antidepressant

Switching Psych Meds Often Doesn’t Help

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A recently published meta-analysis of over 3000 studies suggested that switching antidepressants after the first drug doesn’t produce the desired results is not better than staying the course and/or exploring options other than trying a different drug.  This is a very interesting finding as most prescribing clinicians tend to give one antidepressant a “trial” of […]

antidepressant

Prevalence of Psychiatric Medication Use

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A recent research letter, published by JAMA, reported that one out of six American adults take at least one psychiatric medication.  As a clinical psychologist I understand the benefits of non-medical treatments for psychiatric illness, but that doesn’t mean I don’t appreciate appropriate use of psychiatric meds.  In fact, I refer a significant number of […]

interpersonal relations

When Patients Try to Seduce Doctors

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I was recently interviewed for a Medscape article about maintaining professional boundaries, entitled, When Patients Try to Seduce Doctors.  It’s a relatively short piece and, though I was misquoted a little, it has some good information about the doctor-patient relationship and the importance of establishing and upholding appropriate professional boundaries.  Check it out.

medication

Why Placebos Work

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A recent article in The Wall Street Journal summarizes some of the explanations about how we think placebos work.  If you read an earlier blog post I wrote about placebos, what I find so fascinating about all this is that even when subjects/patients are told they are receiving a placebo (either in the form of […]

arguments

Exercise to Argue Better

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Let’s face it, all couples argue (well, some don’t but they probably don’t communicate much).  Typically when we argue we we try to convince the other person that we are right and they are wrong.  In doing so we tend not to listen much; instead while the other person is speaking we are thinking up […]

depression

No time to exercise?

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A really interesting study just came out on PLOS One that should be of particular interest to those of us who say they just don’t have enough time to exercise.  The study took a bunch of sedentary guys and divided them into three groups: regular exercise, interval training and lazy controls.  The guys in the […]

sleep

Falling Asleep Quicker

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There are several topics that seem to come up with patient after patient and I find myself making the same suggestions over and over again. One of these topics is sleep hygiene. Simply stated, sleep hygiene is a way to describe your behaviors and habits related to sleep. There are several types of insomnia including […]

psychotherapy

Happiness Promotes Health

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In a recent presentation, US Surgeon General Vivek H. Murthy said, “If there was a factor in your life that could reduce your risk of having a heart attack or a stroke, that could increase your chances of living longer, and would make your children less likely to engage in crime or use drugs, and […]

antidepressant

Is Psychotherapy Better Than Medication?

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The American College of Physicians has released a new clinical guideline on the treatment of depression in the Annals of Internal Medicine.  They suggested that psychotherapy is as effective for treating depression as antidepressants, and “given its relative lack of potential harms, should be strongly considered as the first-line treatment.” This is consistent with the […]

antidepressant

Primary Care Providers to Screen all Patients for Depression

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The US Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) now officially recommends that primary care health clinicians screen all of their patients for depression. Though this is wonderful, this is very, very long overdue. The costs associated with depression and other mental health screen are insignificant relative to the potential gains of “catching” otherwise unrecognized suffering patients. […]