Psych Illnesses Lack Scientific Basis


In today’s society, where every behavior needs an excuse—and a chemical fix—the distribution of psychiatric drugs has become a multi-billion-dollar industry. However, as “miracle” drugs have failed to remedy behavioral problems in society and side effects have become more pronounced, voices of dissent are growing more widespread. Now, a leading psychiatrist has, in effect, admitted that psychiatric diagnosis has no scientific basis—which means drugs prescribed for such diagnoses also have no scientific underpinning.

The Louisiana Weekly reported March 19: “With increasing international concern about the large number of children labeled with so-called psychiatric disorders and prescribed mind-altering drugs, even the pioneer of psychiatry’s billing bible and ‘godfather of adhd,’ Dr. Robert Spitzer, recently admitted that normal children are being inappropriately labeled by health care professionals.”

Spitzer was one of the main contributors to the latter editions of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (dsm) and personally defined more than a hundred mental disorders. In the rush to assign a name to a whole gamut of antisocial behaviors, however, it appears these “experts” overlooked a rather fundamental consideration. “What happened,” Spitzer told bbc2, “is that we made estimates of the prevalence of mental disorders totally descriptively, without considering that many of these conditions might be normal reactions which are not really disorders. That’s the problem, because we were not looking at the context in which those conditions developed” (emphasis ours).

“[P]sychiatric disorders are entirely subjective,” the Louisiana Weekly reported. “[P]sychiatrists at the American Psychiatric Association literally vote on which ‘disorders’ to include in the dsm, and the disorders are removed if they are too much trouble” (op. cit.).

The diagnostic system that these psychiatrists created—without looking at the context in which various behavioral problems develophas led to millions being diagnosed with a range of conditions such as Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder and Oppositional Defiant Disorder. “[P]sychiatrists have been using the dsm to fraudulently claim that mental disorders are the same as physical disorders, thereby justifying the prescription of powerful, psychotropic drugs, including to very young children” (ibid.). Worldwide sales of drugs to treat “mental disorders,” including stimulants, antipsychotics and antidepressants, now total more than $80 billion each year.

Spitzer maintained that psychiatric drugs “don’t have serious side effects”—despite the fact that the Food and Drug Administration (fda) has reported that such side effects can include heart attack, stroke, suicidal and homicidal behavior, diabetes, psychosis and sudden death. A study published by a doctor last September in the Public Library of Science Medicine journal concluded that antidepressants increase the risk of violence in both children and adults. The manufacturer of one antipsychotic drug has agreed to a $1.2 billion settlement involving more than 25,000 individuals who claim the drug caused diabetes and other side effects.

Of course, what is being largely avoided in the debate are the causes of behavioral problems. A diagnosis and prescription is merely a mask to cover up fundamental problems in the way families are living.