WaterAndLife.org/Drugs.htm Fluoride, Fluoxetine, Antidepressants in Children
Fluoride and other drugs 
Date: 9/11/03  From: lucsan
Article: Chinese Studies Link Fluoride to Low IQ Scores index

Children's intelligence declines as their natural drinking water fluoride levels increase, concluded a Chinese study in the May 2003 journal, Fluoride. (Abstract at www.slweb.org/xiang-2003.html)

Fluoride levels comparable to those of U.S. water supplies treated to prevent tooth decay were associated with inferior IQ scores. 

The test subjects were 512 children, aged 8-13 years from Wamiao, a high-fluoride village, and Xinhuai, a low-fluoride village. The high-fluoride village was divided into five subgroups by water fluoride levels, from 0.62 mg fluoride per Liter to 4.38 mg F/L. As water fluoride levels increased within the high fluoride village, IQ decreased. 

"When the data from the 512 children in the two villages were considered as a whole, a significant inverse correlation was found between IQ and the level of fluoride in urine," the researchers report. "These results are consistent with the findings recorded by Li at al., Zhao et al., and Lu et al. of an inverse correlation between intelligence and dietary fluoride from either contaminated food or drinking water," they report. 

Neither village experiences coal burning pollution nor do residents drink brick tea, two common fluoride sources in China. Children with brain disease or head injury history were excluded. Only water fluoride levels differed between the two rural, low-income villages situated in the same province (Jiangsu) and county. Neither blood lead levels nor urinary iodine differed between the test groups. The researchers also controlled for family income and parental education. 

Fluoride crosses the blood-brain barrier producing biochemical and functional impairment of the nervous system during the developmental periods of infancy and childhood, the authors report. 

"...Despite growing evidence of serious neurotoxicity for both fluoride and lead, U.S. safety standards for fluoride in water have been moving in the opposite direction to those for lead in blood. From a scientific standpoint, this is very difficult to understand or to justify," says organic chemist Albert Burgstahler, Ph.D., the editor of Fluoride. 

Contact:   Albert Burgstahler,  awburg@ku.edu,  www.fluoride-journal.com 
Article: Connecticut Agency Bans Paxil Use in Children index 

The New Haven Register reports that the Connecticut Department of Children and Families (DCF) is the first state agency to ban the use of Paxil in children to protect them from harm. 

Public disclosure of evidence demonstrating Paxil's suicide risk prompted the UK government to issue a strong warning against pediatric use of the anti-depressant, sold there under the name Seroxat, in June. It also led the manufacturer, GlaxoSmithKline, to send healthcare professionals in the UK a letter warning them about both the suicide risk for children and withdrawal symptoms. 

The company has issued no such warning letter to US healthcare workers. 

In July, DCF became the first public child protection agency to ban Paxil after the U.S. Food and Drug Administration recommended the drug not be given to anyone under 18. The FDA said there could be severe negative effects for children, including an increased risk of suicide. 

Maribel Vazquez, DCF program supervisor for the Bureau of Child Welfare Services, said last month the department is stopping use of Paxil for six months pending further study. 

DCF will recommend children on Paxil switch to safer alternative treatment, if one is available. 

Department officials wouldn't reveal how many of the nearly 8,000 children in their care are prescribed Paxil or other selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), saying that would violate patient privacy rights. 

The FDA has never approved use of Paxil in children or teens, but some doctors prescribe the adult drug for children. 

The FDA asked all makers of adult antidepressants to submit research showing how their drugs affect children. Three studies of Paxil found it didn't seem to help pediatric depression - but FDA scientists spotted some safety concerns and ordered manufacturer Glaxo-SmithKline to re-analyze the data. 

That re-analysis found the risk of suicidal thoughts and suicide attempts was three times greater among Paxil users, mostly teens, than among children given placebo pills, the FDA said. 

Article: Effexor Warning Re: Use on Children index 

Following on the heels of the Paxil warnings, yet another drug company is cautioning that their antidepressant drug should not be prescribed to children because it may cause suicidal thoughts or self-harm. Wyeth Pharmaceuticals Inc., based in New Jersey, has sent a letter to healthcare professionals across the country warning of possible problems with giving Effexor to children. 

In a two-page letter dated Aug. 22, Dr. Victoria Kusiak, Wyeth's vice
president for global medical affairs, warned that in recent clinical trials Effexor was not effective in treating depression or anxiety and that there were increased "reports of hostility and especially in Major Depressive Disorder, suicide-related adverse events such as suicidal ideation and self-harm." 

In a prospective trial published in the July issue of the Archives of General Psychiatry, newborns of mothers receiving fluoxetine (Prozac) or citalopram (Celexa) exhibited symptoms of central serotonin overstimulation for about four days. The investigators warned of potential neurologic adverse effects from selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) used during late pregnancy. (Arch Gen Psychiatry. 2003;60:720-726) 

"SSRIs have gained wide acceptance in the treatment of mental disorders in pregnant women, but there seems to be an increased risk for neonatal adaptation problems after exposure to SSRIs in late pregnancy," the article quoted Kari Laine, MD, PhD, from the University of Turku in Finland, and colleagues. They cited previous studies suggesting that exposure to SSRIs during the third trimester may cause irritability, constant crying, eating and sleeping difficulties, and even seizures in newborns. 

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