Frequent Visits to Green Spaces Linked to Lower Use of Some Meds

Frequent visits to green spaces such as parks and community gardens are associated with a reduced use of certain prescription medications among city dwellers, a new analysis suggests. In a cross-sectional cohort study, frequent green space visits were associated with less frequent use of psychotropic, antihypertensive, and asthma medications in urban environments. Viewing green or … Read more

States’ Push to Legalize Psychedelics Gaining Momentum

The push to legalize psychedelic drugs is gaining momentum in states across the country, with a sevenfold increase in the number of decriminalization bills since 2019, new research shows. Researchers identified 74 bills and referendums in 25 states introduced during the study period that either sought to reform existing laws and expand access to psychedelic … Read more

Colorado Voters Decriminalize Psychedelic Mushrooms

DENVER (AP) — Colorado voters have passed a ballot initiative to decriminalize psychedelic mushrooms for people 21 and older and to create state-regulated “healing centers” where participants can experience the drug under supervision. Colorado becomes the second state, after Oregon, to vote to establish a regulated system for substances like psilocybin and psilocin, the hallucinogens … Read more

Long-term Antidepressant Use Tied to Increased CVD, Mortality Risk

Long-term antidepressant use is tied to an increased risk of adverse outcomes, including cardiovascular disease (CVD), cerebrovascular disease (CV), coronary heart disease (CHD), and all-cause mortality, new research suggests. Investigators drew on 10-year data from the UK Biobank on over 220,000 adults and compared the risk of developing adverse health outcomes among those taking antidepressants … Read more

Expert Views on Psychoactive Drugs at Odds With US Policy

Psychiatrists’ perceptions of the safety, therapeutic value, and abuse potential of psychoactive drugs are inconsistent with current drug policy, results from a new survey show. Adam Levin, MD “The consensus among experts, including psychiatrists, about specific drugs is not consistent or congruent with the schedule of these drugs” in the United States, lead author Adam … Read more

They Call It ‘Tranq,’ and It’s Making Street Drugs More Dangerous

Approaching a van that distributes supplies for safer drug use in Greenfield, Massachusetts, a man named Kyle noticed an alert about xylazine. “Xylazine?” he asked, sounding out the unfamiliar word. “Tell me more.” Tapestry Health Systems nurse Katy Robbins hands bottles of water to Kyle as he visits the harm reduction mobile unit in Greenfield, … Read more

No Added Benefit of Adjunctive Psychotherapy in Severe Depression?

Adding psychotherapy to pharmacologic treatment does not appear to improve treatment outcomes for patients with major depression, new research suggests. Results of a cross-sectional, naturalistic, multicenter European study showed there were no significant differences in response rates between patients with major depressive disorder (MDD) who received combination treatment with psychotherapy and antidepressant medication in comparison … Read more

Cannabis on Par With Opioids for Pain Relief, Study Suggests

Cannabis-based products may control chronic pain as effectively as opioids, but adverse effects are common, and long-term safety remains unknown, according to a new study. Several other systematic reviews have recently evaluated cannabinoids for treating chronic pain, but the new study’s methodology was “distinct” in “important ways,” leading to “conclusions that differ from other reviews,” … Read more

Antipsychotic Tied to Weight Gain, Higher Cholesterol

Increases in use of the antipsychotic risperidone (Risperdal) are associated with small dose-related increases in both weight and blood cholesterol levels, new research suggests. Investigators analyzed 1-year data for more than 400 patients who were taking risperidone and/or its metabolite paliperidone (Invega). Results showed increments of 1 mg of risperidone-equivalent doses were associated with an … Read more

The Stigma Associated With Mental Illness and Antidepressants

The good, the bad, and the ugly. It’s easy to talk about the good, but when it comes to having real conversations about mental health, it’s sometimes an uphill battle. We see so much about mental well-being, services, and hotlines available for those in need. In fact, it’s almost expected for schools and workplaces to … Read more