Thursday, March 09, 2006

The drugs don't work

08 March 2006 10:19

A man who has suffered from depression for more than 20 years today hit out at the mental health system, saying that it does not treat patients like him properly and relies too heavily on prescribing drugs.

Jeremy Crisp, 48, of St Benedict's Street, Norwich, said he felt that there were too many prescription drugs being given to mentally ill patients and not enough time spent listening to their problems.

His views echo those of Norwich's Director of Public Health Dr Peter Brambleby who last month called for GPs to get patients off anti-depressants and seek other ways of treating the illness. An Evening News investigation revealed nearly £34 million had been spent on prescribing anti-depressants in Norfolk since 2000.

Mr Crisp said in January 1991 he was admitted to the Yare Clinic with manic depression. He was put on the neuroleptic tranquilisier Modecate. He left in March and in May tried to jump off the Malthouse car park on the former Nestle site in Norwich. He survived with multiple fractures after being taken to the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital.

He said that the Modecate “directly contributed” to his deciding there was no alternative but to end his own life.

Mr Crisp, who is unemployed, has suffered from manic depression since the age of 24, which he says started as a result of smoking cannabis. He has been in and out of Hellesdon Hospital ever since and was last an inpatient there in 2003. But he said the tradition of psychiatrists examining the patient with detachment did not work.

“The profession of psychiatry is at fault. There is a mistaken view that it is about distancing and not getting involved. It's not about talking to patients or finding out why they are suffering. “

Ruth Taylor, who manages Mind Body Soul in Ber Street, said: “Psychiatry is just a plaster over the wound. It does not deal with the underlying problem.”


Anonymous Anonymous said...

An interesting article, I was a close friend of Jeremy's and often we were in either Hellesdon or David Rice together,it was very cruel treatment in the 80's and 90's , 'lLargatil'
and 'Haloperidol ' were used as a chemicals cosh, I suffered with him , and nearly died of a depot injection ,In the leg, I luckily survived, complete liver failure, I was in the old Norfolk and Norwich Hospital for nearly 3mths ,the cardio consultant saved my life, he was worried about cascade organ failure , it took me over a year on steroids to get over it, John

3:16 PM  

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