Tuesday, 9 February 2016

“Once you take an antidepressant it becomes a dance that never ends” Ann Kelly @Daily_Record 8Feb16

"TWO Scots whose lives have been ravaged by prescription drugs are battling for ­recognition of the devastating withdrawal issues as well as proper support for victims.

Fiona French, 61, from Aberdeen, and Ann Kelly, 52, from Dunbartonshire, have suffered physically and mentally since they stopped taking their medication.

Health Secretary Shona Robison has now agreed to ask chief medical officer Catherine Calderwood to investigate the claims. ...

For some people medication will be the right thing but, if there is a wider range of services as an ­alternative, there is the option to refer somebody to services that could help to avoid anti­depressants being given. But these will always be clinical ­decisions. ..."

"The women have started a campaign called Action on Prescribed Drug Dependence, calling for a national helpline for sufferers as well as proper recognition that their conditions were caused by prescribed drug withdrawal.

After the Record drew the matter to the attention of Robison, she ­promised to investigate.

She said: “If there is emerging evidence for the need for better ­monitoring, for example, or a regular review then that’s something I will ask the chief medical officer to give me some advice on. ..."

"Fiona has started a petition to the Scottish Parliament calling for support for people coming off these drugs.

She said: “There needs to be better training for doctors. Not everyone is bedridden for two years but a lot of people are suffering. ...”
"Ann, 52, from Dunbartonshire, went to her doctor with mild anxiety and was put on antidepressants by a GP who told her: “You are one of the worried well.”

She said: “I was going about my business but I felt insulated, living my life behind a mask, not really relating properly to people. Anti-depressants wipe out bad feelings but they wipe out good feelings too. ..."

"Ann refused to believe the diagnosis and saw an expert psycho-pharmacologist who confirmed she was suffering withdrawal. With the help of her local MSP Jackie Baillie, she organised a meeting with NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde’s head of psychiatric services Dr David Gerber, who also conceded her condition had been caused by the drug withdrawal.

Ann has set up a help group in Helensburgh called Recovery and Renewal for anyone struggling from the effects of the drugs.

She said: “Once you take an antidepressant it becomes a dance that never ends.”

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