Friday, July 17, 2009

Dr. Joseph Biederman Plays God With ADHD Meds

World-renowned Harvard child psychiatrist Joseph Biederman, whose work has helped fuel an explosion in the use of powerful antipsychotic drugs in children, has been caught up in controversy since a Congressional inquiry by Senator Charles Grassley (R-Iowa) in 2008.

Biederman has been criticized for being an advocate of diagnosing Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and bipolar disorder in even the youngest of children, and using antipsychotic medicines to treat them. Pharmaceutical companies are continuing to profit from the sale of these powerful and sometimes unnecessary drugs. The problem was that much of Biederman's work was underwritten by drug makers for whom he was a private consultant. He was caught with his hand in the cookie jar.

The Congressional inquiry revealed last year that Biederman earned at least $1.6 million in consulting fees from drug makers from 2000 to 2007, but failed to report all but $200,000 to Harvard officials. This constituted a major conflict of interest.

Biederman appeared at a deposition on February 26, 2009, and was questioned by several lawyers for the states, who were claiming that makers of antipsychotic drugs defrauded state Medicaid programs by marketing their medicines improperly.

At the deposition, Biederman was asked what rank he held at Harvard.

"Full professor," he answered.

"What's after that?" asked Fletch Trammell, one of the attorneys.

"God," Biederman responded.

"Did you say God?" Trammell asked.

"Yeah," said Biederman, after which there was a moment of stunned silence.

The transcripts of this deposition call into question the mental state of the psychiatrist himself. It seems the good doctor is showing symptoms of Narcissistic Personality Disorder (NPD), which, according to the Mayo Clinic, is a mental disorder in which people have an inflated sense of their own importance. They believe they are superior to others, but in reality, they are masking their own fragile self-esteem, and are vulnerable to the slightest criticism.

For decades, according to Bruce Levine in an article Friday in the Web site AlterNet.org, "the majority of American doctors, mental health professionals, the media, and the general public have yielded to the dissemination's of Harvard psychiatrist Joseph Biederman who successfully evangelized for more children - and younger children - to be medicated with powerful psychiatric drugs."

The "blowback," according to Levine, can be found in the July 2009 Scientific Mind article "Do ADHD Drugs Take a Toll on the Brain?" The article, by Edmund S. Higgins, clinical associate professor of family medicine and psychiatry at the Medical University of South Carolina, is a sobering report of the long-term dangers associated with ADHD drugs such as Ritalin, Concerta, Vyvanse, and Adderall.

In his article, Higgins cites the Centers for Disease Control. In a recent survey, the CDC found that ADHD afflicts about 5 percent of children in the U.S. - twice as many boys as girls - age 6 to 17. In 2005, according to the CDC, an estimated 9 percent of boys and 4 percent of girls were taking stimulant medications as part of their ADHD therapy. The majority of patients take Ritalin and Concerta, a methylphenidate, and the most of the rest are prescribed Adderall, an amphetamine.

In his article, Higgins writes "although it sounds counterintuitive to give stimulants to a person who is hyperactive, these drugs are thought to boost activity in the parts of the brain responsible for attention and self-control".

Higgins acknowledges that the ADHD medication can indeed improve attention, concentration and productivity and also suppress impulsive behavior. Significant improvements have been found in some people's lives.

Severe inattention and impulsive behavior can indeed put individuals at risk for crime and substance abuse, and adults can face unemployment and be susceptible to car accidents. In these instances, appropriate medication might keep a person out of prison, away from addictive drugs, or in a job. But over the last 15 years, doctors have been prescribing stimulants for people with moderate to mild inattention, and even some with a normal ability to focus.

Patients are no longer just taking medications in childhood, but are encouraged to stay on them when they become adults. Vyvanse, an amphetamine, and Concerta were introduced in 2008 by the FDA for treating adults, and pharmaceutical companies are pushing awareness of adult forms of ADHD. Students are taking the drugs to increase academic performance, and professionals such as doctors and lawyers are taking stimulants in hopes of boosting their productivity. These drugs have therefore become increasingly popular. According to a 2007 study, prescriptions for ADHD drugs in the methalphenidate and amphetamine categories rose by almost 12 percent per year between 2000 and 2005.

