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. 35, No. 2, February

ALS Drug Appears to Ease Resistant Depression
NEW YORK -- Riluzole, a drug for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis that targets glutamate cycling in the brain, can markedly improve depression in some patients who remain highly symptomatic despite treatment with other antidepressants, Dr. Steven F. Kendell...
Amygdala, Prefrontal Cortex Are Keys to Anxiety: Bringing That Knowledge to Neuroimaging Should Help Pinpoint Diagnosis, Treatment Response
ORLANDO -- A complex interaction of genetics, childhood stress, neurocircuits, the amygdala, and prefrontal cortex structures determines how a person develops and copes with anxiety, according to a presentation at a psychopharmacology congress sponsored...
Ask Elderly Patients about Religious, Spiritual Beliefs
PHILADELPHIA -- Religious and spiritual beliefs often play an important role in the lives of the elderly and should be taken into account by health care workers who care for geriatric patients. Physicians and others who care for the elderly should...
Better Coordination of Mental, Physical Health Care Urged: Report Cites Early Deaths of Mentally Ill
Psychiatrists and other members of the mental health community are working on ways to improve coordination of mental health and primary care in an effort to decrease early death among people with serious mental illness. People being treated for...
Better Patient Interviews May Aid Migraine Treatment
SCOTTSDALE, ARIZ. -- Open-ended questions during patient interviews elicit the best information for guiding the management of patients with migraine headache, Dr. Richard B. Lipton said at a symposium sponsored by the American Headache Society. ...
Biofeedback Eases Recurrent Abdominal Pain
ORLAND -- Therapeutic biofeedback reduces pain intensity, pain frequency, and health care utilization among children with recurrent abdominal pain, according to two posters presented at the annual meeting of the North American Society for Pediatric...
Biopsychosocial Model Effective for Patients with Comorbid Pain
ATLANTA -- A biopsychosocial approach may offer the most effective way to manage chronic pain in patients with a comorbid mood or substance use disorder without compromising recovery processes, Martin D. Cheatle, Ph.D., said at the Southeastern conference...
Children More Resilient Than Adults in Absorbing Severe Events
SAN DIEGO -- Children of parents who lost their jobs in the past 3-5 months were more likely to develop psychopathology if they reported three or more moderate to severely stressful life events in the past year than children who reported fewer such...
CPAP May Lower Stroke Risk for Apnea Patients
SALT LAKE CITY -- Studies consistently show a link between obstructive sleep apnea and stroke, with the most recent data showing that sleep apnea is an independent risk factor for stroke and death. The cumulative data in regard to sleep apnea and...
Customize Treatment to Needs of Adolescent with Depression
MENDOZA, ARGENTINA -- When it comes to adolescents with depression, psychiatrists would do well to tailor treatment to the individual needs of each patient, Dr. Harold I. Eist said at the 6th World Congress on Depressive Disorders. Adolescence is...
Data on Veterans Point to Risk, Resiliency in Marriages
HOLLYWOOD, CALIF. -- Veterans with severe posttraumatic stress disorder who live with a spouse or partner are more likely to engage in some high-risk behaviors and less likely to engage in others, compared with those who live alone, Kent Drescher,...
Do Clothes Make the Practice?
You may not have noticed that I was wearing a tie in the picture for this column, or what the tie looked like. It was not the tie that I was wearing a few months back. As fall turned toward winter, the weather in Milwaukee became gloomy, and I found...
Early Treatment May Promote Medication-Overuse Headache
SCOTTSDALE, ARIZ. -- Early treatment of migraine can contribute to development of medication-overuse headaches in pain-adverse patients, Dr. James R. Couch warned at a symposium sponsored by the American Headache Society. These patients will take...
Eliminating Errors in the Hospital
Since the Institute of Medicine released its report "To Err is Human: Building A Safer Health System" in 1999, inpatient medical errors have come under increased scrutiny. The report suggested that 44,000 patients to perhaps as many as 98,000 patients...
Exposure Therapy Can Prove Effective in Complex PTSD
HOLLYWOOD, CALIF. -- Exposure therapy is a proven treatment for posttraumatic stress disorder, and it's even effective in complex cases, Barbara O. Rothbaum, Ph.D., said at the annual meeting of the International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies....
FDA Panel Wants More Data on TMS
GAITHERSBURG, MD. -- A noninvasive device that delivers magnetic stimulation to the brain as a patient sits in a chair alert and awake appears to be safe, but has not been proven to be an effective treatment for depression, a federal advisory panel...
Folic Acid May Improve Cognitive Performance
Older adults who took 800 mcg of folic acid daily for 3 years showed significantly less cognitive decline than those who took placebo, according to a randomized, double-blind trial. Three years of folic acid supplementation gave an individual the...
