Why Antidepressants Cause Brain Damage, Breast Cancer, and Early Mortality

By Pjotr777 · Jun 5, 2018 · ·
  1. Pjotr777
    When you see a headline like this in the news, “Anti-inflammatory Drugs Reduce the Effectiveness of SSRI Antidepressants,” what does it make you think? The impression is that if you are taking an SSRI then you shouldn’t take any pain pills if you want the antidepressants to work, which is the clear message of the press release1 that accompanied the study. This means that SSRI antidepressants must be “working” by some type of inflammatory method.

    It is now common knowledge that low-grade excess inflammation is behind virtually every disease of aging. The obvious contradictions don’t add up to health. Pulling strings further, as I explain in this article, leads to an understanding as to why antidepressants are associated with an increased risk of breast cancer, brain damage over time, and a significantly increased risk of early mortality. This is information the pill pushers at Big Pharma would prefer you never understood.

    The study showed that the use of anti-inflammatory pain medications, such as ibuprofen, aspirin and naproxen, reduced the “effectiveness” of the most widely used type of antidepressants. A combination of an animal study and a large scale human data evaluation led researchers to conclude that the typical response rate to SSRIs of 54 percent dropped to 40 percent.

    “The mechanism underlying these effects is not yet clear. Nevertheless, our results may have profound implications for patients, given the very high treatment resistance rates for depressed individuals taking SSRIs,” notes Dr. Jennifer Warner-Schmidt. “Many elderly individuals suffering from depression also have arthritic or related diseases and as a consequence are taking both antidepressant and anti-inflammatory medications. Our results suggest that physicians should carefully balance the advantages and disadvantages of continuing anti-inflammatory therapy in patients being treated with antidepressant medications.”

    It appears that Dr. Warner-Schmidt is trying to say that if you want to help your brain pain you may need to live with your physical pain – a testament to the ineptitude of Western Medicine’s drug-based therapies. The real story is what isn’t being said or explained; as almost nobody would take an SSRI antidepressant for any length of time if he or she understood what was actually just discovered.

    These researchers noted that SSRIs provoked a release of pro-inflammatory signals in the brain, TNFa and IFNy, which were blocked by the anti-inflammatory drugs. TNFa (tumor necrosis factor alpha) is an inflammatory cytokine produced by immune cells and by glial cells in the brain in response to a problem. For example, overweight people make far too much TNFa in their inflamed white adipose tissue, which can travel up to the brain, cross the blood brain barrier, and induce brain-inflammation resulting in the cognitive decline and depression that is so closely linked to obesity. IFNy (interferon gamma) is a potent activator of an immune-related response, typically to viral infection or a tumor. It specifically boosts the production of highly inflammatory nitric oxide (iNOS). This compound is essential for an immune system battle and is highly inflammatory to healthy nerve cells and to the cardiovascular system.

    So how on earth could taking these brain-inflammatory SSRI antidepressant drugs help a person feel better mentally?

    The BDNF Response to Health and Trauma

    BDNF (brain-derived neurotrophic factor) is one of the most potent healing compounds in your brain. Adequate BDNF is needed for brain plasticity, cognitive intelligence, optimal learning, positive mood, etc. In other words BDNF is your brain rejuvenation compound. BDNF can prevent and treat Alzheimer’s disease. BDNF is even active outside your brain wherein it helps your muscles burn fat! A lack of BDNF sets the stage for addictive behavior2, including compulsive overeating3. Those with the lowest levels of BDNF have the worst depression4.

    You can activate BDNF with aerobic exercise, even consistent moderate aerobics. Aerobics in older adults has been shown to stop brain shrinkage5 and boost BDNF while preventing depression. Many nutrients6 facilitate the production and release of BDNF (DHA, pantethine7, acetyl-l-carnitine8, zinc9, blueberries10, curcumin11, niacin12, DHEA13, and likely many others). Nutrients work very well to maintain BDNF levels in the face of high levels of stress14, as any of the prior study links will explain. To properly activate BDNF also requires proper function of thyroid hormone15, which is problematic in many people with depression.

