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December 2015

Cariprazine (Vraylar)
The US Food and Drug Administration has approved the antipsychotic cariprazine (Vraylar) to treat schizophrenia and bipolar disorder in adults.

Antidepressants and PPHN
Recent research adds evidence that the use of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) during late pregnancy causes a very small increase in the risk of persistent pulmonary hypertension of the newborn (PPHN).

In Brief
Patients with Bipolar Disorder Commonly Take Dietary Supplements; Increased Mortality in Elderly Patients Lower with Second-Generation Antipsychotics

Season's Greetings
Highlights of the past year include the Supreme Court's upholding of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), new data on the role of inflammatory processes in the development of disease, and public policy changes concerning marijuana.

CME 2015
Please be sure to review the Continuing Medical Education (CME) posttest and evaluation for 2015, inserted in this month's issue.

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.