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Is normal behavior a sickness?

February 29, 2008 Leave a comment

In 2000, an enterprising reporter on the Boston Globe, aware that the patent for the billion-dollar-selling anti-depressant drug Prozac was soon to expire, checked to see if an application had been filed for a new version and found that it had. Such applications have to state what the improved benefits of the new drug will be. Among them was this claim: “It will not produce several existing side-effects, including suicidal thoughts and self-mutilation . . . one of its [Prozac’s] more significant side-effects”. This story is related in Let Them Eat Prozac: The unhealthy relationship between the pharmaceutical industry and depression (2004) by the British psychiatrist David Healy.

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