For Best Results, Consider Migraine Complex
SCOTTSDALE, ARIZ. -- Acute migraine cannot be managed effectively without a therapeutic partnership between doctor and patient, and a full understanding of the disabling features of each patient's headache episodes, Dr. Lawrence C. Newman said. ...
Generic Drugs Keep Health Cost Spiral in Check
Overall health spending growth for 2005 hit the lowest level since 1999, largely because of a continuing slowdown in retail prescription drug sales and an increased use of generic drugs, according to a report issued by the Centers for Medicare and...
Girls with ADHD Deserve Attention
Too often, girls with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder are overlooked. As mental health professionals, we must not allow this lack of attention to continue. Certainly, boys are diagnosed with ADHD far more often than are girls. Just 10 years...
Groups Unite to Prevent Heart Disease in Diabetes
Diabetologists and cardiologists are joining forces to address the issue of cardiovascular disease in patients with diabetes. In North America, new joint guidelines from the American Heart Association (AHA) and the American Diabetes Association...
Guidance Offered on Police Access to Patients
CHICAGO -- What should a physician do when a police officer walks into the emergency department and seeks permission to interview a patient? This scenario occurs daily in hospitals across the country, yet law enforcement access to patients is not...
Have You Treated Patients with Gambling Problems That Would Be Considered Pathological? What Medications Have You Used to Help These Patients Manage Their Problems?
Pathological gambling, also known as gambling addiction, is quite prevalent. Using the term "addiction" gives us some clues to the kind of psychopathology found in someone who cannot stop gambling. It has also been referred to as compulsive gambling,...
High Folate Intake May Lower AD Risk
High intake of folate decreased the risk of Alzheimer's disease in a predominantly Hispanic and African American cohort of elderly people, according to a recently published study. There was a statistically significant association between AD risk...
'Huffing' Causing Methanol Toxicity
NEW ORLEANS -- The intentional inhalation of products containing methanol, such as carburetor cleaner and windshield washer fluid, can cause significant toxicity--and emergency physicians must keep that in mind when a suspected inhaler, or "huffer,"...
Impaired Nonverbal Behaviors May Portend Autism
ATLANTA -- Early identification and intervention are crucial to a good long-term outcome in children with autism, experts agreed at the annual meeting of the American Academy of Pediatrics. The disorder can be tricky to diagnose; when in doubt,...
Increased Testing of Anus and Throat Warranted as Gonorrhea Incidence Rises
SAN FRANCISCO -- As the incidence of gonorrhea continues to increase, physicians need to be doing more testing for the venereal disease in the anus and the throat, particularly in gay men, said the chief of the sexually transmitted diseases control...
Inpatient Suicide: Respond Quickly
TUCSON, ARIZ. -- A little more than a year ago, a young psychiatric patient scaled an 8-foot barrier on the seventh floor to jump to his death in a crowded atrium after a holiday gathering at the Mark O. Hatfield Clinical Research Center in Bethesda,...
Intensive Use of Stimulants at Start Often Beneficial in ADHD
ORLANDO -- Start with a long-acting stimulant for treatment of attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder for most patients, increase the dose before adding a short-acting drug, and monitor response with a rating scale, Dr. Peter S. Jensen advised at...
Is Social Phobia a Disorder or Not?
A bright young attorney was referred to me a few years ago by his primary care physician. The attorney had passed the bar exam and had had no problems securing and scheduling job interviews, but for more than 6 months after passing the bar, he had...
Line of Research Could Advance Schizophrenia TX
NEW YORK -- Overexpression of cannabinoid receptors and hyperactivity of the brain's endogenous endocannabinoid system may be responsible for the delusions and aberrant associations characteristic of schizophrenia, Steven Laviolette, Ph.D., said at...
Loss and Grief Can Lead to 'Bereavement Overload'
PHILADELPHIA -- Loss is inevitable for the elderly, and with loss comes grief. Losses are not just the deaths of loved ones, friends, and acquaintances. The elderly also experience loss and grief with their diminished ability to do things. It can...
Low-Fat Diet May Prevent Some Recurrent Breast Cancers
SAN ANTONIO -- A low-fat diet that achieved modest weight loss in women with early-stage breast cancer resulted in a striking 54% reduction in cancer relapse or death among those with hormone receptor-negative tumors, according to a second interim...
Low Literacy Limits Label Comprehension
WASHINGTON -- Patients who read at or below the 6th-grade level had a low level of comprehension of instructions on the labels of five commonly used medications, according to a study led by Terry Davis, Ph.D., of the Louisiana State University. ...
Medicare Part D Doughnut Hole May Not Be Worth Filling
WASHINGTON -- Rhetoric aside, it's not clear whether lifting restrictions on the government's ability to negotiate pharmaceutical prices for the Part D benefit will have any real impact, experts said at a forum on the future of Medicare sponsored by...
