Wednesday, June 11, 2008

US troops in Iraq and Afghanistan turning to anti-depressants in record numbers

Overwhelmed by the horrors and rigours of war, American troops are turning to prescription anti-depressants in record numbers.

America is facing accusations that it is maintaining the troop strength of its overstretched forces through a quiet policy of plying soldiers serving in Iraq and Afghanistan with prescription drugs.

The numbers of American servicemen on medications such as Prozac and Zoloft in combat zones now exceeds 20,000.

Critics claim a regulatory sleight of hand by service chiefs triggered the explosion in drug use. In November, 2006 the military issued a fresh order banning the use of older drugs, including lithium, anticonvulsants and antipsychotics, but omitted new generation of psychotropic medicine.


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