Low dopamine as an underpinning cause of depression, anxiety and even addiction (illicit drugs, sex gambling) has been gaining increased recognition in research. In spite of this there are no antidepressants currently on the Australian market that address dopamine specifically and therefore patients with this pathophysiology often fall through the gaps, failing to get efficacy from pharmaceuticals.
There are a range of striking features that help to distinguish the low dopamine depressive from other types and being familiar with these can help you to identify the best treatment options. In particular the specific effects that low dopamine has on an individual’s sleep architecture, sleep patterns and dreaming can be a real light bulb moment in the consultation.
In Turning the Spotlight on the Low Dopamine Depressive Rachel takes you through the findings of a recent case of a young man with severe depression and anxiety, highlighting the key questions to ask which help to elucidate the most important information and then outlines what to do once you’ve determined low dopamine is at play.
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