Many patients with depression, bipolar disorder, and other mood disturbances do not experience full recovery—or even sufficient improvement—despite treatment with today’s highly effective pharmacologic therapies.
The reasons for such less-than-optimal outcomes are complex. Discovering them and identifying alternative or additional therapies requires more time and resources than most practitioners have available. That’s why The Institute of Living has established the Mood Disorders Consultation Service.
Not Just Response... Recovery
The Mood Disorders Consultation Service at The Institute of Living is designed to help people whose mood disorders have so far been resistant to therapy. The behavioral health community increasingly recognizes that recovery—not just response—must be the ultimate goal of therapy. Full recovery is the overarching goal of our program. We continue to work with each patient until we have identified the optimal treatment and outcome.
How We Can Help
We are available to assess, evaluate, and treat people with a variety of treatment-resistant mood disorders, including:
- Major depressive disorder
- Minor depressive disorder
- Post-partum depression
- Bipolar disorder
- Premenstrual syndrome
- Mood disturbances associated with:
- Interpersonal problems
Assessment and Evaluation
Our first step in caring for patients is to provide a comprehensive assessment and evaluation. This generally involves:
- Health history – A thorough documentation of physical and mental health and treatment history.
- Cognitive assessment – Mood disorders are often linked to undiscovered, untreated cognitive deficits. We check for such deficits using instruments specifically designed to detect sometimes subtle problems with memory, attention, and concentration.
- Psychiatric assessment – We use state-of-the-art tools to determine if the patient is affected by problems such as attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, posttraumatic stress disorder, anxiety disorder, phobias or other pathologies.
- Genotyping – We are national leaders in the science of personalized medicine (see below). By analyzing a person’s DNA, we can identify the medications best suited to his or her unique genetic makeup.
- Physical assessment – This typically includes laboratory tests to unearth any underlying problems such as abnormal cortisol or hormone levels or metabolic disorders.
Treatment Recommendations and Implementation
We recommend treatment based on the findings of our exhaustive assessment and evaluation of the patient. If the patient was referred to us by a health care professional, we provide that practitioner with a complete written report and treatment recommendations. At the referring professional’s request, we will continue to provide ongoing treatment. The Institute of Living offers a full range of treatments, including:
Personalized Medicine - the future of health care, here today
Personalized medicine is an exciting, rapidly expanding field. It uses DNA analysis—or genotyping—to tailor medication choices to an individual patient’s genetic makeup so as to achieve maximum effectiveness with minimal side effects. Hartford Hospital/The Institute of Living is at the cutting edge of this field. We are working with Genomas, a company specializing in DNA-guided medicine, to bring the benefits of personalized medicine to patients with behavioral health disorders. Genotyping is a powerful and distinctive component of the Mood Disorders Consultation Service.
Patients seen in the Mood Disorders Consultation Service are assured of receiving the highest quality behavioral health care. The Institute of Living, Hartford Hospital’s Division of Psychiatry, is one of the world’s premier psychiatric institutions. It is home to a cadre of respected and highly trained behavioral health professionals and is a global center of research and education. The Mood Disorders Consultation Service is directed by John W. Goethe, MD, an experienced and distinguished psychiatrist who is Director of the Burlingame Center for Psychiatric Research and Education at the Institute. Dr. Goethe specializes in diagnosis and treatment of mood disorders. He has lectured and published widely and has an active clinical practice.