Depression Guidelines Fall Short in Characterizing Withdrawal

Current depression guidelines offer incomplete guidance for clinicians to identify antidepressant withdrawal, based on data from a review of 21 guidelines. Previous research suggests that approximately half of patients who discontinue or decrease dosage of antidepressants experience withdrawal symptoms, wrote Anders Sørensen, MD, of Copenhagen University Hospital, and colleagues. These symptoms are diverse and may … Read more

Concern Grows Over ‘Medical Aid in Dying for Mental Illness’ Law

Amid growing concern among the public, psychiatrists, and other mental health professionals, the Canadian government is seeking to delay the legalization of its proposed medical assistance in dying (MAID) for mental illness law that is slated to pass on March 17. Canada already has the largest number of deaths by MAID of any nation, with … Read more

US Settlement Signals Protections for Addiction Medicine

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — A former Tennessee correctional officer will receive $160,000 in back pay and damages after he was forced to resign for taking Suboxone to treat his opioid use disorder, if a judge approves a landmark consent decree filed in federal court in Nashville on Wednesday. It is the first time the US … Read more

Screen All Patients for Cannabis Use Before Surgery: Guideline

If you smoke, vape, or ingest cannabis, your anesthesiologist should know before you undergo a surgical procedure, according to new medical guidelines. All patients who undergo procedures that require regional or general anesthesia should be asked if, how often, and in what forms they use the drug, according to recommendations from the American Society of … Read more

Problematic Alcohol Use on the Rise Among Physicians?

Problematic alcohol use by physicians appears to be increasing, new research shows. However, good data on exactly how common this is and on salient risk factors are lacking, investigators note. In a systematic literature review, investigators found the prevalence of self-reported problematic alcohol use varied widely, but could affect up to one third of physicians. … Read more

Climate Change Has Consequences for Mental Health

The topic of discussion at the United Nations (UN) Climate Change Conference in Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt, was how the consequences of climate change may be mitigated. To date, the discussion has been focused on the environment, living conditions, and people’s physical health. However, the effects on the mind are no less dramatic, emphasizing the German … Read more

Treatment-Resistant Depression Ups Risk for Comorbidities, Death

Treatment-resistant depression (TRD) is significantly linked to comorbid psychiatric conditions and a higher risk for mortality, and can take more than a year to be diagnosed, new research shows. In a population study of more than 145,000 patients, participants with TRD used outpatient resources and missed work at twice the rate as patients with treatment-responsive … Read more

High Neuro Drug Costs Exclude Most From Cutting-Edge Tx

Because of high out-of-pocket costs of new-to-market neurologic drugs that are of similar benefit as older agents, only a small percentage of patients with neurologic disorders have access to these cutting-edge medications, new research shows. “Our study of people with neurologic conditions found fewer than 20% were being treated with new medications,” study author Brian … Read more

Mood Stabilizers Potential Lifesavers in Bipolar Disorder

Mood stabilizers protect against suicide and all-cause mortality in patients with bipolar disorder (BD), including natural mortality, with lithium emerging as the most protective agent, new research suggests. Investigators led by Pao-Huan Chen, MD, of the Department of Psychiatry, Taipei Medical University Hospital, Taiwan, evaluated the association between the use of mood stabilizers and the … Read more

New CDC Guidance on Prescribing Opioids for Pain

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has released updated and expanded recommendations for prescribing opioids for adults with acute and chronic pain not related to cancer, sickle cell disease, or palliative/end-of-life care. The 2022 Clinical Practice Guideline provides guidance on determining whether to initiate opioids for pain; selecting opioids and determining opioid … Read more