Saturday, March 13, 2010

Clinic Notes: Medication and ABA

The popular press has carried a number of stories recently about the large number of children in our society being over-medicated with psychoactive drugs like Prozac, Ritalin, or Risperdal. These stories quote the possible multiple side effects of these drugs and the harm that could be done to these innocent children. Uncaring parents that don't have time for their kids and careless doctors prescribing, "dope" is the image that is portrayed. Often the first thing parents tell me when they bring their children to my clinic is, "We don't want medications." So where are the uncaring parents and careless doctors? Well, actually they are hard to find. A child on medication is usually a sign of good parenting. I tell parents we will try to do everything we can behaviorally and then see if medications are necessary. And often, about half the time medications are necessary. About 80-90 percent of the children I see each week are on the Autism Spectrum and about half are on medication. Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) seems o be facilitated by medication in many cases.


J. Bradley Borden said...

Side effects aside ... Prozac was not effective for reducing repetitive behaviors in children and adolescents with Autistic Disorder as compared to placebo.

Celexa was also shown to have zero benefit in studies, and we know you love studies :-) The serotonin drugs that you yourself claimed to see good results don't bear that out in studies.

About 9 Billion was spend on meds for kids "mental disorders" in 2009. That's compared to about 6 Billion for EVERYTHING else for kids.

Doctors, pharmacists, drug companies are laughing all the way to the bank. They also own the regulatory agencies tasked to see if these drugs are safe and safe long terms. They really could care less about long term studies.

I'd be careful what kool-aid you're drinking since you often accuse parents of being too gullible.

J. Bradley Borden said...

These kids are the perfect customers too. Start them as children and you have life-long customers.

Rachel Lee said...

You seem pretty blaise about side effects like they are imagined or something.

Adverse effects from prescription drugs have become the third-leading killer of Americans. Only heart disease and cancer claim more lives.

J. Bradley Borden said...