What Do You Consider to Be the Top Medical Advances of the Past 20 Years?

Ryan Syrek, Editor

Disclosures

May 27, 2015

Genetics of mental disorders: Understanding of the genetic makeup of patients with various mental disorders is a growing area that is likely to improve the specificity and efficacy of therapies.

Proliferation of cognitive therapy: Cognitive therapy techniques are now used to treat substance abuse and psychotic disorders, in addition to anxiety and depression.

Advances in neuroimaging: Functional MRI and PET have amplified the ability to comprehend normal and pathologic brain function.

Destigmatization: Thanks to greater publicity and support for confronting these challenges, identifying and getting treatment for mental disorders is much less a source of shame than it was two decades ago.

Old drugs, new data: Over the past 20 years, new data have emerged that support the efficacy of older drugs used to treat psychiatric conditions. Such findings as lithium having a role in prevention of suicide and relapse of bipolar disorder, and the reintroduction of clozapine for treatment-resistant schizophrenia, represent major advances.

Top psychiatry advances selected by David Bienenfeld, MD, Professor, Departments of Psychiatry and Geriatric Medicine, Boonshoft School of Medicine, Wright State University, Dayton, Ohio.

For more on the ways in which old drugs are being combined with new data, read here.

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