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General News    H4'ed 7/14/10

SSRIs Render Unfriendly Skies

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However, some of the people who submitted comments to the FAA on the new policy thought the agency should open up the friendly skies to more psychotropic drug use. For instance, on June 16, 2010, a person commenting under the name, Anonymous, told the FAA: "This review should be expanded to include ADHD medications."

"Many pilots are diagnosed as having ADHD and take medication to assist them. Many of the medications used today to assist adults are derivatives of drugs issued to military pilots to remain alert during missions," Anonymous said. "I strongly encourage the FAA to review the use of ADHD medication so the pilots using medications to manage their symptoms can finally come out of the shadows."

On June 23, Gregorio Guillen wrote and asked: "How about those pilots wanting to take prescription low dose Sertraline to treat premature ejaculation and not necessarily depression?"

Gregorio wants to whether they "are going to be affected by this rule?"

A pilot named, Paul Reed, asked the FAA to: "Please consider allowing migraine treatments with anti-depressants to be included in this rule," on June 17.

But on the other hand, on June 17, Patric Barry wrote: "If the pilot population is permitted to use such medication, the temptation to increase the dose when a pilot is feeling "a little off" is too great a risk - to amend the rules to allow an inch, some pilots will feel compelled to take a mile."

"That is simply an unacceptable risk to the general population and passengers relying on the stability of the pilot group to safeguard and protect public safety," he told the FAA.

Dr Jeffrey Welker also believes it is "a bad idea to allow individuals being treated for depression with medications to hold a current valid medical," and "we should be looking very close at these individuals after treatment for mental stability."

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Evelyn Pringle is an investigative journalist and researcher focused on exposing corruption in government and corporate America.
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