A Review by Leemon B. McHenry, California State University Children of the Cure: Missing Data, Lost Lives and Antidepressants By David Healy, Joanna Le Noury and Julie Wood Samizdat Health, 2020, ix +269 pp. Subjecting children to antidepressant drugs that did not outperform sugar pills and that increased suicidality would seem to have been an […]
Children of the Cure
Children of the Cure offers either a fairy tale or an epic take (pay your money and make your own call) on Study 329 – the most famous clinical trial in medicine. There are other takes on what happened in the pipeline from the more academic Illusions of Evidence-Based Medicine by Jureidini and McHenry to Paul Scott’s The Malcharist, which may be satire or may be all too real, difficult to tell, and a compelling screenplay. These books complement Jim Gottstein’s The Zyprexa Papers.
In 1993, a proposal was developed to study the drug for use in adolescent “depression”, and Study 329 was launched. Study 329 did not show a clear benefit compared to placebo, and some study participants suffered serious side effects. The researchers played these down by coding suicidality as lability, and overlooking certain adverse events altogether.
“During my research, I found hundreds of cases of Seroxat-induced “suicide.” I then came across a notorious study that GSK had carried out in the late 90s, a study they termed “329.” The study’s outcome had been posted in a journal online, and all seemed to be well and good. It appeared that Seroxat showed remarkable efficacy in children and adolescents. Why then were children and adolescents dying violent deaths whilst taking it, I wondered?
~ Bob Fiddaman, activist and blogger on drug-related injuries
Children of the Cure, at last, gives patients and their relatives the documented truth about how Pharma really operates, how the regulators and guideline makers are not quite the safeguarders of our health that so many of us long believed them to be. And worst of all, the influence the medical journals have on our health by sleight of hand. So many of us did begin to wonder, after appalling experiences about which we were never taken seriously. But in this book we have a talisman, something to generously give to our GPs, full of facts which cannot any longer be discounted. We cannot be brushed away with lies and obfuscations any more. A much needed, carefully researched and documented book which definitely should save lives.
The story is depressing and tragic, one of many similar tales that have appeared in the past two decades. Clinicians have the skills to assess new treatments, but their independence and financial support must be assured by independent non-industry sources. Children of the Cure is a frightening and tragic story that warrants governmental and public attention. A book review by Max Fink, M.D., Professor of Psychiatry and Neurology Emeritus
StonyBrook University College of Medicine
When Samizdat published Children of the Cure on Amazon, there was discomfort in some quarters. The discomfort was practical for some. Mark Carter from Auckland told us it would take 154 NZ dollars to buy two copies and have then posted to him – he had to go through Amazon.com as Amazon.com.au for some strange reason does […]
Children of the Cure tells the story of the only Medical Study that has two publications in the academic literature—telling precisely the opposite story—and how no one is bothered by this. Study 329 was a clinical study that began in 1994 giving a new antidepressant to teenagers. It has become the most famous clinical trial ever, leading to a fraud charge, a $3 billion fine, and a Black Box Warning.
Buy Book: Children of the Cure