Strokes and psychiatrists — (Augusta Free Press)

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Augusta Free Press

by Chris DeWald

Published Sunday, Oct. 16,  12:30 pm

I have to admit that before I went to a psychiatrist, just the word psychiatrist brought many negative conceptions.  You have to be “not in your right mind” or “close to the edge” to see one of “those” guys.  My concept was wrong.

My psychiatrist has primary interest in psychopharmacologic management, Diagnosis, and inpatient acute management. He also has interests in forensic psychiatry and rehabilitation psychiatry.

OK, what the heck is psychopharmacologic management?  Besides being a tongue twister?  The program provides answers to difficult behavioral health pharmacy challenges, including medication non-adherence, contraindicated prescriptions, supra- and sub-therapeutic dosing, and other problem prescribing patterns.

By ensuring the right drug, at the right dose, for the right patient, at the right time, we can:

•Improve care quality and cost by reducing deviation from evidence-based pharmacy practices

•Improve patient safety and health outcomes

•Increase member compliance to psychotropic medication use

•Monitor and manage pharmacy costs

So, I should never have had any negative conceptions.  Seeing a psychiatrist is actually seeing a “medical” doctor.  This doctor can prescribe medication.  So now we have another confusing term associated with psychiatrist and that being a psychologist. A psychologist has the study of human behavior and mental processes. Psychology is sharply divided into applied and experimental areas. However, many fields are represented in both research and applied psychology.

What the blazes did I say? Allowing for thinking it as KISS ( Stands for Keep it simple, sir), a psychiatrist is a certified medical doctor that can give you a prescription.  So you can remember it as I do. A psych-high-a-trist does just that.  He does not make you high, just a way to remember.

So now we know we have an expert that is a medical doctor that analyzes your medications to your symptoms.  I take 12 different meds in a 24-hour period of time.  Each one is needed to keep me alive, but one was out of sorts for the damaged areas that my brain stem strokes removed.  In May 2006, I was prescribed a depression medication.  This seems to be a standard regimen for all stroke survivors.  Someone with a white coat decided that this should be protocol for “all” stroke survivors.  That’s wonderful, I thought for the last five years.  Prevention is great but I never got that depression for the medication.  I got depressed as my symptoms manifested into another form I could not control.  I had no logical thought processes.  I had instant solutions to situations that were wrong.  These were so abstract wrong, but it was so natural that I as a person and a human being could not see what I was doing.  I was impulsive to such a degree it became a natural state for me.

The neuropsychiatrist spent hours with me and it was evident in his report.  I saw myself for the first time in print.  The neurologist agreed with his findings.  The psychiatrist first did his evaluation and then the neuropsychiatric report was reviewed.  He agreed with the analysis.

So now what?  I was on the wrong medication it is believed.  I am now being weaned off a depressant and put on a mood stabilizer.  I need to be unconfused and thinking straight before any dissection of me can proceed so I know what’s happening and why.   This is a good start and gives me better hope that I can get out of this train tunnel to hades.

So my friends get rid of the idea that to see a psychiatrist you have to be a brick short, harm to yourself or others, or believing your close friends will “brand” you with an evil term.  If they do, they were not your friends at all.   Remember me typing the word KISS?  Can it all be just as simple as a medication review?  For many no, but why go through life not knowing if it can be an easy solution?

I shall keep you in line with this.  During this I had a visit with the ENT doctor.  That would have been my article but this is more important.  Anyone ever think you can get a cyst in your nose.  Maybe don’t think about it…Live all this junk through me…Night folks.