Zantac Lawsuit


Researching drug company and regulatory malfeasance for over 16 years
Humanist, humorist

Monday, September 13, 2021

Who Am I? Trust the Science




With Zoom Trivia Nights soaring throughout the world, I thought I'd throw in three questions that are topical.

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1/ Who am I? 

The defendant caused thousands of false and deceptive claims to be made to the state by manipulating published efficacy data, paying key opinion leaders to bolster their product's efficacy, and deceptively concealing their product's inefficacy to physicians, customers, and the state.

Clue: This company likes to remain silent just as the first letter of their name.

Answer - LINK

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2/ Who am I? 

In 2003 researchers at the University of Illinois-Chicago released the results of research concluding that a a pharmaceutical company manufactured a drug which elevated risk for diabetes. Subsequently, more than 25,000 lawsuits were filed against the company. In 2010 the company said it would pay a total of $198 million to settle those cases. That same year, the UK’s Prescription Medicines Code of Practice Authority found that the same company had failed to adequately describe the risks of its product in an advertisement for the drug in a medical journal.

Clue: A Greek star

Answer - LINK

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3/ Who am I? 

A huge $100 million settlement for about 1,000 ovarian cancer lawsuits has been reached between this pharmaceutical company and plaintiffs' product lawyers. More recently it announced it was earmarking $4 billion to cover the anticipated cost of the their product's lawsuits. The product in question was a popular over-the-counter talcum powder.

The same company have also had 13,400 lawsuits filed against them for another of their products.  In July 2016, a Philadelphia jury awarded $70 million to Andrew Yount, a Tennessee teen who blamed their product for causing him to develop female-size breasts.

Their own internal studies showed that nearly 5% of children using their product can develop gynecomastia (a condition of overdevelopment or enlargement of the breast tissue in men or boys) - However, they hid this information from the regulators and the public.

Clue: Two of AC/DC's vocalists

Answer - LINK

You're welcome.

Bob Fiddaman

Friday, September 10, 2021

#WorldSuicidePreventionDay

 



Today is #WorldSuicidePreventionDay

A subject that has, seemingly, been forgotten about during the times we live in. 

For some, suicide was a choice, a means to end their misery. For others, it was out of their control, pushed over the edge by prescription drug-induced #Akathisia.

Today, many suicide prevention orgs will be calling for more mental health screening, a route by where a depressed person can unknowingly agree to the very same treatment that can cause akathisia. 

These suicide prevention orgs are, in the main, supported and funded by the corporation's that manufacture these types of drugs. 

Create awareness wherever you are. Look out for your loved ones and your neighbours. Research the term 'Akathisia' and make it a household name.

https://missd.co/

Bob Fiddaman


Tuesday, September 07, 2021

Informed Consent - Irrelevant, Inappropriate Spam

 

Spam

irrelevant or inappropriate messages sent on the internet to a large number of recipients.

Following on from 'Are Nurses Conspiracy Theorists?', which contained a video of nurses who gathered at a town hall in Minnesota to air their views about the safety and efficacy of the vaccine, I now have to report that Facebook have deemed that the 1 hour plus presentation is deemed to be going against Facebook's "community standards". (Fig 1)


Fig 1

It seems a bizarre move by the social media giant given that they are, allegedly, all about correct information being disseminated on their platform. What can be more 'on the ball' than nurses working the front lines in hospitals? Or are Facebook suggesting they are 'tin-foil hat' wearers?

If you've not seen the video yet, then I highly recommend it.

Today, I share another video. It was posted by Instagram user, kaitlinjaramillo, and features two women who show us all the patient information leaflet that accompanies the current Covid vaccines. Obviously, one cannot take a video at face value, so I did some digging into this.

It appears it's not the first video to hit social media regarding the, for want of a better word, "lack" of information being handed out to pharmacists and, indeed patients.

The reasoning behind this "lack" of information is equally baffling.

Here's the video:


According to Truthmeter, an apparent fact-finding website, patient inserts on vaccines are intentionally left blank because data is constantly changing. Instead, the blank pages offer the reader a QR code and a website on which the latest vaccine information is published.

This, at first glance, appears all well and good, however, you can only access the website if you are  a Healthcare Professional in the US. Patient's, it appears, cannot access what is, in essence, theirs. (Fig 2)

Fig 2 (Click on image to enlarge)

So, with Facebook, seemingly, cautioning people who post access to information regarding the vaccine, and Janssen, a pharmaceutical company, only allowing healthcare professionals access to this information, where does that leave the consumer?

It appears Janssen will only allow healthcare professionals access, this includes nurses who, according to the definition of the word 'Spam' sees Facebook flagging such posts because they are "irrelevant or inappropriate" (Fig 3)

Fig 3


What's more "irrelevant or inappropriate", access to patient safety information or no access to patient safety information?

These are the times we are living in, folks!

Bob Fiddaman

Back Stories




Monday, September 06, 2021

Are Nurses Conspiracy Theorists?

 


In the mid 1800s, Florence Nightingale co-created a Royal Commission into the health of the military. Along with leading statisticians of the day, William Farr and John Sutherland, they analysed mortality data and found that 16,000 of the 18,000 deaths were from preventable diseases—not battle.

Fast forward to the 21st Century

Erik Mortensen (Republican Party) is a member of the Minnesota House of Representatives, representing District 55A. He assumed office on January 5, 2021. His current term ends on January 2, 2023.

On Aug 27, 2021, Mortensen hosted a town hall meeting for nurses and other healthcare professionals after he became concerned at the number of healthcare workers who were contacting him about COVID-19 vaccine mandates. Most who contacted him were under threat of losing their jobs after refusing to receive a COVID-19 shot.

Previously, the nurses in the video (below) had been hailed as heroes as they stepped up to the frontline to help in the COVID-19 wards.

As the vaccines were rolled out they have witnessed how these shots have killed and injured people, including family members.

The mainstream media have reported that most healthcare workers are now fully vaccinated but the discussion in the video below disputes this.

One key question put forward by a nurse in this discussion got me thinking:

“Why aren’t people asking the nurses why they don’t want to take the shots?”

Why indeed.

Most people who have had the shots may think this discussion isn't applicable to them. They received slight bruising and maybe tiredness after their shots but was well again 24 hours later. They are now free to walk the streets in the hope the vaccine will prevent them from falling seriously ill, they also feel they are 'doing their bit' to help slow the spread of this invisible enemy that has killed so many.

There will be a section of people, across America at least, who will choose not to watch this video for political reasons. Democrats don't want to show any kind of support to opposition leaders or representatives. It goes against the grain to listen to what the opposition has to say, even if it's the truth. This stance has been rife throughout history in politics, also in religion, we now see such a divide anytime vaccine safety is aired.

The nurses in the video drop a few bombs, none more so than the fact that they are being told to not report vaccine injuries and deaths.

