Tag Archives: Valproic acid

Information about Bipolar Disorder for Patients and Families

Bipolar disorder, also called manic-depressive disorder, is a recurrent illness in which the individual’s mood cycles between depression and mania with periods of normality. The illness is a mood disorder. The individual’s moods may swing from manic euphoria, with boundless energy in pursuit of grandiose plans, to depths of depression, with feelings of despair and… Read More »

Pharmacological Treatment of Pain

While medications are often prescribed for all types of chronic pain, research has consistently shown that several classes have proven efficacy for the treatment of neuropathic pain. Ideally, pharmacotherapy of pain would be specifically selected on the basis of considerations of etiology (e.g., ischemic, neuropathic), pathophysiology (e.g., demyelination, central pain), and anatomy (e.g., C fibers,… Read More »

Dissociative [Conversion] Disorders

Description of Medical Condition A sudden change in state of consciousness, identity, motor behavior, thoughts, feelings and perception of external reality to such an extent that these functions do not operate congruently. Many pathologic symptoms can be found, but the patient experiences dysphoria, suffering, and maladaptive functioning. Disorders include: • Dissociative amnesia • Dissociative fugue… Read More »

Adjunctive Pharmacotherapy and Related Issues

Managing antipsychotic side effects. Antipsychotic drugs produce problematic side effects in many individuals (see Table Side Effects of Typical Antipsychotic Drugs). A major category of side effects results from neurotransmitter dysregulation of the extra-pyramidal motor system. It is thought that these side effects are the result of an imbalance of dopaminergic and acetylcholinergic activity in… Read More »

Discontinuation Of Antipsychotics And Switching Of Antipsychotics

The staying power of atypical antipsychotics is poor. In the CAFE and CATIE reports three out of four patients discontinued the initial medications during 12 months and 18 months, respectively, because of lack of effectiveness or tolerability problems. Winnas (2003) asserts that the two most compelling reasons to switch antipsychotics in the treatment of adults… Read More »

Bipolar Disorder – Chronic Illness

Etiology and Pathophysiology Bipolar disorder is a chronic illness characterized by recurrent episodes of aberrant mood. Episodes may manifest with symptoms of mania, hypomania (a less severe form of mania), depression, or a mixture of both depression and mania. Mania is characterized by persistently elevated, expansive, or highly irritable mood that typically lasts for at… Read More »

Chronic Illness: Current Therapies

The main goal of bipolar disorder drug treatment is to establish euthymia (stable mood with a persistent sense of well-being) without inducing mania or rapid cycling (i.e., four or more mood episodes in a 12-month period). For this reason, drug treatment usually consists of an agent or, more frequently, combinations of agents that exert both… Read More »

Chronic Illness: Emerging Therapies

Few new drugs are in clinical development for the treatment of Bipolar disorder. Most agents in clinical trials for this disorder (e.g., Bristol-Myers Squibb’s aripiprazole, Novartis’s oxcarbazepine, AstraZeneca’s quetiapine, Janssen’s risperidone, Ortho-McNeil’s topiramate, Pfizer’s ziprasidone) are already available in the major markets (United States, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, United Kingdom, and Japan) for the treatment… Read More »

Specific Migraine-Preventive Agents: Anticonvulsants

Anticonvulsant medication is increasingly recommended for migraine prevention, because it was proved to be effective by placebo-controlled, double-blind trials. With the exceptions of valproic acid, topiramate, and zonisamide, anticonvulsants may interfere substantially with the efficacy of oral contraceptives. Nine controlled trials of five different anticonvulsants were included in the AHCPR Technical Report. Carbamazepine The only… Read More »

Schizophrenia: Other Pharmacological Treatments

Because antipsychotic medications often fail to resolve the full range of schizophrenic psychopathology and other common symptoms (e.g., anxiety, depression, mood instability, motor unrest), adjunctive treatments are commonly tried. Adjunctive pharmacological treatments in patients with schizophrenia have been the subject of numerous reviews (). In addition, some psychotropic medications other than antipsychotics have been used… Read More »