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. 12, December

About One-Third of Asthmatics Report Poor Sleep Quality
SEATTLE -- About 30% of patients with asthma report that their sleep quality is either "fairly bad" or "bad," according to one of the largest studies to use objective sleep measurements in this patient population. "Sleep quality is obviously impaired...
Adding Bupropion to Patch Fails to Improve Smoking Cessation
Bupropion hydrochloride does not improve smoking cessation rates among adolescents when added to nicotine patch therapy, according to a randomized clinical trial. There is a paucity of controlled studies assessing strategies for adolescent smoking...
Adjunctive Psychotherapy Benefits Bipolar Patients
STOCKHOLM -- Adjunctive treatment with psychotherapy can be very beneficial to patients with bipolar disorder, decreasing relapse rates by up to 40% and significantly improving social functioning. These kinds of therapies appear to be especially...
All That Glitters: Bringing Back Metallica
In 2001, the legendary heavy metal rock band Metallica reached the nadir of its 20-year association. No recent albums or tours. Heck, band members were barely able to speak to one another. Their managers, worried that a major cash cow was going mad,...
Alzheimer's Study Will Try to Identify Best Biomarkers: Hundreds of Early AD, MCI Patients Will Be Followed for Up to 3 Years
Government agencies, industry, academia, and advocacy groups are working together in a unique collaboration to undertake what could be the Framingham Study of Alzheimer's disease. The Alzheimer's Disease Neuroimaging Initiative, headed by the National...
Are Caps the Answer to the Malpractice Crisis?
YES Multiple fires are burning in our health care system today. But the malpractice insurance crisis is among the most serious, and ironically, the one that can be most easily remedied. Caps on noneconomic damages are a critical first step. Today,...
Better Blood Sugar Control May Improve Memory
ORLANDO, FLA. -- Improved glycemic control appears to improve working memory in patients with type 2 diabetes, Mark W. J. Strachan, M.D., reported at the annual scientific sessions of the American Diabetes Association. A relatively large body of...
Chemotherapy May Affect Aspects of Neuropsychological Function
LOS ANGELES -- Cancer patients call it "chemobrain"--a soggy mental state that seems to be a frequent side effect of chemotherapy. It is rarely studied and poorly understood, but as the number of cancer survivors grows, the impact of chemotherapy...
Childhood Exposure to Violence
Little boys trying out for the local football team expect to get tackled. They don't expect to get shot. Yet that's what happened to 11-year-old Jenry Gonzales in August as the Boston youngster was running drills with nearly 100 other young football-star...
Clozapine Is a Proven Choice for Suicidal Patients
STOCKHOLM -- Despite the potential for serious side effects, clozapine remains a highly effective medication for schizophrenia patients with suicidal behavior, reducing the risk of suicide attempt by up to 85%. Herbert Meltzer, M.D., said at the annual...
CV Risk Factors May Be Bad for Brain, as Well as Heart
PHILADELPHIA -- Dyslipidemia, obesity, and hypertension aren't just bad for the heart. They're bad for the brain, too. Data from three large population-based studies presented at the 9th International Conference on Alzheimer's Disease and Related...
Dangers of Untreated Depression Are Examined
SAN DIEGO -- Some antidepressant medications may increase suicidal ideation in pediatric patients, but untreated depression is deadly without question, David Feinberg, M.D., said at a meeting sponsored by the Los Angeles Pediatric Society. "The...
Disordered Eating in Girls: Weight Status Is Key
ORLANDO, FLA. -- Data from an ongoing longitudinal study suggest that both individual factors and family environment play an important role in the development of maladaptive eating, Leann L. Birch, Ph.D., said at an international conference sponsored...
Donepezil May Help Behavioral Responses in AD
ORLANDO, FLA. -- Alzheimer's disease patients who do not obtain clear-cut cognitive benefits with donepezil nonetheless often experience significant improvement in behavioral symptoms of the dementia. Ralf Ihl, M.D., said at Wonca 2004, the conference...
