Cognition-Boosting ‘Smart Drugs’ Not So Smart for Healthy People

VIENNA, Austria — Prescription drugs designed to boost cognition in neurodevelopmental disorders do not increase overall cognitive performance in healthy individuals — and may even reduce productivity, new research suggests. In a randomized controlled trial, 40 healthy adults were given the attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) treatments methylphenidate or dexamphetamine or the wakefulness-promoting drug modafinil vs placebo. … Read more

Home-Based Transcranial Stimulation Succeeds for Major Depression

Home-based transcranial direct current stimulation with real-time supervision significantly improved clinical symptoms of major depressive disorder, based on data from 26 individuals. Major depressive disorder (MDD) remains a leading cause of disability and a significant predictor of suicide worldwide, Rachel D. Woodham, PhD, of the University of East London and colleagues wrote. Transcranial direct current … Read more

E-Health Program Improves Perinatal Depression

Patients with perinatal depression who used a specialized online tool showed improvement in symptoms, compared with controls who received routine care, based on data from 191 individuals. Although perinatal depression affects approximately 17% of pregnant women and 13% of postpartum women, the condition is often underrecognized and undertreated, Brian Danaher, PhD, of Influents Innovations, Eugene, … Read more

Hepatitis C Meds Linked to Improved PTSD Symptoms

The combination of the two antiviral medications glecaprevir and pibrentasvir (Mavyret) is linked to improved symptoms in posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), new research suggests. A national cohort study of US Department of Veterans Affairs patients included more than 250 participants with PTSD and comorbid hepatitis C virus. Results showed the glecaprevir/pibrentasvir (GLE/PIB) combo was more … Read more

Yoga, CBT Provide Long-Term Improvement in Insomnia, Worry

Both yoga and cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) provide meaningful improvements in worry, anxiety, and insomnia in older adults that last even 6 months after discontinuing treatment, new research suggests. The study is the first to compare the long-term effects from the two interventions; And the results offer clinicians and patients two effective choices for researchers … Read more

Clean House, Healthy Mind? Chores May Lower Dementia Risk

Participating in certain physical and mentally stimulating activities may be protective against dementia, new research suggests. In a large prospective cohort study, individuals who regularly engaged in stenuous exercise had a 35% less risk of dementia, those who consistently did household chores had a 21% lower risk, and those who reported seeing friends and family … Read more

Mixed Results for Intensive Home Care for Psychiatric Crises

Intensive home treatment may offer an alternative to inpatient care for patients in acute psychiatric crisis — but the intervention is no outright alternative, new research suggests. In a randomized controlled trial of more than 200 participants, intensive home treatment was associated with a 34% decrease in the number of inpatient hospital days in the … Read more

Best Meds for Insomnia Identified?

Two drugs have emerged as the optimal medications for treating insomnia based on the “best-available evidence,” but there are caveats. In a comprehensive comparative-effectiveness analysis, lemborexant and eszopiclone showed the best efficacy, acceptability, and tolerability for acute and long-term insomnia treatment. However, eszopiclone may cause substantial side effects — and safety data on lemborexant were … Read more

CBT May Improve Comorbid Posttraumatic Headache, PTSD

Cognitive-behavioral therapies (CBTs) can provide relief from comorbid, persistent posttraumatic headache and posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), new research suggests. Results from a randomized clinical trial of almost 200 military veterans showed that, compared with usual care, CBT for headache led to significant improvement in both headache disability and PTSD symptoms. Cognitive processing therapy (CPT) also … Read more

New Light on Why Some Psych Patients Don’t Respond to Therapy

Although most psychiatrists have encountered patients who don’t improve with treatment, novel research sheds some light on one possible explanation for this phenomenon. Investigators found that among patients who were “stuck” many believed that they didn’t deserve to get better and were significantly less likely to adhere to, or complete, a treatment program. “To the … Read more