A recent headline made me wonder, how are all these pharmaceutical medications, including the very ones meant to stave off feelings of suicidal depression and suicidal thoughts, making people more prone to commit suicide, and why? The recent headline was about the smoking cessation medication called Chantix, and how it’s link to increased suicide risk should not stop people who did not have pre existing depression tendencies or suicidal thoughts from taking it to quit smoking they just had to be mindful of the relatively small risk.
Also, there are several antidepressants that are the same – many of them now bearing warnings at the FDA’s request, that they may increase tendencies toward suicide. And how about the popular acne drug Accutane? Even an allergy medication called Singulair was linked to a teen’s suicide – let me say that again – AN ALLERGY MEDICATION, not some antidepressant or other more serious medication, but a simple allergy medicine may be linked to a teen boy’s suicide.
There are still pending lawsuits against this medication for teens who went on the medicine to help clear up their acne and ended up severely depressed, some even carrying out suicides. What do these medications do chemically to our minds to invoke the suicidal thoughts? Well, the problem is, no one knows for sure, and the worst part is, they are looking at these complaints and reports of sucides after being on certain medications at this point as anecdotal, since the evidence is not abundant enough to make a definite distinction.
Also absent is a knowledge of whether the victims had previous tendencies toward suicidal thoughts or depression. Among other medications that have had anecdotal stories filed with the FDA and other governing agencies over drugs and consumer rights are epileptic medications, flue medications such as Tamiflu, and several anti depression and anti anxiety medications, which was one groups of medicines where this was a known possibility and which many drugmakers were already warned to put on their labels as a possible side effect.
One of the spokesman for the FDA did bring up a good point, and that is that sometimes, in some of these cases but quite possibly but not all, they have to look at the possibility that the suicide tendencies were just a background event, beside the fact of the medication itself, and in fact were a pre existing condition to the patient in question, however he also acknowledges that they will go back and look at the clinical trials to get more answers if there are enough complaints and issues received on a certain medication.