    BDNF production in your brain occurs within glial cells (astrocytes). It is very important to understand that BDNF production can be activated by multiple signals coming into the glial cells, not just one type of input. In other words, we have glial cell activation in response to healthy behaviors like exercise and good nutrition. This is part of the ongoing process of keeping your brain rejuvenated and in tip-top working condition. In animal experiments following stroke, voluntary exercise16 helps produce high levels of BDNF and nerve regeneration whereas forced exercise does not.

    BDNF is also activated during times of brain injury, to repair the injury17. Nerve cells do not split and divide like other cells in your body. Rather, nerve cells must either fix themselves or have a strategy to develop new nerve growth; both processes require BDNF. Thus, one way to stimulate BDNF is to injure nerve cells.

    It is this latter strategy that SSRI antidepressants utilize – in a manner never intended by Mother Nature. The details of this rather bizarre method of operation are explained in a detailed review article18. In brief, one way SSRIs are supposed to work is by enhancing the flow of serotonin, an effect that would be felt immediately upon taking them. However, it is well recognized that an additional mechanism is in play, as for many it takes several weeks or longer before their mood seems to improve. This latter effect is due to the SSRI medication progressively accumulating in glial cells, inducing a highly inflammatory toxic response, and triggering the release of BDNF. Now you can understand why taking anti-inflammatory drugs would interfere with SSRI function.

    Understand that such a strategy to boost BDNF production is highly problematic. It can just as readily result in suicide or worsened depression. A person who is depressed is lacking BDNF. This means their credit cards for BDNF have been maxed out trying to cope with the stress in their life. In essence, SSRI antidepressants are like getting a new BDNF credit card from a loan shark. The interest rates are astronomically high, i.e., the loan is given in the form of excitotoxic brain cell injury. Talk about robbing Peter to pay Paul. This is a very short term remedy, at best.

    According to the review article above, the method of BDNF activation by SSRI antidepressants utilizes a specific gene signaling pathway called TrkB (Tropomyosin-associated kinase). The overexpression of this particular gene signal is known to cause breast cancer19. It is not that BDNF causes breast cancer. Indeed, just about every nutrient listed above that boosts BDNF production naturally also protects against breast cancer. This is the difference between nutrition and drugs. Nutrients and exercise act in harmony with the brain to bolster its natural function, while nourishing and protecting other areas of the body. In this case SSRIs manipulate an injury recovery strategy to boost BDNF by actually poisoning brain cells. This strategy was never intended to be used on an ongoing basis. It is quite clear that the TNFa activation of BDNF20 can have deleterious effects on the nervous systems and may not help BDNF production at all. The science provides a direct link to cancer, especially breast cancer.

    Breast Cancer and SSRI Use

    Human data regarding SSRI use and breast cancer is highly controversial. The reason is due to Big Pharma-funded “scientists for hire” who crank out studies that say there is no risk. And this is only one aspect of the blatant and fraudulent misrepresentation of SSRI risks and benefits.

    This issue came front and center in an April 2011 open access article published in Plos One21 that reviewed 61 studies regarding breast and ovarian cancer and antidepressant use. The overall data showed an 11 percent increased risk for breast and ovarian cancer associated with all types of antidepressants. The association between the SSRI type of antidepressants and cancer was stronger than for any other type of antidepressant. All SSRI studies but one showed an increased risk of female cancer. Additionally, this April 2011 study also evaluated the financial ties of study authors to the companies that make antidepressants. Shockingly, none of the 15 researchers with financial ties to the industry found any risk for breast/ovarian cancer in the studies they conducted, whereas 43 percent of the researchers without industry ties found clear evidence of cancer risk. The authors called for more research to determine the exact nature of this risk, since 10 percent - 15 percent of women are on these drugs. Don’t expect the FDA to do anything meaningful any time soon.

