Friday, March 14, 2008



March 3, 2008

Amy Philo
214-705-0169 home, 817-793-8028 cell,

Dr. Ann Blake Tracy, Executive Director of the ICFDA
Ann Tracy, 801-209-1800 direct, 801-335-4727 fax

Camille Milke
505-269-2286 direct or 505-213-0999 fax

The supporters of The MOTHERS Act have been engaging for the past few years in an aggressive attempt to pass an incredibly broad federal law which will transform the U.S. market for “antidepressant” or “antipsychotic” drugs from a voluntary pool of patients who are encouraged by commercials to seek help from their doctors, to a government-sponsored screening program to select patients who are deemed to need “antidepressant” or “antipsychotic” drugs from among the female childbearing-age population. These promoters of the bill have had vast resources and ample time to obtain support and backing from the legislators they have influenced. The bill has passed the U.S. House, and needs approval from the Senate, final agreement from the House if any changes are made, and a signature from President Bush. This could happen in a matter of days or weeks.

The timing of the impending vote on this bill in the U.S. Senate is highly ironic in light of the tremendous amount of negative news we have seen on antidepressants and antipsychotics over the past several months. It is especially shocking to see it being promoted at a time when our society is being terrified by frequent shootings and murder-suicides which have been preceded by the perpetrator’s use and sometimes improper discontinuation of antidepressant drugs, and in the wake of several notable celebrities’ deaths which were the result of prescription drug toxicity. The evidence against these drugs is frightening, and the reality is that, if The MOTHERS Act is passed, those who are the most innocent and vulnerable and in need of protection FROM these drugs will instead be put ON these drugs, and placed in serious danger from all of the negative drug effects - including spontaneous abortion, a tenfold increased risk of psychosis for postpartum women, birth defects, suicide, and homicide (YES, THIS IS A LISTED ANTIDEPRESSANT SIDE EFFECT).

The bill creates funding for development of new drugs at taxpayers’ expense. Doctors will be under greater pressure to prescribe drugs to pregnant and postpartum women due to federal law which would ensure the promotion of earlier “detection” and “treatment.” Despite the fact that the law admits that the causes of depression or psychosis can vary between many life situations and social realities, and perhaps some unknown biological factors, and the manufacturers’ own research (kept hidden for years but recently revealed) shows that antidepressants have no more benefit than a sugar pill, the bill endorses drugs and hospitalization as essential and necessary treatment options. Many women who seek treatment or reach out for help under this proposed legislation would be under the watchful eyes of the government rather than simply under the care and guidance of their doctors or counselors. The potential for creating violence, death, and destroying families through the administration of drugs combined with possible involvement of police, CPS, and the courts, as well as the invasions of privacy and individual freedoms that this bill would ensure, must not be accepted.

Since we first issued our press release opposing S. 1375, The MOTHERS Act on February 11, thousands of people have been made aware of this bill, which at one time flew way under the public radar. Many people have come forward for the first time with sad stories of personal harm caused by the drugs, while a few others have, unfortunately, gone on to continue their support for a bill that threatens to bring about a dire and dangerous situation, sacrificing life, family, children, motherhood, freedom, and our future.

Some people pushing for the bill have taken notice of our efforts, and in response simply told the public and the media that The MOTHERS Act is mainly about “education.” That sounds so innocuous and harmless that it’s nearly impossible for most people to disagree with the bill if they have not read its contents. But even if that were the true purpose, or if the Senate were to rewrite the bill and remove most of the negative wording, leaving ONLY education as its goal, let us consider this idea for a moment - what is the impact of an education or awareness campaign promoting certain psychiatric labels?

In a 1996 study cited by Dr. Grace Jackson in her book, Rethinking Psychiatric Drugs, researchers discovered that an awareness campaign in the UK called “Defeat Depression” resulted in a significant increase in prescriptions for antidepressants, a change in physician practices of increased willingness to prescribe, and a large increase in agreement from the public that antidepressant drugs are effective and should be given to patients. Furthermore, to summarize from a follow-up study in 2001, researchers concluded that since there were still so many people who favored alternative treatments such as yoga, meditation and natural remedies over antidepressants, “further efforts to improve public knowledge about pharmacotherapy of mental disorders [were] needed.”

