For David Carmichael there was “nothing more exhilarating than being a dad”
. He built his BMX-loving son a half-pipe in the back yard and lived for his two children. In his mid-forties David was prescribed Paxil to combat depression. In a matter of weeks, his son was dead. David had murdered him in the midst of a manic psychotic episode, proved by DNA evidence to have been caused by his prescription anti-depressants.
David isn’t alone in suffering the deadly side-effects of prescription drugs. Brennan McCartney was a bright and gregarious young man who loved playing music. One day he went to his doctor with a chest infection and was inexplicably prescribed Cipralex, an antidepressant. Four days later he walked into the woods and hung himself.
Whilst unassuming families are torn apart, drug companies continue to profit - unharmed by these egregious scandals. GSK was fined $3 billion for bribing doctors and encouraging the prescription of potent anti-depressants to children. The firm paid the fine in cash, having made over $25 billion dollars in profit through the sale of Paxil, Avandia, and Wellbutrin.
However, the deepest scandal is the flagrant complicity of regulatory bodies established to protect the public. Senior members of the FDA are shown to be complicit in attempts to suppress the suicidality side-effect of Prozac – a drug on which Lilly has made $21 billion profit.
As the dollars stack up, so do the bodies. The bodies of innocent people guilty of nothing more than having a misplaced faith in their medical professionals. “Just because something’s legal, doesn’t mean it’s safe"
, warns David Crespi, a father found guilty of murdering his twin daughters whilst psychotic.