From April 2013 to March 2014 the most prescribed antidepressant in America was Cymbalta.
Cymbalta is the brand name given to the medication for marketing purposes (to sell lots of the drug and make it appeal to the public), the scientific name is Duloxetine.
It is in the SNRI class of medications. SNRIs are serotonin-norepinephrine uptake inhibitors. Meaning, they increase the levels of the two neurotransmitters serotonin and norepinephrine in the brain by blocking their absorption (uptake).
This is thought to affect changes in mood by affecting the way the brain cells send and recieve messages. They cannot identify specifically what happens in the brain by measuring levels of the neurotransmitters before and after taking the drug but only speculate.
Related post: How Was the Chemical Imbalance Theory Developed?
Speculation and a treatment approach based on the speculated Chemical Imbalance theory that has been proven false. Proven false yet still used as justification for a treatment approach that netted the drug company manufacturer of Cymbalta – Elly Lilly and Company – a whopping $4.2 billion dollars in 12 months.
Wow. That’s a lot of profit. I’d probably believe in the Chemical Imbalance Fairy too if I was going to end up a millionaire plus in a year. I’m far from perfect or immune to corruption. And also a low income single Mom.
Side Effects of Cymbalta
Cymbalta is approved for use in depression, anxiety (over 6 months in duration), nerve pain, fibromyalgia and long-term muscle pain. It is also used to treat osteoarthritis.
The drug has a black box warning of a risk of suicide and is not recommended for those under the age of 18. Black box meaning it is the highest level of warning given by the FDA before the drug could be taken off the market due to safety issues.
How smart to give a medication to those who are suffering depression that has the potential to make them want to kill themselves. Sarcasm at its worst. Other side effects include: aggression, irritability, panic attacks, restlessness, abnormal excitement and ‘acting without thinking’.
Abnormal excitement? Aggression and acting without thinking? Hmmmm, is someone who is depressed then going to get a BP-2 diagnosis as an antidepressant medication gave them the feelings of hypomania?
Related post: Is Hypomania Always a Bad Thing?
Does that make much sense? Does it really matter what the risks are when they can get billions of dollars in profit in a very short amount of time? And when they have the money to buy off those who are in charge of regulating them in the first place (FDA officials)?
You be the judge.
10 Most Prescribed Drugs in America
That fact was taken from the article: “The 10 Most Prescribed Drugs in America.”
“1. Hypothyroid drug Synthroid, with 23 million prescriptions per month;
2. Cholesterol drug Crestor, with 22.9 million prescriptions;
3. Heartburn drug Nexium, with 19.3 million prescriptions;
4. Asthma medication Ventolin HFA, with 17.5 million prescriptions;
5. Obstructive pulmonary disease drug Advair Diskus, with 15.5 million prescriptions;
6. Antidepressant Cymbalta, with 14.5 million prescriptions;
7. Blood pressure drug Diovan, with 12 million prescriptions;
8. Attention deficit drug Vyvanse, with 9.9 million prescriptions;
9. Diabetes drug Lantus Solostar, with 9.9 million prescriptions; and
10. Epilepsy and nerve pain drug Lyrica, with 9.6 million prescriptions.”
Source: The Advisory Board Company.