A new research study published in the American Journal of Health finds that more people are dying by their own hand than people are dying in car crashes. You can read the report here.
That’s a scary and serious statistic. So many people are asking what is going on — and here’s the thing: a lot of it is due to prescription drugs.
That’s right: drugs that only get into the hands of the public via a prescription signed by a doctor or someone else legally authorized to do so under state law. The very purpose of a prescription is to protect people against these powerful drugs. Prescriptions by definition limit dosage and amount available — and presumably include the health care professional’s monitoring of the drug’s impact and success. Right? Well, maybe not.
Consider this: it’s understood that prescription drugs are playing a big part in these suicides (it’s called “intentional poisoning”) and there are national seminars being held to study the situation – like a recent one in New England where doctors and others gathered together to discuss this growing national crisis. Which is good.
However, what we know is that people are killing themselves by taking overdoses of drugs that are only available because a doctor signed a prescription pad to allow the drug to be purchased at a pharmacy or drug store. Not that much discussion is being had right now on the doctor’s duty here.
We do have studies on correlations between particular drugs and suicide. That’s right: some drugs have suicide as a side effect, or what they term “suicidal ideations” or “suicidal thoughts” or “suicidal tendencies.”
The FDA warned doctors in 2008 that the following anti-epileptic drugs, available through a prescription, had suicidal side effects:
- Carbamazepine (marketed as Carbatrol, Equetro, Tegretol, Tegretol XR)
- Divalproex sodium (marketed as Depakote, Depakote ER)
- Felbamate (marketed as Felbatol)
- Gabapentin (marketed as Neurontin)
- Lamotrigine (marketed as Lamictal)
- Levetiracetam (marketed as Keppra)
- Oxcarbazepine (marketed as Trileptal)
- Pregabalin (marketed as Lyrica)
- Tiagabine (marketed as Gabitril)
- Topiramate (marketed as Topamax)
- Zonisamide (marketed as Zonegran)
The Citizens Commission on Human Rights International has an excellent article with numerous case references where prescription drug usage is connected to suicide. People taking drugs that the doctor told them decided to kill themselves. People like teenagers and U.S. soldiers and other innocent victims of Big Pharma products.
That’s right. We’re not talking about addicts grabbing pills in back alleys — we’re talking patients taking pills the doctor prescribed for them. Shouldn’t those doctors have some responsiblity here? And what about the pharmacy, do they have a duty to warn you when you buy this stuff? And what about the drug maker, what is their responsibility here?
If your loved one has committed suicide by intentional poisoning or after taking prescription drugs connected or thought to be connected to suicidal side effects, then you have a right to ask these questions and to have them answered. This national statistic is shocking and infuriating. According to this article, you will need to ask these questions – maybe in a lawsuit – because the government is not asking them for you.