Study: Medicines Might Contribute to Vet Suicide Rates

Legal Help for Veterans is a law firm helping veterans get the benefits they deserve.

Northville, MI (Law Firm Newswire) February 5, 2019 – A new study suggests the medicines used to treat military veterans and others contribute to already high suicide rates among some subpopulations. When medicines used to treat military veterans compound their problems, it greatly complicates the transition to civilian life.

The very medicines used to treat veterans with PTSD and other injuries obtained through the sacrifice of military service might contribute to suicidal thoughts and actions, a recent study suggests. The study examined the effect of the drug Prazosin on subjects who were identified as already having suicidal thoughts. The study included at least two military veterans, and results suggest the drug contributes to suicidal thoughts and actions.

“Suicide is a pervasive problem with military veterans – particularly those dealing with the ongoing effects of PTSD,” said experienced veterans benefits attorney James G. Fausone, who also is a military veteran. “When the medicines intended to help them cause more harm than good, that increases their problems, rather than solving them.”

Medical College of Georgia chairman of psychiatry health behavior Dr. W. Vaughn McCall is the study’s lead author. He said the study results are inconclusive, but do show potential issues with how veterans and others receive treatments designed to help them. When the issue is suicide, that problem becomes a matter of life and death.

Prazosin primarily treats high blood pressure, but it also often is prescribed to treat veterans and others with PTSD. The study suggests patients who already have suicidal thoughts might experience amplified desires to end their lives due to side effects of taking the drug. The results, though, need additional study before drawing any conclusions.

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