Evaluation and Therapies
The first step toward understanding the adult patient's problems is an evaluation by a mental health professional. The evaluation consists of an in-depth interview of the patient and often of those who have close relationships with the patient. Review of any pertinent medical records is important. Special medical evaluations, laboratory or X-ray studies may be performed to further clarify a diagnosis so that the psychiatrist may formulate a personalized treatment plan.
After a thorough and complete diagnostic evaluation by members of the professional team, specific treatments will be recommended and offered. In most instances, treatments may be implemented on an outpatient basis and consist mainly of psychotherapy, psychiatric medications or a combination of both. If necessary, patients may be admitted to a partial hospital program or a full inpatient unit for more intensive treatment.
Individual therapy, including supportive counseling, insight-oriented psychotherapy, interpersonal psychotherapy and cognitive-behavioral therapy, is available. Through increased understanding of one's situation and past and present experiences, the patient is able to gain mastery over emotions and behavior. The therapist is able to facilitate this outcome through his or her guidance of the process and through the healing forces of the therapeutic relationship itself.
Group and family therapy may be the primary treatment for certain patients or serve as an adjunct to individual therapy. The ability to include both members of a troubled partnership or all members of a dysfunctional family can serve as a powerful therapeutic tool. Members of a psychotherapeutic group can offer mutual insights and support that often are not available in individual treatment alone.
Psychiatric medications can be extremely effective in controlling major symptoms of a host of mental disorders and may be the mainstay of treatment in many situations. In other instances, these medications may enable and facilitate various psychotherapeutic treatments.
Electroconvulsive therapy may be indicated for some patients and can be administered with the patient's consent during the course of hospitalization or on an outpatient basis. These treatments are performed in the hospital with anesthesia administered under the direction of faculty anesthesiologists.
For more information or to make an appointment, call (314) 977-4850.