One nurse also says, "If I don’t get the vaccine, I’m going to lose my job. I’m going to lose thousands of dollars in retirement. I’m going to lose my health insurance, my life insurance, my over 400 days of extended illness bank hours. I’m going to lose a lot. I’m here because I believe in medical freedom. And I believe if we don’t stand up and stop these mandates, they’re going to keep twisting our arm, and twisting our arm, and twisting our arm, until we’re all broken."

Again, those who have already had the vaccine will probably feel this video isn't worth watching, they will tend to watch, believe and disseminate videos from the mainstream media because, well, it's the mainstream media who have convinced them that everything is hunky dory with the vaccines and those who have already lined up for their shots are living proof of this.

Before you watch the nurses discuss what is going on in the real world let's take a short look at what Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews had to say recently on Sky News Australia.

"There is going to be a vaccinated economy, and you get to participate in that if you are vaccinated. We're going to move to a situation where, to protect the health system, we are going to lock out people who are not vaccinated and can be."


Contrast what Premier Daniel Andrews' says now with what a room full of frontline nurses are saying.

Who do you believe, a government official or nurses with first hand experience?

The video below isn't making headlines. Neither CNN or, indeed, Republican-run Fox News is reporting on the video. It should be viral yet it's only had around 26,000 views. Once again, it is left to the public to disseminate such information.

If anyone does decide to share this blog post or the video then be prepared for the backlash. You wear a tin-foil hat, you are endangering lives, you're 'anti-vax', a conspiracy theorist, you're not a vaccine expert, I prefer to listen to the scientists than someone who is a Google Dr.

But hey, if you are any of the above, that means the nurses who feature in the video are too, right?

**Discussion starts at the 17 min 15 sec mark**

If video doesn't play, you can find it here.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UYJqWl2Mr9Q&t=1081s


**UPDATE** Facebook regard the nurse video as 'Spam'

Bob Fiddaman

Hat-Tip Kim Witczak

Related

Informed Consent ~ Changing the Paradigm

Tuesday, August 31, 2021

If Pfizer Were a Caregiver - The Elephant in the Room

 



To date, I've not witnessed any person who is refusing Pfizer's vaccine publicly chastise anyone who has chosen to be vaccinated. I have, however, seen plenty of vaccinated people call those who are not vaccinated, "idiots", "stupid", "selfish", "antivaxxers". Many more negative connotations are used, often behind the backs of the unvaccinated.

Although there may be some examples of the unvaccinated targeting vaccinated people, I suspect it's because they are fed up of having the above negative connotations aimed in their directions - I may be wrong.

This post is, in essence, for those people who continue to claim that the unvaccinated are idiots, etc.

I pose a hypothetical question to those people, one, which I feel, should, at the very least, tap into their sense of logic when trying to persuade the unvaccinated to "GET VACCINATED!" (They often use CAPS and exclamation marks to drive their point home) - messages like these are rife on social media, such as Instagram, Facebook, Twitter etc.

As yet, I've not had any answers to this question, apart from, "It's a silly rhetorical device.", this from someone who has publicly stated that he has been vaccinated. Do you see any negative connotations in his response?

Anyway, I digress.

Here's the hypothetical question:

If Pfizer were a caregiver, would you employ them to look after the welfare of your children, grandchildren, and/or elderly relatives?

Before you answer, it may be wise to check out Pfizer's CV.

Here it is (Sources provided at the end of this blog post)

Products
- The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) expressed great concern about reports of dozens of fatalities linked to heart valves made by Pfizer’s Shiley division. In 1986, as the death toll reached 125, Pfizer ended production of all models of the valves. In 1991 an FDA task force charged that Pfizer’s Shiley division had withheld information about safety problems from regulators in order to get initial approval for its valves and that the company continued to keep the FDA in the dark. A November 7, 1991 investigation in the Wall Street Journal asserted that Pfizer’s Shiley division had been deliberately falsifying manufacturing records relating to valve fractures. Pfizer announced that it would spend up to $205 million to settle the tens of thousands of valve lawsuits that had been filed against it. Even so, Pfizer resisted complying with an FDA order that it notify patients of new findings that there was a greater risk of fatal fractures in those who had the valve installed before the age of 50

- In 2004, Pfizer agreed to suspend television advertising for a related medication called Celebrex. The following year, Pfizer admitted that a 1999 clinical trial found that elderly patients taking Celebrex had a greatly elevated risk of heart problems.

- In 2005, Pfizer withdrew another painkiller, Bextra, from the market after the FDA mandated a “black box” warning about the cardiovascular and gastrointestinal risks of the medication. In 2008, Pfizer announced that it was setting aside $894 million to settle the lawsuits that had been filed in connection with Bextra and Celebrex. The settlement included roughly 7,000 personal injury cases, mainly plaintiffs who took Bextra, The attorney represented 2000 claimants, about 10% of them relatives of people who died.

- In 2010, a federal jury awarded $1.37 million to a former Pfizer scientist who claimed she was sickened by a genetically engineered virus at a company lab and was then fired for raising safety concerns.

Children
- In 2000, the Washington Post published a major exposé accusing Pfizer of testing a dangerous new antibiotic called Trovan on children in Nigeria without receiving proper consent from their parents. The experiment occurred during a 1996 meningitis epidemic in the country. In 2001, Pfizer was sued in U.S. federal court by thirty Nigerian families, who accused the company of using their children as human guinea pigs. Eleven of the children reportedly died, while the remaining 181 were said to have suffered from deafness, paralysis, brain damage and blindness.

- In 2006, a panel of Nigerian medical experts concluded that Pfizer had violated international law. In 2009, the company agreed to pay $75 million to settle some of the lawsuits that had been brought in Nigerian courts. The U.S. case was settled in 2011 for an undisclosed amount. A Pfizer spokesperson had previously claimed, "The study saved lives and was conducted ethically and responsibly."

Environment
- In 1971, the Environmental Protection Agency asked Pfizer to end its long-time practice of dumping industrial wastes from its plant in Groton, Connecticut in the Long Island Sound. The company was reported to be disposing of about 1 million gallons of waste each year by that method.

- In 1991, Pfizer agreed to pay $3.1 million to settle EPA charges that the company seriously damaged the Delaware River by failing to install pollution-control equipment at one of its plants in Pennsylvania.

- In 1994, Pfizer agreed to pay $1.5 million as part of a consent decree with the EPA in connection with its dumping at a toxic waste site in Rhode Island.

- Pfizer have also settled wrongful death cases of both adults and children regarding Zoloft's propensity to induce suicide. Despite settling these cases, Pfizer still deny that Zoloft can induce suicide.

Zoloft has generated over $30 billion in sales since its release in 1991, but research suggests that the drug is, at best, little more effective than a sugar pill.

To date, Pfizer has been fined a total of $4,660,896,333 for various violations

I suspect many who have chose not to be vaccinated don't quite trust this particular multi-billion dollar corporation and, more than likely, are completely cheesed off at individuals calling them out with their slanderous comments.