The increased usage of stimulants is causing questions to be raised about their long-term use. There is a growing concern that the drugs might take a toll on the brain in the long run. Methylphenidates such as Ritalin and Concerta have a chemical structure "similar to cocaine," according to Higgins, and they act on the brain in a similar way as cocaine.

According to Higgins: "Indeed, a smattering of recent studies, most of them involving animals, hint that stimulants would alter the structure and function of the brain in ways that may depress mood, boost anxiety, and, contrary to their short-term effects, lead to cognitive deficits. Human studies already indicate the medications can adversely affect areas of the brain that govern growth in children." He goes on to speculate as to what additional harmful side-effects have yet to be found.

In February 2007, the FDA did indeed issue warnings about the side-effects of ADHD drugs, such as stunted growth and psychosis, among other mental disorders. The possibility exists that stimulant treatment during childhood might contribute to high rates of accompanying diagnoses for other mental health problems, according to Higgins. But having ADHD is itself a risk factor for other mental health problems.

The evidence that ADHD drugs cause adverse reactions such as stunted growth in children are in direct contradiction to Biederman's findings. Alternet.org's Levine, himself a clinical psychologist, reports on a 2007 National Institute of Mental Health study of ADHD treatments involving 579 children. Over a three year period, the children, between seven and ten years old, were involved in a growth rate study. In the study, the growth rates of unmedicated children were compared to the growth rates of children who took ADHD stimulants throughout that period. Compared to the children who were unmedicated, the ADHD drug-treated children showed a decrease in growth rate of, on average, two fewer centimeters in height, and 2.7 kilograms less in weight. By the third year, there was no noticeable stunting of growth, but the damage had been done. The ADHD children never caught up to their counterparts.

According to Levine, "there are many children whose only problem in life is not doing their homework but are medicated with ADHD drugs; and the majority of their parents had no idea that they were giving their children amphetamines or amphetamine-like substances. Unfortunately, too many Americans are willing to surrender their own authority to damn near every pompous authoritarian rather than question the legitimacy of exploitive industrial complexes and the predatory people at the top of them."

The pharmaceutical-industrial complex, according to Levine, is part of a "wave of evil" that "washes not only the financial-industrial complex, the military-industrial complex, the energy-industrial complex, and predatory executives at AIG, Citibank, Halliburton, Blackwater/Xe, Enron, and Exxon."

Levine was quoting Ralph Waldo Emerson, who wrote: "The wave of evil washes all our institutions alike."

According to Levine, the pharmaceutical-industrial complex has "virtually annexed the mental health profession, whose all-star opportunist team is captained by Harvard psychiatrist Joseph Biederman."

Biederman, as I pointed out earlier, may be suffering from Narcissistic Personality Disorder. He has a "God complex" not unlike another well-known person associated with Harvard University, Theodore Kaczynski.

According to Wikipedia, Kaczynski, also known as the Unibomber, "is an American murderer, mathematician, and neo-Luddite social critic who carried out a campaign of mail bombings. He was born in Chicago, Illinois, where, as an intellectual child prodigy, he excelled academically from an early age. Kaczynski received an undergraduate degree from Harvard University and earned a PhD in mathematics from the University of Michigan. He became an assistant professor at the University of California, Berkeley at age 25 but resigned two years later." His occupation is listed as "prisoner, former assistant professor of mathematics." They left out "bomber".

While Wikipedia can sometimes be comical in its descriptions and anecdotes, the esteemed Psychology Today has referred to Kaczynski's acts of terror as being "narcissistic." It should be noted that Kaczynski suffers from a variety of other mental illnesses.

Joseph Biederman cannot be compared to Theodore Kaczynski, other than that they are both associated with Harvard, and both have a background in academics. Oh, and they both are suffering from Narcissistic Personality Disorder.

The problem with Biederman is that he has been held in such high regard for so long. His theories on mental illness have been disputed and shown to be dangerous. How many Ted Kaczynskis could have been stopped as children?