Meditation Helps Breast Cancer Patients after TX
SAN ANTONIO -- The mindfulness-based stress reduction program developed by Jonathan Kabat-Zinn, Ph.D., appears to be beneficial to patients with early-stage breast cancer in the immediate posttreatment period as they transition to survivorship, Cecile...
Mood and Stress May Influence HIV Progression
SAN FRANCISCO -- Depression and stress appear to be important considerations in the treatment of HIV-infected patients, Dr. Frederick Hecht said at a meeting on HIV management sponsored by the University of California, San Francisco. Although research...
Motivations of Opioid and Stimulant Abusers Differ
BOSTON -- College students who abuse opioids do so for different reasons than students who abuse stimulants, according to research presented at the annual meeting of the American Public Health Association. Opioid users were more likely to report...
Nurturing Mental Health in Children
Half of all lifetime cases of mental illness begin by age 14. This observation from a study by Harvard University's Ronald C. Kessler, Ph.D., and his colleagues, in addition to findings that early identification can prevent years of suffering and...
Obesity No Hurdle to Combination HCV Therapy
BOSTON -- Combination therapy with peginterferon [alpha]-2b and weight-based ribavirin produces consistent rates of sustained virologic response in obese patients with chronic hepatitis C virus, according to data from the largest hepatitis C virus...
Patient Apathy Linked to Poor Glycemic Control in Diabetes
TUCSON, ARIZ. -- Apathy is not recognized as a psychiatric disorder, but treating it may improve glycemic control in patients with type 2 diabetes, according to a poster presented at the annual meeting of the Academy of Psychosomatic Medicine. Dr....
Personality Trait Can Worsen Rheumatoid Arthritis Symptoms
TUCSON, ARIZ. -- A psychological trait associated with heightened awareness of bodily distress may help to explain why some rheumatoid arthritis patients suffer more from achiness, malaise, and fatigue than do others with similar disease severity,...
Perspective
Few psychiatrists are focused on the public health maxim of "prevention, prevention, prevention." In fact, psychiatrists typically focus only on helping sick people, not preventing people from getting sick, so conversations about prevention often have...
Physicians Encouraged to Sign Up Soon for an NPI
The clock is ticking for physicians to sign up for a National Provider Identifier, the new 10-digit number that will be used by Medicare, Medicaid, and many private health plans to process claims. The deadline for registering for an NPI number is...
Post-MI Anxiety More Common among Women: Be Sure to Start Patients on Anxiolytics Quickly after Anxiety Is Diagnosed Post Myocardial Infarction
CHICAGO -- The high anxiety that many women have after an acute myocardial infarction may explain their high complication rate, compared with men, and it may offer a new way to improve patient outcomes. "Early recognition and effective treatment...
Private Feelings, Public Conduct: Merging Worlds?
It's Oscar time, and my favorites for best picture are "The Queen" (nominated) and "Notes on a Scandal" (not nominated--boo, hiss!). For best performance by an actress, I wholeheartedly agree with the nominations of the two players whose marvelous...
Prolonged Exposure Is Best TX for Women with PTSD
HOLLYWOOD, CALIF. -- Results from the largest randomized controlled trial ever comparing two types of psychotherapy for posttraumatic stress disorder indicate that for women, therapy involving prolonged exposure to the original trauma is significantly...
Psychological Impact of Diabetes Less Intense on Children
COPENHAGEN -- Parents of children with type 1 diabetes intensely experience the psychological impact of the disease, according to new study findings. "Both parents and children may need counseling to help them cope with worries associated with the...
Psych Services Benefit Emergency Departments
TUCSON, ARIZ. -- Dementia may be overdiagnosed and delirium overlooked when geriatric patients with vague symptoms are brought to emergency departments, Dr. Lesley Wiesenfeld suggested at the annual meeting of the Academy of Psychosomatic Medicine....
Ramelteon Is Effective for Some Insomnia Patients
ORLANDO -- Ramelteon is effective for a subset of patients with insomnia, according to a presentation at a psychopharmacology congress sponsored by the Neuroscience Education Institute. In addition, because the agent works on melatonin receptors, a...
Remission Rate of 66% Seen after 12 Weeks of Fluoxetine
SAN DIEGO -- More than two-thirds of children and adolescents with major depressive disorder who were treated with fluoxetine were in remission by week 12 of treatment, yet almost half of remitters had at least one residual symptom by week 12. The...
Research into Seizure Prediction Devices Advances: No Adverse Events Have Been Reported in the Two Ongoing Phase III Implanted Device Studies
CHICAGO -- Ongoing clinical trials for two implanted devices designed to interrupt or predict seizures herald an area of clinical research that has quickly gained ground during the last 5 years, Dr. Brian Litt said at the annual meeting of the American...
Review Gives Nod to PDE-5 Inhibitors in Men with Diabetes
Phosphodiesterase type 5 inhibitors should be considered a primary treatment for erectile dysfunction in men with diabetes mellitus, according to a meta-analysis published recently in the online issue of the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews....
