Literature Monitor

Should Neurologists Treat Psychiatric Problems in Patients with Epilepsy?

Epilepsy Behav; ePub 2018 Nov; Clary et al


Giving neurologists the tools to diagnose and treat common psychiatric disorders can help meet the mental health needs of adults with epilepsy whose psychiatric comorbidities are being ignored, according to investigators from Wake Forest School of Medicine and Johns Hopkins University.

  • There is a high prevalence of psychiatric disorders among adults with epilepsy.
  • These comorbidities are often overlooked because patients have limited access to mental health services.
  • Heidi Munger Clary and Jay Salpekar suggest that letting neurologists diagnose and manage common conditions like mood and anxiety disorders will help address this dilemma.
  • The researchers suggest that validated screeners could help neurologists who do not have expertise in psychiatry to manage depression and anxiety.
  • With such assistance, adult neurologists could be trained to effectively use selective serotonin reupdate inhibitors (SSRIs).

Munger Clary HM, Salpekar JA. Should adult neurologists play a role in the management of the most common psychiatric comorbidities? Practical considerations [published online ahead of print November 22, 2018]. Epilepsy Behav.

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