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World of Psychology


Brain and Behavior

The iPhone Throws Away Usability for Cool Factor

We usually don't write about technology usability issues or ergonomics in this blog, but from time to time a technology or ergonomics issue comes across our desk that seems so blindingly, obviously stupid, we have to write. The Economist published this love letter to Apple and we just couldn't stand it any longer. Take this meaningless passage:


Apple illustrates the importance of designing new products around the needs of the user, not the demands of the technology. the iPhone is not the first...

Depressed Neighbor? Okay. Depressed Teacher? No Way

Earlier this week, at the start of their annual meeting, Mental Health America (formerly known as the National Mental Health Association) released findings from an attitude survey they funded last fall. Most of the findings are pretty much what you expect -- Americans are a lot more accepting of mental health issues and disorders these days than they were 10 years ago, but such issues still lag behind the acceptance of general health conditions, such as diabetes or cancer.

For instance, Americans are...

Research Update: Psychotherapy and Depression

Four studies published recently in depression and bipolar disorder suggest some different and unique benefits of psychotherapy. This is a long entry, so you'll have to "read more" to get the full story.

Treatment Resistance in Depression



Lekin and associates examined 240 patients with moderate-to-severe major depressive disorder to see how cognitive therapy helps in people who have tried various types of antidepressant medications (without relief from their depression):


Recent research suggests that there may be a reduction in therapeutic response after multiple administrations...

The Psychiatrists Are Meeting

It's mid-May, so it must be time for the annual meeting of the American Psychiatric Association, or as we like to call them, the "little APA" (because it has one-third the membership of the American Psychological Association). And with its annual meeting comes the annual flurry of press releases sent to us to alert us to all the fascinating new studies announced that find that existing medications are useful for a whole bunch of other things too! Yay!

Seroquel XR



A study was presented today...

Did Medications Drive Ann Bauer’s Son Crazy?

There's a lot of things in life that can drive a person "crazy." Relationships, work, heck, even mental illness.

But in an article entitled, Psych meds drove my son crazy (also see Digg discussion), Ann Bauer makes the leap of logic into having the reader believe that, without a doubt, psychiatric medications led to his "crazy" behaviors. They absolutely may have, I agree with that.

But she puts none of his reactions or behaviors onto the fact that her son was depressed...

Brooke Shields on Postpartum Depression

Brooke Shields speaks candidly to ABC News about her own postpartum depression (PPD) experience after the birth of her first child. An edited transcript of this video follows below:

Shields: I was not really aware that I had it [postpartum depression]. It was devastating to my whole family. I had gone through numerous attempts to have a baby and when I did finally have this perfect, beautiful, healthy baby and it all but destroyed me. I couldn't hold...

Are In-Store Clinics an Answer?

The Boston Globe yesterday published an editorial arguing that in-store clinics are no quick fix:


CVS's basic premise for the concept is that people's lives have become too busy for doctors visits, and that patients are too impatient to wait the days or weeks it takes to get an appointment. So customers can head to the clinic at their local CVS, the first of which is proposed for Weymouth, and for $59 and a wait of under 20 minutes, they can get to see...

Crime, Consequences and Mental Illness

Sometimes you wake up feeling refreshed from a good night's rest. Other days you wake up feeling a little groggy and less put together.

I can only hypothesize that the latter occurred when the author wrote this post in response to our post pointing out the flaws of associating violence with mental illness based upon the CATIE data.

One of the biggest problems with the violence study done on the CATIE data, which I didn't explictly mention in my prior post (but which...