Risky Sex, Drug Behaviors Persist in Young People after HIV Counseling
WASHINGTON -- The findings of a large survey reinforce the ongoing prevalence of risky sexual and substance abuse behavior among young people that could promote the spread of HIV infection, Angulique W. Outlaw, Ph.D., said in a poster at the Ryan White...
Screening Tool May Help Identify Alcohol Use
ORLANDO -- It is a good idea to routinely ask patients--particularly those with risk factors for dependence--about their alcohol use, George F. Koob, Ph.D., said at a psychopharmacology congress sponsored by the Neuroscience Education Institute. ...
Small Study: Olanzapine Effective against Trichotillomania
PARIS -- Trichotillomania was highly responsive to olanzapine in a small, randomized, placebo-controlled trial that suggests repetitive hair pulling may be closer to tics and Tourette's syndrome than to other obsessive-compulsive disorders. Eleven...
Switching to a Cash Practice
I have been in solo psychiatric private practice for 33 years and continue to truly enjoy my work. But the stress level was building because of reimbursement realities and administrative hassles, so in the fall of 2005, after a lot of thought, I opted...
Tamoxifen Benefit Lasts 10 Years, New Data Show: The Relative Risk of Breast Cancer Was Reduced by a Highly Significant 29%, Compared with Placebo
SAN ANTONIO -- A new 10-year follow-up from a landmark clinical trial of tamoxifen for breast cancer prevention indicates that the benefit continues strongly throughout the next half decade following completion of the standard 5 years of therapy, whereas...
The Art of Lanham Bundy
Lanham Bundy says some people think of her paintings as examples of surrealism. But she doesn't see her work that way. "It's hard to label things, but I consider myself a contemporary artist--with some definite influences from different periods,"...
Treating Rapid-Cycling Bipolar Disorder: Mood Chart Covering 6 Months or a Year Provides a View of the Illness That Can Clarify Drug Choice
Bipolar disorder is a disease of variation, and one important variable is cycle frequency. At any time, a significant proportion of patients are rapid cyclers--20% in the Systematic Treatment Enhancement Program for Bipolar Disorder study--who have...
Two Parkinson's Drugs Linked with Valve Damage
Patients with Parkinson's disease who received the drugs pergolide or cabergoline had profoundly higher rates of clinically significant valvular heart disease than did those taking other dopamine agonists, in two European studies. An Italian echocardiographic...
Undergrads' Words after Trauma Can Predict PTSD
HOLLYWOOD, CALIF. -- Language use in the immediate aftermath of a trauma can predict who will develop lasting symptoms of posttraumatic stress disorder, according to a poster presentation by Wendy D'Andrea-Merrins at the annual meeting of the International...
Variant of MET Gene Linked to Increased Risk of Autism
Researchers have discovered that a common genetic variant of the MET receptor tyrosine kinase on chromosome 7q31 is associated with a 2.27-fold risk of having autism. This new finding corroborates other works in autism which "indicate altered organization...
Veterans with PTSD Require Tailored Approach: Some Military Organizations Have Implemented Programs Aimed at Spotting Problems in Early Stages
HOLLYWOOD, CALIF. -- Military veterans with posttraumatic stress disorder can be especially difficult to treat, Mark Creamer, Ph.D., said at the annual meeting of the International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies. "The very first controlled...
Web Survey Predicts Risk of Adolescent Depression
SAN ANTONIO -- Physicians may be able to quickly and accurately assess and stratify an adolescent's 1-year risk of developing new-onset major depression using a 20-item checklist, Dr. Benjamin W. Van Voorhees said at the annual meeting of the Society...
What Is the Best Way to Reform the U.S. Health Care System?
Single payer is the way to go. The health care financing organ in the United States is failing. It has all the manifestations of a patient with heart failure. We have poor output, where we can't circulate health insurance to cover the entire...
When Can Incompetent Defendants Be Restored?
CHICAGO -- The first evidence-based support for clinical factors that may help to predict when a criminal defendant who is incompetent to stand trial can be restored to competence was presented at the annual meeting of the American Academy of Psychiatry...
Wider-Ranging Plans Urged for Nursing Homes: Evacuation Arrangements for Major Disasters Need to Involve Local Police and Emergency Units
After reviewing nursing homes' emergency plans and outcomes of evacuations and sheltering for the last two hurricane seasons, the Health and Human Services Department's Office of Inspector General is suggesting that the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid...
Young Patients with Chest Pain May Be Cocaine Users
SAN FRANCISCO -- Consider cocaine use as a cause of chest pain, especially in young patients, Dr. Priscilla Hsue said at a meeting sponsored by the California chapter of the American College of Cardiology. In 2004, 2 million Americans were cocaine...
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