Drug Pipeline for Obesity Holds 189 Contenders
ORLANDO, FLA. -- Drugs in development will soon offer more hope to patients struggling to control their weight, Louis Aronne, M.D., said at a symposium on obesity sponsored by the American Society of Bariatric Physicians. The future of antiobesity...
Eliminating Seclusion and Restraint
Almost 4 years ago, those of us working in the psychiatric unit at Salem (Ore.) Hospital initiated a new approach to the treatment of acutely ill inpatients. Our vision was to create an environment in which psychiatric patients could find ways to...
Exenatide Phase III Data Promising for Diabetes
ORLANDO, FLA. -- Synthetic exendin-4 improved blood glucose control and was associated with weight loss in patients with type 2 diabetes who were inadequately controlled on metformin, sulfonylureas, or a combination of the two, Ralph A. DeFronzo, M.D.,...
Exposure to Anesthetic May Promote Addiction: Study Shows Anesthesiologists Are Exposed to Fentanyl despite Its Intravenous Administration
WASHINGTON -- Exposure to fentanyl in the operating room may fuel the consistently high rates of substance abuse among anesthesiologists, Mark S. Gold, M.D., reported at the annual conference of the Association for Medical Education and Research in...
FDA Approves Extended-Release Hydromorphone
The approval of an extended-release formulation of the potent opioid agonist hydromorphone was accompanied by a risk management plan aimed at reducing abuse and minimizing diversion of the drug, a notorious problem with the controlled-release opioid...
FDA Okays Treatment Exemption Study for VNS in Chronic Depression
Up to 100 patients with life-threatening treatment-resistant depression will receive vagus nerve stimulator therapy as part of a treatment investigational device exemption study the Food and Drug Administration approved after rejecting an earlier marketing...
Federal Policies Pushing Technology Adoption
SAN FRANCISCO -- The federal government has stepped up its initiatives pushing for the adoption of electronic health records and other information technologies, Eduardo Ortiz, M.D., said at the triennial congress of the International Medical Informatics...
Functional MRI Helps to Predict Depression Recovery
SANTA FE, N.M. -- Activation in six brain regions to emotional stimuli can predict which patients will recover from depression, Ian H. Gotlib, Ph.D., said at the annual meeting of the Society for Psychophysiological Research. In a prospective study...
GAO: Medicare Payment Fix Will Raise Spending 4%-23%
No matter what the solution is, fixing the Medicare physician reimbursement formula is sure to be a costly venture, the Government Accountability Office concluded in a report. Modifications to the sustainable growth rate (SGR), a component in the...
Gay, Bisexual Youth at Risk for Suicidal Ideation, Action
ST. LOUIS -- North American teens who are gay, lesbian, or bisexual have a significantly increased risk of suicidal ideation or suicide attempts, according to a secondary analysis of eight large North American school surveys. The analysis, which...
Hispanics Have Low Rates of BP Control; Aggressive Intervention Is Warranted
ATLANTA -- Hispanics have the lowest rates of hypertension treatment and control in the United States, and hypertension-related mortality in this population is on the rise, according to data from several studies presented at a prevention conference...
Hostility May Play Role in Nicotine Addiction
BETHESDA, MD. -- Adolescents and people who are naturally hostile may be more biologically susceptible to the effects of nicotine. At least that's what researchers at the Transdisciplinary Tobacco Use Research Center at the University of California,...
How to Prepare for Adoption
Fourteen years ago, Gary Onady, M.D., was performing an EKG on a patient who presented with chest pain when his wife called to tell him that a birth mother in Columbus, Ohio, had chosen them to adopt her newborn daughter. The Onadys, drawn to adoption...
Imaging Offers Insight into Schizophrenia: New Modality Shows Language Abnormalities
NEW YORK -- Magnetoencephalography, a new imaging modality that provides a millisecond-by-millisecond picture of the brain in action, is providing new insights into the language abnormalities of schizophrenia, reported Karen Froud, Ph.D., at a symposium...
Incarcerated Women Experience Mental Decline
SCOTTSDALE, ARIZ. -- Women who are incarcerated have more substance dependence problems and mental illnesses than their male counterparts, and their health appears to deteriorate more rapidly than that of nonincarcerated women, Catherine Lewis, M.D.,...
