alzheimers, dementia, dementia big pharma, off label anti-psychotics and dementia, pharma, psychotropic drugs and dementia, risperdal
“Med changes are always a coin toss. Sometimes they really upset the apple cart. In fact, the [house] doc had increased one dosage from 0.5 mg to 1.0 mg a couple of weeks ago and it wreaked absolute havoc on her. She did nothing but sit and stare into space during waking hours, wasn’t eating, had no reaction when Jess or I walked in, and was completely non-verbal…”
The above snippet is from a post I wrote in 2011, and the drug mentioned was risperdal.
I’ll forever wonder how much more harm than good was done by the various and assorted medications Mom was given over the course of her battle with Alzheimer’s. Once it was clear that Aricept was no longer doing a damn thing, prescribing medications to control worsening symptoms was nothing more than a crap shoot.
Warning: Steep Drop Ahead
Psychotropic drugs are a slippery slope. Anti-psychotics, anti-depressants, anti-anxiety, mood stabilizers. Can you imagine what the various and assorted combinations, not to mention constant changes, are doing to our loved ones?
Depakote, Risperdal, Ativan, Lexapro, Buspar, Celexa, Zyprexa, trazodone, and the most dreaded Haldol. Just a sampling of the psych drugs mom was on at one time or another.
It’s the classic chicken and egg; the symptoms and behaviors worsen and a drug is prescribed. It works for awhile, then seems to lose its effect so they try something else. The cycle continues. At what point do the drugs become a major part of the problem instead of part of the solution?
All in the Name of Profit
One of the most disturbing notions is the increasingly “acceptable” off-label use of these drugs.
Susan Macaulay recently wrote several articles on this very topic. The information shared is absolutely appalling, and underscores the reason our drug companies are often looked upon with such mistrust and even disgust. Sadly, as illustrated by the 2008 UK report Susan references, this is also nothing new.
At a minimum, we owe it to ourselves and our loved ones to be informed – thank you, Susan, for compiling this important material.
The truth and lies about risperdal and greed have begun to unfold and it’s not a pretty picture (9/17/15)
10 things Johnson & Johnson probably wishes the world didn’t now know about the way it marketed risperdal (9/18/15)
Find the lady in the lies: a shell game of side effects and suffering for the sake of antipsychotic sales (9/20/15)
7 things you should know about how and why antipsychotics are inappropriately prescribed to people living with dementia in care facilities (9/26/15)
Susan Macaulay cares for her mother who is living with Alzheimer’s and is a recognized dementia care expert. Macaulay is creator and curator of SheQuotes, My Alzheimer’s Story, Amazing Women Rock, AmazingSusan.com, and Succeed With Susan. She is a feminist, global citizen, lifelong learner and the author of Everyday Feminine Wisdom and soon-to-be-published “the dogs’ breakfast.”
Mary Smith said:
Thanks for sharing Ann.
I’m continuing this series because somebody has to speak up about this. It’s just plain wrong to sedate people with antipsychotic drugs that cause more harm than good in the long run. I rue the day I went to my mom’s Dr. complaining about anxiety. Had I known then what I know now I would’ve done things differently that’s for sure!
To cut myself a little bit of slack, there’s a lot more information now than there was even five years ago with respect to nonpharmacological strategies to help people with dementia overcome some of the symptoms and engage life more fully.
I’m incensed by the fact that the medical profession, eldercare industry and many care facilities simply refuses to see the error of their ways.
I will continue to advocate. Thanks for your support.
Here’s today’s post:
Ann Napoletan said:
Thank you for ALL of your hard work, Susan. Like you, I try and remind myself that when I was dealing with this, we knew so little about alternatives to psych drugs. I trusted the doctors. But, boy, if I had it to do again… things would surely be different. I would exhaust every option before starting down that slippery slope.
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yep x a gazillion!
now I’m fighting for my future self and the future selves of others. it’s too late for our moms., but it’s not too late to infuse more purpose in their journeys ❤
And thanks for thanking me and right back at ya ❤
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