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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Michael Joel Schrift, DO, MA (University of Illinois at Chicago College of Medicine)
Description: Updated with the latest studies and with an emphasis on evidence/effectiveness-based treatments, this comprehensive book, written and edited by internationally-recognized clinician-researchers, remains the gold standard of psychopharmacology references and the one I would use to teach psychopharmacology.
Purpose: This edition addresses such issues as the growing recognition of the need for not only evidence-based but also measurement-based care, the important complementary role of effectiveness studies, and translating the results of acute efficacy studies into effective maintenance strategies. The editor and chapter authors have again produced a scholarly, up-to-date, and very practical book for treating these complicated disorders.
Audience: The intended audience includes residents in psychiatry and family practice as well as the general practitioners in these specialties; psychiatric nurses, psychologists, and social workers; and other mental health professionals who are involved in caring for patients taking psychotropic medications.
Features: This edition covers all the important aspects of psychopharmacological practice, including the general principles of psychopharmacology, pharmacodynamics and pharmacokinetics, assessment of efficacy, the indications and treatment for antipsychotics, antidepressants, electroconvulsive therapy and other device-based therapies, mood stabilizers, antianxiety and sedative agents, geriatric and pediatric psychopharmacology, and other special populations such as substance dependent patients and patients with dementia or delirium. This book is unique in the way that it continues to provide stated conclusions about particular treatments based on clinical experience and evidence. Each chapter ends with relevant and timely references. I do have one criticism: it is now standard to include the financial disclosures of the chapter authors and editors, but this was missing. This is particularly relevant with the current atmosphere of public mistrust of pharmaceutical research findings.
Assessment: These criticisms notwithstanding, this book remains an outstanding learning resource for clinicians involved in the treatment of patients with mental illness. It should be required reading for all residents in psychiatry training programs.