Guns and drugs: Psychoactive drugs may impact mass shootings

Who is looking at the psychoactive drugs as a trigger to gun control?

Photo: drug caution

OREGON, January 16, 2013 - A few weeks before the Newtown school shooting there was a mall shooting in Oregon. That shooting ended when a civilian pulled out his own gun and drew it on the killer. When the killer saw him, he turned his gun on himself and the ordeal was over. Two dead, seven injured, and over 69 shots fired. Chances are you didn’t hear about this. Chances are you didn’t hear about many shootings that take place across the country.

You may also not have heard that many of the shooters in these cases have a history of taking psychoactive drugs, used to treat a variety of mental illnesses from depression to Schizophrenia. 

As American politicians look at gun laws, they cannot ignore the growing observable evidence of prescription medications in the majority of the mass shootings.

The Newtown School shooter reportedly took the pharmaceutical drug Fanapt, made by Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation  (Please see correction below). Fanapt is prescribed to treat schizophrenia in adults, according to the drug company’s literature. Fanapt was approved by the FDA after two short-term research trials: a four week and a six week trial.

Side effects listed in the literature that accompanies Fanapt notes the following: Fanapt can cause “arrhythmia and sudden death - consider using other antipsychotics first.”

Other side effects of Fanapt include suicide, along with hostility, aggression, mania, a confused state, along with problems with impulse control. Fanapt can also cause seizures, erectile dysfunction, high blood pressure, and low blood sugar.

Frequent side effects of Fanapt include restlessness, aggression, and delusion. Fanapt can also cause hostility, paranoia, anorgasmia, confusional state, mania, catatonia, mood swings, panic attack, obsessive-compulsive disorder, bulimia nervosa, delirium, polydipsia psychogenic, impulse-control disorder, and major depression.

Novartis and the FDA state that this drug has not been safely tested on young people. According to Novartis, “Safety and effectiveness in pediatric and adolescent patients have not been established.”

There is evidence that suggests prescription medication may play a role in mass shootings. 

Documents show that 109 people have been wounded and 58 killed in recent shootings where the shooters were taking psychotropic drugs. The FDA has reports of 11,000 incidents of violence resulting from these drugs between 2004 -2011, including 300 homicides, representing less than 10% of actual incidents.

Psychology Today, January 5, 2011 describes this problem in detail. Of the 1937 total case reports of violence toward others by individuals taking psychotropic drugs, there were 387 cases of homicide, 404 physical assaults, 27 cases of physical abuse, 896 reports of homicidal ideation, and 223 cases of “violence related symptoms.”

The adverse events reported to the FDA are known to represent but a tiny fraction of all such adverse events. This study simply identified 31 drugs responsible for most of the FDA case reports of violence toward others, with antidepressants near the top of that list. 

The many past shootings at school campuses and other public venues should be investigated by government officials concerning whether psychotropic drug use may have been involved in the case.

Moore and his collaborators concluded: “These data provide new evidence that acts of violence towards others are a genuine and serious adverse drug event that is associated with a relatively small group of drugs. Varenicline, which increases the availability of dopamine and serotonin reuptake inhibitors were the most strongly and consistently implicated drugs.”

Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitor (SSRI’s) appear particularly dangerous. SSRI’s raise not only serotonin levels but also potentate the activity of epinephrine, norepinepherine, and in some cases dopamine. These are neuro-active substances that are part of the catecholamine family.

People who use Prozac and other SSRI drugs are five times as likely to commit suicide than if they took no medication at all.

These drugs can cause helplessness, apathy, aggression, and sedation.

Serotonin elevating drugs are prescribed for stress related emotional conditions, yet the evidence is that serotonin is already too high in people suffering from emotional stress. This is because stress liberates free fatty acids from storage, which, in turn, increases the uptake of tryptophan into the brain, increasing the formation of serotonin.

A record of violence has clearly been associated with above average blood serotonin levels. 

Politicians, it is time to look at the psychoactive medications use and abuse in America. 

___

Correction: That the Newtown Shooter was being treated with Fanapt, which was based on published reports, is incorrect.  We regret the error. 

___

Dr Peter Lind practices metabolic and neurologic chiropractic in his wellness clinic in Salem, Oregon. USA. He is the author of 3 books on health, one novel, and hundreds of wellness articles. His clinical specialty is in physical, nutritional, and emotional stress. 

 

For more health tips go to http://www.wellnessreport.net

 

 

 


This article is the copyrighted property of the writer and Communities @ WashingtonTimes.com. Written permission must be obtained before reprint in online or print media. REPRINTING TWTC CONTENT WITHOUT PERMISSION AND/OR PAYMENT IS THEFT AND PUNISHABLE BY LAW.

More from Alternative Health with Dr. Lind
 
blog comments powered by Disqus
Peter Lind

Dr. Peter Lind has written five books about healthy lifestyle and specifically subjects such as food, diet, nutrition, exercise, and stress. He has written one thriller about agriculture genetic engineering that has been written into a screenplay. 

Contact Peter Lind

Error

Please enable pop-ups to use this feature, don't worry you can always turn them off later.

Question of the Day
Featured
Photo Galleries
Popular Threads
Powered by Disqus