The question still remains. If Pfizer were a caregiver, would you employ them to look after the welfare of your children, grandchildren and/or elderly relatives?

Answers on a postcard, please...

Bob Fiddaman




Monday, August 23, 2021

Informed Consent ~ Changing the Paradigm

 


Rarely does a video cause me as much anger as one I recently viewed via Twitter. Before reading on, please view it below or here



After hearing Dr. Samuel White's story, I searched for an unedited version of the video and additional info about White, who has been a doctor in NHS for more than 17 years. White is now facing an interim orders tribunal regarding his fitness to practise. The Medical Practitioners Tribunal Service (MPTS) will carry out a tribunal to decide whether to:

1.Impose an interim order of conditions on White's medical registration.
2.Impose an interim order of suspension on White's medical registration.
3.Make no order.

As part of the ongoing process, White's licence to practise medicine within the NHS was suspended by a letter the NHS sent on 26 June 2021. His rebuttal, via his lawyers, can be seen here.

White has been temporarily suspended for telling his patients to review data provided by two government websites: the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) Yellow Card Adverse Event Reporting website in the UK and the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS) in the US.

As of 8 August 2021, MHRA states they have received 342,014 reports for all the combined vaccines and that this accounts for more than 1 million total reactions, 1,559 of which were fatal. (Fig 1)

CLICK ON IMAGE TO ENLARGE
Image courtesy of UK Column


This government-provided data is what Dr. White told his patients to read when deciding whether or not to have the COVID vaccine. The figures above change weekly and will increase as more people report their adverse reactions. It's also important to remember that because many adverse reactions and deaths are never reported to the MHRA, these figures above do not tell us the whole story.

The MHRA will argue that the reported reactions and deaths do not necessarily mean the vaccine caused them, often using the phrase, "correlation does not equal causation." They have done this throughout history with medicines that cause adverse events and even deaths.

White was giving his patients as much information as he had at his disposal; he didn't have the weekly stats for the vaccines' adverse events; hence his common-sense suggestion that patients check the two websites is appropriate. 

So what is Informed Consent?

It seems an easy question to answer, but no doctor can provide patients with all the information needed for fully informed consent because data from clinical drug trials is withheld from medical professionals and consumers. 

1. You must have the capacity (or ability) to make the decision.

2. The medical provider must disclose information on the treatment, test, or procedure in question, including the expected benefits and risks, and the likelihood (or probability) that the benefits and risks will occur.

3. You must understand the relevant information.

4. You must voluntarily grant consent, without coercion or duress.

Let's take a closer look at #2

For doctors to relay information about benefits and risks to their patients, they need all the information. But doctors and the MHRA do not receive all the data from the drug companies. Case Report Forms (CRFs) are individual patient data from clinical trials. These are all kept under lock and key--the only time one is ever granted access to CRFs is when a request for disclosure is made. Disclosure refers to a litigation procedure where each party in the suit must disclose any/all documents that may be considered relevant to the pending court case.

The likelihood of CRFs from COVID vaccine clinical trials ever seeing the light of day is slim given that AstraZeneca, Pfizer, and Moderna, have all been granted indemnity. In other words, consumers who suffer from taking these COVID-related products can never sue the company that made them. So, no litigation, no CRFs.

Having no access to CRFs is bad enough, yet we also have ghostwritten "medical literature."

Who You Gonna Call?

Most people who see the names of medical doctors or Ph.D.'s followed by affiliated academic institutions as authors of medical journal articles likely believe the drug data and product claims promoted. The pharmaceutical companies promote these erroneous assumptions using a scheme called ghostwriting.

The authors of ghostwritten articles have not written them or read all the clinical trial data. Instead, the drug companies hire PR firms to draft articles and send them to academics who lend their names as authors. A classic example of this was ghostwriting PR outfit, Scientific Therapeutics Information (STI), that worked for drug kingpins, GlaxoSmithKline (GSK).

In a nutshell, GSK's pediatric trials for Paxil returned abysmal results. However, GSK knew all was not lost. The company only needed child psychiatrists to promote Paxil for kids by claiming the drug was safe and effective. STI's ghostwritten article helped convince many doctors to convince many parents that Paxil was safe for children. Years later, we learned through litigation why GSK never shared the clinical trial data: Internal documents showed GSK was worried that their clinical trial data would reduce product sales. 

You can read more about this case here, here, and here.

Doctors, including Samuel White, are not obliged to research drug company malfeasance; moreover, even if they did their own research, they are not obliged to inform patients of their findings.

The USA

An article published in the British Medical Journal (BMJ) on 20 August 2021 highlights how the American equivalent of the MHRA, the Food and Drugs Administration (FDA), is preparing to grant full approval of the Pfizer vaccine without publicly discussing the data. Only a year ago, the FDA said it was "committed to use an advisory committee composed of independent experts to ensure deliberations about authorization or licensure are transparent for the public."

So, why the sudden U-turn? Experts quoted in the BMJ article said politics drove the decision not to meet to discuss the data. Diana Zuckerman, president of the National Center for Health Research, who has also spoken at recent Vaccines and Related Biological Products Advisory Committee (VRBPAC) meetings, said, "It's obvious that the FDA has no intention of hearing anyone else's opinion. But if you make decisions behind closed doors it can feed into hesitancy. It's important to have a public discussion about what kind of data are there and what the limitations are. As we think about risk versus benefit, we need to know."

The FDA and MHRA don't want to discuss the data because, as I previously stated, they don't have all the data.

Ladies and gentlemen, this is the publicly funded smoke-and-mirrors shit show being performed for us. The truth of the matter is, everything is being hidden in plain sight. Whether you have taken these COVID drugs or not, you should question all of the above. It is easy (and lazy) to post memes on Facebook or Twitter chastising those who choose not to take these vaccines. It's easy to label people who don't get in line for pharma's new COVID products and call them "anti-vaxxers" or "conspiracy theorists.' Similar labels were assigned to folks who spoke out about the dangers of promoting and prescribing Paxil to children. Yet years later, GSK's lies were exposed during wrongful death litigation. 

Informed Consent ~ Changing the Paradigm

I'd like to see the term 'informed consent' used less frequently. It is meaningless when a doctor or patient does not have access to all the data. Instead, I'd like to use the opposite term, 'Informed refusal'.

Informed refusal is where a person has refused a recommended medical treatment based upon an understanding of the facts and implications of not following the treatment. Individuals need to be in possession of the relevant facts, all of them.

This may stick in the teeth of those who have already had the vaccine, a lot of whom claim that people who refuse the vaccine don't have any rights, 'it's not about them', we hear, 'it's about others.'

So, my right to informed refusal is based on the lack of data coming from the likes of Pfizer, Moderna and AstraZeneca and now the FDA. Based on the information they are not giving me, I refuse to be treated and if that upsets those who have been treated and limits my freedoms, then so be it.

