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Dr. Oz: Your Story on Anti-depressants needs humanizing

  • Broadcast in Psychology
Stories We Live By

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Dr. Oz, you did a fine show and a public service when you exposed the fraud and dangers of anti-depressants such as Prozac. Your story happily contained the facts that these drugs are vastly overused, potentially damaging to brain and psyche, are addictive, have many side effects including increased risk of suicide and perhaps worst of all are ineffective in a majority of  people who take them. One of your guests was a psychiatrist who agreed with you on the overuse and dangers of these drugs but presented evidence in the form of two brain scans that imply that there are various forms of depression. He suggested that only a psychiatrist can diagnose which form of this true, serious medical illness exists and that he should be the one to prescribe Prozac or one of its similar competitive brands. I applauded you and your guests for suggesting that before drugs are used to try and help a depressed individual that other medical problems that can cause or mimic depression should be ruled out, that psychotherapy should be tried, and that the individual should try exercize and other life changes. But your story is still incomplete and needs to be challenged. There is no evidence that depression is a medical condition and that brain scans reveal brain problems that cause depression. Most importantly, you and you guests never discussed depression at the level of a real person, a full human being living a real life with others human beings and having a history within a human context! I have invited you to be a guest on my show and asked to be one on yours to discuss expanding the story you told but will speak about your story whether or not you honor me with your presence.