43% of Americans Risked Their Brain Health for Flu Shots – Did You?

By Dr. Mercola

About 43 percent of the U.S. population opted to get a flu shot last season, a trend that has unfortunately been steadily increasing in the last several years.

According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 8 million more people received the flu shot in 2010, which CDC director Dr. Thomas Frieden told Fox Newsi “is the most people who have ever been vaccinated in this country.”

Most likely, this is a direct result of the massive marketing campaign that is ongoing in the United States, encouraging every person 6 months and older to get a flu shot.

Full article here: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2011/11/24/more-people-getting-flu-shots.aspx

Psychosis may be triggered by antibody reaction to brain protein

A new study published in the journal Biological Psychiatry investigates the role antibodies may play in cases of psychosis, suggesting that psychosis symptoms such as hallucinations and delusions may be triggered by an antibody response to a protein in the brain.
illustration of brain
According to the researchers, their findings provide “hope that major disability can be prevented for the subset of children experiencing acute psychosis with antibodies.”

It is well known that antibodies defend the body against bacteria and viruses, and that in some people antibodies also attack healthy cells, causing autoimmune disorders.

Less well known is the role autoimmune disorders may play inpsychosis. However, scientists have been aware of a link between immune abnormalities and psychosis for over 100 years.

Only recently, though, have scientists been able to pinpoint the specific mechanisms in the immune system that appear to influence psychosis symptoms, such as the mechanism identified in the new study.

The authors of the new study found an antibody reaction to the dopamine D2 receptor or the N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) glutamate receptor among a subgroup of children experiencing their first episode of psychosis, but no similar antibody response among healthy children.

Full story at:  http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/290534.php


Zika virus may cause broader range of brain disorders than previously believed

Study says five patients who tested positive for virus in Brazil reported difficulty with motor functioning while another had trouble with vision and memory

The Zika virus may cause a wider range of brain disorders than previously thought, according to a small study released on Sunday. Scientists already suspect the mosquito and sex-spread virus causes fetal brain disorder and temporary paralysis.


Zika May Increase Risk of Mental Illness, Researchers Say

Misdiagnosis of schizophrenia in a patient with psychotic symptoms.

Misdiagnosis of schizophrenia in a patient with psychotic symptoms.



A case is presented of a 37-year-old black woman with a 5-year history of a chronic psychotic illness, diagnosed as schizophrenia, who presented to the emergency room complaining of a severe headache, while appearing confused and experiencing visual and auditory hallucinations. The purpose of this case study is to illustrate the way in which the appellation of schizophrenia can be misapplied in a patient with a complicated medical history and poor follow-up evaluation and treatment.


Patients with active psychosis are frequently unable to provide a coherent or comprehensive medical history. In the absence of obvious indications to the contrary, a diagnosis of a primary psychiatric illness is often assumed, especially if this label has been applied in the past. However, the differential diagnosis of psychosis is extensive.


This patient was given a complete psychiatric and neurologic evaluation, and aspects of the history that had been lost or ignored were uncovered and reevaluated.


A diagnosis other than schizophrenia was made and another treatment, other than antipsychotic drugs, was initiated. The patient responded rapidly with improved cognitive function and resolution of her psychotic symptoms.


This case serves to illustrate how the absence of a careful clinical assessment and historical case review, in patients who have been previously labeled as schizophrenic, can perpetuate misdiagnoses and inappropriate treatments. It highlights the importance, especially in patients with an incomplete medical history, of ruling out all organic causes of psychosis to avoid inappropriately labeling someone as having a psychiatric illness.


The Mind Of A Mass Murderer: Charles Whitman, Brain Damage, And Violence (VIDEO)

On August 1, 1966, Charles Whitman murdered his mother and his wife before traveling to the campus of the University of Texas, climbing inside the tower, andkilling fourteen others. He was dubbed the infamous UT sniper, but his story involves much more than Marine Corps training and a proclivity for violence. In fact, Whitman complained of headaches and an altered mental state in the days and weeks leading up to the killings. His own suicide note read that “I do not really understand myself these days. I am supposed to be an average reasonable and intelligent young man. However, lately (I cannot recall when it started) I have been a victim of many unusual and irrational thoughts.”


Whitman knew that something was wrong. His note further reads, “After my death I wish that an autopsy would be performed on me to see if there is any visible physical disorder.” And indeed there was. Whitman was found to have aglioblastoma, a type of brain tumor, pressing against regions of the brain thought to be responsible for the regulation of strong emotions.


See full story here

Inhaled Steroid–Induced Mania in an Adolescent Girl: A Case Report

To the Editor: Beclomethasone is a synthetic, halogenated glucocorticoid with anti-inflammatory and vasoconstrictive effects. Its inhaled form is used for the treatment of asthma, allergic and nonallergic rhinitis, and viral croup.1 It accomplishes this by inhibiting leukocyte infiltration and suppressing the humoral immune response. The mechanism of the anti-inflammatory properties of corticosteroids is believed to involve phospholipase A2 inhibitory proteins and lipocortins, which regulate the biosynthesis of inflammatory mediators such as prostaglandins and leukotrienes.2 Excretion of beclomethasone is mainly fecal, and, generally, the drug is well tolerated. The risk of adrenal suppression is more associated with the usage of systemic steroids.3

Psychiatric symptoms associated with corticosteroid therapy include mood swings, mania, hypomania, and depression.4 Mania and hypomania are more common than depression.4 The association of adverse psychological side effects with the use of oral and systemic steroids has been well documented in both the adult and the pediatric populations.413 To our knowledge, there are at least 6 case reports published in which the isolated use of inhaled corticosteroids (beclomethasone dipropionate and budesonide) led to the development of psychiatric symptoms in the pediatric population.12,1419 In most cases, symptoms occurred in the first week, and the most commonly reported symptoms are insomnia, aggressiveness, uninhibited behavior, mania, irritability, and increased energy.12,1419 In most cases, the symptoms resolved after discontinuation of the drug, switching to another drug, or decreasing the dosage.12,1419

Case report. Ms A, a 16-year-old white girl with no significant past psychiatric history, presented to an outpatient psychiatric clinic in 2010 with acute mania. The patient had grandiosity (“God gave me the mission to save the world”), flight of ideas, impulsivity (self-mutilating behavior), racing thoughts, pressured speech, decreased need for sleep, and high energy. On mental status examination, she reported a euphoric mood and described delusions of grandiosity. She denied experiencing any hallucinations. She had pressured speech and her affect was mood-congruent.


read more here:  http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3184585/