The June 22, 2009 issue of Time Magazine includes an article titled "Staying Sane," by John Cloud. He takes a look at the work of Dr. William McFarlane, who is one of the world's top authorities on preventing mental illness. He has long felt that forms of mental illness such as schizophrenia, from which Ted Kaszynski suffered, were preventable.

A team of UCLA researchers in the late 1970's began to publish the results of a long-term study called the UCLA Family Project. The study found that you could predict, with remarkable accuracy, which 16-year-old children would develop schizophrenia later in life.

The UCLA study found, after studying the kids for more than a decade, that those who became schizophrenic were most often from families that displayed "communication deviance," described as "unclear, unintelligible or fragmented speech." They also found the parenting to be "critical and intrusive."

Dr. McFarlane and others began working with some of the families to teach them to communicate better, with "less anger and intrusion". McFarlane was working on the assumption that schizophrenia could be prevented in asymptomatic kids who were at risk for the disease.

"Once a patient's perception of reality has cracked the first time, it becomes very hard to walk back to normality," Time Magazine's Cloud says of McFarlane's theory. Early detection is crucial, according to McFarlane.

McFarlane's schizophrenia-prevention ideas have given other researchers hope in more routine conditions, such as ADHD. Mental illness has long been linked to genes, over which we simply have no control. But according to many mental health experts like McFarlane, your environment and experiences have powerful effects on the way those genes are expressed. This is exactly the opposite of Harvard's Joseph Biederman.

If McFarlane is to be believed, and he has a large following, people like Ted Kaczynski are as much a product of their environment as they are their genes. Could Kaczynski have been stopped before he became ill? Probably not. But what about the millions of children who are having trouble focusing on their homework? Are drugs the answer? According to Biederman, yes. But after the February 2009 deposition when he compared himself to God (to be fair, he didn't say he was God, only that he was next in line), Biederman has lost all credibility. The fact that he failed to report $1.6 million in pharmaceutical consulting fees has been the subject of an ongoing Congressional investigation. His Harvard credentials are about as meaningful as the Unibomber's.

And one more thing: If you got through this article, you don't have ADHD.

32 comments:

  1. This is just another example of a trend in our society of attempting to find a chemical solution for every problem. I'll bet the majority of the e-mails I receive are ads for online pharmacies or "male enhancement" pills. Start kids early on Ritalin or Adderall, and you got 'em hooked for life.

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  2. I read the whole article. Does that mean I don't have ADHD?

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  3. This Biederman character is what's wrong with the health system today. If there were more pro-active doctor's like Dr. McFarlane, we'd have less costs and a better possiblility of a national health care system. As it is, most doctors are only after the money. This is an extreme example, I must admit, but I bet Biederman isn't the only doctor with his "hands in the cookie jar." I also think most doctors are narcissists. The majority of them seem to have a "God complex."

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  4. Here is my 2 cents worth.

    I have been diagnosed with ADHD at age 46. Quite simply I was close to despair. Nobody could work out what was wrong with me. My family life was in great distress. My intelligent and lovely children both have ADHD too- and we were all sinking slowly into dysfunction. I cannot count the number of times I nearly took my life.

    After a year of treatment we life in a different world - we have a few minor issues to resolve- but make forwards progression every day. This could not have happened without stimulants.As it was the improvements in our household strated 20 minutes after I took the first tablet prescribed for me.

    You know the worst thing about this- I am a medical practitoner.I had no understanding of ADHD, and neither did any of the many doctors whose help I sought.

    It is articles like this that are inflicting greivous harm on many people in real trouble.

    So Biederman is an egomaniac? So what? Medicine is full of them- so is journalism.

    Conscientious practitioners alwas try and weigh the evidence for ourselves. I did this even when every moment involved a battle to stay on track, and I do it way better now.

    As for Professor Higgins - to be rising doubts and anxieties on the tenuous eveidence and suppositions he raises is quite extraordinary.

    ADHD causes real, serious harm. Medications are not the whole answer.Full recovery involves a great deal of soul searching and careful thinking, and coaching. Medication is vital in my opinion- and cerainly in my case the benefits clearly outweigh the benefits.

    Let me repeat it again- without medication there would not have been a long term future for me to have found out about any potential side efects, and my ckhildren would have been in grave danger. The benefits clearly have outweighed the ghosts of risk that are being raised here.