    Another angle is that women with breast cancer are often put on SSRI medications because they are depressed about their health. According to a February 2010 open access article published in the British Medical Journal22, the SSRI antidepressants block the effectiveness of Tamoxifen causing up to a 91 percent increased risk of death from breast cancer in a 2.5 year period of follow-up.

    The Disturbing Picture of the Cruel SSRI Scam

    The SSRI literature cover-up extends far beyond attempting to hide or negate the link to breast cancer. The fraudulent scam goes to the heart of the matter- whether the drugs even work very well at all.

    In 2008 the New England Journal of Medicine exposed the extent of the antidepressant deception. The great majority of negative SSRI studies were never published. A whistleblower who had worked at the FDA and was familiar with the data forced the data to public view. It showed 37 studies the FDA considered positive were published, whereas only three negative studies were published. Of the 33 studies the FDA considered negative or questionable, 22 were not published, and 11were published with spin to look positive when they were not. This made antidepressant studies appear 96 percent positive in the literature, when in fact the studies were only 51percent positive. In fact, as Newsweek magazine explained in January 2010, that “benefit” was hardly any different than the placebo.

    On the other hand, rather extreme side effect data from taking SSRI antidepressants continues to pour in. In November 2008, it was shown that anyone over the age of 50 taking SSRIs on a continual basis had double the risk for fractures, as excessive serotonin production directly blocks new bone formation. In March 2009 it was reported in a large study of women that antidepressant use, independent of other variables, was linked to a statistically increased risk of sudden cardiac death. In December 2009 researchers reported that in 136,000 postmenopausal women taking SSRIs there was a 45 percent increased risk of stroke of any kind, a 32 percent increased risk of mortality23 from any cause, a 212 percent increased risk of a hemorrhagic stroke, and a 210 percent increased risk that the stroke damage would be so severe it would cause death. As mentioned at the beginning of this article, the increased rate of inflammation in the brain, especially activating highly inflammatory iNOS in response to INFy, is a clear mechanism that could cause these dangerous strokes in the brain.

    The issue of cardiovascular, breast cancer, and mortality adverse effects from SSRIs is far from settled. The industry will do everything in its power to pay scientists to publish studies that state or imply there are no problems. The battle will go on for years, with massive litigation expenses hanging over the heads of Big Pharma. The FDA, as always, is missing in action. However, to the person taking an SSRI to feel better, it is clear that the drugs work by inflammatory mechanisms that are not healthy over the long haul and possibly not even in the short term. SSRIs are a credit card at best; one day you will need to pay up.

    While I am well aware of people who feel symptomatic improvement from taking antidepressants, this information serves as a wake-up call. Hopefully it will help such people find alternative solutions such as exercise, weight loss, a better diet, and dietary supplements that can help boost BDNF, improve stress management skills, and get nondrug psychotherapy as needed. Getting off SSRI medications requires that you work with your doctor with the long term goal to be off medications because you don’t need them. I have first hand knowledge of many people who have been injured by SSRI medications, including suicide. The fact that the SSRI medications, while helpful to some, are clinically proven to be no better than a placebo, represents one of the great con jobs of all time on the unsuspecting American public. Maybe Congress should investigate this issue instead of wasting time and taxpayer money on Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens.

    Original Source

    Written by: Byron J. Richards,

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Recent User Reviews

  1. peacefullake
    "Just BS"
    1/5, 1 out of 5, reviewed Jun 6, 2018
    Article contains just scaremongering and no reputable sources to back up the statements made.
    Studied are mentioned but no way of checking what these studies were exactly (anyone can make up studies without citing the sources of the studies)

    This is the sort of fake info thaf is spread online by those convinced there is a big Pharma wanting to kill people and other BS like that.

    Dangerous info to spread around. Anti depressants do help some people and are not just placebo but you can easily verify that with studies that you can actually read! Unlike with anything stated in this article.
  2. 5-HT2A
    "Useful, insightful article"
    5/5, 5 out of 5, reviewed Jun 6, 2018
    This article suggests a mechanism of toxicity responsible for the limited positive effects of antidepressants. It essentially suggests SSRIs are neurotoxins which cause the release of substances that repair damage in order to reduce depression, a sort of mild chemotherapy for the brain perhaps.

