Clinical Psychiatry News

Clinical Psychiatry News is a monthly medical and psychiatry tabloid published since 1973 by the International Medical News Group. Subjects for Clinical Psychiatry News include psychology and psychiatry. The executive editor is Denise Fulton, and Gina Henderson is a senior editor.

Articles from Vol. 32, No. 10, October

Addressing the Needs of Juvenile Offenders
When it comes to juvenile offenders, the wheels of justice often spin out of sync with community mental health needs and services. About 50%-75% of incarcerated youth nationwide suffer from a mental or emotional disorder, compared to the estimated...
Alcohol Complicates, Compromises Anxiety Tx: Treatment of Choice Is Usually an SRI; Benzodiazepines Should Be Used with Caution
Given the prevalence of each diagnosis, it is not surprising that anxiety and substance-use disorders are often seen together. In the National Epidemiologic Survey on Alcohol and Related Conditions (NESARC), lead investigator Bridget F. Grant, Ph.D.,...
Attitude Adjustment May Help Metabolic Control
ORLANDO, FLA. -- An attitude problem--"psychological insulin resistance"--contributes to the prevalence of poor metabolic control in people with diabetes, Dr. Mary T. Korytkowski said at the annual scientific sessions of the American Diabetes Association....
Benzodiazepines Give Anxiety TX a Jump Start
SAN DIEGO -- The sedative effects and potential for abuse associated with benzodiazepines haven't scared physicians away from using the drugs to treat anxiety or panic disorder, Dr. Javaid I. Sheikh said at a psychopharmacology congress sponsored by...
Book's 2-Week 'Memory Prescription' Makes a Difference in Brain Metabolism
PHILADELPHIA -- For patients (and physicians) who want to maintain their brains, Dr. Gary W. Small has the prescription. His new book, "The Memory Prescription: Dr. Gary Small's 14-Day Plan to Keep Your Brain and Body Young" (New York: Hyperion,...
Chronic Pain Interventions Avoid Surgery, Drugs
SAN FRANCISCO -- A number of interventions offer patients with chronic pain something more than medications but less than surgery, Dr. Barbara S. Mallett said at a joint conference of the American Society on Aging and the National Council on the Aging....
CMS Launches Medicare Drug Comparison Tool
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services is offering Medicare beneficiaries a way to compare prices for similar drugs used to treat the same condition. The "Lower Cost Rx Comparison Tool" is available online at www.medicare.gov or by calling...
Cognitive Therapy May Beat Drugs in OCD
HONOLULU -- Cognitive therapy and training improve obsessive-compulsive disorder in children as much as medication and may be beneficial for a greater number of them, according to two studies presented at the annual meeting of the American Psychological...
Congress Upset by Dearth of Antidepressant Data
WASHINGTON -- For at least 6 months, the House Energy & Commerce Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations has been seeking to determine what the Food and Drug Administration and pharmaceutical manufacturers know about safety and efficacy of...
Developer of DBT Predicts Wider Use of Modality: Marsha M. Linehan, Ph.D., Thinks Suicidal Patients Other Than Those Diagnosed with BPD Would Benefit
Research may one day allow suicidal behavior to be directly treated--independently of other comorbidities. But very little data are available on effective treatments for suicidal behavior. Marsha M. Linehan, Ph.D., known for her work in developing...
Don't Avoid Opioids in the Elderly
Opioids can be extremely safe drugs for many elderly patients with any type of chronic pain. When used correctly, they enhance well-being and quality of life immensely. But older patients do not receive these products as often as they could, largely...
Education Key to Suicide Prevention on Campus
BALTIMORE -- Suicide is the second-leading cause of death on college campuses, and academic advisers and professors should be trained to look out for the early warning signs of depression, said Dr. Boglarka Szabo in a presentation at a symposium on...
Expressive Writing May Not Help Asthmatics
HONOLULU -- An increasingly popular psychosocial treatment for several chronic diseases may not have benefit for asthmatics, Alex H.S. Harris, Ph.D., said in a poster presentation at the annual meeting of the American Psychological Association. ...
FDA Panels Back Black Box Warning on Antidepressants: Analysis of 24 Pediatric Trials Showed an Increased Suicidality Risk of 2%-3%
BETHESDA, MD. -- A black box warning alerting prescribers to the risk of suicidal behavior and ideation with antidepressants in pediatric patients will likely be added to the labels of antidepressants, as recommended by the majority of the members...
Fluoxetine Plus CBT Best for Depressed Teens
Depressed adolescents respond best to a combination of fluoxetine and cognitive-behavioral therapy, said Dr. John S. March of Duke University, Durham, N.C., and his colleagues on the Treatment for Adolescents with Depression Study. In a randomized,...
Galantamine Shows Safety and Efficacy as TX for Dementia with Lewy Bodies
PHILADELPHIA -- Treatment with galantamine was safe and effective for improving behavior and global function in patients with dementia with Lewy bodies in an uncontrolled study of 40 patients. Galantamine treatment also improved clinical fluctuations...