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  5. In my opinion, the author Paul Solomon is just stating the facts. What he's saying seems to be well-documented. I found it to be an interesting article that points to the real problem: Are we over-medicating our children?

    Indeed, medication is needed in some cases, and the author states instances where it has helped.

    I had trouble concentrating in school, but that was more because I had an active mind, and not a sign of any mental illness. Thank God my parents didn't put me on medication. They did think I had an attention deficit disorder, but I got by with just doing what I did best: Art, music, creative things.

    The mind works differently for everbody. So I wasn't good at academics. Not everyone gets an Ivy League education.

    I'm doing fine with my A.A. degree, which I worked very hard for, by the way. If I had been medicated for my inattention, I'm not sure what negative effects it would have had, but I'm glad my parents opted to let me do poorly in school rather than try to diagnose it.

    Some kids just need to be nurtured, and environment and a solid home life can be a way of keeping some conditions from surfacing in the first place. I agree with the article in this respect. This is an interesting article in that even though it's an opinion piece, the author seems to be staying close to the main focus, which is that while medication can be helpful, it's not always the only way.

    The number of children needlessly taking drugs because of Dr. Biederman's conflict of interest where he was skimming money off the same drug companies he was selling to kids is a crime in itself. The author sums it up well. He got caught with his "hand in the cookie jar".

    Nowhere does the author say that ADHD is not an illness, or that is not serious. He's just framing his article around a corrupt doctor and explaining the facts of the case.

    The issue is that too many kids are medicated without being properly diagnosed, and without looking at other options besides medication.

    We need to be doing what's best for the kids, not what's best for the drug companies. I applaud Dr. William McFarlane's approach to preventative medicine, even in instances of more serious mental illness.

    I have to admit, after reading this article, that this is a controversial subject, but that it is important to know about. Not just children, even adults need to be more hands-on in their own medical treatment. If a doctor wants you to take drugs, ask him if there is an alternative. My doctor told me to take medicine for my high blood pressure. I tried it for awhile and it made me sick. I tried cutting down on my salt intake, and that did the trick.

    Pharmaceutical companies are getting rich on their fancy medications, but how much of them do we really need? If you have any questions about the sad case of prescription medication, look at the tragic death of Michael Jackson. We need more articles exposing doctors of all kinds, escpecially nationally known experts like Biederman, who are pushing drugs kids while they're taking kickbacks from the drug companies.

    That's my 2 cents worth.

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  6. The trouble is - it is not just inattention. How would you handle the situation where you were socially disabled- where you were systematically excluded and brutalised because ofyour inability to focus and produce the desired response in social situations? This is the situation we were faced with both in my own case and my daughter's case. The world is full of this false assumption that ADHD is all about making kids behave in class and get better grades. It is not so. Treating ADHD is about treating people who are experiencing real distress- who if left untreated are exposed to a wide range of serious harms. The information is all there for anyone who wants to look. It has been reproduced many times by serious researchers whose first commitment is to their own reputation for academic rigour.If you really want to find out - do the research.. This is one of the best understood, best researched topics in medicine. Johnny- if you are creative, you may well be one of us- but consider yourself lucky to have come out undamaged. Many of us do not.

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  7. This is no doubt a controversial subject. I applaud the author for exposing what's going on. I feel bad for Andrew, but I still think the debate needs to be out there. The fact that Dr.Biederman was involved in such blatant conflict of interest makes the story that much sadder. His reputation has been hurt, so even if his medical views made sense, he has no credibilty. The author mentions this in the article.

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  8. Full recovery does involve therapy to get to the root cause of any psychological issues. However, most people just reach for the pill box, without any serious soul searching. Parents are giving their kids these medications, even when they are aware of the potential side effects.

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  9. Interesting and disturbing article.

    The wide spread and careless use of these drugs are deplorable. I know some people really need such drugs but I have often questioned what the long term side effects would be from their use especially in children.