Would passing The MOTHERS Act in effect counter the ideas of those who have wised up to the drug companies, by creating a sense of legitimacy through governmental drug endorsements? By promoting earlier detection and treatment of postpartum depression or psychosis, or depression in pregnancy, it makes sense that we would see the numbers of prescriptions for antidepressants and antipsychotic drugs significantly increase in pregnant and postpartum women. This would be a boon to the drug industry, which has had to deal with the potential for decreasing sales since the FDA issued black box warnings on SSRIs for doubling the risk of suicide in 2004, and black box warnings on “antipsychotic” drugs for doubling suicides just a few weeks ago. Eli Lilly received a “Not Approvable” letter for their new injectable Zyprexa application several days ago. Also, a recent analysis of all studies submitted to the FDA prior to approval of many antidepressant drugs showed that the drugs overall were no more effective than placebo, but that most of the studies in which antidepressants did worse than placebo were never made public, or the results were misreported.

With the truth stacked against the drugs and against this bill, we have no option other than to campaign vigorously against the passage of The MOTHERS Act. There are many steps you can take right now to help ensure its defeat and safeguard our women, unborn babies, and the innocent bystanders whose paths sometimes cross people who commit crimes during altered states while under the influence of prescription drugs.

First, sign our petition against the MOTHERS Act

Next, contact the U.S. Senate and demand that they consider the truth and stop this bill dead in its tracks. For phone and fax numbers for the Senate please go to

Please share this information with everyone you possibly can and urge them to act now.

Please also read the addendum to this press release, especially the excerpts which follow the links, and feel free to forward this entire information packet.


Amy Philo
Survivor of Zoloft-induced homicidality, suicidality, and psychosis during the postpartum period

Camille Milke
New Mexico State Director of the ICFDA
Mother of a victim of psychiatric drug-induced suicide and grandmother to a now motherless child

Dr. Ann Blake Tracy
Executive Director of the ICFDA
Author of Prozac: Pancaea or Pandora? Our Serotonin Nightmare



Blog and YouTube channel for Julie, whose son, Manie, was born with a life-threatening Paxil heart defect (Julie has 5 kids, 4 of whom are healthy, but she took Paxil during her pregnancy with Manie, her 4th child)

Moms in NJ (which has a similar law to the proposed MOTHERS Act) were treated like criminals for seeking help for PPD

Our original press release with an addendum, which includes references to medical studies on dangers, including pregnancy dangers and suicide / homicide dangers, toxicity dangers, and articles on PPD alternatives, actual safely treatable causes, and prevention:

A lack of sufficient data to support the alleged safety of breastfeeding while using psychiatric drugs

A decline in suicides since the FDA Black Box Warning

Lowest level of suicides in 30 years as prescriptions for antidepressants drop by half (England, Wales)

A Swedish study revealing that psychiatric drug use preceded about 80% of all adult suicides

Antipsychotic drugs get slapped with black box warning for doubling suicides

Adrenal exhaustion as a cause of PPD (including information about thyroid conditions and the fact that antidepressants exacerbate adrenal problems):

Media coverage of the NEJM analysis revealing the data suppression and ineffectiveness of antidepressants

Flyer to use for massive advertising against the bill and to solicit petition signatures

An outreach letter that can be used for emails asking for support and endorsements of our efforts against this bill

Amy Philo’s YouTube Videos including her personal story of Zoloft-induced psychosis and homicidal and suicidal urges during the postpartum period:

Please read some of these excerpts from emails and blogs that we have found or received in the past few weeks:

“I was on very low dose Desyrel for depression during pregnancy. But when I got tired of being tired, I took myself off. A year later they put me on Prozac. I felt better, but began behaviors that distressed me. They told me that I needed it. I switched to Zoloft. Later to Paxil. Each time I tried to get off of it, I had what I later learned was withdrawal effects, but they told me it was proof I needed it. Later, when I heard someone tell my story about the withdrawal effects, I took myself off cold turkey, knowing that I would get through it. And I did. During these years on SSRI's, I was diagnosed with Type II Bipolar Disorder (mild mania). When I got off of SSRI's those symptoms disappeared. My relationship with my son was permanently damaged by my behavior, and horrible 'legal' things happened to me as the result of my drug induced behavior. The psychiatric community denies this is why, but recently, my doctor was looking for something for my panic attacks and some depression and said that she wouldn't put me back on SSRI's because of the manic symptoms they induced... this is the doctor, one of them, who denied the SSRI's were causing my problems! I still have panic attacks, but never had them before these medications. I had depression, but not these panic attacks...which now may be something I'm going to have to deal with ongoing.

