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Were These Knife Attacks Caused by SSRI Antidepressants?

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It's a crime to jolt the most jaded TV News watchers. Last week, a 14-year-old girl in a Chicago suburb allegedly stabbed her 11-year-old half sister 40 times, killing her. News reports say the 14-year-old was angry over an argument the night before, set her alarm, got a kitchen knife and entered her sister's room. The suspect allegedly uttered that the younger girl was not thankful for what she had done with each stab wound, said police. The older sister's unappreciated services included cooking dinner, doing the 11-year-old's chores for her and keeping the household running, said news reports.

The stabbing comes a little over a year after another shocking Chicago area stabbing. Elzbieta Plackowska in the Chicago suburb of Naperville was charged with fatally stabbing her 7-year-old son 100 times and fatally stabbing a 5-year-old girl she was babysitting. Plackowska felt her husband "truly did not appreciate how fine a wife and mother she was," DuPage County State's Attorney Robert Berlin said. "She told the detectives that she thought by killing (her son) Justin she would make her husband hurt the way she hurt in their relationship," reporters were told. Plackowska also stabbed the two family dogs to death.

Are there two psychiatrists somewhere out there wishing they had not prescribed SSRI antidepressants, linked to such bizarre violence, to the suspects? We will probably never know. But bizarre knife murders--excessive, inexplicable and without clear motive--are increasingly associated with the widely-prescribed drug class which includes Prozac, Luvox, Zoloft, Paxil, Lexapro and Celexa. Bizarre violent acts are also associated with SNRI antidepressants (which include Effexor and Cymbalta) the antismoking drug Chantix and Lariam, an anti-malaria still in use in the military.

Another wonder drug by Martha Rosenberg

"The kind of energy, rage and insanity seen in a lot of crimes today was not seen before SSRIs appeared," Rosie Meysenburg, founder of the website SSRI Stories told me in an interview shortly before her death. "There are two cases of women on the SSRI Stories   site who stab a man close to 200 times and a case of a man who stabs his wife over 100 times and then goes next door to the neighbor's house and stabbed the neighbor's furniture about 500 times."

"Multiple stab wounds can indicate rage as well as dissociation," University of South Florida criminology professor Kathleen Heide told the Chicago Tribune about the recent sister stabbings in Chicago. "That's why a (risk evaluation) is critical. Is this person aware of what she's doing?"

Stabbings are not the only bizarre violence seen under the influences of SSRIs Meysenburg told me. "There are also cases of kleptomania, pyromania and a strange kind of nymphomania in which women school teachers molest their minor male students," she said. Meysenburg founded the SSRI Stories website after experiencing severe side effects from being prescribed an SSRI herself.

The site includes many examples of people setting themselves on fire, biting their victims and elderly offenders not traditionally associated with violent crime. Besides unlikely offenders and weapons, the crime stories recounted on the website often lack a comprehensible motive like the two recent cases in Chicago. A Midwest City, Oklahoma woman accepted a cup of tea from an elderly nurse she'd just met, in one crime report cited, and then strangled her. A 12-year-old boy stayed in his cousin's car while she shopped at Target and killed her 5-week-old daughter while she gone. All the cases on the site involve people under the influence of SSRIs, as reported by news outlets.

Of course lethal stabbings are not a new occurrence in US history. The spectacular 1966 murders of eight nurses in Chicago by Richard Speck were committed with a knife. And who can forget Lizzie Borden who was tried and acquitted of the murders of her father and stepmother in Fall River, Massachusetts in 1892? (Though her "40 wacks" were from an axe not knife.)

Still, more than 5,000 murders and bizarre violence have been linked to SSRIs in news reports and often, if the crimes sound too extreme to be true without a medical explanation--they are. Despite the large evidence database, Big Pharma has denied, hidden and downplayed the side effects to get its money's worth. Watch for an admission that the drugs do cause violence when all the patents have run out.

Learn more about dangers of popular prescription drugs by reading Martha Rosenberg's award-cited expose Born with a Junk Food Deficiency: How Flacks, Quacks and Hacks Pimp the Public Health (Random House)

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Martha Rosenberg is an award-winning investigative pubic health reporter who covers the food, drug and gun industries. Her first book, Born With A Junk Food Deficiency: How Flaks, Quacks and Hacks Pimp The Public Health, is distributed by Random (more...)
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"Are there two psychiatrists somewhere out there ... by Paul Easton on Sunday, Jan 26, 2014 at 5:11:33 PM
Yes we should know. There is a move, even with ca... by Martha Rosenberg on Sunday, Jan 26, 2014 at 6:08:16 PM
Why it is time to call for knife control! This kni... by Bill Johnson on Sunday, Jan 26, 2014 at 5:25:00 PM
You are making a joke and nothing about this is f... by Martha Rosenberg on Sunday, Jan 26, 2014 at 6:08:57 PM
I'm not laughing Martha. Just reacting like you d... by Bill Johnson on Sunday, Jan 26, 2014 at 7:16:41 PM
The difference between knives and guns is that gu... by Paul Easton on Sunday, Jan 26, 2014 at 8:17:27 PM
Knives can make people crazy, too. The difference ... by J. Edward Tremlett on Sunday, Jan 26, 2014 at 10:08:41 PM
That is consistent with what I said. The average p... by Paul Easton on Monday, Jan 27, 2014 at 12:54:44 AM
Yeah, I can see where you're coming from on that :... by J. Edward Tremlett on Monday, Jan 27, 2014 at 1:53:52 PM
If I carried a gun I might make an irreversible m... by Paul Easton on Monday, Jan 27, 2014 at 9:57:58 PM
This is happening way too often!... by marilyn potter on Sunday, Jan 26, 2014 at 9:36:22 PM
I have never heard of such a methodical killing be... by Martha Rosenberg on Sunday, Jan 26, 2014 at 10:07:36 PM
America in particular, but also much of the rest o... by Doc McCoy on Monday, Jan 27, 2014 at 1:26:23 AM
Very good, glib and insightful! Now as I suggeste... by Jack Smythe on Thursday, Jan 30, 2014 at 10:44:51 AM
Thanks for writing this article Martha.  ... by Shane's Page on Monday, Jan 27, 2014 at 4:47:38 AM
Hello Leonie Thank you for writing. Sorry for ... by Martha Rosenberg on Monday, Jan 27, 2014 at 2:25:17 PM
Maybe SSRIs lead to rage murders. I don't know, bu... by Daniel Vasey on Monday, Jan 27, 2014 at 4:41:33 PM
My advice to you is to try one of these drugs for... by Jack Smythe on Thursday, Jan 30, 2014 at 10:02:59 AM
SSRI's mess with brain chemicals c... by Jack Smythe on Thursday, Jan 30, 2014 at 9:58:14 AM