CEP welcomes trailblazing report by Public Health England on withdrawal and dependence on psychoactive drugs

CEP today welcomes the publication of a report by Public Health England which recognises for the first time the scale of prescribing of drugs that can cause dependence and withdrawal.  The report shows that one in four adults in England has been prescribed a benzodiazepine, z-drug, gabapentinoid, opioid or antidepressant in the past twelve months, with up to […]

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Hengartner and Plöderl respond to Hayes et al’s commentary on their article on suicide risk with antidepressants

In our recent study published in the journal Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics, we showed that adults who start antidepressants for depression are 2.5 times more likely to attempt suicide when compared to those starting placebo. This equates to 1 in every 200 people attempting suicide as a direct effect of taking the antidepressant. This number is […]

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Guest blog: Are you coming to the drug lunch?

This is the question raised at least every 2 months in our NHS psychosis team. Most of us will go without a second thought (I have to admit, I usually do. There are free M&S sandwiches, fruit, biscuits and pastries; “That’s all the moral compass I need”, I like to joke). We have the usual […]

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CEP calls for UK Sunshine Act to highlight payments made to doctors

Today the Council for Evidence-Based Psychiatry calls for the implementation of a UK Sunshine Act to make transparent the financial relationships between doctors and pharmaceutical companies & the makers of medical devices. It would be similar to the The Physician Payments Sunshine Act in the United States which was implemented by the Obama administration August 2013, and […]

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New study: antidepressants significantly raise the risk of suicide in the treatment of depression for adults

Adults who start treatment with antidepressants for depression are 2.5 times more likely to attempt suicide when compared to placebo, according to new research published today in the journal Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics. The study found that approximately 1 in every 200 people who start treatment will attempt suicide due to the pharmacologic effects of the […]

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Campaigning persuades Royal College of Psychiatrists to change its position on antidepressant withdrawal

Following campaigning by CEP, the All Party Parliamentary Group for Prescribed Drug Dependence and numerous members of the #prescribedharm community, the Royal College of Psychiatrists has today changed its position on antidepressant withdrawal.  It has issued a revised policy statement updating its guidance to doctors, and calls upon NICE to update its guidelines as well. […]

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Don’t blame Brexit: doubling of antidepressant prescriptions in fact reflects longer-term use

The news that 70.9 million antidepressant prescriptions were dispensed in England last year – almost double the figure in 2008 – is an admission of failure. Some medical and mental health organisations have speculated that this rise reflects increased awareness of mental health problems and greater willingness to seek help, and others have even blamed […]

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Tumbling Further Down the Rabbit Hole: the Disturbing World of Antidepressant Withdrawal Research

For those still interested in the recent antidepressant withdrawal debate, here is a new and important instalment. Before we get to the essential part, let us first recall that our systematic review in Addictive Behaviors (2018) showed, among other things, that around half of people who stop antidepressants experience withdrawal. This conclusion was critiqued in […]

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Dr James Davies: Let’s be clear about pill shaming

Today the BBC published an article on ‘pill shaming‘, asking for us to put end to it. In short, it depicts a young woman talking about how certain people in her life (her family, friends and some strangers) have made her feel about taking antidepressants. Some implied that she should ‘try harder to make herself […]

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CEP members response to recent complaints about PHE review

Dr James Davies, Prof John Read and Luke Montagu (members of CEP as well as the Expert Advisory Group for Public Health England’s review into prescribed drug dependence) would like to respond to criticisms of the PHE review raised by some campaigners. In our involvement with the PHE review to date we have encountered no evidence for what […]

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