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  10. Thank you for the kind thought Sherry, but there is no need to feel bad for me. The ADHD model has allowed me to resolve issues that have troubled me for all of my life. Let me say right here and now that medication only treatment for ADHD is bad treatment, and almost certainly destined to fail. Personally I believe that the disability model of ADHD is flawed- that ADHD does indeed arise from a system that is not sufficiently responsive to the needs of individual psychology. I see myself as having been tested- and having passed the test- my mental makeup is a true advantage to me. The difficulties I have faced ultimately have made me a more compassionate person- so in the long run I am happy.

    However without timely medical intervention I may well not have survived.

    This, however, is a disgraceful piece of journalism. The very idea that as an unskilled person you can open a book and say a person has "narcissistic personality disorder " appalls me. If I tried to do it as a nonspeccailist doctor I would be sued for defamation and found guilty of infamous conduct. If you want to dabble in this area go to skyscape.com and buy a subscription to DSM and read the whole book. ( 20 odd dollars for 6 months) Read the preamble particularly and learn the caveats and warnings that are placed in that book about its limitations and its proper uses. It is a very well considered and wise document.

    What I really object to about the whole tone of this article is that by playing the man and not the ball you can avoid the argument and manipulate peoples opinions. Biederman's comment to the senate was intemperate no doubt- but have any of you considered that it may just have been a small attempt at wit? - or sarcasm?

    Now nineteen out of twenty people who read this article and the subsequent comments will simply walk away with their prejudices intact. I am speaking to those of you who have the curiosity to consider a different perspective and the persistence to research the matter properly and make your own decision without accepting anyone elses authority- including mine.

    All that I have recounted here is as clear an account of my own truth as I can possibly write.

    Ask yourselves- are you the one or one of the nineteen? quote

    As for the closing smart alec comment "If you got through this you don't have ADHD"- even ADHD people can concentrate on something that really engages them. The definition of the condition is inability to direct attention at will.( Once again - do your research) Furthermore the medications really do help this aspect of the problem- immediately for many of us, and very much so for me. Once again the journalist has proven his ignorance and his will to use that ignorance to manipulate public opinion. He would have failed high school clear thinking where I came from. ( That was a subject I was always enthralled with.I understand that our politicians judged it too dangerous and had it removed from the local curriculum). I will confess though that I found it a great trial wading through this article.

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  11. Andrew, the author didn't say Dr. Biederman has Narcissistic Personality Disorder, only that he was "showing symptoms" according to the definiition by the Mayo Clinic.

    The author did a good job in writing on this controversial subject. DON"T BLAME THE AUTHOR, blame the subject of the article, Dr. Biederman.

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  12. I feel bad for Andrew Kinsella, but if this type of article opens up the subject for debate, isn't that a good thing?

    I'll be looking for articles that give a different point of view, but I appreciate Paul Solomon's commentary on the subject.

    The doctor at the center of this controversy, Biederman, was the focus of a Congressional inquiry, so obviously he is newsworthy. We don't know if his "God" comments were just a joke, but if so, he's not only guilty of conflict of interest in the drug industry, but also bad judgement.

    There are many people who can benefit by the use of drugs, but this doctor needs to be exposed, and I'm glad I found out about him. This is the first I heard about it.

    Again, if this opens the subject for debate, then the article by Paul Solomon has been of immense benefit.

    I look for more articles on this subject.

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  13. What is the controversial subject here? Certainly not ADHD or its potentially devastating effect on adults and children. The real scandal is the fact that one of the leading proponents of antipsychotic drugs (and a Harvard professor at that), has been taking kick-backs from the drug companies that would benefit from his advocacy. At least this article has prompted a discussion on the subject.

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  14. Ernie, that is fair comment- however the Narcissistic Personality Dosorder comment and the slyly withdrawn comment about Theodore Kaczynski, not to mention the parting comment about ADHD sufferers not being able to read to the end of the article are sly, and manipulative ad hominem attacks. That the author should stoop to using tactics like that when he already had plenty of material to run with degrades his argument, and his standing as a person of good intent.

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  15. @■ Richard Bass
    "Interesting and disturbing article.
    The wide spread and careless use of these drugs are deplorable. I know some people really need such drugs but I have often questioned what the long term side effects would be from their use especially in children."

