Thyroid UK
85,934 members100,830 posts

NHS prescribed record number of antidepressants last year

Strange how the price of anti-depressants has fallen.

NHS prescribed record number of antidepressants last year

Data prompts debate about whether rise shows drugs are handed out too freely or whether more people are getting help

The NHS prescribed a record number of antidepressants last year, fuelling an upward trend that has seen the number of pills given to patients more than double over the last decade.

The figures raised questions over whether the rise shows doctors are handing out the drugs out too freely or whether it means more people are getting help to tackle their anxiety, depression and panic attacks.

Prescriptions for 64.7m items of antidepressants – an all-time high – were dispensed in England in 2016, the most recent annual data from NHS Digital showed. That was 3.7m more than the 61m items dispensed during 2015.

It also represents a massive 108.5% increase on the 31m antidepressants which pharmacies dispensed in 2006.

There are no figures for how many people are being given antidepressants, though, as NHS Digital do not record that. The 64.7m items were used to treat depressive illness, generalised anxiety disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder and panic attacks, NHS Digital said.

Rest of story here:

theguardian.com/society/201...

31 Replies
oldestnewest

I find this shocking. Doctors don't cure any more, they just stupefy as many people as possible, wherever and whenever possible, because it is so much easier and cheaper than finding out what is actually wrong with people.

I don't think this is going to change. People are going to have to wake up to the realisation that modern medicine is not interested in making them well, it is only interested in getting people out of the surgery as quickly as possible, while continuing to make money for the doctors prescribing and the Pharma companies who are selling.

19 likes
Reply

I end up feeling that the amazing results we sometimes see reported are simply the advertising puff. Certainly, we see dedicated doctors and other staff performing miracles on a regular basis. But these heroic achievements must not be allowed to distract us from the dreadful treatment so many receive - with thyroid being well up the scale of badness.

Many of those reading this far will, obviously, be asking how many of these anti-depressants are being prescribed when thyroid hormone might very well be appropriate. A question which remains unanswered by the medical professionals.

16 likes
Reply

Certainly, we see dedicated doctors and other staff performing miracles on a regular basis.

I have been led to believe my entire life that doctors are wonderful people who do a fabulous job and they are very dedicated, and perform miracles every week.

But sadly for me, my family, my relatives, and my friends, those miracles have never come our way. I think doctors as a group have got a neat propaganda machine set up somewhere and people have been falling for it (the propaganda) all my life!

13 likes
Reply

Same here!

8 likes
Reply

I was talking on another social media site yesterday, to someone who was given anti D's for anxiety, on T4 with lots of ongoing thyroid problems... Obviously I am not a medic, but from my own experience I would guess that this person has been so incorrectly medicated that it is their adrenals that are compromised and causing the 'anxiety'. And I suspect this is a common occurrence.

I wonder why the numbers are not kept? I know I am very cynical but I wondering why, in this day and age, that figures are not kept...? But from the 'no evidence of benefit of T3' because no records kept, I reckon Is this the same thing...don't keep records of AntiD's issued so can't be held responsible?

2 likes
Reply

Chapeau humanbean

2 likes
Reply

I can't help but agree with Dr Malcolm Kendrick's thoughts on antidepressants:

google.co.uk/amp/s/drmalcol...

4 likes
Reply

Dr K makes a reference to the comments on a Telegraph article. I've read them before but decided to read them again. They seem to have been stripped off the article so that I can't see them. Can anyone see them?

1 like
Reply

humanbean

It is referenced in the index under 3 (at the bottom of the blog) or I hope it is the one you mention

telegraph.co.uk/news/health...

1 like
Reply

Oh yes, I can see the article. But the comments have gone AWOL. I wondered if the comments are missing for everyone?

1 like
Reply

humanbean I've noticed that readers can no longer comment on Telegraph articles, or at least the ones I've noticed. Perhaps that could have something to do with it?

2 likes
Reply

humanbean sorry I misunderstood that is was not the telegraph article itself you wanted. I presume you mean comments in the telegraph article that have gone.

1 like
Reply

Yes, the comments have gone. :(

1 like
Reply
3 likes
Reply

Number needed to treat for ad's is 7. So seven people needs to take ad's for one to get full benefit. So your chances are 1 out of 7 to fully recover on ad's.

If 98 ad users get together only 14 of them have recovered. Does it sound fair for the rest of them?

