A drug needs to be thoroughly tested to be sold – it must go through trials, including placebo trials and there must be a conclusive result proving that it is effective and won’t be harmful. Why do I smell a rat here..?
It appears that the system can be cheated. For example, when testing selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors a simplest trick was used – if the clinical trial showed the drug is ineffective, the research wasn’t published. Thanks to this the whooping result was achieved 94% of trials pointed to effectiveness of the drug. If you take a long hard look though, you will see that the effectiveness was actually only 51% (which means that placebo was as or even more efficient). Sure, placebo is not a drug but it also doesn’t have side effects. It means that the drugs itself could have made the patients worse. This is not a conspiracy theory – the facts are easily verifiable.
We will never know how many hoaxes like this one happened but it’s by no means a new thing. Drugs controlling cholesterol levels were 20 times more effective if the trials were sponsored by the one who produced them. One doesn’t have to blatantly lie in order to come up with a desired result. It is enough to take a set of conditions (for instance, risk of suicide, numbers of sick leave, mood, day time activity etc.) and after a trail end, take the ones that confirm our thesis (so a drug with suicide as a side effect will appear to be working because less patients took less sick leave). Until methods of medical research aren’t regulated I won’t believe any of this. On the other hand, I do trust supplements as they are virtually never tested by their producers.
The sheer number of side effect of patented drugs is horrifying – and this included suicides. This aspect is of vital interest to us as many a time the therapy with the use of these drugs brings on the real illness. Some people become addicted and some are at a great risk of a becoming unwell again in the future. In my own experience, a lot of those who took such drugs long term also were never able to fight their disease ever. The fact is that these drugs don’t even cure depression is the worst aspect of this issue. They only mask the symptoms. It is like treating tooth decay with painkillers. You can either address the issue and mechanically treat the tooth or you can take painkillers while the tooth rots. Same holds true for depression. There is no “magical pill” that will bring permanent health.