ARE PSYCHOTROPIC MEDS CREATING ACTIVE SHOOTERS?

ARE PSYCHOTROPIC MEDS CREATING ACTIVE SHOOTERS?

June 2, 2019

Rob Lauer Political Reporter

As numerous State Legislatures across the U.S. write new laws restricting guns in the wake of almost weekly active shooter events somewhere in the country, one important factor has failed to be addressed. Almost all the young men who’ve been shooters in mass killings in the U.S. over the past 10 plus years have had a history of consuming Psychotropic Meds, according to independent news reports. Is it not being reported by the MSN because the drug companies have spent over $2.5 Billion lobbing Congress and other lawmakers, or is it the billions spent by drug makers buying TV ads on all the major news networks?

Adderall and other prescription stimulants have been reported to cause psychosis and schizophrenia-like symptoms, such as paranoid delusions, hallucinations, and other behavioral or mood disturbances, according to the journal Molecular Psychiatry. Which means the drugs cause suicidal and homicidal feels in some portion of the people who take them. According to Scientific America, over 51 million Americans are taking a Psychotropic Meds.

As a case in point, the Parkland, Florida, shooter, Nikolas Cruz , who murdered 17 kids on Valentine’s Day, was on medication for emotional issues, according to reports from his aunt.

These same Meds are prescribed to returning U.S. Military suffering from PTSD. There are efforts to study if the Psychotropic Meds are contributing to the large number of Veterans committing suicide daily.

Study:

Teens and young adults with attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder, ADHD, who receive amphetamines such as Adderall for treatment have a higher risk of developing psychosis, compared to those who receive methyphenidates stimulants, such as Ritalin, according to a large new study.

Using two national insurance claim databases, the authors followed 221,486 teens and young adults ages 13 to 25 with ADHD who were prescribed a stimulant for the first time between the years 2004 and 2015. Half received amphetamines such as Adderall and half received methylphenidates such as Ritalin. A total of 343 of the teens and young adults who were followed — or one out of every 660 young people — developed an episode of psychosis in the few months after starting on a stimulant. The risk for this rare but serious side effect was twice as high — 0.21% — for those taking amphetamine, compared to 0.1% for those taking methylphenidate, according to the results published Wednesday in the New England Journal of Medicine.
ADHD is a developmental disorder, and its symptoms include inattention, hyperactivity, and restlessness or impulsivity that is more severe, frequent or debilitating than normal. Stimulants have been shown to be effective in controlling these symptoms. Since 2007 the US Food and Drug Administration has required manufacturers to add a warning to drug labels, stating “stimulants may cause treatment-emergent psychotic or manic symptoms in patients with no prior history.”
Current guidelines recommend either methylphenidate or amphetamine as first line treatment of ADHD when a medication is required. Teens and young adults were four times more likely to receive a prescription for amphetamine such as Adderall in 2015 compared to 2004, and 1.6 times more likely to receive one for methylphenidates such as Ritalin, according to the new research.
“There are subtle differences in the way Adderall and Ritalin affect dopamine systems in the brain,” Moran said. Both stimulants work through dopamine pathways in the brain, but Adderall is more likely to cause a release of dopamine, whereas Ritalin is more likely to block the re-uptake, allowing it to linger. The surge of dopamine during a psychotic episode most closely mimics that seen after stimulant use like Adderall, which may explain some of the findings, Moran added.
Dr. Rebecca Baum, a developmental and behavioral pediatrician at Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Ohio who was not involved in the study, says she worries the results may alarm parents and scare them away from effective treatments for their children.
“Any time we use a medication we are certainly thinking about what is the benefit of the medication versus the risk,” said Baum, stressing that ADHD can be a debilitating condition when symptoms aren’t well-controlled, and while psychosis is a real and potentially serious side effect, it is still very rare.
“The vast majority of my patients have ADHD and I have the benefit of being able to treat many patients quite successfully,” said Baum. “Thankfully in my practice it is not a side effect that we see very often,” she added.
Moran also adds that she and her team focused the study on teens and young adults who were taking stimulants for the first time, emphasizing that for those who have been on these medications and have been taking them as prescribed, the risk is likely even lower.
As for parents and young adults weighing whether to start a medication, Moran hopes the research will prompt a conversation about risks, benefits and alternatives such as behavioral therapy and non-stimulants.
Source: CNN, New England Journal of Medicine

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