    Careless use of prescription medication is unacceptable. Anyone who feels they have experienced that should take it up with their local medical board.I do not know what happens in the US- but here in Australia no doctor is likely to forget the process of fighting for his professional life against a formal enquiry of one of our local Medical Boards. We have very substantial consumer and legal representations on these boards- they are not closed shops.

    Furthermore consumer complaints to the board are free of charge, are always taken seriously, and are covered my legislation that protects the complainant form legal consequences of having raised a complaint.

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  16. Maybe things are different in Australia, but in the U.S. prescription drug abuse is a big problem, and not just with children. The Harvard doctor was caught in a major conflict of interest, and his work with bipolar and ADHD children was driven by money. That's the story.

    In the future, I'm sure we'll find other doctors with their "hands in the cookie jar".

    One reason prescription drug abuse is such a hot topic right now is Michael Jackson, but what about the adults who started out on prescription drugs as kids and continued as adults. We don't want our kids hooked on illegal street drugs, but we also don't want them hooked on prescription drugs. Addictive behavior many times is caused by how we are raised as kids.

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  17. I agree with Richard Bass. This is an interesting and disturbing article. It seems to be getting a lot of feedback, which is good. I'd like to put in my 2 cents worth.

    It's doctors like Joseph Biederman who are causing the medical crisis in America. President Obama wants to lower medical costs. Let's start by weeding out quacks like Biederman. The UCLA study and Dr. William McFarlane's work should be looked at more closely.

    Richard says, "Full recovery does involve therapy to get to the root cause of any psychological issues. However, most people just reach for the pill box, without any serious soul searching. Parents are giving their kids these medications, even when they are aware of the potential side effects."

    That was worth repeating, because it says it all. Parents are turning their kids into drug addicts. People like Joseph Biederman need to be exposed. I found this article to be excellent. The topic needs to be addressed.

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  18. if you ask me its not just his methods that should be coming under scrutiny, but many medical professionals.

    Prescription drug abuse is huge problem, and I don't see it stopping when drs and parents keep advocating to dope up their kids instead of deal with them.

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  19. So many people have their hands in the cookie jar when it comes to diagnosing. Since the health care industry is so F'ed up, people are making millions of the sick people. You have to be rich to afford the cost of meds to keep you alive for things such as diabetes or HIV (or so poor that you get help from the government)....it's not about the quality of YOUR life..it's about the quality of THEIRS (insurance companies, big pharmacuticals, doctors, professors all the like). Great article by the way!

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  20. So many people in the medical industry have their hands in the cookie jar when it comes to diagnosing illnesses of all kinds. The health care industry is a mess.

    When it comes to mental health, for years it seems it's just been to give meds of all kinds and see what works.

    The fact is, usually the meds don't work. Doctors are getting rich by prescribing drugs instead of diagnosing problems correctly. They might say you have ADHD when in fact you're dislexic. They don't seem to care what's true, as long as you have great insurance and they can schedule you for a follow-up exam.

    Very good and well-informed article!

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  21. The response to this article has been interesting.

    I used various source materials in my research. Bruce Levine, of AltNet.org, is a clinical psychologist. Scientific Mind's Edmund S. Higgins is a clinical associate professor of family medicine and psychiatry at the Medical University of South Carolina.

    The June 22 issue of Time Magazine had a cover story titled "It's All About Prevention," which featured a profile of Dr. William McFarlane, who, according to writer John Cloud, is "one of the world's top authorities on preventing mental illness". I included Dr. McFarlane's views on preventative medicine because it is the direct opposite of Dr. Biederman's medicate-at-all-costs method. As my article states, Dr. Biederman had a financial incentive to rely on over-medicating our children.

    The Web sites of the Center For Disease Control (CDC) and the Mayo Clinic provide further information.

    Sen. Charles Grassley's 2008 Congressional inquiry of Dr. Biederman is part of the public record. Dr. Biederman, the subject of my article, has been accused of a conflict of interest. This is newsworthy, and is the basis for my article.

    Obviously I've put my own views into the article, and it's meant to be an opinion piece. Thank you to everyone for taking the time to read it. This is an important issue, and should be open for debate.

