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Conspiracy Theory and Mental Illness: A Real Conspiracy.

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posted on Jul, 1 2008 @ 11:02 AM
I experienced a real life "conspiracy" last week ... and live to tell the tale.

It involved my wife, several Emergency Room doctors and a mental institution. The conspiracy was that the nurses and doctors tried to convince my mother-in-law and myself that my wife was mentally ill, though I disputed their claims with fact and proof. Their conspiracy theory proved wrong in time and raises major concerns regarding the assessment and treatment of those deemed "mentally ill".

It all started one afternoon when my wife and I decided the fence line of our yard needed weeded. We commenced to pull the weeds from the bushes and flowers. My wife happened to unknowingly get into a patch of poison ivy. Being the naturalist that she is, she attempted to "treat" the affliction with topical treatments. After several days of attaining no relief and the poison ivy only spreading and worsening, I convinced her to see her physician. Once at the doctor's office, she was treated with a shot of steroids (I'm not sure what the actual name of the steroid in the syringe) and the doctor prescribed what is known as a "DexPak" in the medical industry. This "DexPak" is a corticosteroid known as prednisone, a steroid which, like many other steroids, can have multiple and major side effects.

The steroid caused my wife to have trouble breathing and also a very rapid heart beat. We consulted the M.D. that prescribed the medication and she told us that this was normal and we should continue with the prescription. My wife did as was recommended by her physician. This drug cause my wife to have trouble sleeping. She slept only 1-2 hours per night while taking this medication and my wife normally sleeps AT LEAST 8 hours per night. After the 4th day of no sleep my wife took herself off the medication (which one should NEVER do, it turns out). The insomnia continued. On the 5th day of practically no sleep, I told my wife that we should go see her physician once again and see if anything could be done about this sleep disorder. We told her that my wife had stopped the medication. The doctor wanted to prescribe an anti-anxiety medication to help her sleep. Of course, my wife wanted a more naturalistic approach and asked if it'd be OK to drink a glass of wine. This doctor said this would be fine and drink however much helped her to get some sleep. We went home and she drank a glass and a half of wine before she reverted into a delusional state. She broke a wine glass over the counter while laughing at something her mother said over the phone. I convinced to to lay down and rest. I spent the remaining night with her making sure she didn't have a heart attack or her breathing didn't get any worse. Her condition worsened.

I got her up the next morning and took her to the Emergency Room since we seemed to get no relief from the M.D. that she regularly sees. The ER checked her in, drew blood and took a urine sample. All her vital signs (EKG) checked out normal (aside from the rapid heartbeat and her trouble breathing). The urine and blood test returned no signs of drug use (I fear that's all they checked for - being that she was up for 5 days straight they automatically assumed that she was a drug user and wacked out on speed). We explained, as we had to her M.D., all the side effects that she'd been suffering such as: lightheadedness, sweating, disorientation, blurred vision, constant urination, confusion, excitement, false sense of well-being, feelings of self-importance, feelings of being mistreated, restlessness, acne, headache, irregular heartbeat, muscle weakness, nausea, and of course trouble sleeping. All side effects of prednisone.

The doctors took note and said she should stay and rest a while. I was happy to oblige the notion and hoped that she might finally get some sleep with this peace of mind. While attempting to sleep, my wife - as she had at home - would begin with R.E.M. when starting to drift off. But, just before her mind could enter deep sleep my wife would snap awake and begin to tell whomever was near the mysteries of the universe, as she now experienced them through her delusional state. This happened several times. My wife, being the delusioned Christian that she was, being speaking about Jesus and God. This is a strict NO-NO in the medical field. No mention of faith based deities should be referenced in the modern medicine arena. She went from the official diagnosis being that she was suffering side-effects of prednisone to suffering from a mental illness. The doctors explained to me that she was probably exhibiting the early signs of schizophrenia. They wanted to get a counselor from Our Lady of Peace Hospital to speak with her. I said that would be fine. I asked the doctor if steroids could trigger such an episode of mental illness. He said no. But typically women begin to show signs in the mid 30's-late 40's when they suffer from such.

I had no idea what Our Lady of Peace Hospital was. I was under the assumption that it was just another medical facility that was better equipped than the local small town hospital we were currently at. She had yet another episode and with this one she attempted to escape the ER. We were able to restrain her and calm her down once more. Just like all the other times, when the episode was over with she apologized to the staff and explained to them that she didn't know why she kept having these fits and she was sorry for all the trouble. After the apology, the nurses sedated her with shots of Tramadol and Adavan. After which, they strapped her down and suggested that she be transfered. I signed the papers and followed the ambulance into the city to Our Lady of Peace, which turned out to be a mental institution, among other things.

We were interviewed and they took down our story. They asked my wife (while sedated) many questions regarding her health and mental state. She answered all semi-coherently. She was admitted. I went home to rest and came back to the hospital at 7:00 during visiting hours. They took me up to the 3 North wing. I set foot into the ward and realized the mistake that I had made. This was indeed a mental institution in full effect. I immediately went to my wife's room where she continued to sleep. I stayed only a few minutes and left to allow her to get some rest. I attempted to ask the attendants some questions and was able to after about 10 minutes of waiting around while they did crossword puzzles. I won't get into all the incompetencies that the ward suffered from, but let me tell you this: The state mental illness treatment in this hospital was EXTREMELY POOR. I felt sorry for anyone that is treated for such a condition in this facility.

I returned home and did not sleep. I got up at 6:30 the next morning and returned to the hospital. My wife called me on my way there. She told me that she felt 100% better and that she'd gotten 12 hours of sleep finally. She had met with a "doctor" (we later found out that this was not a doctor, but a "counselor") and he wanted her to continue with her sedative medication and well as pescribe an anti-psychotic medication known as Risperdal along with Ambien to help her continue to sleep.

Now, keep in mind that they are keeping her for "observation". To me, that would mean that they're attempting to see these "mental illness" episodes take place. Being that the episodes subsided after the sedation took place I still don't understand why they would sedate her in an attempt to "observe" these episodes. Also, why would any doctor (or counselor) prescribe antipsychotic medicine without being 100% positive that a patient would need said medication?! My wife, of course, refused the "treatment".

I asked about getting my wife checked out. They told me that I would have to have a doctors approval, but I could speak with her social worker. I said that would be fine. The doctor had visited the hospital that morning, seen his patients and had left. I called his office and was informed that the doctor had many other hospitals to visit and wouldn't return to his office until 2-3:00 pm. I told the receptionist that I'd like to speak with the social worker that was handling my wife's case. I was informed that the social worker wouldn't be in until 11:00 am. So I waited. I made calls to friends that are doctors and they seem to agree that my wife should accept the 'treatment' that the doctors were offering. I wasn't satisfied that she needed any such "treatment" being that she was mis-diagnosed as being mentally ill, when any idiot that can read could discern that she was only suffering side effect of the steroid that she was prescribed. I called some friends who're lawyers to discuss my options. They began to look into what could be done to get a release. Meanwhile, my wife began to ask about self-release from the facility. She was told that she could not check herself out because she was not in a coherent state, though she was. There were several incidents that took place that I considered inappropriate behavior for staff in a mental illness facility. I won't get into everything. It was mostly small annoyances such as hiding extra items that I had brought my wife. They "misplaced" her extra clothes. They "misplaced" her glasses. He magazines that I had brought her would disappear, then 30 minutes later the nurses on duty would be reading the magazines. Very unprofessional behavior and totally inappropriate for a mental ward where patients are attempting to receive treatment for an apparent mental illness. It's almost as if they didn't want anyone to think that they were sane.

*** word limit met: continued ***

posted on Jul, 1 2008 @ 11:02 AM
*** continued ***

I won't bore you anymore with the mindless run-arounds that we endured over the next 6 hours. Finally after roughly 8 hours of waiting in the lobby and endless calls to the doctor's office and lawyer discussions we were able to check my wife out of the hospital. She was and had been completely coherent since waking at nearly 7:00 that morning. She's at home today working as she always has. Other that being demoralized by the entire incident, she's perfectly fine. She's just as sane as she's ever been (with the except of prednisone induced delirium).

My question is: If she had accepted the "treatment" of sedatives, antipsychotic and sleeping medication ... would my wife still have a mental illness? Would she still be in a mental ward?

The conspiracy is that modern medicine tried to convince me, my wife and her parents that my wife was mentally ill. Doctors don't always have the answers. Even when they do, they're not always the right answers. This is only one story that ended up with a happy ending because of the understanding and common sense I exhibited during this trying time. God help those that blindly follow a doctor's orders without using a little deductive reasoning for themselves. I'm sure there are many more stories out there that didn't end up with a happy ending.

[edit on 1-7-2008 by tyranny22]

posted on Jul, 1 2008 @ 11:19 AM
I had thought about posting my story just to get the word out there that the state of modern mental illness assessment and treatment is very poor.

I eventually decided not to post it.

But, after reading this thread, I felt the need.

posted on Jul, 1 2008 @ 11:23 AM
You've done well to speak of your experiences Tyranny22, i have a few theories as to what happened to your wife too.

Biological ones, not supernatural.

p.s; Oh, and i assure you, your wife is not mentally ill.

[edit on 1-7-2008 by Anti-Tyrant]

posted on Jul, 1 2008 @ 12:25 PM
Oh wow, what happened to your wife was absolutely horrible imo! I'm so glad your wife was alright in the end and was able to be released. It's a good thing you posted what you did, since it will probably be a lot of help to other people in your situation.

And yeah I would say that it does raise major concerns, most definitely. It's pretty scary to think about actually. Unfortunately there are a lot of people who blindly follow a doctor's advice. Not that all doctor's are bad, but it's always a good idea to get a second opinion if you think something isn't right.

Another problem is, unless you're a scientist, you probably don't know everything about a certain medicine and the chemicals in it. So you don't know what kind of reaction that one or more medicines can have on your body other than what's listed on the medicine or what the doctor says, assuming it's correct.

posted on Jul, 1 2008 @ 12:37 PM
Thanks for your all's concern. I wish an incident like this on no one ... not even my worst enemy. It was hard enough to see my wife acting in such a manner, but to have to ask myself, "Is this what it's going to be like for the rest of our lives?" was the saddest question I think I've ever posed to myself.

It is very disheartening to think that such a mistake could be made. Granted, my wife was part of the 0.0002% that have such remarkable side-effects to prednisone. Her body and mind absolutely would not tolerate it.

On a side note: I can understand one reason that lead to the diagnosis. My wife had stopped taking the steroid many days before the ER incident. This lead the doctors to believe the medication was out of her system, and thus could not be the cause of her psychotic behavior. They couldn't have been more wrong.

It was an oddity and a case that will probably never be repeated. I know that most medical diagnosis are correct 80-95% of the time. Regardless, I hope that this information might help others in their future dealings with modern medicine.

posted on Jul, 1 2008 @ 01:17 PM
reply to post by tyranny22

I'm really sorry you and your family had such a horrible experience. I'm glad it's made you wiser and thank you for passing your wisdom on to the ATS community.

A question though, what sort of natural treatments did your wife use before she went to the Dr. for the poison ivy?

posted on Jul, 1 2008 @ 03:04 PM
There are only a few professional mental health workers who are aware of the "conspiracy syndrome" being on the rise. Actually the tool of the measurement is far from being precise and things will not improve, because the diagnostic tools are virtually non-existent. Scientists love to work with a representative sample, but this syndrome that mostly afflicts the population in well-developed countries is poorly defined and so are the terms that the diagnosis is made of. That leads to a biased sample, so things are left alone. The fact that that Hitler and Stalin belong to the list of the most notable conspirators is not enough to launch a focused research into the phenomenon, because the vast majority of people who seem to fit the lose description of a "conspirator theorist" bark but don't bite -- they are really true theorists.

Since only a minority of cases could be discussed with the use of language that psychiatry speaks, the pharmaceutical industry is not the one who would be keen on financing the research.

Some psychologists argue that the syndrome may be actually beneficial to the mental stability of some afflicted individuals. They point toward the instances where a conspirator theorists avoid or refuse to accept the kind of evidence that would prove them wrong in their views, and that's a sign of innate mental defense mechanism being on a high alert.

posted on Jul, 1 2008 @ 03:54 PM
Thank you for the concern. Everything has returned to usual. We actually benefited from the incident. Our relationship with each other and each other's families has strengthened. So, it wasn't a total loss.

As for the "natural" remedies she tried before seeking medical treatment: really, just aloe. We have an aloe plant for burns and such. She would break a stem off and squeeze the aloe over the afflicted area. It helped to sooth and ward off itching, but the aloe didn't help with much else. That's about it as far as "natural" treatments she tried. She also put Neosporin on the poison ivy to get it to heal quicker. That's a BIG no-no. It only made things worse. Never used Neosporin on a case of poison ivy!!!

posted on Jul, 1 2008 @ 09:26 PM
Let me tell you a story Tyranny. I was placed in a psychiactric ward because I was "schizoaffective". Turned out I just had OCD. During my time there they gave me medication that has been known to cause cancer. Without telling me what it was for since they had not given me a diagnosis at that time. They said "Just take it!"...I was a recovering drug addict and after being checked in I made the commitment to never put anything in my body without knowing what it was and to make sure it would not harm me like my past drug use. They said I needed to take it or else they would give me a bad report. Eventually I took it and they said I had to keep taking it or else it would warrant them putting me back there. So I had to visit a psychiatrist about once a week and give them a check up. As I said it causes cancer.....

I am 21 and now have a tumor....

posted on Jul, 2 2008 @ 08:08 AM
I am very sorry to hear that.

The state of modern mental illness treatment is at an all time low. Reganomics really put a halt to assessment and treatment by closing down most mental institutions in this country.

It sounds like you suffered the exact same assessment/treatment that we incurred. While not knowing the exact patient's problem or illness, the psychiatric ward issues medicines in a trial and error effort ... not even knowing what to expect as a result. Medicate the patient and observe the results. It's as simple and ignorant as that.

I read in the fine print, while admitting my wife to this facility, that patients with HIV or AIDS were subject to experimental testing and trial-stage medication. If you had HIV/AIDS and did not agree to the experimental drugs/treatment you could not be admitted. Also, it stated in the fine print that some doctors or staff may be students/interns. But, in my experience with this facility, it appears that MOST were counselors or social workers and not actual doctors.

Again, I'm sorry to hear about your situation. Hopefully you can consult some experts about your tumor. Maybe you can find out what the exact drug was that was issued to you and hopefully come up with the best treatment.

posted on Jul, 2 2008 @ 08:54 AM
Having been prescribed prednisone myself for a partial paralysis caused by pressure on a nerve due to an infection I can attest to how evil the stuff is. The side effects can be worse than the problem, even after you get off it with symptoms like acute insomnia and chronic fatigue as a result which can easily unbalance your sanity or make it look like that to uninformed observers but I'd expect medical professionals to be up to date on what it typically does. My GP was reluctant to prescribe it and warned me of all these things in advance.

The bottom line for me is that it worked and I threw away half of the only bottle of pills I got - but getting over the prednisone took twice as long as it did to cure the original problem.

posted on Jul, 2 2008 @ 09:14 AM
well of course they did this, the whole medical system is corrupt, i wonder how much you would have to pay for all the medication and for your wife to stay at the mental hospital.

Doctors i find only prescribe medicine and do surgery, they never really cure you. Your wifes interest in more natural methods is a smarter choice i think.

Also if something like this ever happens again make a big scene and threaten to sue the doctors, they get so scared its unbelievable.

Thats what my uncle did when my grandfather was having pain in his stomach. They had been waiting for 1 hour to see a doctor so my uncle got up started talking loudly to the nurses saying that if my grandfather died because of the wait that he would sue the hospital because of inefficiency. Right after the outbreak they treated my grandfather right away without delay. so i say when in doubt threaten to sue.

i guess this also relates to my natural cures thread, on how those doctors just want you to waste more money on drugs and get sicker because of the drugs so that you can buy more drugs.

posted on Jul, 2 2008 @ 09:32 AM
Just to show that even what you think of as common drugs can cause trouble, once, some years ago, I had walking pnuemonia and was prescribed the antibiotic, Bactrim.

Bactrim. An older sulfa drug. Heck, I think I'd taken it once before as a teenager for something.

But this time, something was different. After the second day, my heart raced. I lost my appetite. I couldn't sleep but when I did I had nightmares. I even felt...not normal. Scared, suspicious. I had racing thoughts. I thought I was going crazy. I immediately thought of the drug, but was confused because I never thought that an antibiotic could do something like this.

I called my doctor up, and he told me to immediately stop taking it. That what I described was rare, but a side effect of Bactrim.

posted on Jul, 2 2008 @ 12:06 PM
I truly believe it was a conspiracy ... not in the traditional sense of doing something secret, but in the sense of keeping a patient for as long as possible for maximum billing.

When I spoke with the care providers in the ward, they were in a consensus that if there was NOTHING wrong with my wife that she'd probably be released within a week. ?!?! Why, if there is nothing wrong, would they insist that she stay a week?

Anyhow ... as far as billing: I have full insurance coverage on my wife and I. However, we were informed that if we were to check my wife out against the "Doctor's" approval (which we did) that my insurance probably wouldn't cover any cost of the hospitalization. So, in the end I'll probably end up having to pay for the whole incident out of my own pocket ... despite having full coverage.

It's a scam how the insurance companies offer their employees bonuses for meeting rejection quotas. An absolutely ridiculous idea that goes against any sort of moral code that the medical industry should abide by. Though, insurance in not part of the medical industry ... they're a service provider.

posted on Jul, 2 2008 @ 12:38 PM
Friend, I feel for you. I'm very much aware of the failure of our state mental hospitals and the mental help industry in general.
My main concern is that you wife is no longer taking Risperdal. It can be a killer. Below are some of the common side effects:

# Difficulty in sleeping (insomnia).

# Agitation.

# Anxiety.

# Headache.

# Sleepiness (somnolence).

# Fatigue.

# Dizziness.

# Concentration difficulties.

# Disturbances of the gut such as constipation, nausea, vomiting or abdominal pain.

# Blurred vision.

# Sexual problems.

# Prolonged erection (priapism).

# Urinary incontinence.

# Inflammation of the lining of the nose (rhinitis) causing a blocked or runny nose.

# Rash.

# High blood glucose level (hyperglycaemia).

# Weight gain.

# Excessive fluid retention in the body tissues, resulting in swelling (oedema).

# Abnormal movements of the hands, legs, face, neck and tongue, eg tremor, twitching, rigidity (extrapyramidal effects).

# High blood prolactin level (hyperprolactinaemia) - rarely this may lead to symptoms such as breast enlargement, production of milk and menstrual disturbances.

# Decreased numbers of white blood cells or platelets in the blood.


Some of the more serious side effects include:

Strokes, seizures. increased blood sugars - causing diabetes.

My wife suffers because of this. She was only Risperdal for about two weeks before the above started happening. The first sign that something was wrong was when she didn't get any sleep for about 4 days.

Risperdal is just as bad for you as taking something like crack or speed from a drug dealer.

Basically, Risperdal has ruined our lives.

posted on Jul, 2 2008 @ 01:31 PM
reply to post by tyranny22

there's enough here for 2 or 3 spin off threads

I mean no offense to mental health practitioners - in any way - it's like anything else -
some people are amazing at what they do - some people should do something else

deciding who is rational and who is not - is subjective - conditional

even if it's what you're trained for - it's a difficult thing to do

then, when you throw in hospital rules/state rules/insurance - on top of everything else

when the deciding factor is one human deciding whether or not another human is off their nut - there's going to be problems

you have situations where someone clearly has mental health issues and needs help desperately - but for a number of reasons - can't get it

then a situation like yours - mismanaged - even though well intentioned in the beginning - all the way to essentially your wife being held against her will

I know that a main concern is making sure a person is not a danger to themselves or others - and sometimes you have to wait that out

whether that's actual concern for the patient - or a liability issue - I get it

but seems to me - as you made clear - there's a lot of room there for people to abuse the situation - for whatever reason

I had a bad case of poison oak once - bad as in almost killed me - turns out I was allergic on top of it's usual fun effects

between the cause and the cure - took forever to get over it

and I was completely delirious for a lot of it - meds and lack of sleep - days and days without sleep

fortunately the worst that came out of it for me was the worry it caused my family and friends - and some embarrassing stories - which worked out for my family and friends

medication can mess up everything - including the ability to sleep

but even if you took it out of the equation - sleep deprivation alone is enough to put a person in a totally different state of mind

even missing some sleep can do it - but what your wife experienced was serious sleep deprivation

it's used as a form of torture and coercion for a reason

anyway - I'm so glad she's fine now

posted on Jul, 2 2008 @ 04:09 PM
reply to post by Sanity Lost

She never actually took the Risperdal or the Ambien they wanted to prescribe. I think they were also trying to get her to take more doses of Atavan, but she refused all "treatment". I advised her to do so. I had read the fine print when signing her in and made a note of it. Had she still been delirious the following day, I would have told her to follow the doctor's orders, but she seemed perfectly coherent, so I didn't see the need in her taking anti psychotic medication as well as anti anxiety or sleep medication. The only thing those drugs would have accomplished is a longer stay for the patient.

[edit on 2-7-2008 by tyranny22]

posted on Jul, 2 2008 @ 04:17 PM
reply to post by Spiramirabilis

I agree. I could start a thread on:

• the inadequacies of the mental health industry as a whole

• the mis-diagnosis or over-medicating patients with prescriptions that are not needed

• the health provider's standard of issuing bonuses to employees for denying claims

Any of these would probably make a decent spin-off thread. But, my main point was just to get this story out ... in hopes that others might avoid such an incident.

posted on Jul, 2 2008 @ 04:30 PM
well, for people who've never been through something like this - I'm glad you did post it after all - because there are a lot of variations on this theme

in the above post - on advising her not to take the meds - it's a tough call to make in a situation like that - most people just do what they're told - because who knows what the consequences are? It's a scary situation

sometimes you do need the medications - it's hard to trust your instincts

your wife was fortunate to have you there - someone who really knew her - and had a feel for how out of kilter the situation was

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