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Altostrata

Neuropsychiatry: Same baloney, different sandwich

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Altostrata   
Altostrata

As the "chemical imbalance" theory wanes, the "neurogenesis" theory justifying antidepressant prescription arises.

 

The "chemical imbalance" theory spawned countless scholarly and scholarly-seeming articles and books as doctors nodded solemnly over their brilliant biological insights into the brain and emotions. Unfortunately, these insights have been demonstrated to be based on bogus research, wishful thinking, and a bandwagon effect stoked by pharma money.

 

How embarrassing for psychiatry's intelligentsia. But there still has to be a rationale for prescribing antidepressants, so they came up with something else.

 

Now we have the "neurogenesis" hyperbole, with its corollary that would have depression as a degenerative brain disorder. If "chemical imbalance" doesn't exist, there has to be some fundamental flaw in the brains of people who are unhappy, right?

 

And there has to be some stick to use to drive them to drugs, so psychiatry has enthusiastically taken up the cudgel of depression as progressive brain damage.

 

The progressive brain damage trope doesn't fly -- clearly many people recover from "depression" and other mood disorders without drugs and seem to be as good as anyone else.

 

It is an absurdity and an offense to humanity to argue, for example, that 2 weeks of grieving, which can be diagnosed as major depression, becomes brain damage if allowed to continue longer.

 

In general, the brains of "depressed" people, even ridden with all those diseased circuits, work fine. Many are even intellectual leaders and creative geniuses.

 

The association of depression with other health issues is also suspect, as the statistics depend on what you call "depression." If it's the thing that bothers 25% or 40% or 50% of the population (depending on which nonsensical numbers you follow from the psychiatric industry), the association may depend on other lifestyle factors not noted in the studies, including sedentariness, eating junk food, and working at a soul-killing job.

 

"Depression," like all mood disorder diagnoses, is a slippery diagnosis. It may just be being alive that causes health risks.

 

Then there's always psychiatry jiggering the studies to suit its goals. For example, the recent Pan 2011 study of stroke in women http://tinyurl.com/3hfnm7m found a moderate association between antidepressant use in depressed and non-depressed population and elevated incidence of stroke. The depressed non-medicated population had normal stroke risk. However, contra the study's own findings, the authors (Harvard Psychiatry) perversely concluded it was depression that caused elevated risk, and this was the big news blasted all over the media.

 

As for antidepressants causing neurogenesis - this may have been seen in mice but the degree and quality of neurogenesis has never been demonstrated. For example, neurogenesis induced by antidepressants has never been compared, even in mice, to neurogenesis induced by exercise. And, in humans, to reading a good book, or anything else that might be mental stimulation.

 

(By the way, the process of making mice "depressed" would be laughable if it didn't involve torturing the mice. Oh, wait, that is a lot like a working at a corporate job.)

 

Whatever neurogenesis is generated by antidepressants needs to be balanced against adverse effects, again completely absent in the blather of the learned. Is it possible that antidepressant-induced neurogenesis, if it exists, is not an unmixed good?

 

Is it possible, for example, that whatever new cells are produced, they might be wiped out by the stress of withdrawal? (See Harvey 2003.)

 

As usual, psychiatry relies on studies that haven't been properly controlled, where whatever benefit is claimed for antidepressants has not been compared to less-invasive treatments or even normal fluctuations in emotional state.

 

"Chemical imbalance" is dead, "neurogenesis" rules for now, and psychiatry rebrands itself "neuropsychiatry" to justify its mainstay -- the arbitrary prescription of poorly studied drugs. Same baloney, different sandwich.

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Altostrata   
Altostrata

Thanks, Fid. Yes, I wrote it.

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Altostrata   
Altostrata

This new style of "neurogenesis" to justify the prescription of the d*mned drugs makes me very angry.

 

But wouldn't we expect psychiatry to change its stripes once "chemical imbalance" became an embarrassment? They've already demonstrated they are masters of rationalization (which used to be considered a neurotic symptom).

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summer   
summer

"Chemical imbalance" is dead, "neurogenesis" rules for now, and psychiatry rebrands itself "neuropsychiatry" to justify its mainstay -- the arbitrary prescription of poorly studied drugs. Same baloney, different sandwich.

 

 

So now many will no longer hear they have a chemical imbalance... instead, they will hear something like, "well, Ms. Smith, you have a neurogenesis disease."

 

If I had not heard that word before, I probably would have had a heart attack!

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summer   
summer

In general, the brains of "depressed" people, even ridden with all those diseased circuits, work fine. Many are even intellectual leaders and creative geniuses.

Indeed we are creative geniuses! :D

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Altostrata   
Altostrata

Worse, summer, they'll be telling you you have a degenerative brain disorder. Which we know is very untrue!

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westcoast   
westcoast

Reviving an old thread here. I was horrified when I found out about neurogenesis. Not everything that grows is good. Can't believe they'd try to spin it as a good thing. Yuck. Should be disclosed on the leaflet...

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westcoast   
westcoast

Happened up this while on another quest (the usual pattern).

 

http://psychiatryinvestigation.org/html/fulltext.asp?no=0502015012&m=0(full text)

 

I wish I knew what this meant, the article might as well have been in Sanskrit.

 

 

Based on our findings, treatment with venlafaxine may affect neural differentiation in human embryonic carcinoma cells. Furthermore, these results will improve our understanding of the molecular mechanisms of venlafaxine.

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LoveandLight   
LoveandLight

What a load of rubbish. They have no shame and conscience. Need to go to the cursing thread. I'm so angry.

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Lilu   
Lilu

Depression, Antidepressants, and Neurogenesis: A Critical Reappraisal

 

"To summarize, initial evidence regarding the effects of psychological stress and antidepressant drugs on adult neurogenesis in laboratory animals led to the development of the neurogenesis hypothesis of depression, which has supportive evidence in many experimental settings. However, the emergence of contradictory reports and failed replications requires a revision of this hypothesis to state that neurogenesis in the adult dentate gyrus can be regulated by stress and antidepressants under certain as-yet-undefined conditions, but that this regulation is not an intrinsic property of all psychological stress, depression, and antidepressant treatments. It seems most likely that neurogenesis is only one, more visible aspect of a complex array of neuroplastic functions that occur in the adult hippocampus, and that the various factors involved in this neuroplastic environment are responsive to external influences, which often accompany but are not inherently linked with the pathophysiology and pharmacological treatment of depression and depression-like behaviors."
 

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