I read Mr Levine’s book for my own personal book club in about a week while doing cardio in the gym, as I am wont to do with good books. Otherwise, at the gym, I am keeping abreast of the latest neuroscience journals and other periodicals. First, here is my personal five-star review of the book, I hurriedly put in with my Samsung after reading it.
| from Kindle Customer on February 14, 2018|
Important reading to understand today’s mental health topology
While I do not agree with everything that mister Art Levine’s book posits, about 95% of the book for me is spot-on. From the politics to the public health issues to the medication. This book should be required reading for all students in public health programs.
Art Levine’s book Mental Health Inc. for me, deserved more time and attention than your standard mental health text. Why? He goes into the political, economic, social, and environmental forces that are skewing mental health care for most Americans, and he gave me food for thought. The picture he shows all too clearly is that America’s mental health care system is a mess. Mr Levine clearly shows, using stark statistics and the money trail, that not only is our current national leadership eviscerating the medical care for all, they are especially destroying the human right of mental health care for those who most need it. As if that was not enough, the politics of money is fomenting bribes, kickbacks, and more unethical behavior that should not happen. I do not want to go into detail about the Big Pharma political abuses, which Mr Levine chronicles in exhaustive and shocking detail, but it is a very necessary and hopefully instructive text to enable those in power to change the system, should they so choose.
Nursing homes should be safe places of respite for our seniors- they deserve no less. They are not. I was shocked beyond words to see the abuses of power and medicine that Mr. Levine plainly laid out in case reports and overall statistics. There is widespread abuse of the elderly in nursing homes and respite centers. Our seniors deserve compassionate, appropriate, and ethical care. The system as it stands in the USA is an abomination, and it makes me physically ill when I think about it.
Mental health in terms of the kids with mental health issues, especially those in foster care and also the care of the military veterans and active service members is another strong point in this book. Our kids and our vets deserve much, much better. Kids and vets are being routinely over-drugged, and many are dying from their drug cocktails. For me, the saddest and most apt point Mr. Levine makes in these sections is that even though mental health for veterans and active service military is woefully underfunded and understaffed and more- THEY GET BETTER MENTAL HEALTH CARE THAN THE AVERAGE CIVILIAN, a sobering FACT.
My Personal Reflections on “Mental Health, Inc.”
I could not help to make tie-ins with Mental Health, Inc’s points to my own life- surviving for more than twenty-five years while taking many antipsychotics. While some atypical antipsychotics are quite good at controlling anger, namely, Clozaril, Zyprexa, and Risperdal, others are not as good. Zyprexa and Risperdal basically block, or are antagonists, at the D2 dopamine receptors and serotonin receptors. They are not partial agonists. Clozaril is a partial agonist at the D2 receptor, but because of a compensatory mechanism with the NMDA receptor, it has both the greatest efficacy against psychosis and anger of any available antipsychotic. Truly, Clozaril is one of a kind. If not for the deadly possibility of Clozaril causing deadly low white blood cell count, I am sure it would be the mainstay of schizophrenia pharmacotherapy around the world. European psychiatrists use Clozaril more than American psychiatrists, and their patients, accordingly, on average live longer and more productive lives. Seroquel, Geodon, and Abilify do not have the same compensatory effect on NMDA, and in my opinion, therein lies the danger of these three partial agonists to cause extreme medication-induced rage
It struck me that Mr. Levine seemed to talk a lot about Seroquel and rage in his first chapter. I survived Seroquel, as detailed in my autobiography A Schizophrenic Will: A Story of Madness, A Story of Hope. I wrote an article titled Is Seroquel Safe? About the sometimes causal relationship between Seroquel and anger, indeed sometimes extreme homicidal anger and rage, years ago, and I am now re-posting it because when my WordPress went down, so did the article.
Many years later, after working really well for many years Abilify eventually made me homicidal and suicidal. I had so much rage on Abilify, eventually my body was shaking for two days straight and I had to use all my will not to explode and kill anyone in the process of letting out the rage. I put myself into the hospital. I went into more depth in my little library science way, and in an article for Psychcentral.org titled Angry? It might be Abilify. I wrote the following: “The ehealthme.com database shows the following drug- percentage chance of causing anger: Abilify – 0.77% ; Geodon – 0.93%; and Seroquel -1%. All of these drugs either modulate dopamine or serotonin. When 1 out of 100 people will notice anger or rage issues, that’s a common side effect, but is is nowhere in the prescribing information for these drugs in the Physician’s Desk Reference. Also, it turns out that the raw number of people who have anger from Abilify on ehealthme.com is higher than Accutane: the famous drug that made the kids go crazy violent in Bowling for Columbine.” This is all public knowledge but, not one of these three drugs has “Anger” or “Rage” as a possible side effect listed anywhere in the prescribing information. I feel this hampers otherwise good doctors from doing their jobs, as anger can also be a side-effect of PTSD or psychosis. So, when rage appears the doctors are not alerted that the side effect of anger, indeed, could be due to the atypical antipsychotic they are prescribing, unwittingly putting lives are risk.- even at the low 2 milligram dose I was taking, even after many years with no problems on the drug.
