The Ghaemi Psychiatry Podcast
By Nassir Ghaemi
The Ghaemi Psychiatry PodcastSep 26, 2023
Ketamine and psychedelics: They're not transformative
Ketamine and psychedelics are getting a lot of hype, but they won't live up to it. This episode explains why, the main reason being that these treatments are just symptomatic, like tylenol or aspirin, and not disease-modifying. They thus don't have long-term benefits. They are like super-tylenol, which is not transformative for psychiatry.
Invalidity of adult ADHD - Comments and replies
In this podcast, I reply to some reactions on Twitter and by email to my prior podcast on the invalidity of adult ADD.
Episode 10: The invalidity of "Adult ADD"
Adult ADD is diagnosed frequently, but this podcast describes how it really represents other conditions, like mood or anxiety states or mood temperaments, or how it reflects normal inattention.
For further reading, see: https://psychiatryletter.com/adult-add/
Some of the cited articles are linked in that reading. All the sources also are referenced in SN Ghaemi, Clinical Psychopharmacology, Oxford University Press, 2019 in a detailed appendix chapter on ADD in children and adults.
For further general reading and links to webinars and other educational materials, go to www.psychiatryletter.com
Episode 9: Serotonin hypothesis of depression and the "chemical imbalance" theory: Much ado about little
The serotonin hypothesis of depression is false and it really doesn't matter much. The "chemical imbalance" approach to understanding and explaining medications if far too simplistic, to the point of simply being false.
Episode 8: Why DSM is mostly false
DSM is the diagnostic system of psychiatry, currently in its 5th revision. This podcast discusses why it is mostly false scientifically, and why it is important to change it.
Episode 7: Chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), American football, and the lithium cure: An interview with Jim Scarborough
Chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) is an illness that occurs with concussions and subconcussive impacts, leading to depression, manic symptoms, anger, aggression, suicidality, headaches, cognitive impairment, and eventually dementia. I have proposed that lithium can treat or prevent CTE. In this episode, I explain why and interview Jim Scarborough, who describes his family's struggle with CTE in their son and his decision to begin lithium treatment.
Episode 6: Psychiatric drugs: Symptomatic versus disease-modifying
I discuss my recent article defining psychiatric drugs in two categories: those that improve symptoms and those that affect the underlying disease process. Most psychiatric drugs are symptomatic, and not disease-modifying, and thus should be used less and short-term, in my view. Disease modifying drugs should be used more and long-term. They include lithium and other mood stabilizers.
The article has generated some discussion on the internet, including some claims with which I don't agree.
The podcast describes and clarifies the concept.
The article can be found here:
Episode 5: ADD and amphetamines: Harmful treatments for an invalid diagnosis?
I discuss my perspective that the diagnosis of ADD, in children and adults, is not scientifically valid, and give reasons why. I also explain that amphetamines, including methylphenidate (Ritalin, Adderall, which is an amphetamine), are biologically harmful to the brain and have other harms. Sources for this podcast are below:
SN Ghaemi, Clinical Psychopharmacology, Oxford University Press, 2019 - see appendix on ADD
Episode 4: Lithium - An ignored solution to suicide?
Recently the country musician Naomi Judd, who had been open about years of severe mood illness, died by suicide. Suicide rates are increasing, yet a simple proven solution is being ignored: Lithium, the only drug proven to prevent suicide. Listen to learn more.
Episode 3: Suicide and serotonin reuptake inhibitors - What a recent New Yorker article missed
Do serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SRIs) increase the risk of suicide? Why do child psychiatrists keep prescribing them despite a FDA black box warning? A recent New Yorker article highlights the problem of teen suicide, but it missed the key treatment mistakes.
Episode 2: Let's talk about depression
What is depression? How can you tell when it's an illness, or needs medication treatment, and when it isn't an illness, or needs psychotherapy?
Episode 1. Introduction to the Ghaemi psychiatry podcast
Welcome. In this first episode, I tell you a little about my background and begin with a discussion of some basic ideas about psychiatry, such as when to use medications and when to use psychotherapies. Join us for this first episode, and stick around for future ones!