The harms of psychotherapy: are BME and LGBT communities more at risk?

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Keith Laws and Samei Huda mull over a recent national survey looking at patients experiences of the harms of psychotherapy. The study reports that both black and minority ethnic people and lesbian, gay and bisexual people reported higher rates of long-lasting negative effects of psychotherapy.

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What do you want from your psychiatric medication?

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John Baker presents a systematic review of preferences for medication-associated outcomes in mental disorders, which concludes that we just don’t know what value mental health service users place on the different outcomes that come from taking psychiatric medication.

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Commonly prescribed psychiatric drugs: do they work?

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John Baker summarises a review of commonly prescribed medication that covers seven psychiatric drugs, including antidepressants, antipsychotics, benzodiazepines, amphetamines, methylphenidate and cholinesterase inhibitors.

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Antidepressants: benefits and harms in children and adults

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Samei Huda discusses the findings of a recent review into suicidality and aggression during antidepressant treatment. The systematic review and meta-analyses were based on clinical study reports and included some important adverse effects of antidepressants in children and young people.

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Is the NICE guideline for bipolar disorder biased in favour of psychosocial interventions?

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Guy Goodwin reviews a new paper in the Lancet Psychiatry by Jauhar, McKenna and Laws, that calls into question the trustworthiness of the NICE bipolar disorder guidance.

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Aripiprazole for treatment-resistant depression in older adults

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Sarsha Wilson publishes her debut blog about a recent RCT on the efficacy, safety and tolerability of augmentation pharmacotherapy with aripiprazole for treatment-resistant depression in later life.

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Rivastigmine for Alzheimer’s: is a small cognitive ‘improvement’ worth the risk of feeling physically unwell?

This trial suggests that antipsychotic use can be effectively reduced in nursing homes by using a review protocol.

Rosalyn Nelson presents the latest Cochrane systematic review of Rivastigmine for Alzheimer’s disease, which brings together the results of 7 industry sponsored or funded trials, and concludes that Rivastigmine may be of benefit to people with Alzheimer’s disease.

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What impact are psychotropic drugs having on our physical health?

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John Baker summarises the findings of a recent review of people with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and depression. The study looks at the adverse effects on physical health of psychotropic drugs (antipsychotics, antidepressants and mood stabilisers).

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Combined methylphenidate and citalopram may help older people with depression recover faster

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Lisa Burscheidt summarises a recent randomised controlled trial of combined methylphenidate and citalopram for depression in older people, which presents promising but limited findings.

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The antipsychotic drugs don’t work for anorexia nervosa

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Helen Bould appraises a recent meta-analysis of second-generation antipsychotics for anorexia nervosa, which finds that the drugs don’t lead to weight gain or improve eating disorder symptoms. So why are antipsychotics being used in this group of patients?

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