Medications & Psychiatry

 email page    print page

All Topic Reviews
Psychiatry Under the InfluenceAlternatives Beyond PsychiatryAmerican MadnessAmerican PsychosisAn Unquiet MindAntipsychiatryBad PharmaBefore ProzacBetter Than ProzacBiological PsychiatryBipolar, Not So MuchBlack Man in a White CoatBlaming the BrainBrain Science and Psychological DisordersBrainwashedClinical Psychopharmacology Made Ridiculously SimpleComfortably NumbCompassion and Healing in Medicine and SocietyComplete Mental HealthConcise Guide to PsychopharmacologyCrackedCritical PsychiatryCultural FormulationDeconstructing PsychosisDemystifying PsychiatryDiagnosing the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental DisordersDiagnosis: SchizophreniaDiagnostic Issues in Depression and Generalized Anxiety DisorderDimensional Models of Personality DisordersDisordered Personalities and CrimeDoctoring the MindDoctors of DeceptionDrop the Disorder!DruggedDrugs for LifeEmpirical Ethics in PsychiatryEssential PsychopharmacologyEssential Psychopharmacology of Depression and Bipolar DisorderEssentials of Psychiatric DiagnosisEsssential Philosophy of PsychiatryEthics in PsychiatryEvidence-Based Treatment of Personality DysfunctionExercise-Based Interventions for Mental IllnessFinding the Right Psychiatrist:Forces of HabitHandbook of Clinical Psychopharmacology for TherapistsHappy Pills in AmericaHealing the Soul in the Age of the BrainHelping Parents, Youth, and Teachers Understand Medications for Behavioral and Emotional ProblemsHerbs for the MindHigh PriceHippocrates CriedHistory of Psychiatry and Medical PsychologyHookedHuman TrialsInfectious MadnessInspired SleepIntoxicating MindsIs It Me or My Meds?Let Them Eat ProzacLife-Threatening Effects of Antipsychotic DrugsLitLiving with Bipolar DisorderMad in AmericaMad ScienceMalignant SadnessMedicating ChildrenMedicating Modern AmericaMental Health in Asia and the PacificMind FixersMoments of EngagementMommy I'm Still in HereNatural Healing for DepressionNo One Cares About Crazy PeopleNot CrazyOrdinarily WellOur Daily MedsOverdosed AmericaPathologist of the MindPediatric PsychopharmacologyPediatric PsychopharmacologyPediatric PsychopharmacologyPharmaceutical FreedomPharmacracyPharmageddonPharmageddonPhilosophical Issues in PharmaceuticsPoets on ProzacPower HerbsPowerful MedicinesPrescriptions for the MindProfits Before People?Prozac and the New AntidepressantsProzac As a Way of LifeProzac BacklashProzac DiaryProzac on the CouchPsychiatric DiagnosisPsychiatric HegemonyPsychiatrists and Traditional HealersPsychiatry and EmpirePsychiatry and the Business of MadnessPsychiatry as Cognitive NeurosciencePsychiatry at a GlancePsychiatry in PrisonsPsychiatry ReconsideredPsychopathyPsychopharmacology Problem SolvingPsychotropic Drug Prescriber's Survival GuidePsychotropic Drugs And Popular CulturePsychotropic Drugs: Fast FactsRaising Generation RxRe-Visioning PsychiatryRecovery from SchizophreniaReligious and Spiritual Issues in Psychiatric DiagnosisRitalin NationRunning on RitalinRutter's Child and Adolescent PsychiatrySaving NormalSchizophreniaShock TherapyShock TherapyShould I Medicate My Child?ShrinksSide EffectsSometimes Amazing Things HappenStraight Talk about Psychiatric Medications for KidsSuccessful PsychopharmacologySuffer the ChildrenTaking America Off DrugsTalking Back to ProzacTextbook of Cultural PsychiatryThe $800 Million PillThe Age of AnxietyThe Anti-Depressant Fact BookThe Antidepressant EraThe Antidepressant SolutionThe Antidepressant Survival ProgramThe Big FixThe Book of WoeThe Complete Guide to Herbal MedicinesThe Conceptual Evolution of DSM-5The CorrectionsThe Creation of PsychopharmacologyThe Cult of PharmacologyThe Dream DrugstoreThe Emperor's New DrugsThe Essential Guide to Prescription Drugs 2005The Essential Guide to Prescription Drugs 2006The Making of DSM-III®The Medical Model in Mental HealthThe Medicated ChildThe Medication QuestionThe Merck DruggernautThe Mind/Mood Pill BookThe Natural Pharmacist : Natural Health Bible from the Most Trusted Alternative Health Site in the World The Pill BookThe Pill Book Guide to Natural MedicinesThe PlaceboThe Rise and Fall of the Biopsychosocial ModelThe Sedated SocietyThe Therapist's Guide to PsychopharmacologyThe Therapist's Guide to Psychopharmacology, Revised EditionThe Truth About the Drug CompaniesThe Use and Misuse of Psychiatric DrugsThe World of CaffeineThomas S. SzaszToxic PsychiatryTrouble in MindTry to RememberTry to RememberTwilight of American SanityUnderstanding Physician-Pharmaceutical Industry InteractionsUnhingedVoluntary MadnessWarning: Psychiatry Can Be Hazardous to Your Mental HealthWhat Is Mental Illness?What Psychiatry Left Out of the DSM-5What Works for Whom?Will@epicqwest.comWomen, Madness and MedicineYour Drug May Be Your Problem

