Author | Elliott B. Martin Jr, MD


Brief Psychotic Disorder Triggered by Fear of Coronavirus?

May 08, 2020


Some health care workers have been particulary vulnerable to the stress of uncertainty and loss of control engendered by the COVID-19 pandemic, illustrated by 3 cases presented here.

Mass Murder in the Digital Age

January 09, 2020


Recognizing violent incidents as “acts of domestic terrorism” contribute nothing toward our understanding of the mental processes that drive such behavior. More in this commentary.

To Invoke or Not to Invoke: Tarasoff Is the Question

September 27, 2019


The author presents for consideration and discussion two personal stories in which the so-called Tarasoff Rule, or the “duty to warn” a threatened third party, was invoked. One was arguably appropriate; the other, arguably not.

Can We Free Ourselves of the Dogma of Medical Education?

January 30, 2019


Our ability to speak freely regardless of role, training, or experience is one element that allows psychiatrists to discuss their fears and limits as clinicians.

A Historical Perspective on Suicide

July 27, 2018


Walter Benjamin’s suicide is especially interesting as a bridge from the Freudian psychosocial era of hysteria-neuroses to the current era of the borderline-narcissist.

Your Money or Your Life: A Reflection on the Health Care Industry

March 29, 2017


Depression is the leading cause of disability worldwide, and this may indeed be the most telling legacy of the lost art of healing.

Did Freud Ever Do This? A Reflection on the Epidemic of Crazy

May 24, 2016


“Hey, man, why is the world so crazy these days?”

Managing Ebola: An Archaeology of Disease

July 01, 2015


Playing helpless witness to a growing epidemic with no cure takes us back in time. The Hippocratics called it the “art” of medicine. It does not take a psychiatrist, however, to see that this “artful” approach frequently fails in public health crises.

How I Got Schooled in Ancient Psychiatry

September 29, 2014


If you're up for a little ancient humor, you'll love this original translation of an ancient Babylonian text in which a physician is jilted on a fee, then is further embarrassed in his efforts to collect it.

Whatever Happened to Speculative Thought? Some Historical Evidence Against Evidence-Based Medicine

February 04, 2012


Any physician can predict death as the outcome of a fatal illness, but the physician who can predict death from among seeming randomness has certainly acquired a superior level of insight.