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IN THIS MONTH'S ISSUE:
November 2014

Adjunctive Atorvastatin (Lipitor) for MDD?
In a study of patients with major depressive disorder (MDD), adding atorvastatin (Lipitor) to citalopram (Celexa and others) treatment was associated with lower scores on the Hamilton Depression Rating Scale (HDRS).

Antidepressants, Pregnancy, and the Risk of Cardiac Defects
A large cohort study found that commonly prescribed antidepressant medications do not appear to carry cardiac teratogenic effects when used during pregnancy.

Psychotropics and Suicide
FDA warnings that antidepressants and atomoxetine (Strattera) could increase suicidal thinking impacted prescribing patterns and the incidence of psychotropic drug poisonings.

In Brief
Exposure to SSRIs Does Not Increase Risk of Hepatocellular Carcinoma in Patients with Hepatitis C Infection; Hyperconnectivity Exists Between Brain Networks in Young Unmedicated Remitted Patients with Depression

Antipsychotic Dose Reduction and Adverse Effects
A study of patients with schizophrenia found that decreasing the dose of risperidone (Risperdal and others) or olanzapine (Zyprexa and others) by half did not affect the rate of adverse metabolic effects.

A Message from Alan J. Gelenberg, M.D.

When I first started writing BTP in the 1970s, it was to bridge the gap between new knowledge in our field and its application to patient care. Over the decades since, the need for this bridge has become even greater. Neuroscience rockets forward. Psychiatrists and other clinicians have a broader array of treatments for patients with mental disorders than we even dreamed of back then. But we have less time to spend with patients and less time to keep up with developments that affect treatment decisions. Our medications, and those prescribed by colleagues in other specialties, are more varied, complex, and prone to interactions. What were formerly crisp boundaries between major psychopharmacologic categories are now murky.

This makes the modern practice of psychiatry challenging—but also fun and promising. With the expanding armamentarium of treatment options comes enhanced ability to alleviate suffering. The mission of BTP remains constant, even while the field grows. We are still here to bridge the gap, to make science applicable and relevant, and to help you in your day-to-day work relieve distress and improve function in patients' lives.