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Medication and suicide

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Sept. 9-15, 2004

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September 9, 2004

Medication and suicide Antidepressants help control an illness that drives many teens, adults to kill themselves. Recent headlines have called attention to findings that there may be a link between taking anti-depressants and committing suicide, especially in children and teenagers. The Federal Drug Administration is considering putting warning

OTHER LOCAL RESOURCES • Crisis and suicide hotline: (317) 251-7575, available 24

labels on the drugs pending the results of a public hearing

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and input from scientific advisers.

which also provides referrals and

But local health professionals are saying the findings have many people confused. "There's a lot of controversy, a lot of hype and a lot of misunderstanding in this area," said Anantha Shekhar, professor of psychiatry at Indiana University School of

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911.

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Medicine. "Overall, one has to be critical of many of the stories that float around, but also think of ways to study this

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more accurately."

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Most recently, Lilly was cleared in the suicide death of

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19-year-old Traci Johnson, a participant in the company's

illness that can be treated but

new anti-depressant Cymbalta's clinical trials.

never really goes away

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Shekhar explained the anti-depressant-suicide link in many

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depressed adults this way: "A person who is so depressed and suicidal, but hasn't done anything,

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may suddenly have enough energy (from taking an anti-depressant) to do something."

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Nationwide statistics prepared by John L. Macintosh, Indiana University South Bend's acting associate dean and professor of psychology, for the American Association of Suicidology ranks Indiana 26th in the nation for suicides, at 11.7 per 100,000 people, in 2001. The national average is 10.8.

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According to 1990-2000 suicide rates, the number of 25- to 34-year-olds in the nation committing

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suicide has dropped fairly steadily from 15.2 per 100,000 in 1990 to 12.8 per 100,000 in 2000.

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Groups at particular risk are those older than 65, people with chronic illnesses, and young people.

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Suicide ranks third as the cause of death for 15- to 24-year-old Americans.

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"People see (suicide) as the only way out of this significant pain, of this darkness," said Gina Eckart,

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licensed mental health counselor at Wishard's Midtown Community Mental Health Center. "It's hard

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for individuals on their own to see any light at the end of the tunnel."

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She urges people to get immediately involved if they sense a friend or family member is thinking of

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2/25/2009 10:59 AM


Medication and suicide

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http://web.archive.org/web/20040909231754/www.intakeweekly.com/art...

suicide. Being open to talk, non-judgmentally, about a person's suicide plans is one way to help. -- Kimiko Martinez

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2/25/2009 10:59 AM

Depress2web - Medication and suicide  

Groups at particular risk are those older than 65, people with chronic illnesses, and young people. Suicide ranks third as the cause of deat...

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