Patients Are More Complex Than We Realize

Complexity in Health Care: A Paradigm shift for Clinical Practice (Springer 2023) by Steven A. Frankel, Steven D. Thurber, and James A. Bourgeois offers a healthy departure from standard approaches to diagnosis and treatment in psychiatry. Standard approaches follow set protocols and algorithms, such as the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-5), and various Read more about Patients Are More Complex Than We Realize[…]

Thinking About Healthspan to Live Longer and Better

Outlive is well-written, well-balanced, and makes no fantastic claims. Further, while providing clear guidance for achieving better health, Dr. Attia does not advise but, rather, shows a way to think about one’s own health. His idea is for each of us to set our own individual health plan, the one that works best for us, so Read more about Thinking About Healthspan to Live Longer and Better[…]

A New Book Puts Chronic Pain in Better Perspective

A new book presents an important new understanding of chronic pain and the role of prescribed opioids—one that can help troubled patients and their distressed doctors alike. The Right to Pain Relief and Other Deep Roots of the Opioid Epidemic,Oxford, 2023, by psychiatrist, philosopher, and pain expert Mark D. Sullivan and anesthesiologist and pain expert Read more about A New Book Puts Chronic Pain in Better Perspective[…]

Are Are CDC Guidelines Too Liberal Around Prescribing Opioids

Most will find the 2022 CDC opioid guidelines, also published in the New England Journal of Medicine, similar to the CDC guidelines of 2016. But a new comment troubles me and adds to my worry that the previous recommendations were too liberal. The recent version, in my opinion, more clearly condones initiation of opioids in Read more about Are Are CDC Guidelines Too Liberal Around Prescribing Opioids[…]

The Dangers of Medicine’s Pernicious Culture

A rigid medical culture prevents addressing society’s present needs. KEY POINTS 1. An unconscious culture guides medicine. 2. This culture perpetuates medicine’s successful treatment of diseases. 3. The culture, however, precludes needed efforts to prevent and treat chronic diseases. 4. Only a change in medical education can correct this adverse culture. A similar version of Read more about The Dangers of Medicine’s Pernicious Culture[…]

America Needs a National Institute of Healthcare Education

No one is in charge of training providers for mental health care. Key points: 1. The US has a massive mental health crisis. 2. There is a chronic, severe shortage of mental health professionals. 3. The medical clinicians who provide 85 percent of care lack training. 4. No federal agency has responsibility for health care Read more about America Needs a National Institute of Healthcare Education[…]

Poor US Mental Health Care Confirmed From a Top Authority

Dr. Thomas Insel’s new book makes poor mental health care a human rights issue. A similar version of this post was published earlier in Psychology Today. A momentous event for the mental health field occurred with publication of Dr. Thomas Insel’s new book: Healing: Our Path from Mental Illness to Mental Health (2022).1 His severe Read more about Poor US Mental Health Care Confirmed From a Top Authority[…]

We Miss Many Psychiatric Diagnoses

Disabling physical disorders often are associated with mental disorders. A similar post was made earlier in Psychology Today. In patients with chronic, disabling physical symptoms, an associated mental illness often co-exists unrecognized. When consulting their clinician, these patients typically do not offer the expected psychological symptoms needed for a diagnosis, instead focusing only on their Read more about We Miss Many Psychiatric Diagnoses[…]

How To Effectively Communicate With Others

Empathic skills pave the way to effective communication. Camille Pissarro  (1830–1903): Conversation  CC-PD-Mark A similar version of this blog was posted earlier in Psychology Today. Many have advocated using person-centered skills since the seminal work of Carl Rogers,1 but few describe the specifics, especially, for being empathic. Our Michigan State research in medical education generated Read more about How To Effectively Communicate With Others[…]

Psychiatry’s Mismatch With Primary Care

Mental illnesses in primary care often present with physical symptoms. KEY POINTS 1. Effective mental health care in medical settings requires awareness of physical symptoms as well as psychological symptoms. 2. Chronic illness patients with lifestyle limitations often have unrecognized depression, anxiety, or substance abuse. 3. Disabled, chronic disease patients typically do not offer psychological Read more about Psychiatry’s Mismatch With Primary Care[…]

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