for mental health services is leading to many children being treated with medication despite limited effectiveness and safety.

    Brown chaired the APA working group that produced this report.

    “These findings are in part related to our healthcare system’s failure to provide sufficiently for children, particularly mental health care. As a result, much of the care for problems such as depression, anxiety and ADD has been limited to medication, even though therapy has been found to be effective and less risky,” he said.

    Research published earlier this year showed a five-fold increase in the use of antipsychotic drugs to treat behavioral and emotional problems in children and adolescents from 1993 to 2002.

    The working group’s report identifies and calls attention to several “notable gaps” in the knowledge base upon which psychotropics are currently being prescribed, including anti-depressants and anti-psychotics. The report also notes that existing evidence for both psychosocial and psychopharmacological treatments are “uneven across disorders, age groups, and other defining characteristics of race, ethnicity, and socioeconomic status.”

    “Furthermore,” the report states, “data are lacking concerning the long-term effects of the majority of treatments, both psychosocial and psychopharmacological, as well as their effects on functional outcomes” such as academic achievement and peer relationships.

    Finally, the report notes that the lack of availability of all pharmaceutical data on psychotropics and their effects prevents the news media and the public from a full understanding of which treatments work, which do not, and the possible adverse side effects of some medications.

    The working group recommended that decisions about treatment be guided by the need to balance the possible benefits of the treatment with its possible harms, including the absence of treatment.

    Full text of the article is available from the APA Public Affairs Office or at <--this link won't work for me

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  1. Beeker
    This reminds me of the time Prozac came out and they started putting kids on it in 1989. Funny how many of my friends blew their heads off in the following year when they stopped taking it. I blame the pot.

    These guys are almost all quacks. I have to see a this one to get my Dexedrine prescription and he is cool but has this Pharmacy sales kid coming in with Effexor free samples and "30 days Adderall 40mg XR FREE" credit cards. The card actually has 'FREE' in caps like that.
  2. angeliclight
    Much of the problem arises from children who can't communicate enough to be tested acurately. It's what do the "teachers" observe, the "school nurse", the "school system psychiatrist (who is only at the school once a week for a day to see about twenty kids)", the "pediatrition", the "babysitter". I'm a part of the education system, and I can tell you that most decisions are made according to checklists. I'm a teacher and I get about ten or so a week, they get passed on to the school nurse who fills out more, and the checklists get picked up by the parents and taken to the pediatrition who looks at them for about five minutes before he sees the patient and his/her mother. Then, after looking in the child's ears, throat, and nose, and asking a few questions of the parent because the child is so petrified by the forgein probing they've received, they decide what to perscribe. ONLY and I mean ONLY if children are sent to a CHILD PSYCHOLOGIST for several hours of testing and evaluation outside of the school system do I believe that the prognosis and prescriptions are usually valid. But take a guess how many parents can health plans help out enough to pay for expensive private testing. Not to many. That's why so much of the testing is done through public school systems in which the name of the game is SPEED, because there are too many customers (children) than can be serviced appropriately. Parents and their lawyer's ears would perk up if they knew that student's who have a legalized IEP (Individualized Education Plan) don't even get half the service hours they're supposed to because there are too many kids in every school across the USA. This is why the numbers are off, this is why too many kids are psychologically medicated, and this is why as many parents as possible should carefully monitor everything their child's teacher's say because they spend the most time with them aside from parents themselves. And most of all, parents who spend a lot of time with their children should listen to themselves when it comes to medication.
  3. Zaprenz
    DESOXYN has to be the best.

    We won't allow ANYONE to use "methamphetamine", it is the curse of modern man and his demise into EVIL.

    With the exception of CHILDREN, as long as they have ADD, no worries! :crazy (Their young immature brains, if anything can BETTER deal with it than us aldults)

    I don't think much of Meth myself but one has to laugh at the hypocrisy of drugs laws.

    [Desoxyn = methamphetamine (not dexedrine)]
  4. Zaprenz

    Please tell me your joking...
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