Non-Traditional Approach

Dennis B. Kottler, MD

Westlake Village, CA

Appointments:   818-991-8376 


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Many patients describe conditions that defy traditional diagnosis.  Consider this patient's description of his condition:

"I feel fuzzy many days.  My thinking has a "disconnect" that interferes with organizing my thoughts.  I also get very uncomfortable when dealing with a group of people.  I feel sad and frustrated many days.  However, other days seem a lot better for no particular reason.  I have tried many antidepressants and anti-anxiety drugs without much change in my feelings. I have had this condition as far back as I can remember."

Is this patient suffering from depression, an anxiety disorder, a thought disorder, or something for which there is no diagnosis and no particular explanation?

In these situations, "mainstream" psychiatry assigns words like "atypical" or "not otherwise specified" to DSM IV diagnostic categories or expands categories with such descriptions as "OCD Spectrum Disorders," or "Bipolar Spectrum Disorder."

In fact there are many troubling and distressing conditions that lie outside "cookbook" descriptions and treatments.  In such situations a more flexible approach is needed, looking at multiple causes ranging from psychological to chemical and employing a diversity of treatment approaches, often in an empirical approach (trial and error).  When the treatment hits a roadblock, back up and try something else.  

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Appointments:  818-991-8376