I'm on the side of truth, not suppression, be that in the form of access to raw data or the posting of infantile memes on social media by the 'monkey see, monkey do' individuals, all, of course, designed to silence those with the ability to think freely without fear. 

Fearbook

I've never seen a divide happen so quickly. On both Facebook and Twitter I now see posts from people declaring that they are deleting friends from their list who speak out about the vaccine, all fuelled by the regular 'flags' we now see daily on Facebook anytime anyone posts something negative about treatment. Flags such as:

So, it's okay to click on the 'Get Vaccine Info' link but, seemingly, not okay to click on any information that may oppose this information.

When Facebook go a step further and actually remove opinion you have the right to ask why. Here's the standard reply you get:

As this blog of mine points out, Facebook moderators don't have access to the safety or side effect data of COVID vaccines, they couldn't possibly know what is true or false.

The best one I've seen so far is the following:

So, a post or link of yours may offer 99% truth but Facebook 'fact-checkers' flag it for containing 'partly false' information.

More Jabs

The United States will begin widely distributing Covid-19 booster shots next month as apparent new data shows that vaccine protection dwindles over time.

“We are starting to see evidence of reduced protection against mild and moderate disease,” according to the statement signed by CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky, acting FDA Commissioner Dr. Janet Woodcock, White House chief medical advisor Dr. Anthony Fauci and other U.S. health leaders.

U.S. agencies are preparing to offer booster shots to all eligible Americans beginning the week of Sept. 20, starting eight months after their second dose of Pfizer or Moderna’s vaccines.

So, the freedoms given to those who have currently been double-jabbed, concerts, sporting events, travel, will, seemingly, be taken away unless they have the booster.

Viruses mutate over time, they can strengthen or weaken. The majority of vaccines are developed over time and not rushed to market. Just because a vaccine gets approval (albeit 'Emergency Approval') does not make it safe. Data is collected and supposed to be assessed. This is called Post-Marketing Surveillance, designed to collect all the adverse events from the public. Most people don't know that clinical trials do not end in the lab - Any drug or vaccine that comes to market is just another phase of a clinical trial.

Dr White's bosses and, it seems, Facebook 'Fact-Checkers' are doing everything in their power to deter you and I from checking out the Post-Marketing Surveillance data. This is real-world data and not the data of a clinical trial setting.

You have to ask yourself, why the suppression?

Those who oppose members of the public who question the safety and efficacy of the COVID-19 vaccine will, no doubt, continue to post various memes supporting the use of vaccines in adults, children and expectant mothers. Their pious position will be supported with posts and links to celebrities, journalists and ghost-written articles that appear in academic journals. None of these will be flagged by Facebook.

As I said before, Monkey see, monkey do.

As a side-note, I first heard about COVID-19 on January 1st 2020 (Back then it was just known as the "Corona Virus"). I was in Central America at the time and a neighbour of mine invited me over to his place for afternoon drinks. He asked me if I'd heard about the outbreak, he had business in China so was more up-to-speed than I.

A month or so later, I was back in the UK visiting family and friends. Within weeks of me landing back in Blighty, the whole country was locked down. It was then that I wrote a series of predictions. You can see those predictions here. People back then rolled their eyes at me and no doubt those same people will be rolling their eyes at this blog post.

Bob Fiddaman






Thursday, July 22, 2021

The Gardasil Vaccine Lawsuits Keep Piling Up

 


Photo Courtesy of Baum Hedlund Aristei & Goldman


Drug company nemesis, Baum Hedlund Aristei & Goldman, lawyers filed a lawsuit yesterday on behalf of a 22-year-old Abigail “Abby” Stratton of Mount Pleasant, South Carolina who developed postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome (POTS) and other serious health problems after receiving the Gardasil human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine.

Abby was a healthy and active young woman before receiving a Gardasil jab in November of 2017. Within weeks of this jab, she developed serious and debilitating health conditions. Eventually she was diagnosed with POTS and autonomic dysfunction that her attorneys allege were caused by the Gardasil vaccine.

Lawyers Bijan Esfandiari, Nicole Maldonado, Michael L. Baum, Monique Alarcon, and co-counsel Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. filed the Gardasil lawsuit (Case No. 3:21-av-99999-CIV) in United States District Court, District of South Carolina against Merck & Co., Inc. and subsidiary Merck Sharp & Dohme Corp, both based in New Jersey.

According to John Hopkins Medicine, POTS is is a blood circulation disorder characterized by two factors:

 - A specific group of symptoms that frequently occur when standing upright

 - A heart rate increase from horizontal to standing (or as tested on a tilt table) of at least 30 beats per minute in adults, or at least 40 beats per minute in adolescents, measured during the first 10 minutes of standing.

 - Symptoms include, but are not limited to: light-headedness (occasionally with fainting), difficulty thinking and concentrating (brain fog), fatigue, intolerance of exercise, headache, blurry vision, palpitations, tremor and nausea.

The complaint alleges Merck tested the Gardasil vaccine against a toxic placebo spiked with Amorphous Aluminum Hydroxyphosphate Sulfate (AAHS), a powerful neurotoxin. By adding this harmful ingredient to the control group, Merck could then claim its vaccine was “as safe as a placebo.”

Amorphous Aluminum Hydroxyphosphate Sulfate (AAHS) is an additive in Gardasil meant to produce a stronger and longer immune response. Aluminum, however, is known to be neurotoxic if it accumulates in the brain.

Merck are accused of concealing the Gardasil vaccine induces and increases the risk of autoimmune diseases, including POTS and dysautonomia (a group of medical conditions caused by problems with the autonomic nervous system)

Abby was just 19 years old when her doctor recommended the Gardasil HPV vaccine. Her physician stated that Gardasil was a safe and effective vaccine for preventing cervical cancer, with this information, plus Merck’s marketing and advertising messages, she decided to receive the vaccine.

Within weeks she developed a skin condition that caused redness and visible blood vessels in her face. A month or so after receiving the jab she also developed excruciating migraines. The headaches were so bad that she often vomited and visited the hospital to try and relieve the excruciating pain.

As if the skin condition and migraines weren't bad enough, Abby, some months later,  began to experience symptoms of POTS, these became so debilitating that during workouts at her local gym she had to lay down to avoid passing out.

By the summer of 2019, Abby was taken to the hospital by ambulance because she could barely walk. She was told by the hospital treating physician that she was "dehydrated."

Many other incidents later, Abby was again wrongly diagnosed and told she had anxiety and that it was "nothing serious."

Her inability to focus in class because of extreme fatigue and severe migraines led her to seek help from her school to help her with her disabilities with extra services. The school agreed but said she needed a letter from her doctor. Sadly, her doctor refused to sign the forms indicating her medical issues were hindering her studies. Remarkably, he diagnosed her with POTS but then accused her of using the condition as an excuse for her drop in performance. 

“One of the hardest things about life after Gardasil is having people not believe me when I tell them I’m suffering,” Abby says. “The pain is hard enough to deal with; when you also have to suffer the indignity of not being believed about that pain, it’s so much worse. I’m doing this because I want others who are dealing with POTS to know that they aren’t alone.”

