If you have not logged on to the new Mad in America Science, Psychiatry and Community website you are missing something truly marvelous. It is set up like a webzine with various bloggers, news and information on psychiatry and mental health care.
On Monday January 23, 2011 in 'Psychiatry's Grand Confession', Jeffrey Lacasse, Ph.D. and Jonathan Leo Ph.D. wrote about the serotonin hypothesis. The authors point out that although it has been reported that although there is no evidence that depression is caused by a serotonin imbalance, this claim is still being used to market antidepressants. It is still something that patients are told by prescribers. referring to a NPR reporter, the authors state, "the reporter seems to not understand that the idea of telling a falsehood to patients because you think it is good for them is a serious violation of informed consent," the authors ask some very important questions about the situation. These issues are not being accurately reported in the mainstream media often enough...read here
A false claim of this type, is fraud. The nature of an act is not changed, it does not become a benign act because of the professional status or supposed altruistic intent of the person making the claim. False claims of this type are meant to alter a person's behavior. Specifically it is meant to induce treatment compliance with a prescriber's recommendation to take one or more prescription drugs to treat an unidentified, or "metaphorical" imbalance. When a person who relies on the truthfulness and validity of a false claim experiences adverse consequences, the person is a medical fraud victim.
When a nutritional supplement manufacturer or a natural food distributor says their product prevents illness or treats a condition; the FDA regulates it---by stopping it. When the claim is made by medical professionals who prescribe FDA approved drugs; or the claim is made in direct to consumer advertising of FDA approved drugs; or the claim is used by advocacy groups in public education programs to 'bust the stigma;' the FDA does nothing.
It is clear the FDA uses it's regulatory authority to regulate non-life threatening 'risks' of nutritional supplements, and raw food, while it simultaneously neglects it's duty to protect people from the false claims made in order to illegally market FDA approved drugs. Even when the drugs do not correct an identified metaphorical imbalance, or effectively treat an illusory disease. All of this is evidence that the FDA is abdicating it's mission and it's protective, regulatory duty. Failing to hold drug and medical device makers and their professional KOL's accountable for their unethical tactics, gives the false claims a patina of legitimacy. Worse, failing to warn the public about serious risks of disabling and fatal effects of the drugs, and devices, the FDA is in fact complicit, an active participant in an ongoing criminal enterprise. In effect, and in fact, the FDA is the only authority which can regulate or approve the content of Direct to Consumer advertising, and the labels of FDA approved drugs and medical products, and their uses---but utterly fails to do so. A massive amount of Medicaid and Medicare fraud has been perpetrated with the FDA, federally-funded academic researchers, the American Psychiatric Association, and the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry aiding and abetting the human rights crimes which are victimizing vulnerable people and defrauding pulicly funded programs to pay for it all...