    It also suggests a most excellent and useful analogy, that SSRIs are like a credit card, wherein a person is merely delaying having to deal with their real problems by taking these harmful drugs, much like a pharmacological PayDay loan, wherein the ultimate consequences of delaying the inevitable carries considerable, even predatory amounts of interest. This however can be said for most drugs of dependence.
    Pjotr777 likes this.


  1. peacefullake
    This honestly sounds like a scaremongering article... Written by someone who mentions "big Pharma", "inflammation causes diseases" and other BS like that... No scientific evidence to back up the statements either (no, mentioning generic studies with no reputable sources that can be verified doesn't count as scientific proof). This is clearly written by one of those people who probably thinks that you can cure cancer with lemon and chilli and that chemotherapy is useless instead lol.
      Pjotr777 likes this.
    1. peacefullake
      Pjotr777 likes this.
    2. Pjotr777
      Excellent critical note! This is what I love about science. The quest for reality. Fundamental reality.
      peacefullake likes this.
  2. peacefullake
    The studies never published is another thing that is manipulated to support the idea that "big Pharma" wants to hide that anti depressants cause cancer etc. It's not mentioned why the studies weren't published and the conclusion was "We cannot determine whether the bias observed resulted from a failure to submit manuscripts on the part of authors and sponsors, from decisions by journal editors and reviewers not to publish, or both."
      Pjotr777 likes this.
  3. Pjotr777
    Thanks for reading and not believing what you read. I am the same: always critical (and damn stubborn). I found this article because I was looking for “neurotoxicity anti-depressants”. Sure there is some truth in it but inflating a story and manipulating presented data is a scam.
      peacefullake likes this.
  4. Pjotr777
    I am looking for a peer reviewed multi-site longitudinal research on this topic.
  5. 5-HT2A
    The reality is that antidepressants worsen depression over the long-term, just as antipsychotics worsen psychosis over the long run. Psychiatrists are trained to tell patients that that is their "illness" wherein reality the psychiatrist's behavior is itself the cause of symptoms. This is extremely common.

    The pharmaceutical industry has engaged in a systematic attempt to downplay the damaging effects of antipsychotics, psychostimulants, benzodiazepines, opiates, and antidepressants by corrupting the scientific literature. Many "scientific" journals are dependent on pharmaceutical industry ad money to operate, just as the commercial media such as CBS and NBC are, giving the industry a multifaceted mechanism to control public perception of their products. Many studies are withheld from publication because they either show high risks or a lack of efficacy, and this is made possible because of the revolving door between congress and K street, as the FDA has ceased to really function beginning in 1980. This has been long-established.

    It is true to me that this article is written a bit haphazardly, with the author making some vague generalizations which are not scientific. I do not know that it has been shown that antidepressants cause breast cancer per se. But bare in mind that MDMA was originally banned not because of widespread social problems but because very high dose of MDA caused neutotoxicity in lower primates and of course because it was really healing people and was long off-patent. If it were even possible that a recreational drug caused such cancer risk they'd be emergency scheduled at the drop of a hat.

    As to the breast cancer remark specifically, it has not been shown that SSRIs cause it per se, but that cancer patients who take SSRIs are less likely to go into remission. This is certainly worthy of further study, given that 25% of adult women are taking these drugs, which is itself astonishing given their tendency to worsen depression. I have recently posted articles on this tendency specifically, and really most drugs work this way. Moderate amounts of pot and alcohol are two exceptions, but antidepressants have very long half lives.

