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Disease vs Disorder

When Will We Solve Mental Illness? The second guidepost concerns the impact of biology.

When Will We Solve Mental Illness?

Although there are several important exceptions, measurable differences in brain biology appear to contribute only a fraction of added risk for developing persistent mental problems. Genetic inheritance surely plays a role, but it falls well short of a stand-alone “cause” in most people who receive a diagnosis. The remainder of the risk is supplied by experience: the messy combination of trauma, substance use, loss and identity crises that make up an individual’s intimate, personal history.

Biology has nothing to say about those factors, but people do. Millions of individuals who develop a disabling mental illness either recover entirely or learn to manage their distress in ways that give them back a full life. Many participants are veterans of the psychiatric system, people who have received multiple diagnoses and decided to leave medical care behind. All Disorders.

Diagnosis and Diagnoses

ADHD. AIDS. ALS. Alzheimer's. Anxiety. Aphasia Types. Apraxia: Review and Update. Autism. Cerebral Palsy. Chronic Fatigue Biomarkers. People suffering from a debilitating and often discounted disease known as chronic fatigue syndrome may soon have something they’ve been seeking for decades: scientific proof of their ailment.

Chronic Fatigue Biomarkers

Researchers at the Stanford University School of Medicine have created a blood test that can flag the disease, which currently lacks a standard, reliable diagnostic test. “Too often, this disease is categorized as imaginary,” said Ron Davis, PhD, professor of biochemistry and of genetics. When individuals with chronic fatigue syndrome seek help from a doctor, they may undergo a series of tests that check liver, kidney and heart function, as well as blood and immune cell counts, Davis said. “All these different tests would normally guide the doctor toward one illness or another, but for chronic fatigue syndrome patients, the results all come back normal,” he said.

Crohn's Disease

COVID-19-Brain. CTE. Depression. Delirium. The emergence of a syndrome-specific personality profile in young children with Down syndrome. Dyslexia. Epilepsy. Prosopagnosia - Face Blindness. Fetal Alcohol Syndrome. Confusion of Amnesia, Analgesia, and Sedation Really a Safety Issue - Anesthesia Patient Safety Foundation. General Question Has OBA Impact To the Editor I address the controversy surrounding the use of conscious IV sedation.

Confusion of Amnesia, Analgesia, and Sedation Really a Safety Issue - Anesthesia Patient Safety Foundation

The discussions continue to examine the qualifications of those prescribing and administering the agents and of those who monitor the patient’s response. The question most frequently asked is, “Is this safe for the patient?” Gerstmann Syndrome - StatPearls - NCBI Bookshelf.

Heart & Memory/Brain problems

Huntington's Disease. The Surprising Solution to the Imposter Syndrome. Korsakoff's Syndrome: A Critical Review - PubMed. In this review, we present a survey on Korsakoff's syndrome (KS), a residual syndrome in patients who suffered from a Wernicke encephalopathy (WE) that is predominantly characterized by global amnesia, and in more severe cases also by cognitive and behavioral dysfunction.

Korsakoff's Syndrome: A Critical Review - PubMed

We describe the history of KS and its definition, its epidemiology, and the lack of consensus criteria for its diagnosis. The cognitive and behavioral symptoms of KS, which include anterograde and retrograde amnesia, executive dysfunction, confabulation, apathy, as well as affective and social-cognitive impairments, are discussed. Moreover, recent insights into the underlying neurocognitive mechanisms of these symptoms are presented.


Migraine. Multiple Sclerosis. Semiology of neglect: An update. Abstract Hemispatial neglect is a common disabling condition following brain damage to the right hemisphere.

Semiology of neglect: An update

Generally, it involves behavioral bias directed ipsilaterally to the damaged hemisphere and loss of spatial awareness for the contralesional side. In this syndrome, several clinical subtypes were identified. Parkinson's Disease. Phantom limb. Prion Disease. Psychopathy. PTSD. Schizophrenia.

Self-Awareness (disorders of)

Simultagnosia. Split Brain. Spina Bifida. Stroke. Tourette Syndrome. Psychosurgeons Use Lasers to Burn Away Mental Illness. Donepezil in the Prevention and Treatment of Post-Surgical Delirium. Next-Generation Treatments for Mental Disorders. Voices `told woman' she had brain tumour. Low Activity Microstates During Sleep. Ventral Striatum - an overview. A Gating of Cortical Inputs Through the Ventral Striatum The ventral striatum has been repeatedly referred to as a gateway where information from limbic cortical circuits is integrated with information from the prefrontal cortex.