Meantime, Merck, the manufacturer of Gardasil, continues to deny any wrong-doing that has resulted in this young woman's horrific ordeal.

It's time to stop taking the words of doctors and drug company marketing on faith.

Way I see it.

How many people buy a used car without first seeing the history log book?

If the salesman told you it's a great runner with no history of mechanical faults would you just take this as the truth?

 Millions of young men and women have rolled up their sleeves  and received Gardasil on this premise.

If lessons are to be learned from Merck's history of malfeasance then one need look no further than the promotion of their blockbuster drug, Vioxx, a drug used treat osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, acute pain conditions, migraine, and dysmenorrhea.  First introduced to the U.S. market in 1999 it became quickly embroiled in scandal and was withdrawn from the market in 2004 after it was found to increase the risk of cardiovascular side effects (heart attacks and stroke). According the Drugwatch, Vioxx may have caused approximately 140,000 heart attacks resulting in an estimated 60,000 deaths. You can read more about Vioxx here.

To date, Merck has paid out over $5 billion in fines which include healthcare-related offenses, safety-related offenses, off-label or unapproved promotion of medical products, and drug or medical equipment safety violations.

You can read more about Abby's plight and other Gardasil victims here

Bob Fiddaman

Back Stories

Thursday, August 20, 2020 - Baum Hedlund Take a Stand Against Vaccine Maker

Thursday, September 17, 2020 - Californian Law Firm Lead the Way in Gardasil Litigation

Friday, January 22, 2021 - Fifth Gardasil Vaccine Lawsuit Filed

Thursday, February 04, 2021 - Gardasil Vaccine Can Cause Infertility, New Lawsuit Alleges

Friday, April 02, 2021 - Gardasil Lawsuits Continue

Monday, April 19, 2021 - Vaccine Manufacturer Used "Spiked" Placebo to Hide Injuries Between Vaccine and Control Groups, Lawsuit Alleges



Wednesday, June 02, 2021

GSK Alleged of Ignoring Sexual Harassment Claim

 

Dame Emma Walmsley, Chief Executive Officer GSK

Mark Best is 54

He lives in Puckeridge in Hertfordshire

He's pissed off with GSK (GlaxoSmithKline)

Why?

Well, he, and his fiancée have been passed around from pillar to post by the hierarchy at GSK.

His betrothed, Georgia Suckling, is also pissed off.

She assumed that any disorderly conduct by any other GSK employee toward her would have been nipped in the bud.

Sadly, this isn't the case as it's alleged that Georgia has been subjected to harassment from a colleague at GSK.

A male colleague.

For the past month or so, I've been copied in on a series of emails to GSK, which have included the GSK CEO, Emma Walmsley and one of the "Glaxo Three', Jason Lord.

In a nutshell, Mark Best is alleging that his fiancée , Georgia Suckling, has been harassed by a male colleague.

Once, both Georgia and Mark, brought this to the attention of senior staff, they were, basically, stonewalled and pressured into leaving their positions and told to travel 200 miles or so to their new place of employment.

The emails, of which there are many, throw the light on GSK's apparent misconduct procedure, moreover how it is claimed that such a procedure is nothing but words on a website that really mean nothing at all.

I asked Mark to write a guest post for this blog. I included all of those he copied in on emails, including Walmsley and Lord. I asked for comments.

In typical GSK fashion, they never responded

Mark Best has much to say.

This is part one...

--

Hi, my name is Mark Best, I am 54 years young and currently live in a village called Puckeridge in Hertfordshire.

I am a time served Engineer and hold a Higher National Certificate (HNC) in mechanical production engineering. 

My skills and qualifications have been accredited by the Institute of Mechanical Engineers and my title is Mark Best, ENGTECH, a globally recognised level of professional registration for Engineering Technicians. 

I served my apprenticeship with the Pharma company called Glaxo based in Ware, Hertfordshire, which has gone through several mergers including Glaxo Wellcome and currently GlaxoSmithKline or GSK. I have had one break in service with GSK when it’s Aerosol department was closed in 1995. I moved to a company called Napp /Bard pharmaceuticals in Cambridge on the Science park near Milton where I spent 2.5 years as a packaging engineer. I returned to the GSK Ware site in 1998 and worked in the Tablet Packing dept as an Engineering Tech until 2010 and then moved on to industrialisation of the new equipment to assemble and pack the then new Ellipta device. After this (Circa 2016) I moved into an Engineering Compliance and C.I. (Continuous Improvement) role as a Senior Engineering Technician up until being forcibly made redundant in Feb 2020, I say forcibly but I will explain this later.

My fiancée, Georgia Suckling, also worked on the Ware GSK site and that is where we first met. Georgia was employed by a 3rd party business partner of GSK who was contracted to run the GSK Ware engineering stores, the company is called ERIKS U.K.

Georgia had had several roles within Production environments at various companies. Prior to joining ERIKS U.K. she was a Production Manager at a specialist lighting company where she oversaw and planned the production schedule and ensured components and sundries were ordered into stock to meet production schedules for customer orders and ensure successful delivery of customer orders to agreed timescales.

Georgia is currently 30 years old and had worked for ERIKS U.K. from early 2017 where she joined them as Office Manager in the GSK Ware Engineering Stores. Georgia lived in Bishops Stortford in Hertfordshire with her Mum and two dogs, Fin and Izzy, a crazy pairing of a Samoyed and French Bulldog!

Georgia was in the Office Manager job for 8 months ( roughly) when ERIKS U.K. decided to remove the then Service Centre Manager (SCM) due to his lacking performance. Georgia was left in the deep end and held the stores together alone as the Office Manager until she was approached by ERIKS U.K. and her GSK manager (Graham Hale) in December 2017 to step up to the role of SCM owing to her outstanding performance. Finally Georgia agreed to take the role and was given a pay rise, a company car, private healthcare and a commitment of necessary training and support for the senior role from both GSK and ERIKS U.K. Georgia commenced the SCM role in Jan 2018.

In early Feb 2018 I was requested by my manager and my senior manager to review the spares holding and lead times for the Ellipta Packing department and liaise with the machinery suppliers to smooth this process and reduce lead times of critical parts. The two main suppliers to us were Marchesini, an Italian packing machinery manufacturer and ATS (Automated Tooling Systems) a Canadian machinery manufacturing specialist.

A meeting was held between my two managers and myself with Georgia, Graham Hale (GSK contracts manager) and Sue Gratwick, who also worked for ERIKS U.K. as a store's person.

It was agreed that Georgia and I would work together to highlight the issues that ERIKS faced in procuring the spares we required for Ellipta Packing and we would come up with solutions and improvements that were good for all parties concerned.

Both Georgia and I got on well from the start of the project and I addressed several issues that she was facing very quickly! 