The “Jiang Effect” Partial Dopamine and Partial Serotonin Agonists Can Cause Rage
Let me explain the neurobiology of extreme anger and its connection to serotonin and dopamine. When one increases serotonin in a teenager or possibly another person with an SSRI it is well recognized that anger or suicidality may result. Seroquel and Geodon are partial serotonin agonists- they can raise serotonin when it gets low. Also, dopamine is another neurotransmitter involved in anger formation or suppression. Quoting verbatim, the medical researcher Yao Xue Xue Bao. in an article from 1992 titled [Amphetamine–induced rage reaction in mice and its mechanism]. “…Therefore, it may be deduced that the APT-induced rage reaction results from increased release of dopamine in the limbic system “ There are quite a few other articles indexed by MEDLINE that include much of the same information, but not so many are as unequivocally clear that dopamine can cause rage. How does this apply to Abilify? Abilify works with a “Goldilocks” mechanism. When dopamine goes too high, it is blocked, but if it goes too low, it is raised in a mechanism called partial dopamine agonism. So, Abilify can raise dopamine, therefore, increasing dopamine can cause rage: as well-evidenced by a few people who do cocaine as well. Hence, partial dopamine agonism explains why Abilify can cause extreme rage. Partial serotonin agonism explains why Geodon, and Seroquel can cause extreme rage.
For most of the people, most of the time, these drugs work as intended without the side-effect of rage. However, sometimes not.
Popular partial agonists like Abilify, Seroquel, and Geodon are used for treating schizophrenia, PTSD, bipolar disorder, depression, and other psychiatric issues. If you are taking a newer atypical antipsychotic for one of these these issues there is a good chance it is a partial agonist of dopamine or serotonin, possibly to “augment” your antidepressant. Literally, millions of people in the United States alone take these three medications. 1% of just one million people is 10,000 people. To put this in a statistical perspective, when we realize that according to CBS News 1 in 6 Americans take some kind of psychiatric drug and there are about 300 million people in the USA, that means 50 million people are taking psychiatric medicines and Seroquel, Geodon, and Abilify are some of the most popular psychiatric drugs. If only half of one percent of 50 million people is affected by anger that is a staggering 250,000 people who may be put in danger of excessive and dangerous rage.
If it were in my power to magically wave my hand and force this knowledge into the textbooks of young resident doctors and psychiatrists as well as educating the general public in an instant, I would, but I need help spreading this message. I am just one person with a blog. You can help! Please share this essential post to help others! A personal note, I am currently stable with my paranoid schizophrenia on Navane chemical name thiothixene at a very low 10 milligram dose, with a beautiful girlfriend, a good writing career of many books behind me, I am the first in the world to use a Vagus Nerve Stimulator for severe Multiple Chemical Sensitivities, and I am currently looking for gigs as a Spanish to English and English to Spanish Translation and Statistician, my profile is on Upwork.
However, my main goal in life is to help others. So thanks for reading, and please let me know what you think in a comment, and please feel free to link to my blog or this article in particular, if you think it was helpful!
Well, that’s a lot to chew on. Thank you Mr. Art Levine for writing Mental Health Inc. It should be required reading EVERYWHERE where medicine and nursing, psychology and psychiatry are studied- also by the general public so they are aware of what is going on in the world. I wish I could give this book 10 stars, but 5 was the limit. Well done!
Finally, I should say I am looking for a co-author for book #66 a follow up to A Schizophrenic Will, tentatively titled “William Jiang and the Gammacore” about my personal feat of curing severe MCS with a vagus nerve stimulator- a world first and newsworthy! Please contact me if you are a big author and would like to bring a positive story to life on the printed page that has the makings of a blockbuster!
See Author William Jiang, MLS quoted in the
NEW YORK TIMES
William Jiang, MLS is currently the Author of 63 books, including the bestselling books Guide to Natural Mental Health , 3rd ed and his critically-acclaimed autobiography A Schizophrenic Will: A Story of Madness, A Story of Hope. You can see a selection of his books about mental and physical health nicely laid out on his blog at http://www.mentalhealthbooks.net