Ventral Striatum - an overview

Why do viruses often come from bats? A discussion with your friendly neighborhood virologist : science. Bidirectional prefrontal-hippocampal dynamics organize information transfer during sleep in humans. Prefrontal cortex sleep - PMC - NCBI. Long spaceflights affect astronaut brain volume. Extended periods in space have long been known to cause vision problems in astronauts.

Long spaceflights affect astronaut brain volume

Now a new study in the journal Radiology suggests that the impact of long-duration space travel is more far-reaching, potentially causing brain volume changes and pituitary gland deformation. Spider venom key to pain relief without side-effects. Molecules in tarantula venom could be used as an alternative to opioid pain killers for people seeking chronic pain relief.

Spider venom key to pain relief without side-effects

University of Queensland researchers have designed a novel tarantula venom mini-protein that can potentially relieve severe pain without addiction. Dr Christina Schroeder from UQ's Institute for Molecular Bioscience said the current opioid crisis around the world meant urgent alternatives to morphine and morphine-like drugs, such as fentanyl and oxycodone, were desperately needed. "Although opioids are effective in producing pain relief, they come with unwanted side-effects like nausea, constipation and the risk of addiction, placing a huge burden on society," Dr Schroeder said. International Journal of Neural Systems. Reel-Example: Conduction Aphasia 1. Obesity is Inflammatory Disease, Rat Study Shows. Scientists led by Dr David Fairlie from the University of Queensland, Australia, have found abnormal amounts of an inflammatory protein called PAR2 in the fat tissues of overweight and obese rats and humans.

Obesity is Inflammatory Disease, Rat Study Shows

PAR2 is also increased on the surfaces of human immune cells by common fatty acids in the diet. When obese rats on a diet high in sugar and fat were given a new oral drug that binds to PAR2, the inflammation-causing properties of this protein were blocked, as were other effects of the high-fat and high-sugar diet, including obesity itself. Zucker Rat, a pet rat that has developed diabetes as a result of a genetic disorder that causes obesity. Image credit: Joanna Servaes / CC BY-SA 3.0. “This important new finding links obesity and high fat, high sugar diets with changes in immune cells and inflammatory status, highlighting an emerging realization that obesity is an inflammatory disease,” Dr Fairlie said.

Lim J et al. 2013. Research Findings on Memory and Cognitive Impairment in ECT. Dr.

Research Findings on Memory and Cognitive Impairment in ECT

Peter Como presented to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration Neurological Devices Panel examining the reclassification of electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) devices on January 27, 2011. Role of the bed nucleus of the stria termina... [Eur J Pharmacol. 2003. Ethics Education and Psychology: British Psychological Society Critiques DSM-5.   The British Psychological Society responds to the new DSM-5. A prior blog post looked at some criticism of the DSM-5.

The British Psychological Association offers a more formal, 26-page critique. The entire document can be found here. Alien limb syndrome: A Bayesian account of unwanted actions. Alien limb syndrome has attracted a wide public interest due its unusual clinical manifestations (e.g., Mosley, 2011). The term ‘alien limb’ itself implies an enigmatic and dramatic nature of an otherwise debilitating disorder. In the clinical context, alien limb refers to the performance of seemingly purposeful or semi-purposeful movements, which patients report as independent of their own intentions or despite the lack of intention. These movements can sometimes be performed against the patient's will, in what has also been termed the ‘anarchic’ limb syndrome (Marchetti & Della Sala, 1998), as infamously but unrealistically depicted in the film Dr Strangelove (1968). The clinical reality is more prosaic, but nonetheless distressing for patients and puzzling for observers.

A Case of Right Alien Hand Syndrome Coexisting with Right-Sided Tactile Extinction. Introduction AHS is a bizarre and very rare neurological movement disorder first described by Goldstein (1908). Patients with AHS experience one of their limbs as alien, which acts autonomously and performs goal-directed movements that are not guided by the intention of the patient. For example, patients grasp for objects or touch their face without volition. Patients may even act aggressively against themselves. The alien hand syndrome. Brain Fog After Heart Failure Improves with Walking and Brain Games. The older you get, the more likely you are to worry about keeping your memory intact. If you are among the 5.7 million adults in the United States living with heart failure, a potentially fatal condition, you might have another reason for concern—brain fog, a subtle form of memory loss.1.