A UCSD study released February 9, 2006, is fueling concerns about the effects of certain antidepressant drugs on pregnant women, saying that their use late in pregnancy can significantly increase the chance of deadly lung problems in newborns.
Dr. Christina Chambers of UCSD urged the FDA and drug companies to develop "better information about this group of antidepressants, and as it is developed it needs to be disseminated."
Normally, the lung disorder is rare, with one to two per 1,000 births. But when pregnant women took the drugs in question after the 20th week of pregnancy, the incidence rose to six to twelve per 1,000 births, a report by Dr. Christina Chambers and colleagues at UC San Diego found.
The antidepressants that increased that risk are in a class called SSRIs or selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors. They include citalopram, fluoxetine, paroxetine and sertraline sold under 19 brand names, including Celexa, Prozac, Paxil and Zoloft. Continue Reading
September 11, 2004
Contact: Vera Sharav, President, AHRP
Telephone (212) 595-8974
Cell: (917) 375-5083
AHRP Press Briefing
The FDA bears responsibility for a credibility crisis in medicine. The FDA has allied itself with the pharmaceutical industry, adopted that industry's culture of arrogance and concealment of evidence-even as children's life-safety were put on the line. The hazardous side-effects of SSRI antidepressants were concealed for 25 years with FDA's tacit approval-lest the truth impede industry's mega-profit goals. Indeed, FDA's limited review of selective evidence, its reliance on information supplied by psychiatrists with financial conflicts of interest, and the invited presentations by Pfizer and Eli Lilly, are calculated to minimize the scope of the problem.
The Alliance for Human Research Protection will convene a press briefing at which five independent experts will review scientific and clinical evidence, shedding light on what was known 20 years ago, what is known and not known today about the safety and efficacy of antidepressant drugs.
The issues to be addressed at the press briefing, and the documented evidence presented, will not be explored by the FDA advisory committee meeting-inasmuch as independent analysts were excluded from the discussion. All critical analyses and reports from outside independent experts have been excluded from the committee deliberations-much as Dr. Mosholder's report and recommendations were suppressed for six months-until it was made public by The Alliance for Human Protection who posted it on its website in July.
The five independent expert presenters are:
Children's lives have been been put on the line by concealed hazardous side-effects of SSRI antidepressants. The FDA lent its support to the least forthcoming drug manufacturers--even exerting pressure on companies that were willing to disclose suicide-related risks on their antidepressant drugs labels. FDA officials forced Wyeth and Forest to toe the line.
Following the independent experts' presentations, questions from members of the press will be answered. Families will also share experiences that show the chilling reality of the life-threatening consequences of SSRI antidepressant drug use in children and adolescents.
Alliance For Human Research Protection (AHRP)
142 West End Ave. Suite 28; New York, NY 10023
February 20, 2006