I can't believe what incredible suffering some supposedly "human" beings can perpetrate on other human beings...FOR PROFIT!!! It's a disgusting legacy of a culture of greed and indifference, and is the cause of U.S. interference and imperialism...greed, power, profit. They have no conscience, no humanity!!

The damage to my life was great...particularly to my relationship with my son, who has only known me with my behavior on those, though we are close, and the relationship was loving and protective, I did behave badly at times. He has a lot of pain to deal with because of it...and it affects our relationship. It's a source of great pain, sorrow and shame for me. I didn't get off these drugs until he was out of the house at 18. He left before he graduated from high school.

I worked with a young woman going through a crisis, brand new mom... she was 3 months post partum... something horrible happened and they arrested her, took her away from her child... she never got her back. She already had mental problems, but what they did to her made it worse.

Doctors and law enforcement are lazy and indifferent...really jaded... and they have stopped caring. They rely on what they think they know and what is expedient. So laws like this will make it worse.”
– Lucy


Excerpts from The Star-Ledger (Newark, New Jersey)

December 9, 2007 Sunday

“Promised lifeline for new moms falls short

Postpartum depression law called a disappointment so far



Maxine Garcia of Sayreville says that when she asked for help she got a response that left her stunned. Police officers and rescue squad workers arrived unannounced at her home last year, an hour after she called the hotline to say she was six months pregnant and "depressed out of my mind." According to the police report, Garcia threatened to hurt herself, but she denies it. She and her two children were forced to go to the emergency room. "I felt like I had no rights," Garcia said. "I really just needed someone to talk to."

Yolanda Iyube of Franklin in Somerset County says she confided to her gynecologist two years ago she was consumed with scary thoughts about her baby dying violently. Before she left the office, a police-escorted social worker took her to the emergency room. "They brought me in a police car to the hospital. It was horrible - everyone was looking at me like I had committed a crime."

Venis said such responses can discourage women with postpartum depression from seeking help.

...When the law took effect, there was an initial reluctance from physicians treating new mothers - a fear that "we won't be able to discharge anyone from the hospital," said Edward Wolf, vice chairman of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Saint Barnabas Medical Center in Livingston.

Wolf said the law added responsibilities for obstetricians already vulnerable to malpractice lawsuits. He said there was a fear of "I am going to get this thrown on my lap without help."”

Excerpts from Julie’s blog

“Manie is 3 years old.

Was born with Transposition of the Great Arteries.

Had a balloon procedure shortly after birth to keep him alive.

Had open heart surgery at 1 week old.

Had 3 cardiac caths to correct problems with collaterals.

Has had several coils put in his collaterals.

Has a leak in his valve.

Manie has to take medicine for high blood pressure.

Manie has also suffered from acid reflux

Manie was on an adult dose of meds for acid reflux for six months.

Because of the acid reflux Manie has bad teeth. His baby teeth are ruined.

When Manie goes to the dentist he has to have dental work done with out Novocaine or nitrous oxide.

The reason why Manie was born with a congenital heart defect was because of my ingestion of an antidepressant while I was pregnant. I took Paxil within the first three months that I was pregnant with Manie. At the time that I was pregnant with Manie Paxil was a class C drug. Now Paxil is a class D drug.

What is a category D:
Definite fetal risk, maybe given in spite of risk if needed in life-threatening conditions.

What could be so important to risk a unborn baby's life? If something is life-threatening I would think a person should be under supervision as not to hurt them self or their unborn child.

In Mosbys Drug Reference Paxil is a category B drug in 2003.
Now I ask when did Glaxo know about paxil causing birth defects???????? Now that is a good question isn't it.

This is what I have to say to any one who is pregnant or could become pregnant. If you are depressed get help indeed. However please think about this...