Internalizing, Externalizing Behaviors Help Predict Medication Adherence
MIAMI -- Internalizing and externalizing behaviors significantly predicted treatment adherence in suicidal adolescents in the 6 months after psychiatric hospitalization, Diane Chen said at the annual conference of the American Association of Suicidology....
Length of Therapy and Depression
A recent study found that patients with depression who had more than 12 sessions did not progress as fast as did those who had fewer. Have you found that some depressed patients do better with fewer sessions? Least Improvement = Most Therapy ...
Malpractice 'Surcharge' Earns Mixed Reviews
Ira Warshaw, M.D., felt that he had no choice but to come up with a creative solution to help save his practice. Dr. Warshaw, a family physician in North Palm Beach, Fla., found that he had depleted his practice's line of credit at the end of 2003...
Mirtazapine Tied to Psychomotor Deficits
STOCKHOLM -- In healthy adults, mirtazapine is initially associated with more driving errors and decreased performance on divided attention tests, compared with escitalopram, but these deficits subside with continued treatment, Marleen Wingen said...
'More Aggressive' Medicare Tackles Chronic Care
WASHINGTON -- Medicare currently is not equipped to handle care for chronic illnesses, so officials at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services are testing out some new approaches. "What we're really after is to change Medicare's role from...
Muscle Tenderness Seen in Pelvic Pain Patients
CHICAGO -- Up to a fourth of women with chronic pelvic pain also have piriformis or levator ani tenderness, according to a study presented by Dr. Frank Tu at a meeting sponsored by the International Pelvic Pain Society. Musculoskeletal dysfunction--including...
One Patient, Three Diagnoses
Clinicians managing patients with a dual diagnosis face a myriad of challenges in caring for coexisting substance abuse and psychiatric disorders. But there are also "triple-diagnosis" patients--those with a psychiatric disorder, substance abuse, and...
Ounce of Prevention Worth Pound of Cognition: Patients Who Follow Standard Preventive Health Advice May Protect Themselves against Dementia
PHILADELPHIA -- Tried and true preventive health advice may have a newly recognized benefit: prevention of cognitive impairment. New data presented at the Ninth International Conference on Alzheimer's Disease and Related Disorders suggest that the...
Physicians, Patients Differ on Care Priorities
WASHINGTON -- Physicians and consumers appear divided on their health care priorities for 2005, according to several polls released at a forum sponsored by the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association and Forbes magazine. Physicians are emphasizing...
Psychopaths Appear Less Attuned to Facial Emotions
SANTA FE, N.M. -- Psychopaths are far more likely than are control patients to make errors on a task requiring the identification of facial emotions while showing no differences in a similar task requiring identification of letters of the alphabet,...
Psychopaths Show Deviant Responses to Aversive Stimuli
SANTA FE, N.M. -- Psychopaths show decreased startle responses compared with nonpsychopaths when viewing aversive photographs, Edward M. Bernat, Ph.D., reported in a poster presentation at the annual meeting of the Society for Psychophysiological Research....
Psychopathy, Asperger's: A 'Serious' Combination; Dahmer Also Had Schizoid Personality Disorder Features and Schizotypal Pathology, Expert Says
SCOTTSDALE, ARIZ. -- The late convicted serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer probably had Asperger's syndrome, Arturo J. Silva, M.D., said at the annual meeting of the American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law. People like Mr. Dahmer "have fantasies which...
Quetiapine Useful for Treating Dementia-Related Agitation
PHILADELPHIA -- Quetiapine is effective and safe in treating agitation associated with dementia in long-term care residents, Pierre Tariot, M.D., reported at the Ninth International Conference on Alzheimer's Disease and Related Disorders. Behavioral...
Research Suggests Existence of True Sinus Headache
VANCOUVER, B.C. -- Most so-called sinus headaches are actually migraines, but a small subset of these headaches cannot be classified as anything else. Dr. Eric J. Eross said at the annual meeting of the American Headache Society. Many individuals...
