In recent years, there has been an explosion of research in the field of neuropsychiatry. The promulgation of clinical neuroscience milestones for general psychiatrists has further underscored the importance of familiarity with neurological and psychiatric comorbidities, neurodiagnostic methods, and neuroscience findings relevant to psychiatric symptoms. The discovery that N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDA-R) antibody-associated encephalitis may present with psychosis and other psychiatric symptoms has led to renewed interest in the possible autoimmune etiology of a range of psychiatric disorders, with exciting prospects for the use of immunological therapies in psychiatry. It is now incumbent on the psychiatrist to be able to recognize when a psychiatric presentation may be due to an autoimmune disease. Furthermore, the discovery of the C9orf72 hexanucleotide repeat expansion has revolutionized our understanding of frontotemporal dementia. This gene has been associated with psychosis and mania that may precede the onset of dementia by many years. Conversely, some patients who present with atypical symptoms of behavioral variant frontotemporal dementia do not have degenerative disease, but a “phenocopy syndrome” that may be related to a range of psychopathology, including autistic spectrum disorders, cluster C personality traits, anxiety disorders, psychotic disorders, and bipolar disorders. Functional neurological symptoms (conversion disorder) often present a challenge for clinicians, falling as they do between the conventional boundaries of neurology and psychiatry. In recent years, there has been renewed interest in understanding the related neurocircuits and developing evidence-based treatments for conversion disorder, including cognitive behavior therapy and psychodynamic approaches. This presentation discusses developments in neuropsychiatry and effective strategies in the diagnosis of functional neurological symptom disorder (conversion disorder) for the general psychiatrist.
**This content was captured at the 2017 APA Annual Meeting and may reference information from various sources and terminology from previous editions of the DSM.
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- Describe the complexities and pitfalls of the diagnosis of functional neurological symptom disorders and how to reduce stigma
- Discuss principles of treatment and how to deliver a diagnosis of functional neurological symptom disorder
Estimated Time to Complete
Estimated Duration: 30 minutes
Begin Date: December 1, 2018
End Date: December 31, 2020
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Faculty and Planner Disclosures
- Sepideh N. Bajestan, M.D., Ph.D., Clinical Associate Professor, Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Stanford Univeristy. Reports no financial relationships with commercial interests.
- Tristan Gorrindo, M.D., Director of Education, American Psychiatric Association. Reports no financial relationships with commercial interests.
- Codie Vassar, M.D., Medical College of Wisconsin. Reports no financial relationships with commercial interests.
- Ricardo A. Juarez, M.S., Director, District Branch and International Relations, American Psychiatric Association. Reports no financial relationships with commercial interests.
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