Wouldn't it be better to seek some other kind of help for your depression? I have been through having a child with a birth defect and I will always be going through it. I can never turn back the hands of time and not take that pill. Unlike you I did not know. I did not have a clue. Until recently I did not know why Manie was born with a heart defect.

I looked and looked for a reason why and always came up with nothing. Until one day I found out that it was because I took paxil. The guilt I feel will never go away even though it was not my fault. If you think that you are depressed now wait until your life is flipped upside down when your baby is born with a horrible birth defect like Manie was.

Manie has three sisters and one brother. Manie is number four out of five kids. Manie loves to hunt frogs and go fishing. Manie loves being outside in the summer time. I had a normal pregnancy with Manie. I even had a couple of ultrasounds done while I was pregnant with Manie. There were no clues that Manie had a rare heart defect. I had already 3 perfectly healthy kids and did not expect for Manie to be any different.

As soon as Manie was born he began to turn blue. The more he cried the more he turned blue. Our doctor did not know what was wrong with Manie. The doctor thought that it might be his heart or his lungs.

Manie was flown to a hospital an hour and a half away from where we live. I had to stay at the hospital where I had Manie. The doctors called me when Manie arrived and told me Manie had transposition of the great arteries.

I was told that Manie had to have a procedure done to save his life. The doctors went through the artery on the inside of Manie's right leg. The doctors snaked a balloon all the way through the artery to Manie's heart. Once the doctors were in Manie's heart they blew the balloon up and ripped a hole in Manie's heart.

In the days following the surgery Manie's leg and foot started to turn a dark purple. The doctors told us that Manie may have to have his leg amputated because the procedure damaged the artery in Manie's leg.

Right before Manie's open heart surgery the doctors put Manie on blood thinners. Shortly after putting Manie on blood thinners they were able to detect a pulse in Manie's foot. Manie kept his leg.

(TGA means the aorta and pulmonary arteries in the heart are switched. When a child is born with TGA there is very little oxygen in the blood. The aorta receives the oxygen-poor blood from the right ventricle, but it's carried back to the body without receiving more oxygen. The pulmonary artery receives the oxygen-rich blood from the left ventricle but carries it back to the lungs.)

Manie loves to go to a lake by our house and hunt frogs and go fishing.
Manie also likes to go to the park.
Manie really likes to go to the mall and play video games.
Manie also loves to dance especially to 80s music.


When he first started going to the dentist at about a year old because his teeth were going bad and this was before we knew that he had been suffering with acid reflux I was blamed for it then too. I was told his teeth were bad because I was still nursing him and I needed to stop. So I have learned that they are just looking for someone to blame. I take care of my kids teeth. If I did not then why does Manie's older brother have perfect teeth and never had any cavities at all? I just took Manie's older brother and one of his older sisters to the dentist two weeks ago. Guess what no cavities and no problems. Hmmm what does that tell ya?

So it looks like Manie is going back to the dentist in four months and at that time the student said "they will talk to me about putting him under to have all his teeth done at once." I am not going to worry about that right now I guess. I will keep on brushing and praying that his teeth will be fine. Manie made it through another dental appointment and he is such a brave little boy. I am so proud of him.

This was just a small insite into what Manie has to go through. I wish I could take it all away and make it better for him, but all I can do is be there to love him.


…I do not care if it is 1% or a 100% of women who take antidepressants that have children born with birth defects the suffering these babies have to go through is too much. What woman would want to be that 1%? No one would, but they are saying take the chance if you need too. GSK PLEASE stop funding these studies and misleading woman. Have you not done enough already. Except the fact that you did wrong instead of trying to belittle what my son and others have gone through with these studies that say the risk is so small. You are just trying to take some of the heat off. GSK it seems to me you have just made a big ass out of your self again. I for one am not fooled by your attempts to lessen what you have done. I only hope that other women listen to the whole story instead of just the headlines and realize that antidepressants do cause birth defects.


Big Pharma has been abusing people for profits.

This problem has been going on since the begining of Big pharma. We need to let "them" know that we are not going to tolerate this any longer. We need to let the government know that we demand something be done. Why is Big Pharma allowed to hurt people and get away with it. You have seen the pictures of Manie when he was born and you have heard me talk about the torture he has to deal with, if someone is responsible for his pain then why are they not punished? 