Firstly, to get Georgia a GSK laptop to release orders on the GSK systems remotely, e.g. from home, Georgia had been asking for this for ages and rather than having to be stuck at her desk in the stores office she could release orders remotely as and when required  (GSK run a 24/7 operation whereas the stores only work on days Mon -Fri). Georgia was taking the GSK laptop home and could spend 2 hours per evening releasing orders for GSK which eased the pressure she was under in the office and to concentrate and improve the metrics set by GSK during the day.

As well as this quick win, she voiced issues regarding ATS (Automation spares deliveries). I had first hand experience of this from my Industrialisation role. When I visited ATS in Canada, the guys on the shop floor were disgruntled owing to the closure of their in-house machine shop. Many parts and spares were made in-house at ATS and problems/modifications could be addressed quickly and resolved almost immediately. Since the closure of the in-house machine shop, the parts drawings were sent to China to a 3rd party company to be made in a bid to save costs! The issue that the company now faced was that parts would take 8 weeks to be made from scratch and be shipped from China to Canada. Often the parts were not to the correct standards or there were other issues that caused setbacks, especially on new bespoke machine builds such as GSK machine builds. This obviously caused a delay of a further 8 weeks to remedy the problems but also set back other parts of the project that relied on these parts being delivered. This put ATS under pressure, GSK under pressure and ERIKS U.K. under pressure.

To relieve the problem during the industrialisation phase, I had approached a local Engineering Company that we/GSK Ware had used for many years called Pope and Meads. A deal was struck whereby Pope and Meads could manufacture parts/spares under licence for ATS meaning that we, GSK, could control quality and drastically reduce lead times for critical parts e.g. same day/next day etc. This agreement was never rolled out to ERIKS U.K. and hence ERIKS/Georgia and the stores were getting the bad press for lead time delivery for ATS parts that was clearly outside of both Georgia’s and ERIKS control!

On the back of this, I arranged for Georgia to have a planned visit of Pope and Meads, a tour of the manufacturing facility and an opportunity to meet the team who she would need to liaise with to procure urgent/critical ATS parts on behalf of ERIKS U.K. to keep GSK Engineering spares in stock or respond to urgent breakdowns quickly.

During the time spent in the engineering stores, and with Georgia working on this project, I became aware of a certain individual, a Sodexo worker (Sodexo were another GSK 3rd party business partner used on the Ware site for plant/facilities maintenance) who was coming to stores constantly throughout the day and for the same part, 

On one occasion, I noticed this person pointing to Georgia behind my back and she looked worried. She went to the main store area with the Sodexo worker for a few minutes and came back to the office visibly upset. I asked her if she was OK and she said "no". 

She shared with me that this guy was constantly asking for a relationship with her, she had declined politely stating she did not want a boyfriend but he was persistent and would not take no for an answer. Georgia opened up to me that several GSK employed engineers had made inappropriate propositions and comments to her and another Sodexo manager, [redacted], had acted inappropriately with suggestions and comments on SKYPE. This had been reported to Simon Russell, the now area manager for ERIKS who approached  [redacted] about his manner and it stopped immediately. She said she could shrug off most of this male attention but this individual would not take no for an answer and if he saw her talking to any other male on site he would be asking her if she was seeing this bloke or that bloke.

I explained to Georgia that she did not have to suffer this type of harassment and GSK had strict policies and reporting lines if this inappropriate and unwanted behaviour continued.

Georgia was due to go on a short city break with a friend and this was in late February. She relayed to her friend how this Sodexo individual was making her feel at work and her friend was threatening to come to the site to confront the individual directly and to tell her mother.

Following Georgia’s return from her break, I asked Georgia out on a date and we started a relationship in early March. We got on great and enjoyed each other’s company. The harasser had no idea that Georgia was seeing me but persisted to ask her if she was seeing this guy or that guy if he saw her talking to any other male employee. Georgia described him as a 'dripping tap' His attempts to approach Georgia around the site increased and if he passed her at one point on site he would run through buildings to ensure he was in her path, a few moments later on her return from a meeting to her desk for instance!

Towards the end of March 2018, I was at my desk in my office area with my colleagues on a Monday morning and my manager approached me and just said, "Mark, you have to come with me, you are not going to like this but you have to come with me now." My colleagues were clearly shocked and I did as I was instructed. I was taken across the lobby to the meeting room in the Directors suite where the head of security was waiting with two security guards. Neil Garrod, the GSK head of security said to me, “Mark, I’m so sorry to have to do this, in the last 20 odd years of knowing you on site I have never heard your name mentioned in vein”. Neil went on to state Colette Cochrane, my Engineering Director, "received a call from Security over the weekend where somebody has reported that you were seen drunk as a lord in a local bar and openly taking and handing out cocaine”. He added, "Colette has instructed us to conduct a drink and drugs test on you now and that is why you are here", Colette had sighted GSK Speak-up as the reporting system used to deal with this allegation.

I stated there and then that I had not been out at all over the weekend, I had not touched a drop of alcohol over the weekend and I do not do/take drugs so the allegation was completely false on ALL counts. I said I would pass the test and be clear on both drugs and alcohol! I had to take the test to clear my name and, as stated, was clear on both counts.

On return to my desk, my colleagues were concerned about what I had been subjected to and one went on to source the GSK policy for Drug and Alcohol testing. We realised then that the policy had been breached by Cochrane. The policy for GSK testing and speak-up is below

Speak-up
Drugs/Drink testing Policy
Click on image to enlarge

Following this test, I did speak with Cochrane and again she sighted 'speak-up' as the policy used to action the report. GSK had the number but would never release it to me, only the Police! This is important because I went to the Police and they basically laughed down the phone saying that your Engineering Director has been watching too many films and the Police would only get involved in tracing a call/phone if a serious crime was linked to it! This is a workplace matter. End of call!

I relayed this info to Cochrane who was reluctant to share the number. Luckily Georgia had mentioned this matter to Graham Hale who said that the call was made from a Sodexo work phone. As we suspected, Georgia’s harasser was probably behind this malicious call.

Hang on to these thoughts and read the policies as it is important to what happens next!

GSK Protocol








Mark has much more to say in Part Two.

Stay Tuned!

Bob Fiddaman






Monday, April 19, 2021

Vaccine Manufacturer Used "Spiked" Placebo to Hide Injuries Between Vaccine and Control Groups, Lawsuit Alleges

 



Los Angeles-based attorneys, Baum Hedlund Aristei & Goldman, has filed yet another lawsuit, this time on behalf of a 23-year-old teacher in Reno, Nevada who claims Gardasil, a human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine, caused her countless injuries, including, but not limited to, chronic migraines, a shortage (deficiency) or impaired function of a hormone called aldosterone, and autonomic nervous system damage

At the age of 14, Savannah Flores received her first dose of Gardasil, shortly after she experienced fatigue, dizziness, and nausea. Her second dose of Gardasil was administered just days after her 15th birthday after which she experienced trembling, shaking, chest pressure, and headaches. It was at this point that her health seriously declined. Severe migraines, vertigo, menstrual irregularities, and more  followed and life as she knew it pretty much ceased. Church camps, swimming, basketball and various other activities became too painful for Savannah.

