Is it possible to draw a straight line between patient suicide and prescription drugs? It's a touchy subject. Within the last few weeks, the FDA alerted the public that epilepsy drugs appear to boost the remote risk of suicide (or at least suicidal thoughts), that Pfizer's stop-smoking drug Chantix may do the same, and that it's requiring more suicide-related data in drug trials. Is suicide the scary drug risk du jour? Or is the explosion activity long overdue?
The New York Times examines the question today and basically concludes that clarity will be elusive. Unless, that is, lawmakers mandate massive databases of patient-and-drug info designed to sift out rare side effects.
- check out the NYT's release