The Mental Effects of Growing Up With a Hoarder

Many of us are reluctant to throw things out. We buy. We accumulate. We collect. Eventually our attics are packed with dusty heirlooms that we rarely, if ever, look at. Eventually we’re forced to pare down and head to the Goodwill. But not all of us. Andrew Guzick, PhD Hoarding — or the prolonged difficulty … Read more

When Words Are Not Enough

Almost 1 year into the pandemic, the day finally came when I could welcome patients back to meet in person. For a little over a decade, I have cared for the mental health of healthcare professionals. After nearly a year of telehealth, one by one I welcomed nurses, physicians, physical therapists, nurse practitioners, pharmacists, social … Read more

Does Noninvasive Brain Stimulation Augment CBT for Depression?

Noninvasive brain stimulation does not appear to augment cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) in patients with major depressive disorder (MDD), new research shows. Results of a multicenter, placebo-controlled randomized clinical trials showed adjunctive transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) was not superior to sham-tDCS plus CBT or CBT alone. “Combining these interventions do not lead to added … Read more

Do Psychotropic Meds Raise or Lower COVID Risk?

Editor’s note: Find the latest COVID-19 news and guidance in Medscape’s Coronavirus Resource Center. Different psychotropic medications are associated with different risks of COVID-19 in hospitalized patients with serious mental illness, a new study suggests. Investigators found that second-generation antipsychotics were associated with a 48% lower risk of COVID-19, while valproic acid was associated with … Read more

Depression Biomarkers: Which Ones Matter Most?

Multiple biomarkers of depression involved in several brain circuits are altered in patients with unipolar depression. The first comprehensive meta-analysis of all biomarkers quantified to date in cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) of individuals with unipolar depression showed that several could be “clinically meaningful” because they suggest neuroimmunological alterations, disturbances in the blood–brain-barrier, hyperactivity in the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal … Read more

Higher ‘Chemical Restraint’ Rates in Black Psych Patients in the ED

Black patients presenting with psychiatric disorders to hospital emergency departments (EDs) across the US have significantly higher rates of chemical restraint than their white counterparts, new research shows. Results of a national study showed Black patients presenting to the ED were 63% more likely to receive chemical sedation than white patients. The investigators also found … Read more

Long-Term Cannabis Use Linked to Dementia Risk Factors

Long-term cannabis use is linked to hippocampal atrophy and poorer cognitive function in midlife — known risk factors for dementia. A large prospective, longitudinal study showed long-term cannabis users had an intelligence quotient (IQ) decline from age 18 to midlife (mean 5.5 IQ points), poorer learning and processing speed compared to childhood, and self-reported memory … Read more

Brief Intervention Effective, Durable for Schizophrenia

Metacognitive training (MCT) is effective in reducing positive and negative symptoms of schizophrenia, new research suggests. MCT for psychosis is a brief intervention that “combines psychoeducation, cognitive bias modification, and strategy teaching but does not directly target psychosis symptoms.” Results from a meta-analysis of 40 studies with more than 1,800 total participants with schizophrenia showed … Read more

High-Intensity Exercise Helps Patients With Anxiety Quit Smoking

DENVER ― High-intensity exercise may help patients with anxiety quit smoking, new research shows. Results from a randomized study of 150 participants reporting symptoms of anxiety showed that among daily smokers who received a personalized, high-intensity aerobic intervention, rates of smoking abstinence were nearly twice as great as for those who received a lower-intensity exercise … Read more

Mindfulness Intervention Curbs Opioid Misuse, Chronic Pain

A psychotherapeutic intervention that unites mindfulness training, “third wave” cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), and positive psychology significantly reduces chronic pain and opioid misuse, new research suggests. In a randomized clinical trial, 250 adults with both opioid misuse and chronic pain received either the intervention, called mindfulness-oriented recovery enhancement (MORE), or supportive psychotherapy. Results showed the … Read more