Statement to the FDA on February 2nd, 2004

I am a behavioral-developmental pediatrician who has prescribed psychiatric drugs to children for 26 years. I have no drug company affiliations. I am the author of Running on Ritalin and Should I Medicate My Child? As a "front-line" practitioner I have lost faith in my research-academic colleagues to provide me data, information, opinions and conclusions in an objective and unbiased fashion. I desperately need that information -- today we are discussing SSRIs in children -- in order to validate and augment the clinical decisions I must make everyday on who does and doesn't get medication.

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Out of Whack

The question, "Are we overmedicating our kids with psychiatric drugs?" was once again brought to our attention by a recent cover story in Time Magazine. I'll answer with another question, "How much more evidence do we need to decide something is terribly awry with our society and culture -- and especially with the way we address the behavior and performance problems of children?"

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A Hole in His Head

In the Bay area, the Barret Robbins affair continues to simmer. We are told that the Oakland Raider all-pro center missed the Super Bowl because he was suffering from bipolar disorder and had stopped taking his medication before the big game. Apparently this triggered a major depressive response which led to an alcoholic binge and the rest, as they say, is history -- a lopsided blow-out defeat for the Raider football team.

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