“I live in fear of the next migraine,” Savannah said regarding her migraines that are so intense she sometimes experiences blindness. “It’s scary not knowing at any given time whether I’ll get a migraine or have another symptom that lays me up for a day or more. I miss normal.”

Baum Hedlund Aristei & Goldman, who represent others in Gardasil injury lawsuits, allege that Gardasil manufacturers, Merck & Co., Inc. and subsidiary Merck Sharp & Dohme Corp:

Utilized a toxic, or spiked, placebo to mask injuries between the vaccinated and control groups and also cut the dose of aluminum in half for the vaccinated group to mask injuries (critics believe aluminum to be the most toxic component of the vaccine)

Further, it is alleged that Merck failed to follow the protocol to report adverse events and falsely told participants that the placebo was a saline solution.

Coming at a time when vaccines seem to be the talk of the town, these claims are deeply worrying. If, as alleged, Merck knowingly hoodwinked participants in their clinical trials then what of other vaccine manufacturers? Is this a standard practice for drug companies to deceive or trick participants in trials, or indeed regulators who grant licences to vaccines?

You can read more about Merck's underhand shenanigans and Savannah's plight here.

Bob Fiddaman

--

Back Stories

Thursday, August 20, 2020 - Baum Hedlund Take a Stand Against Vaccine Maker

Thursday, September 17, 2020 - Californian Law Firm Lead the Way in Gardasil Litigation

Friday, January 22, 2021 - Fifth Gardasil Vaccine Lawsuit Filed

Thursday, February 04, 2021 - Gardasil Vaccine Can Cause Infertility, New Lawsuit Alleges

Friday, April 02, 2021 - Gardasil Lawsuits Continue

Tuesday, April 06, 2021

15 Years - Changing Gears

 


Today is the 15th anniversary of this old blog of mine.

What began as an individual grievance after I was harmed by GlaxoSmithKline's Seroxat and disregarded by the British drug regulator, MHRA, turned into something far different after discovering thousands of other people across the globe were similarly harmed by SSRIs and related systemic deceit.

Now--over 2.5 million hits, a published book, and two awards later--I sometimes still have to explain to people that what they claim as SSRI facts are actually SSRI myths. That the pharma/psych industry's disinformation campaign is still going strong is a testament to their expertise in spinning fake news. And while it continues to amaze and disappoint me that this systemic fraud is a leading cause of disability and death, I find satisfaction in knowing my blog has helped countless people better recognize prescribed harms and avoid them.

Before embarking on this 15-year journey, I was a ufologist; this helped prepare me for all the attempts to discredit my reporting regarding SSRI harms. "You're a crank, conspiracy theorist, flat-earther" are some labels thrown at people who believe there is intelligent life beyond earth. Drug safety advocates are similarly called conspiracy theorists, pill-shamers, Scientologists, right-winger's, etc. Many of these attempts to slander come from psychiatrists via social media platforms. The drug-safety arena is far more disturbing than is the world of ufology.

When my blog launched on April 6, 2006, Facebook and Twitter didn't exist. One could only promote their research and writing via various online forums, many of which were infiltrated by pharma and pharma-funded "charities." Typically, these plants would attempt to pass themselves off as patients who proclaimed their lives were saved by depression pills, which I call brain pellets. But occasionally, the charades grew more sinister, and some people resorted to internet stalking and identity theft.

The drug safety world is less harsh today, but it's still unstable. There's a new breed of advocates, many of whom have the backing of organisations and "key opinion leaders." While these partnerships may help move the patient-safety ball forward, they can also create similar problems we've seen from the pharmaceutical and mental health industry alignment. Those with different opinions are labelled or blackballed or told they can't have their lived experience shared because they spoke to a publication or radio show that wasn't "mainstream" enough. This labelling and gaslighting revictimizes families who were prescribed harm. Ironically, some patient and drug safety advocate groups unwittingly do pharma's work--censorship--which benefits pharma.

I'm glad my blog never blackballed or silenced people with lived experiences of prescribed harm. While I wish I had had some sort of organizational backing when I started campaigning 15 years ago, in hindsight, not having such made my blog better. Bloggers like me, Truthman, Leonie Fennell, and Anti-Dep Aware had to make do with a keypad and a driving curiosity to independently uncover the facts. That we were unaligned with charities and special interest groups helped us candidly report what we knew and leave the PR whitewashing for others.

These days, ufologists aren't often labelled, not since the US Govt admitted in 2017 that they've had official teams investigating reports for decades. Perhaps one day, governments will do the same with drug-induced "suicides" and homicides committed whilst under pharmafia products' influence. I won't hold my breath as I imagine we'll see the presence of UFOs confirmed before we see this.

Thanks for the last 15 years, folks. Your support and guidance have been much appreciated. At times I've felt like John Coffey walking the green mile at Cold Mountain Penitentiary. I've lived and breathed this toxic business of selling sickness far longer than any would desire.

"I'm tired, boss."

Bob Fiddaman

Friday, April 02, 2021

Gardasil Lawsuits Continue

 


Baum Hedlund Aristei & Goldman recently filed yet another suit against Merck & Co. Inc. and subsidiary Merck Sharp & Dohme Corp. on behalf of a 22-year-old Higganum, Connecticut woman, Korrine Herlth, who alleges that the Gardasil vaccine caused her to develop postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome (POTS), complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS), vision loss, and other serious health conditions.

At the age of just 15, Korrine was vaccinated against the human papillomavirus (HPV), a viral infection that commonly causes skin or mucous membrane growths (warts). Korrine's mother, Andrea, gave her consent after reviewing Merck's assurances that the vaccine was a safe preventative measure against HPV and cervical cancer. The vaccine is administered as a three-dose series for 15-year-olds and after her second shot, Korrine started to experience dizziness, shakiness, nausea, faintness, and headaches, as well as an increased heart rate. Because of this, her mother did not give consent for her daughter to receive the third jab.

Korrine's symptoms worsened from this point onwards and she has had to endure daily seizures, convulsions, chronic fatigue, joint pain, anxiety attacks, sleep apnea, hypoxia, and sleep disturbances and tics amongst a multitude of other bodily disturbances.

“My daughter has been assaulted on a systemic level,” her mother said. “Currently, there is no known cure, no offered hope of reversing the damage, just a series of trial treatments that have either failed her or exacerbated symptoms. It is a devastatingly helpless feeling watching my only child decline without hope of better days ahead.”

“Gardasil has made my life a living hell. The things I loved doing were ripped away from me. … I just want my old life back.”, Korrine said.