I find it unbelievable that ad's are marketed effective treatment.

4 likes
Reply

If they're worried about it, they should stop giving doctors incentives to prescribe antidepressants, shouldn't they.

7 likes
Reply

greygoose for each new diagnosis of depression the surgery receives QoF points amounting to £1,650. Then of course there's more QoF points for follow-up visits.

6 likes
Reply

Whereas, for prescribing T3...

4 likes
Reply

greygoose indeed but hypothyroidism hasn't received any QoF points for several years. Make of that what you will!

5 likes
Reply

Pft

5 likes
Reply

It's the merry go round of incentives. Obviously practice follows trends in data held, targets and most importantly £. The cash incentive wa removed a few years ago for diabetic foot clinics within GP surgeries, amongst others, and I personally know one person that has lost a foot as a result. No one ever checked peripheral circulation or sensation after the incentive was withdrawn and the doctors failed in their duty of care to educate carers/family on the signs to look for when the services stopped . This particular individual was not capable of looking after themselves. So now they have an amputation that I believe was as predictable as a pressure sore as no one cared enough to ensure that it didn't happen. As they weren't being paid extra for that area of 'care'.

6 likes
Reply

cwill that is truly shocking.

4 likes
Reply

I remember being given sertaline ( think that's how it's spelt , Prozac generic ) when I was severely hypo , it almost sent me over the edge . Things were so dark and meaningless I could very well see the connection between it and the kids who were on it that carried out the columbine high massacre . Not that I was in that frame of mind , just absolute bleakness and nothing meant anything.

Pleased to say the prozac went in the bin and I was rescued back from the brink by the delivery of a bottle of thyroid -s . I still don't give a sxxt but in a kind of biker , rebel with a cause kind of way.

7 likes
Reply

JS33 same here ThyroidS quashed my depression very rapidly after years of suffering with it and of course undiagnosed hypothyroidism. Symptoms were accorded to menopause, depression, heart problems...blah blah blah.

To think it is so simple to treat this disorder and get a good quality of life with NDT (for some of us anyway) but it is obfuscated by inadequate dosing and complete reliance on T4 with lashings of antidepressants - it is a scandal.

6 likes
Reply

Individual Performance bonuses skew actions in business often to the detriment of the business. In GP s practices it is to the detriment of the patients.

3 likes
Reply

Do you think that it is a combination of a lot of damaged people coming into the UK, plus people feeling more anxious because of what is going in the UK and the wider world? Life in general is stressful.

Reply

It is well documented that our guts and the food we eat can influence our minds and as Docs know/understand so little about nutrition then no wonder this situation has arisen.

Check out Kelly Brogan - David Perlmutter and others ...

2 likes
Reply

Wonder how many of those patients actually have thyroid problems only they are given antidepressants because their doctors would prefer to say they're 'depressed' than actually treat their thyroid problems.

I have a Graves so it doesn't apply to me but reading posts on here it sometimes feels like there is a preconceived idea / conspiracy among doctors that people (often women!) would rather have 'thyroid problems' than admit they are just plain old overweight and eat less and exercise more, so whatever you do, don't indulge them by actually treating their thyroid.

2 likes
Reply

Surely it wouldn't have anything to do with the fact doctors get paid to prescribe anti-depressants would it? Or is that just me being cynical? 😳

1 like
Reply

I think there are alternatives to anti-depressant. There are all kinds of talking therapies available but waiting lists are very long which defeats the object.

I had been suffering from depression for many years (while I had subclinical hypothyroidism). I was prescribed four different types all of which made me feel detached and less able to cope.

I was prescribed Mirtazipine in November last year along with a TSH level of 22 and an increase in levothyroxine. My depression has lifted, I came of Mirtazipine three weeks ago and feel great. I question whether I needed Mirtazipine. I also had life coaching so it could have been a culmination of the three. I will never know but if I ever feel low again I will not accept anti-depressants until I've had my thyroid checked.

Anti-depressants don't resolve the problem in the long term, they just put a plaster on it.

1 like
Reply

For me, the alternative to antidepressants was, without doubt, thyroid hormone. But it took a long time to prove that to my dotor who kept insisting I needed antiDs. I did agree to councelling but it really was a total waste of everyone's time. Talking therapy or antiDs cannot compensate for insufficient thyroid hormone, which I have proved beyond any doubt was the cause of my so called 'mental illness'.

2 likes
Reply

You may also like...