Well, something sort of odd happened tonight. As I was browsing the NY Times website…well, the headline kind of jumps out, doesn’t it: “At Least 100 Dead in India Terror Attacks.” It seems so distant, so—somehow—ordinary. Bad things happen to people halfway across the globe every day, right? Well, I’m looking through the coverage on this, and what do I see? A link to photos of this nightmare by one of my Flickr contacts and a fellow traveler. Whoa. All the way across the globe became just next door in about one second.
Archive for November, 2008
Posted by Pythia on November 27, 2008
Posted by Pythia on November 20, 2008
November 19, 2008
FIRST THEY’RE DRUGGING OUR DRINKING WATER, NOW OUR KIDS? WHAT NEXT?
From an M.D. and professor of psychiatry.
We also have the specter of two year olds being diagnosed with bipolar disorder and treated with these medications.
Stop giving antipsychotics to kids who don’t have the diagnosis of childhood schizophrenia.
June 8, 2008
Researchers Fail to Reveal Full Drug Pay
“Researchers” being the foremost advocates of pediatric bipolar disorder.
The Harvard group’s consulting arrangements with drug makers were already controversial because of the researchers’ advocacy of unapproved uses of psychiatric medicines in children.
Dr. Biederman is one of the most influential researchers in child psychiatry and is widely admired for focusing the field’s attention on its most troubled young patients. Although many of his studies are small and often financed by drug makers, his work helped to fuel a controversial 40-fold increase from 1994 to 2003 in the diagnosis of pediatric bipolar disorder, which is characterized by severe mood swings, and a rapid rise in the use of antipsychotic medicines in children. The Grassley investigation did not address research quality.
September 4, 2007
Bipolar Illness Soars as a Diagnosis for the Young
I made some comments on this one a while back.
August, 23, 2007
A Neuroscientist’s take on the issue.
Wear your flame retardant suit for this one. Although, I do have to say that when I was on Seroquel, I might as well have been lobotomized. It was not pleasant. I couldn’t concentrate long enough to string a few words into a coherent sentence, when, that is, I could stay awake.
And when they say pediatric bipolar disorder, they’re talking pre-adolescent.
One issue I have with all of this is that pediatric bipolar disorder is not like grown-up bipolar—different manifestations, different symptoms. So if it’s in kids, it doesn’t look like bipolar disorder in adults, and is similar enough to ADHD/ADD to be “misdiagnosed” as such, maybe it needs its own name.
As far as continuity into adulthood, the only study of its kind that I have found states,
Over eight years of follow-up, 44.4% of children with bipolar disorder displayed manic episodes after age 18, reported Barbara Geller, M.D., of Washington University in St. Louis here, and colleagues in the October issue of Archives of General Psychiatry.
This rate was 13 to 44 times higher than population prevalences, which strongly supported continuity into adulthood and the credibility of diagnosis in childhood, they wrote.
The researchers conclude that 44% of children in the study were correctly diagnosed as having bipolar disorder. My question is, what about the other 56%?
And I’m still not even going to get into giving these powerful psychotropic drugs to children. I just can’t imagine what they must do to a growing brain.
Posted by Pythia on November 16, 2008
Now that my brain seems to be partly functioning, I want to share some of things I’ve come across over the past year or so.
One of the more interesting encounters was Neurophilosophy, a blog about ”molecules, minds and everything in between,” as the author puts it, in other words neuroscience, his specialty. Neurophilosopy is part of an online community of blogs focusing on issues in the sciences.
Something that really caught my attenion last year was The Rise and Fall of the Prefrontal Lobotomy. (Some of the pictures are quite disturbing.) In this article, Neurophilosophy gives a brief history of the lobotomy, from the first experiments in the 1890s to its decline in the 1960s (although according to Wikipedia, lobotomies were still being performed into the 1980s). There is also an overview of the mechanics of the procedure.
The article ultimately leads up to the 2005 National Public Radio interview of a man, Howard Dully, who had been lobotomized for his “defiant behavior” at the age of 12 by the infamous Walter Freeman, the inventor of the “ice-pick” lobotomy and the man who “supervised” James Watts’ lobotomy of Rosemary Kennedy. When I heard the interview, I was absolutely enthralled. You can listen to this interview on NPR’s website.
Posted by Pythia on November 5, 2008
You know, I read somewhere recently that the better your mental health is, the less you start your sentences with “I.” From experience, this seems to be true. For quite a while now the posts here have been “I” posts. And yes, right now I’m avoiding starting with “I,” but putting adverbial phrases or conversational fluff first, while technically removing the “I” from its initial place, is not a semantically valid negation of the self-absorbed mind-set that it indicates. Whew, that was tough.
So, anyway, today is a doctor day. (I’m still very self-conscious about this “I” thing, so if I sound awkward, please bear with me.) If you’ve been following the exciting exploits of Pythia and the doctors, you’ll remember that my psychologist is now managing my meds. Well, he prescribed Paxil the last time I saw him, and said to start it when the nausea subsided. Well, the nausea subsided, but I never started the Paxil. I’m too scared to. I know I need an antidepressant, and know that I tolerate Paxil and that it to some extent works, but I’m afraid both of it dulling my mind (which is already dull right now) and the possibility it’ll make me (even more) irritable as hell and miserable. And, I have to say, I’m really not looking forward to the possibility of being lectured for non-compliance.
What’s an oracle to do?