Higher Health Care Costs Lead to Increased Fraud
WASHINGTON -- Health care fraud continues to grow, fueled largely by rising health care expenditures, several experts said at a forum sponsored by the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. "Unfortunately, health care fraud is alive and well,"...
Higher Risk of ALS Seen among Most Vets Who Served in 20th Century
SAN FRANCISCO -- The elevated risk of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis documented in Gulf War veterans in two recent studies isn't specific to that group, but is increased in U.S. military veterans who served at any point throughout most of the 20th century,...
How Physician Couples Make Marriage Work
For Dr. Tamir Keshen and Dr. Roberta Sengelmann, it's the little things that help keep their marriage intact, such as maintaining the same sleep schedule and spending the first hour or two of nearly every morning together working out. "Those are...
Hypertension Study Fails to End Clinical Debate; ALLHAT Found Increase in New-Onset Diabetes Did Not Translate into Higher Risk of Heart Disease Events
NEW YORK -- ALLHAT, the trial that was supposed to end the bickering about drug choice in hypertension, has fallen far short of that goal, according to reports presented at the annual meeting of the American Society of Hypertension. For example,...
Implementing an MST Program
The juvenile justice system in this country is intended to be rehabilitative, yet this is often not the case. Simply because youth are incarcerated and in residential treatment does not mean they are getting what they need. Studies have shown that...
Lithium Augmentation of Venlafaxine
The Problem You have an adult patient diagnosed with major depressive disorder. He has been treated with venlafaxine, which has shown partial efficacy at maximal dosage, and you are now considering augmentation with lithium. The Question Can...
Long-Term Donepezil May Hold Other Benefits: Cognition of Alzheimer's Patients May Appear Unchanged, but Behavioral Benefits May Result
PHILADELPHIA -- Some patients with Alzheimer's disease may derive behavioral benefits from drug treatment, even when their cognition and global status appear unchanged or deteriorate, Dr. Peter Johannsen reported at the Ninth International Conference...
Lovesick: The Quirky Romances of Patrice Leconte
French director Patrice Leconte is fascinated by offbeat relationships, especially quirky love stories. "Monsieur Hire" (1989) concerns a forlorn voyeur obsessed with a beautiful woman. "The Hairdresser's Husband" (1990) is about an eccentric drifter...
Luteal-Phase Treatment May Be Best for PMDD
PARIS -- Treatment of premenstrual dysphoric disorder may be more effective if a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor is used throughout the luteal phase and not withheld until symptoms appear, Ellen W. Freeman, Ph.D., said in a poster presentation...
Melatonin for Jet Lag and Sleep Disorders
Mechanisms of Action Melatonin was first described nearly 50 years ago from bovine pineal tissue. Experiments on tadpoles showed that it was a powerful skin-lightening agent that inhibited melanin dispersal in melanocytes (Best Pract. Res. Clin....
Mental Health Help Up a Bit after 9/11 in NYC
CHICAGO -- Use of mental health services among New Yorkers increased only moderately in the year after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks on the city, reported Joseph A. Boscarino, Ph.D., of the New York Academy of Medicine. A telephone survey...
Mini-Mental State Exam Misses Memory Problems
PHILADELPHIA -- The Mini-Mental State Examination, often the first choice of primary care physicians to assess memory in elderly patients, may miss many cases of memory impairment, Amy E. Kane reported in a poster presentation at the Ninth International...
No Decline in Dementia Risk with Estrogen Use
Unopposed estrogen therapy was not associated with a reduction in the incidence of probable dementia or mild cognitive impairment in women aged 65-79 years, according to newly released data from the Women's Health Initiative Memory Study. The study...
Obesity One of Top Threats to Children's Health
WASHINGTON -- Obesity is one of the top threats to children's health, according to a government report that also found a slight increase in the number of children living in poverty. The eighth annual comprehensive report, America's Children in Brief:...
Other Risk Factors for Depression Are More Significant Than Diabetes
ORLANDO, FLA. -- Gender, ethnicity, and smoking are stronger predictors of depression than a diagnosis of diabetes, according to a large cohort study of primarily lower income, African American patients treated at community health centers in the southeastern...
Outpatient Care Made Better
We've all been inundated with propaganda from insurance companies arguing that briefer patient encounters and care provided by people with less training are better for the patient--and the bottom line. But I've got a story to tell: Better care, as...
Paroxetine Effective for Irritable Bowel Syndrome; Treatment with SSRI Eased Patients' IBS Symptoms in First Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Trial
PARIS -- Treatment with paroxetine led to a significant improvement in the clinical status of patients with irritable bowel syndrome in a randomized, placebo-controlled study with 74 patients. Results from open-label studies had suggested that selective...
Phone Therapy Expands Doctors' Reach and Lowers Costs
Telephone psychotherapy could be a low-cost adjunct to pharmacotherapy for patients beginning treatment for depression, said Dr. Gregory E. Simon and his associates at the Center for Health Studies, Group Health Cooperative, Seattle. Although structured...
