Fluoxetine (generic name: Prozac is trade name) belongs to a family of compounds, the selective serotonin re-uptake inhibitors (SSRIs), which represent one of the few major breakthroughs in the treatment of psychiatric illness in the past 40 years. Many thousands of people suffering from depressive illness have agreed to participate in clinical drug trials that have demonstrated the efficacy of such drugs.
SSRIs have meant that the choice for those suffering from depression is no longer between despair or drugs that may render them partly dysfunctional. Suicide is one of the natural outcomes of untreated depression and SSRIs, in contrast to the older antidepressants, are safe in overdose. For those of us involved in treating depressive illness and preventing suicide, an article testing the fashionable American hypothesis of Prozac as recreational is a galling pill to swallow.
King's College London
London SE5Reuse content