Baum Hedlund Aristei & Goldman is a national law-firm that regularly goes head-to-head against pharmaceutical corporations that intentionally mislead customers about the safety and efficacy of their products. They, on behalf of Korrine, allege that Merck negligently manufactured the Gardasil human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine, negligently designed and conducted clinical trials before receiving U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval, and failed to warn consumers of the vaccine’s dangerous known side effects.

More can be read about Korrine's case here.

Bob Fiddaman




Monday, March 08, 2021

Seroxat and the Fallacy of Centrality

 


Shane Cooke

Last week, I learned a new term and planned to blog about it. Days later, I read "Gripped by and Discarded by GlaxoSmithKline," a guest post on Dr. David Healy's RxISK.org site. This blog explores how the two relate. 

 

Fallacy of Centrality

The term "fallacy of centrality" was coined by Ron Westrum, a researcher who observed pediatricians' diagnostic practices in the 1940s and 1950s. He found that many of these doctors assumed that they were in a central position, and they presumed if something serious was occurring, they would know about it. If something occurred that they didn't know about it, well, it just wasn't happening. This distorted thinking prevented many pediatricians from recognizing and reporting child abuse before the early 1960s. The pediatricians' applied the "logic" that if parents were abusing their children, they'd know about it. 

 

A present-day example of this type of magical thinking is below (Fig 1). The former head of the Royal College of Psychiatrists, Wendy Burn, uses her "clinical experience" to dismiss SSRI withdrawal. Burn hasn't seen SSRI withdrawal problems in her practice; therefore, it doesn't exist or rarely occurs. The fallacy of centrality is problematic among doctors, especially psychiatrists who expose their illogical thinking via social media accounts. It took Burn and many of her colleagues years to belatedly acknowledge the large SSRI withdrawal problem. Their admission came about after many members of the prescribed harm community and a handful of ethical researchers shared the real experiences and scientific facts.

 

Burn and Professor David Baldwin previously claimed in the national media that "...in the vast majority of patients, any unpleasant symptoms experienced on discontinuing antidepressants have resolved within two weeks of stopping treatment." (Fig 2) Once again, they embraced the fallacy of centrality.

 

Fig 1


Fig 2

 

The same arrogant, illogical thinking is illustrated in "Gripped by and Discarded by GlaxoSmithKline." It's the story of a young man, Shane Cooke, who suffered SSRI harms and was later repeatedly victimized by a chain of experts who employed the fallacy of centrality. Shane was just 21 when he decided to leave his foster parents, whom he had been with for nearly 20 years. He became engaged to a young woman, and they agreed to move in together. Both were in their final year at college, which caused understandable stress as they finished their degrees. 

 

Shane was having difficulty eating and sleeping and was anxious about his coursework deadlines. In 2002, he saw his GP, who prescribed two different SSRI brands that precipitated Shane's suicidality. His GP then switched him to Seroxat, an SSRI sold by GlaxoSmithKline (GSK). Prescribing Seroxat was the norm in the early 2000s given that doctors were not yet familiar with the serious risks the product presents. However, GSK and the British drug regulator, the MHRA, were aware of the problems with Seroxat.

 

In October of the same year, BBC's Panorama aired its first of four investigations into Seroxat. Scottish BBC journalist Shelley Jofre extensively reported the problems caused by the so-called 'wonder drug.' 


Prescribing physicians have no excuse for pushing this dangerous and risky drug after this date. Some doctors might argue they never watched the show, but this is a lame excuse. Once again, however, the fallacy of centrality comes into play here: What would an investigative journalist know about a drug that the medical profession doesn't know? 

 

After being prescribed Seroxat, Shane developed severe agitation, often asking his foster parents, "What's wrong with me?" 


I can relate. The adverse effects I experienced while taking Seroxat and withdrawing from it are documented in my book, this blog, and numerous podcasts. 


Shane's angry outbursts worsened, and he drove a car through a glass entrance of the Ablett Psychiatric Unit in Clwyd after he had been drinking alcohol. (SSRIs can increase cravings for alcohol and drive people to drink who have never previously consumed alcohol.) 

 

The Courts then ordered Shane to leave the home he shared with his wife-to-be and move back in with his foster parents. According to his foster parents, he complied with the order but would often go missing and later be found hiding in hedges or grass verges. His foster parents agreed that it was the medication causing Shane's bizarre behaviour, which now had spiralled to threats of suicide. Two doctors who then assessed Shane decided to decrease the Seroxat dose. Ten days later, Shane said he became "normal" again.

 

Unfortunately, Shane again became a victim of another professional's fallacy of centrality. A judge at Caernarfon Crown Court jailed Shane for two-and-a-half years for crashing his car through the doors into the foyer of the Ablett Unit Clwyd on June 2. While Shane had been drinking on the night of the crash, the judge failed to consider the role Seroxat had played. The judge wrongfully assumed that alcohol made "Shane do it." If a judge has never witnessed violence and alcohol cravings as adverse effects of prescription drugs, the judge decides this simply cannot and does not happen. (It is also true, however, that some judges do know but decide to blame alcohol; it is more convenient and less problematic than blaming a pharmaceutical company's drug.) 

 

Devastated by their son's incarceration, Shane's foster parents eventually heard about a psychiatrist from Bangor, Wales, who was researching the link between Seroxat and rage. That doctor is David Healy. They contacted Healy, who assessed Shane's medical records and determined Seroxat had induced Shane's fury on the evening of June 2.

 

The decision to jail Shane was going to be appealed, but the appeals process would have been lengthy. Shane was nearing his sentence's completion (shorter than the punishment he was initially given), and he decided not to continue an appeal. He served the prison sentence for his Seroxat-induced crime. GSK continues to deny Seroxat causes dependency and suicidal thoughts and actions. However, I do not believe GSK's false claims are products of the fallacy of centrality.

 

Upon Shane's release, he was electronically tagged and sent back to his foster parents. His engagement, independence, and career all destroyed by a risky drug and repeated fallacies of centrality. Despite these travesties of injustice, Shane went on to complete his coursework and passed his exams. Today, Shane is active on Twitter and hopes others won't suffer what he did. Shane and his foster mom, Mary, now run the Prescribed Medication Withdrawal group in Wales.


You can follow him here and read his full story here.


Mary, who is one of the unsung heroes in the advocacy world, can be followed on Twitter here.


The withdrawal group is now doing fortnightly zoom meetings. Anyone within travelling distance of Prestatyn, in particular, are welcome to join in. (this is in the hope of meeting face to face in the future) 


You can reach Mary via email at ellen.hennessey@btinternet.com

 

--

If you still need convincing that Seroxat isn't problematic, watch the four investigative reports here. Perhaps you can share them with healthcare professionals who, like so many prescribers out there, probably suffer from a fallacy of centrality.

THE SECRETS OF SEROXAT (2002)

EMAILS FROM THE EDGE (2002)

TAKEN ON TRUST (2004)

THE SECRETS OF THE DRUG TRIALS (2007)


Bob Fiddaman


Please contact me if you would like a guest post considered for publication on my blog.