The inherent bias in online reports of side effects
Mental Health

Bias in Online Stories of Psych Med Side Effects

You can find all kinds of stories online of people reporting negative experiences with different forms of psychiatric medication. However, there's inherent bias in that kind of reporting of side effects, so you really can't use that information to effectively generalize how safe or effective a treatment is. In this post, we'll look at where… Continue reading Bias in Online Stories of Psych Med Side Effects

This one flew over the cuckoo's nest: electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) in real life
Depression

This One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest: ECT in Real Life

Ask anyone of a certain age what comes to mind first when they hear the term electroconvulsive therapy (aka ECT, aka electroshock therapy, aka shock therapy), and chances are they will mention the film One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest starring Jack Nicholson. The reality is very different.

Somatic treatments for depression: ECT, TMS, DBS, tDCS, and VNS
Depression

Brain Stimulation Treatments for Depression

There are a number of non-medication, non-therapy options for treatment-resistant depression. Somatic treatments involve brain stimulation through the application of energy. ECT and TMS are the most well-known, but there are some more obscure options as well. And then there's cranial electrotherapy, which isn't in the same ballpark at all. So let's dive in! Electroconvulsive… Continue reading Brain Stimulation Treatments for Depression

options for treatment-resistant depression
Depression

Treatment-Resistant Depression: When What’s Supposed to Work Doesn’t

Wouldn't it be nice if the treatment of depression was simple?  Unfortunately, there's nothing simple about depression treatment in the real world.  Treatment-resistant depression (TRD) refers to illness that hasn't respond to trials of adequate duration and dosage of at least two antidepressants.  It may be that treatment didn't work in the first place, or… Continue reading Treatment-Resistant Depression: When What’s Supposed to Work Doesn’t

Birth of a New Brain by Dyane Harwood book cover
Book Reviews

Book Review: Birth of a New Brain

Birth of a New Brain chronicles author Dyane Harwood’s journey with postpartum onset bipolar disorder.  The story’s rich, vivid descriptions draw the reader along on the intense roller coaster ride of the author's illness experience.  Many elements of her story will be hauntingly familiar to those whose lives have been touched in some way by bipolar… Continue reading Book Review: Birth of a New Brain