    With the speculative nature of parts of this article acknowledged, you ought to take notice of the fact that the industry never sponsors large scale trials designed to expose the dangers of its products. The fact that, if true, industry-sponsored scientists tend not to find problems with drugs while independent scientists more often do is evidence of corruption, and fits an old, consistent pattern we see within and around this industry. It is difficult to come up with definitive proof of these claims when the criminal corporations to be regulated own the regulators and control most of the grant funding.
    1. MamaTrauma
      I concur. It is apparent that a healthy lifestyle is the best way to survive. I wonder why we are living longer when, at the turn of the century, pharmacopoeia didn't exist, was the age of mortality so young? Maybe there are so much more of us populating Earth, throwing off the numbers.
  6. 5-HT2A
    Also, it is really pathetic that I am not allowed to edit a comment after 2 minutes.
      Pjotr777 likes this.
  7. Cid Lysergic
    I agree with @peacefullake . To me it came off too easy to poke holes in it. Anti inflammatory drugs lessen the effects of SSRI's? That doesn't mean SSRI's cause inflammation. Drugs can act on several different systems at once and have a wide arrange of effects, or side effects (which are merely effects that are unwanted. Think of Benadryl. Used for allergies. Diphenhydramine also cause sedation. A side effect of Benadryl. Well guess what? Nytol, an over the counter drug, also sold as sleep-aid is the exact same active ingredient as Benadryl! Just double the dose and the colour blue instead of pink. That's because the colour blue is seen as calming, comforting, relaxing. So they use it to make your brain think it's more sedating than if you were to take two pink Benadryl.).

    If using their logic, then that means anti-inflammatory's cause depression!! Even more reason to stay away from them, lmao.

    It read to me like it was an advertisement for BDNF. They state that there is no proven treatment for Alzheimer's disease. You can only manage/slow down some of the symptoms, but you can't cure or ultimately stop/prevent it. I've read that from a variety of sources from what I've read about the disease, such as on Wikipedia (it's a quick reference to begin at) & the Special TIME Edition magazine titled "The Science of Alzheimer's: What It Is • How It Touches Us • Hope" sitting right next to me that I bought yesterday at the drug store.
  8. Pjotr777
    I found wikipedia an increasingly reliable source of information. Like any source I look at it with scepsis but anyway, they do a great job.
    Psychiatrists yes... I was kicked out of the mental health system because I didn't fit into the protocol and the protocol is that I should take a heavy metal like lithium to poison my system. Psychopharmaca have a devastating impact on my (mental) health regarding side effects or they work too good (mania).
    I need help but they don't help me anymore.
    1. MamaTrauma
      There are so many types of manic depression/bi-polar disorder. It is possible that mental illness is fear or trauma based. Increasing incidence of referring toward co-morbid anxiety with depression may be rebranding bipolar disorder. I also have adverse and opposite effects as well as allergies and sensitivities to multiple medications. Not only are you biological, you are also environmentally influenced.
      Pjotr777 likes this.
    2. MamaTrauma
      You are an individual with chemistry and chromosomes unlike any other. Psychiatrists often bound by time constraints just tick boxes. High I.Q. is relative to social skills, that's why they all seem weird. Your symptoms may be due to environment, pain, trauma, emotion, hormones, health, societal, economic, and multiple other influences. With at least 19 different types of bipolar disorder (lithium treatment) and the rebranding name of anxiety with depression, it is apparent that you were possibly misdiagnosed. Symptoms of bipolar include getting pissed about taking poison, which may appear to non compassionate uncaring health worker who isn't of high intellect, another trait of bipolar disorder. Just kidding. It is no longer socially acceptable to be expressive or emotional publicly. I was diagnosed bipolar several times. I studied medications and psychiatry, pored over the DSM. It is possible to find things in common with diagnosis as well as personality traits. Remember that you and insurance are paying them to treat you, not victimize or simply, not compartmentalize or discredit your challenge. In all business, the customer is always right, so accept nothing but the best treatment, the most time and utmost care so you can live well. I am allergic, sensitive or have the opposite effects to multiple medications, I am unique as well. Usually the experts can get you to agree to a diagnosis, but you are the expert on the topic of you. Intimidation is a big part of it, as education is why they get paid the big bucks and are aloof. I hope you find an understanding of your malady and find an accepting caregiver that sees the individual amazing, one of a kind you. Maybe they don't have a name for what you have yet. Remember, everybody has a problem.
      Pjotr777 likes this.
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