Related Topics
Concise Guide to PsychopharmacologyReview - Concise Guide to Psychopharmacology
by Lauren B Marangell, Jonathan M Silver, James M Martinez, Stuart C Yudofsky (Editors)
American Psychiatric Press, 2002
Review by Roy Sugarman, Ph.D.
Nov 12th 2003 (Volume 7, Issue 46)

This little book will warm your heart, especially if its 6.5 by 4 inch bulk slides easily into your shirt pocket, as it does in mine, nestling over my heart and protecting me from bullets, both chemical and real.

The book begins with a description of the general principles of prescribing, taking a quick look at initial evaluations, then target symptoms, and the use of polypharmacy.  Drug interactions are covered, and specifically the issues of cytochrome enzyme interactions, protein binding, absorption and excretion, and other pharmacodynamic interactions are discussed.  All of this takes just 9 Mini-me pages, so you can understand how tight the writing it, with drugs grouped on pages 6 and 7 in tables that make it easy to see what will talk to what.

Part two goes straight into antidepressants,  looking at both tricyclics, heterocyclics and newer medication overall from the point of view of mechanisms of action, indications and efficacy and clinical use, as well as risks, side effects, and their management, all of this in 10 pages, again with handy reference tables taking up four of these pages.  Newer drugs such as escitalopram, buproprion and mirtazapine all get mentions among others, and even a short paragraph on Borderline Personalities here, but nothing of reboxetine for instance, which I presume the Americans don't have yet.

Anxiolytics, hypnotics and sedatives all get similar terse treatment, looking of course at the benzodiazepines to start with, via the routes of mechanisms of action, indications and efficacy, selection, risks, side effects and management, dependence, withdrawal and rebound effects, memory impairment, and disinhibition and dyscontrol (all in the first 4 mini pages: good writing), and again with omissions, namely zopiclone for instance, again I guess not in the US market, but buspirone does appear.

Antipsychotics show up next on page 83,  with pretty much the same headings as before, except of course the paragraphs and headings related to harmful effects are much more numerous and lengthy.  Again, as before, there are omissions like sulpiride and amisulpride, its new cousin, which have been around in Europe and African for decades in one form or the other, and are unusual compounds, used to induce breastfeeding, as anxiolytics, and as of course major antipsychotics if given in sufficient dose, with the capacity to sort of be atypical, or at least 'go atypical' on us with pre and post synaptic actions depending on the dose.  Risperidone is mentioned, but not the newer long-acting injectable Contra, which may only recently have hit most markets; however, no mention is made of this relative cheap drug's potential to 'go typical' at higher doses, and this must rank as an omission.

Mood stabilizers have their time in the sun by page 123.  Noticeably sort of absent apart from passing references are topiramate, gabapentin and others, presumably again because a book published in 2002 may have been collated over a period of years, and thus come to press before most of the drugs are well know, but many books I have from that date include extensive work on such drugs, so it seems remiss to exclude them.  Likewise, and again probably because of the date of publication, the pages on Bipolar Affective Disorder are weak, and the role of lamotrigine in the depressed phase is for instance not there at all, nor are the recent updates from various authors in 2002.

The stimulants and cholinesterase inhibitors all get a look in, and if fact 29 pages covers this, or just over 10% of the book.

A useful index fills the balance of the book, and a glossary of the generic names of common American drugs is also there.

It's a nice reference though, pity about the dating and the Americo-centric writing, but that is the market for this book.

My own psychiatric registrars would find this book useful in the beginning, but discard it later in their studies, as it is a little dated, but also, in the sacrifices of heuristics, it has lost a lot of more extensive and obscure detail, and is more of value to the medical officer rather than the training specialist psychiatrist.

However it does fit nicely in the pocket, and thus has its availability heuristic philosophy prominent in its marketing from its Texan and Yankee compilers.


© 2003 Roy Sugarman


Roy Sugarman, PhD, is post of Clinical Director of the Clinical Therapies Programme in Liverpool (Sydney) and Clinical Associate Professor at the University of New South Wales.


Welcome to Metapsychology.

Note that Metapsychology will be moving to a new server in January 2020. We will not put up new reviews during the transition. We thank you for your support and look forward to coming back with a revised format.

We feature over 8300 in-depth reviews of a wide range of books and DVDs written by our reviewers from many backgrounds and perspectives. We update our front page weekly and add more than twenty new reviews each month. Our editor is Christian Perring, PhD. To contact him, use one of the forms available here.

Metapsychology Online reviewers normally receive gratis review copies of the items they review.
Metapsychology Online receives a commission from for purchases through this site, which helps us send review copies to reviewers. Please support us by making your purchases through our Amazon links. We thank you for your support!

Join our Google Group!

Interested in becoming a book reviewer for Metapsychology? To apply, write to our editor.

Metapsychology Online Reviews

Promote your Page too

Metapsychology Online Reviews
ISSN 1931-5716