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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Brett C. Plyler, M.D.(Northwestern Memorial Hospital)
Description: This is the eleventh edition of a guide to prescribing psychiatric medication for patients with mental health disorders.
Purpose: The purpose is to provide clinicians with practical advice on prescribing psychiatric medications in regularly encountered clinical situations.
Audience: The audience includes all clinicians who prescribe psychiatric medication. It can be used by both trainees and experienced providers.
Features: The book covers a far-reaching range of topics in its prescribing guidelines. The usual conditions are all here — schizophrenia, mood disorders, anxiety, and child/adolescent prescribing. A nice section covers special conditions — eating disorders, dementia, etc. — that are more difficult to treat. The data used to form the guidelines is composed of the latest studies, literature reviews, and expert opinions. Tables throughout each section compare and contrast different data on each medication. The book has color tabs on the sides of the pages to allow readers to quickly flip to a particular section, and the references are extensive. The book presents a large amount of information in an efficient and organized manner.
Assessment: This is an excellent reference for prescribing medications. Besides the usual, familiar treatment guidelines, it tackles more specialized topics such as how and why to switch from an SSRI to an SNRI or what medication to try next if a patient develops an elevated prolactin level on risperdone. The special patients section is also invaluable, from what to do for hepatic impairment to how useful SSRIs are in eating disorders. My problems with this book are minor. Sometimes all of the data for a particular topic is not in one section. For example, in the discussion of SSRIs, the information on treatment of sexual dysfunction is contained in the chapter on schizophrenia, and, at times, there is too much data contained in the tables. It would have been helpful in the special patients section if the page labels denoted each subsection so I could flip to the one I needed quickly. As I said, these quibbles are minor. The book is a great reference for any clinician involved in the treatment of patients with mental health problems.