Physician Groups Still Support Trials Registry
WASHINGTON -- The pharmaceutical industry's new Web-based database on U.S. clinical drug trial results does not eliminate the need for required trial registration, physician groups contend. On Oct. 1, the Pharmaceutical Researchers and Manufactures...
Policy & Practice
Adolescent Substance Abuse Rising The number of adolescents admitted to substance abuse-treatment facilities rose for the 10th consecutive year, according to a report from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. The report,...
Primary Care Docs Often Don't Screen for Mental Illness
Only half of the primary care physicians responding to a recent survey said they routinely screen their adolescent patients for mental illness and always ask them about their mental health. The doctors surveyed gave many reasons for their failure...
Psychoanalytic View of Gender Draws Criticism
SAN FRANCISCO -- Gender is not genetically determined. The "complex matrix" that culminates in a gender identity includes myriad parent-child exchanges, social influences, and physical experiences, Ken Corbett, Ph.D., said at the annual meeting...
Rethinking Electroconvulsive Therapy
Electroconvulsive therapy is a safe and effective treatment for patients with drug-resistant depression. But the procedure continues to carry with it a stigma that impedes its acceptance. Have you used electroconvulsive therapy in treating your patients?...
Rising Alzheimer's Rates, Costs Expected to 'Overwhelm' U.S. Health Care System
PHILADELPHIA -- Rising rates of Alzheimer's disease and its projected costs will likely pose a major burden to the U.S. health care system in coming years, data from three studies presented at the 9th International Conference on Alzheimer's Disease...
Studies Highlight Racial, Gender Disparities in Pain Treatment
VANCOUVER, B.C. -- Women, minorities, and the elderly do not get treated for pain as well or as often as white males do, speakers said at a special session of the annual meeting of the American Pain Society. Inadequate treatment of pain can cause...
Study Leading Some Experts to Question the Existence of 'Second-Impact Syndrome'
MONTEREY, CALIF. -- The so-called "second-impact syndrome" may not actually exist, Dr. Greg Landry said at a meeting on pediatric and adolescent sports medicine sponsored by the American Academy of Pediatrics. The term was coined by R.C. Schneider...
Study on High-Functioning Autism Underway
BALTIMORE -- Individualized treatments for children with high-functioning autism have the potential to improve the quality and number of relationships such children have with peers, Connie Kasari, Ph.D., said at a meeting on developmental disabilities...
Tape-Recorded Test Beats MMSE in Early Cognitive Change Diagnosis
BAL HARBOUR, FLA. -- A tape-recorded, self-administered test appears to be an accurate and inexpensive means of diagnosing early cognitive dysfunction--particularly memory failure--in adults. When compared with the Mini-Mental State Examination...
Ten-Point Plan Addresses Disparities
We hear a great deal about "closing the gap" in health disparities in this country. To address these disparities, we must apply a multifaceted approach with leadership from the federal, educational, professional, financial, and business communities....
The Art of Nancy Bryant
Nancy Bryant has had to make enormous sacrifices simply to practice her art and manage her life with bipolar disorder. The road to stability has left her unable to work and forced her to cut all ties with her family. But she has found salvation in...
The Bush Proposal Presented
Americans can take pride that we have the best health care in the world--committed doctors and nurses, state-of-the-art medical devices, and life-saving prescription drugs. Despite our successes, there are still too many gaps in quality, too many uninsured,...
The Kerry Proposal Presented
John Kerry understands that our health care system faces important challenges and it will require national leadership to meet them. The number of people who do not have health care coverage is going up, overall health care costs are going up, and...
The Values Debate in Health Care
Most developed countries face similar challenges in attempting to stem rising health care costs. The common forces driving utilization and costs are medical technology advancement, demanding consumers, and an aging population. But the most elusive...
Training Still Key Issue in Psychiatry
Dr. Christine Wittmann, a 4th-year resident in psychiatry, has had mixed experiences with turning over patients to new residents. In some cases, the outcome has been positive. But in others, patients under her care have had difficulty making the...
Uninsured Rate Increases as Employers Cut Costs: Government Coverage Rose Slightly in 2003
WASHINGTON -- The number of people in the United States without health insurance rose to 45 million in 2003, U.S. Census Bureau data show. The increase from 2002 to 2003 amounted to 1.4 million unin sured Americans, with the per centage of uninsured...
'Willpower' Might Be Key in Quitting after All: Change in Thinking about Why Smokers Fail to Quit Could Lead to New Direction for Cessation Programs
HONOLULU -- Smokers just might lack willpower, Thomas H. Brandon, Ph.D., said at the annual meeting of the American Psychological Association. According to Dr. Brandon, a small group of researchers examining the question of why so many smokers are...
Young Women Use Sleep to Self-Manage Headache
PHILADELPHIA -- Going to sleep or napping is the most common and most effective behavioral self-management intervention reported by college-age, tension-type headache suffers, according to a small preliminary study presented at the annual meeting of...