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US drug regulators should consider adding adults to SSRI suicide warning, says campaigner

BMJ 2017; 357 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.j2050 (Published 25 April 2017) Cite this as: BMJ 2017;357:j2050
  1. Ed Silverman
  1. Millburn, New Jersey

A British doctor who campaigned for the public to be warned about increased suicide risk in young people taking antidepressants has said that US drug regulators should consider including adults in warnings.

David Healy, a psychiatry professor at Bangor University, called for the warnings after GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) was ordered to pay $3m (£2.34m; €2.75m) to the widow of a US man who killed himself shortly after starting generic paroxetine.

The jury in the case of Stewart Dolin, a 57 year old attorney, concluded that GSK had failed to properly warn the public about the increased risk of suicide when taking paroxetine. The jury reached its verdict after lawyers for Dolin’s widow, Wendy, presented evidence in the Chicago federal court suggesting that GSK knew that paroxetine posed a risk to adults but had concealed …

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