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ADHD drugs causing frightening hallucinations in kids
You know by now where I stand on drugs like Ritalin for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder – if I could physically go into millions of American homes and remove these drugs from folks' medicine cabinets, I would. ADHD has become the "designer diagnosis" of the past decade, and up to 8 percent of all kids have been diagnosed with it at some point or another. Most of them end up on a prescription drug. I don't have the space here to tell you about all the side effects that come with these drugs… suffice to say, they run the gamut from irregular heartbeats to anxiety and weight loss. But there's a new side effect researchers have uncovered that's cause for serious concern – hallucinations. A government study that looked at past trials on Ritalin, Concerta and Strattera found that these drugs were sometimes causing frightening hallucinations in kids, who in some cases thought they were seeing bugs and snakes. Is there anything more frightening to kids than bugs and snakes? Kids are unnecessarily being put on drugs that make it seem like their worst fears are coming true. The researchers were quick to point out that the side effects only occurs in rare cases. I'm sure it wouldn't seem like such a small issue if it was your kid or grandkid, though. ADHD is criminally over-diagnosed, and the drugs that treat it are unconscionably over- prescribed. While every kid on an ADHD drug hasn't seen bugs and snakes, these drugs have unleashed other side effects on more children than we can count. If your kids or grandkids are taking Ritalin, Concerta or Strattera, do them a huge favor – get a second opinion.
Friday, January 30, 2009
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Thursday, January 01, 2009
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Alaska Employees Get Vaccine Ultimatum
Employees at Providence Alaska Medical Center no longer have a choice as to whether or not they receive a flu vaccine. The hospital is requiring all employees to get flu shots by year's end or face dismissal.
The new policy is controversial, especially among nurses. Many nurses don't want to be forced to get a shot that carries health risks of its own and doesn't always work, according to the nurses' union.
Nationally, fewer than half of health care workers receive flu vaccines. Before this year at Providence, about 40 percent of employees were vaccinated.
The nurses' union has filed a grievance protesting the policy.
ABC Alaska News December 9, 2008