Intended for healthcare professionals

Letters Suicidality and aggression during antidepressant treatment

Paper on suicidality and aggression during antidepressant treatment was flawed and the press release was misleading

BMJ 2016; 352 doi: (Published 16 February 2016) Cite this as: BMJ 2016;352:i911
  1. Bernadka Dubicka, adolescent psychiatrist and, honorary senior lecturer, University of Manchester1,
  2. Alys Cole-King, clinical director, Connecting with People, and consultant liaison psychiatrist2,
  3. Shirley Reynolds, director, Charlie Waller Institute, and, professor of evidence based psychological therapies3,
  4. Paul Ramchandani, reader in child and adolescent psychiatry and deputy head, Centre for Mental Health4
  1. 1Lancashirecare Foundation Trust, Junction Adolescent Unit, Lancaster LA1 4PW, UK
  2. 2Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board, UK
  3. 3School of Psychology and Clinical Language Sciences, University of Reading, Reading, UK
  4. 4Imperial College London, London, UK
  1. Bernadka.Dubicka{at}

We have concerns about the editorial process involved in the publication of Sharma and colleagues’ article.1 The article is fundamentally flawed in presentation and logic, and the results were further misrepresented by The BMJ press release. The BMJ is highly regarded and anything it publishes will probably be taken as fact by journalists and the public. It is therefore crucial that The BMJ operates with the highest levels of peer review scrutiny and editorial comment.

Depression in young people is underdiagnosed and undertreated.2 Parents often feel conflicted or guilty. Suicide is a highly emotional topic and the claim that antidepressants increase suicide in young people is likely to …

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