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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Michael Easton, MD (Rush University Medical Center)
Description: This book is part of the Weil Integrative Medicine Library series that makes the basic principles of integrative medicine accessible to clinicians and the lay audience in a variety of specialties, in this case, psychiatry.
Purpose: The intent is to educate clinicians about effective adjuncts and alternative complementary modalities so they can inform patients and make judgments on blending these therapies into existing regimens. The authors describe rationales and evidence-based approaches to the integrative therapy of mental disorders to aid in the effort to combine alternative and complementary therapies with conventional psychiatry and psychology.
Audience: The audience includes any clinicians, students, or lay persons interested in an overview of various complementary treatment modalities being used or studied in the treatment of mental disorders.
Features: The book provides a wide and at times detailed review of a large variety of complementary treatment modalities for mental illness. The first of the four sections starts with dietary guidelines, exercise, nutritional supplements, botanicals, aromatherapy, and art therapy. Section two covers healing systems including Traditional Chinese Medicine, chiropractic, and homeopathy. Section three discusses complementary treatments for specific problems such as sleep disorders, pain, and brain rehabilitation. The final section explores issues such as mindfulness, meditation, hypnosis, biofeedback, and spirituality.
Assessment: This book does a fair job of providing an overview of a wide range of complementary or alternative treatments for mental disorders. It attempts to focus on evidence-based interventions or areas that are under study. This is an extremely broad area with extensive information. The book addresses only a portion of them, but it is informative and helpful. It is useful for familiarizing readers with a number of alternative or complementary treatment modalities, but it is not organized to focus on particular treatments for specific disease states or syndromes.