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  22. One thing is for sure - treating these problems properly is very hard work. I personally have decided to go that route and accept the reduction in my income- as a trade off for doing the best possible job. I am with you 100%- there is a systemic flaw in the way these problems are handled and effort is remunerated. More public spending is vital. Remember that next time a politician offers you a tax cut.

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  23. I came upon this article by accident. I googled "ADHD" and "William McFarlane," the doctor featured in the Time Magazine report, which I read recently. I have a family member I'm concerned about, and I've been doing some research into this subject. This is very important imformation, and I'm glad it's getting out there. Most people would be shocked by the way we are medicating our young people unnessesarily. Dr. McFarlane's work gives hope to families with a history of mental illness. Dr. Biederman, on the other hand, should have his license taken away. He's what's wrong with our health care system. Paul Solomon's article is very informative and his opinions are valid. I'm glad I found this article. The information is shocking but true.

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  24. If Obama wants to save money on healthcare, he needs to look more closely at issues such as the one raised in this story. By reading the article and all of the comments, I know one thing. This is a subject that needs to be kept in the public eye. Hopefully, more people will write articles about this subject, and expose other doctors who are making a mockery of the system.

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  25. It should be noted that there have been loads of ADHD studies that were either funded by the drug companies or were written by those who were on the board of a drug company. Taking $1.6 mil is pretty astounding though.

    I would've skipped the focus on Narcissistic Personality Disorder. Biederman was probably just trying to make a joke. What's not funny is all the kids who have had serious side effects from these drugs, or who have experienced drops in their cognitive abilities (IQ) and their creativity. Others have died.

    Cylert was taken off the market and others have received black box warnings. Still, we continue to medicate kids as young as 2 for being hyperactive or inattentive.

    Forget the fact that people with these traits tend to be bright, creative, right-brained types. If they don't fit into the "norms", we've got to medicate them to conform. It's a brave new world out there after all.

    What parents need to hear is that there are many common causes of ADHD symptoms - which can be alleviated without drugs. ADHD traits can be beneficial if you learn how to control them.

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  26. Theodore Kaczynski was the victim of an unfortunate experiment which probably caused him to become the Unibomber. During the MKULTRA experiments run by the CIA Theodore Kaczynski volunteered as a subject to undergo experimental testing of MDMA, methylenedioxymethamphetamine, better known today as Ecstacy.

    So the truth about Theodore Kaczynski is that his brain was severely altered by the MKULTRA experiments. The CIA wondered if MDMA would enhance anxiety in the enemy. Theodore Kaczynski quite teaching, took to the woods and started mailing bombs.

    Methylenedioxymethamphetamine is a form of methamphetamine which is a form of amphetamine which are all the same thing, except for slightly tweaked molecules. These drugs are basically the same as Ritalin, Concerta, Methylin, Vyvanse and Metadate - ADHD drugs.

    So the thread that believes that Theodore Kaczynski could be helped by ADHD drugs is entirely wrong as a similar drug induced his personality disorders.

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  27. I, of course, a newcomer to this blog, but the author does not agree

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  28. I was diagnosed as having ADHD when I was 58. I had a lot of difficulties in life, but I assumed it was due to being different. People are different, some have easier doing certain tasks and others are better at other tasks. That's reality. We need each other to make a team, that’s why humans are social. No man is an island.
    I was taught early on that I had to take responsibility for my actions and behavior. I learned coping skills intuitively. I chose a lifestyle that suited my ADHD personality type (INFP for those Jungians out there).
    When I started working in an environment not compatible with my personality, then I had a nervous breakdown and during my recovery was diagnosed. ADHD is situational. Change the situation, environment, lifestyle, etc. and the disorder becomes a blessing and a talent.
    I love my ADHD personality, and as long as I stick to an ADHD friendly lifestyle I am going to continue enjoying an ADHD drug free life.
    So I’m scatterbrained, my desk looks a mess, and my wife keeps the time, telling me when to get ready if we are going out. But hey, who’s perfect?

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  29. I am glad to read this post.

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  30. I am just hoping that there will be a treatment that can really treat ADHD. I am sure that will be the best answer for this problem. I will visit this blog again for more update about this issue.

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