Research Suggests That Food May Be Addictive
People who claim to be addicted to sugar, Big Macs, or chocolate just might be right, a growing body of research shows. Several papers published recently in the Journal of Addictive Diseases suggest that food competes with marijuana and cocaine...
Strategies for Treating PTSD
In the course of our careers, many of us have run across terms like shell shock, soldier's heart, combat neurosis, combat fatigue, or--get this--Da Costa syndrome, known for more than a century as neurocirculatory asthenia, and a favorite term that...
Team Meets Kids Where They Are
Care for mental and physical health issues is erroneously segregated in the current health care environment, said John V. Campo, M.D. That's why Dr. Campo and his colleagues have developed a collaborative care model aimed at delivering mental health...
Teens Drop Drugs, Add Pounds in Substance Abuse Facility
Adolescents in a substance abuse recovery facility gained an average of 11 pounds during the first 60 days of their stay, said Candace C. Hodgkins, who is a doctoral candidate at the University of Florida, Gainesville, and her colleagues. Patients...
The Art of Richard McLean
In many ways, schizophrenia sneaks up on you. That's the way it happened for Australian artist, author, and graphic designer Richard McLean. While he was studying fine art at a university and traveling through Europe, first a deep depression set...
The Challenge of HIV Testing
Thanks to the advent of effective antiretroviral treatments, patients living with the human immunodeficiency virus in the United States can now expect to live nearly 2 decades from the day of becoming infected, and perhaps even to have a normal lifespan....
The Pitfalls of Regulating Academia
The Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education, the Liaison Committee on Medical Education, and multiple other national, state, and local agencies are very, very busy, ensuring quality of care. No one can argue with the desired goal--an educated,...
'The Truth about the Drug Companies'
In her scathing attack on the pharmaceutical industry, Marcia Angell, M.D., former editor-in-chief of the New England Journal of Medicine, frequently hits the mark. It's not difficult: Big Pharma, which has been by far the most profitable industry...
Topiramate May Help Addicts Refrain from Using Cocaine
The anticonvulsant topiramate helped recovering cocaine addicts abstain from cocaine significantly more than a placebo in a pilot study of 40 patients, said Kyle M. Kampman, M.D., and his associates at the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia....
Treating Sexual Dysfunction: Antidepressant-Associated SD Tends to Be Dose Related, but a Dosage Reduction Can Prove Risky
Sexual dysfunction is commonly encountered in psychiatric practice as both a symptom of major mental disorders and a consequence of their treatment. In the last decade, considerable attention has been paid to the latter issue. This is a consequence,...
Trigeminal Surgery: Two Targets Better Than One
ORLANDO, FLA. -- Using two targets on the trigeminal nerve during radiosurgery provides better intermediate-term pain relief of neuralgia than does the traditional method, according to data presented at the annual meeting of the American Association...
Valproic Acid Strongly Linked to Birth Defects
Physicians seeing young girls and women with epilepsy now have strong reason to ensure the prescription of newer antiepileptic drugs whenever possible. New data suggest that older antiepileptic drugs (AEDs), particularly valproic acid, are associated...
Visual Stimulus and Antidepressant Adherence
ORLANDO, FLA. -- Depressed patients who perceive a neutral facial expression as a look of anger, fear, disgust, or sadness are more likely to have somatoform symptoms and less likely to adhere to antidepressant therapy than are patients who perceive...
Web Messaging Boosts Productivity, Revenue
SAN FRANCISCO -- Giving patients access to online communications with physicians and their offices not only decreased phone calls but also decreased the volume of all messages and increased revenues in a controlled study, said Eric M. Liederman, M.D....
Web Sites Selling 'Herbal Viagra' Fail to Fully Inform Users
SAN FRANCISCO -- Important gaps in the information provided by Web sites selling herbal treatments for erectile dysfunction could put buyers in danger, Ramesh Thurairaja, M.D., said at the annual meeting of the American Urological Association. A...
Ziprasidone in Bipolar Mania
The Problem You have a patient diagnosed with bipolar I disorder who has cycled into a severe manic episode with psychotic features. He refuses treatment with typical mood stabilizers such as lithium, valproate, or carbamazepine. Because the patient...