Ineffective UK drugs regulators exposed by Seroxat revelations
Posted Thursday 11 March 2004
Commenting on the admission by the MHRA (Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency), that the antidepressant Seroxat has been prescribed to patients at unsafe doses since it was first licensed for use in the UK in 1990, Richard Brook, Chief Executive of mental health charity Mind said;
“We welcome the fact that the MHRA has clarified its recommendations on safe dosage for Seroxat. And we welcome the fact that the Secretary of State has outlined clear advice for patients on doses higher than the recommended 20mg. We back that advice and stress that anyone worried about their current medication should consult their doctor before taking any further action."
“Mind has consistently highlighted the flaws in drugs regulation in this country. In this sorry tale far too little heed has been paid to ordinary people experiencing awful side effects and severe withdrawal symptoms. Far too much attention has been paid to the spin of drugs company marketing departments. As late as last year 17,000 patients were started on Seroxat on doses above the recommended maximum level.”
1. In 2000 over 3 million prescriptions for Seroxat were issued nationwide
2. In a House of Commons debate last month Newport West MP Paul Flynn <http://www.paulflynnmp.co.uk/> and Gloucester MP Parmjit Dhanda <http://www.parmjitdhanda.co.uk/> joined Mind in calling for greater transparency in drugs regulation and action against drugs companies withholding data
3. Anyone taking Seroxat or any other prescribed drug who has concerns about their treatment should always discuss them with their doctor. They should not stop or change medication without medical advice.