Many mental-health conditions have bodily triggers:

The Economist
Science and technology | Brain v body

Many mental-health conditions have bodily triggers: Psychiatrists are at long last starting to connect the dots

Apr 24th 2024
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The evolving evidence of the impact of inflammatory disorders and metabolic conditions, like PANS PANDAS, on mental health conditions is discussed in the latest issue of The Economist. 


Emerging evidence suggests various infections can trigger mental health conditions like OCD, anxiety, and even psychosis, alongside inflammatory and metabolic disorders, highlighting systemic issues in psychiatry. Historically, psychiatry has focused on symptom description rather than underlying causes, with diagnoses lacking mechanistic understanding. However, a paradigm shift is slowly evolving, driven by efforts to identify neurological biomarkers and recognize mental health conditions as medical rather than purely psychiatric. Recognizing the impact of the immune system on the brain could usher in a more biologically informed approach to mental health diagnosis and treatment, finally prioritizing biology and fostering tailored and improved treatments. Integrating neurology and psychiatry could mitigate existing disparities in patient care, as there is a stark contrast in treatment options when a patient first sees immunology, neurology, psychiatry, or other disciplines of medicine. 

 

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