Do not think for a minute that something like this could not happen to you. Do something about it before it does. Write to your Senators let them know how you feel about what big pharma has done in the past. Encourage them to do something about this. It is clear that big pharma does not care about anyone. If they are willing to hurt babies their is nothing that is going to stop them. 

I say do some research on big pharma. Type big pharma into a search engine and see what comes up. Find out for yourself what has been going on that you do not know about. Be aware of what is going on take care of yourself because no one is looking out for you, but you.


What does this mean for the future of our family minivacation tradition? It looks like Manie will be stuck riding the Infant Ocean for the rest of his life or sitting and watching as everyone else has fun on the rides. It might be that the family will just have to find a new family tradition. What happens when Manie becomes a teenager and wants to go with his friends? Will he ride the rides anyways and risk it all just to find out what it feels like to ride the Mixer or the Dragon.

his vacation has left me thinking what else is there that Manie can't do because of his heart problems? I want to be able to tell Manie that he can do anything he wants and to never let his heart problems stop him, but in this case I can't say that because there are just somethings he will not be aloud to do. I hate using the word can't when it comes to any of my children. I always want my children to know they can do anything if they want it bad enough. I guess GSK has taken that away from Manie too.


I could not believe what I was reading this morning on seroxatsecrets blog. You have to be kidding me I thought. Apparently GSK has bought Reliant a pharmaceutical company that makes HEART MEDS! Is it me or does something smell a little fishy here. Go to
to read the post. Lets examine this situation. My son and others like him were born with HEART DEFECTS because of Paxil which came from GSK. Now these kids that are growing up with HEART CONDITIONS are going to need HEART MEDS probably for the rest of there life. Now GSK has bought a pharmaceutical company that makes HEART MEDS. Isn't there a law against profiting off of the tragedy that you have caused? Does anyone know? If you do please contact me and inform me. If there is not a law against this there should be. I am disgusted about this. I am disgusted because the same company that caused my son so much pain is now going to probably profit from what they have done.


One Thing That Comes With the Territory
It amazes me how stupid some things just are. Like health insurance in America. Manie has government health insurance, called title 19. See here in America if you are poor enough for your child to get title 19 then you must stay poor to continue getting it. Manie's father and I are allowed $3,000.00 dollars in assets. How it works is we are allowed one car but if we have a second car they count it as an asset. We are allowed one house, which has to be the one we live in. The extra car, anything else of value, any income, and money in the bank can not ever exceed $3,000.00 or Manie will lose his health insurance. Manie is only allowed $2,000.00 in assets total. Now lets talk about health insurance. Manie can not go to the proper hospital because the health insurance in most cases will not cover out of state hospitals. When we have to take Manie to the hospital for heart checkup etc. we have to make sure we have an O.K. from our regular doctor first. Yeah like I am going to be just sitting around one day and think just for the hell of it I will go get my kid a cardiac cath. Manie's medication that he needs to keep him as healthy as he can be will not be covered by government insurance. Yet this same government insurance will cover a man to go on Viagra even if he has committed a sexual crime. Does this make any sense to anyone? What about private health insurance you might ask. Ha Manie had private health insurance through his fathers work when he was born. Can anyone say PREEXISTING CONDITION. Yep that's right just because he had the heart defect when he was born it is a preexisting condition and WA la they do not have to pay for anything. If it was not for government health insurance we would be screwed so I am grateful for what we have. I just don't understand why it works the way it does and why Manie can not get the proper care. If it seems like I am ungrateful for what we have I am not. I am very grateful, but I watch day after day as my son looks worse and worse and wonder if there is something wrong with him. See the hospital he goes to can not find anything wrong, besides the fact that he has a leak in his valve, which was caused by the open heart surgery. Last time I knew there was something wrong this same hospital told me Manie was fine and treated me like I was crazy. Months later they found the collateral's that had been growing off of Manie's heart. I had been right all along!(Not that I wanted to be, but a mother knows when there is something wrong) I think letting the collateral's go that long caused more problems then what they want me to know about. I just wanted to share a couple of issues that arise when having a child with a heart condition or any health problem. If there is anyone out there who thinks they are alone know that I am here and there are others out there who understand.

No comments: