Although antidepressants are advised only as second-line treatment in patients with bipolar disorder, the matter is complicated by conflicting data surrounding antidepressant use during pregnancy. Read More
The diagnosis of bipolar disorder is typically associated with significant disability and impaired functioning. This article explores the pros and cons of functional and quality-of-life measures. Read More
Is combination therapy with lithium and valproate more effective in preventing relapses in patients with bipolar I disorder than montherapy with either drug alone?The authors of a study that recently appeared in The Lancet set out to address that important question. Dr. S. Nassir Ghaemi has chosen that study as his “Top Paper” of the year. Dr Ghaemi, who is professor of psychiatry at Tufts University School of Medicine and Director of the Mood Disorders Program at Tufts Medical Center, discusses highlights -- and the clinical implications.
A 39-year-old-woman was admitted to the hospital after attempting to commit suicide by jumping off a bridge. She had been diagnosed with trigeminal neuralgia at the age of 19 years, which was refractory to medical therapy with carbamazepine and high doses of amitriptyline. She preferred to be self-medicated with benzodiazepines and alcohol to relieve her pain since she was 21 years old; nevertheless, such substance abuse led to impairment of depressive disorder induced by her rebel facial pain.
Evidence from animal and human studies imply the amygdala as the most critical structure involved in processing of fear-relevant stimuli. In phobias, the amygdala seems to play a crucial role in the pathogenesis and maintenance of the disorder. However, the neuropathology of specific phobias remains poorly understood. In the present study, we investigated whether patients with spider phobia show altered amygdala volumes as compared to healthy control subjects.|Evidence from animal and human studies imply t
Quality of life (QoL) is increasingly recognized as a critical outcome parameter in mental health studies. The aim of this study was to investigate different domains of the QoL in persons with obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) before and after a multimodal, disorder-specific in- and outpatient treatment.|Quality of life (QoL) is increasingly recognized as a critical outcome parameter in mental health studies. The aim of this study was to investigate different domains of the QoL in persons with obsessive-
Insomnia is a risk factor for impaired function, development of other medical and mental disorders, and increased health care costs. ... up. I would be very groggy. It made me very irritable. It affected my mood.
Clinical evidence shows a strong, bidirectional comorbidity between depression and epilepsy that is associated with decreased quality of life and responsivity to pharmacotherapies. At present, the neurobiological underpinnings of this comorbidity remain hazy. To complicate matters, anticonvulsant drugs can cause mood disturbances, while antidepressant drugs can lower seizure threshold, making it difficult to treat patients suffering from both depression and epilepsy. Animal models have been created to untangle the mechanisms behind the relationship between these disorders and to serve as screening tools for new therapies targeted to treat both simultaneously. These animal models are based on chemical interventions (e.g. pentylenetetrazol, kainic acid, pilocarpine), electrical stimulations (e.g. kindling, electroshock), and genetic/selective breeding paradigms (e.g. genetically epilepsy-prone rats (GEPRs), genetic absence epilepsy rat from Strasbourg (GAERS), WAG/Rij rats, swim
Mood and substance use disorders commonly co-occur, yet there is little evidence-based research to guide the pharmacologic management of these comorbid disorders. The authors review the existing empirical findings, some of which may call into question current clinical pharmacotherapy practices for treating co-occurring mood and substance use disorders. The authors also highlight knowledge gaps that can serve as a basis for future research. The specific mooddisorders reviewed are bipolar and major depressive disorders (either one co-occurring with a substance use disorder). Overall, findings from the relatively small amount of available data indicate that pharmacotherapy for managing mood symptoms can be effective in patients with substance dependence, although results have not been consistent across all studies. Also, in most studies, medications for managing mood symptoms did not appear to have an impact on the substance use disorder. In a recent trial for comorbid major depression
The treatment of depression during pregnancy can be challenging for patients and providers alike. An increasing attention to perinatal mooddisorders has led to an expanding literature that is often difficult for providers to navigate. It can be a challenge for providers to feel comfortable reviewing the broad scope of the risks and benefits of treatments in the context of the limitations of the literature. Women who are depressed during pregnancy have been found to have an elevated risk of poor obstetrical outcomes, although studies of the relationship between depression and outcomes are limited. Women who are treated with antidepressants during pregnancy are also at risk for a host of poor obstetrical and fetal outcomes. The risks for these outcomes are often confused by confounding factors and study design limitations. Understanding the current data and their limitations will allow providers to guide their patients in choosing treatment options. Consistent and simple strategies
ATP is a cotransmitter with glutamate, noradrenaline, GABA, acetylcholine and dopamine in the brain. There is a widespread presence of both adenosine (P1) and P2 nucleotide receptors in the brain on both neurons and glial cells. Adenosine receptors play a major role in presynaptic neuromodulation, while P2X ionotropic receptors are involved in fast synaptic transmission and synaptic plasticity. P2Y G protein-coupled receptors are largely involved in presynaptic activities, as well as mediating long-term (trophic) signalling in cell proliferation, differentiation and death during development and regeneration. Both P1 and P2 receptors participate in neuron-glial interactions. Purinergic signalling is involved in control of cerebral vascular tone and remodelling and has been implicated in learning and memory, locomotor and feeding behaviour and sleep. There is increasing interest in the involvement of purinergic signalling in the pathophysiology of the CNS, including trauma, ischaemia,
Little is known about patient populations that remain during or after the mandatory evacuation of a city and use hospital services. This study sought to characterize the population that presented to an emergency department during Hurricane Gustav in 2008.|This was a retrospective chart review of patients who presented to the Interim Louisiana State University Hospital emergency department in New Orleans during the 72-hour activation phase of Hurricane Gustav.|Of the 104 patients, 51 (49%) had a psychiatric diagnosis. Among the psychiatric patients, 34 (67%) had a substance use disorder diagnosis, 16 (31%) had a mood disorder, 13 (25%) had a psychotic disorder, and 4 (8%) had an anxiety disorder. The psychiatry service was the most used consultation service.|To our knowledge, this is the first report to characterize the patient population presenting to an emergency department during a hurricane evacuation. Data suggest that disaster preparedness should include psychiatric consultation
Five Steps to Improving Patient Access Judy Capko, May 21, 2013 Patient access is getting increased attention through reform initiatives. Here are five steps you can take to make sure patients get appropriate access to care in your office.