Better than Prozac: Creating the Next Generation of Psychiatric Drugs by Samuel H. Barondes

Better than Prozac: Creating the Next Generation of Psychiatric Drugs

bySamuel H. Barondes

Paperback | January 26, 2005

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Every day millions of people take psychiatric drugs. In Better Than Prozac Samuel Barondes considers the benefits and limitations of Prozac, Ritalin, Valium, Risperdal, and other widely used medications and the ways that superior ones are being created. In tracing the early history of these drugs Barondes describes the accidental observations that led to their discovery and their great impact on our view of mental illness. He goes on to show how their unexpected therapeutic effects were attributed to their influence on neurotransmitters thatcarry signals in the brain and how this guided their improvement. But Barondes reminds us that, like the originals, current psychiatric drugs don't always work, and often have negative side effects. Furthermore, none were crafted as remedies for known brain abnormalities. In contrast, the design of the drugs of the future will be based on a differentapproach: an understanding of the molecular mechanisms that give rise to specific patterns of mental symptoms. Using colorful examples of contemporary research, he shows how it is gradually leading to a new generation of psychiatric medications. A lucid evaluation of psychopharmacology, Better Than Prozac offers a deep understanding of psychiatric drugs for people who take them, those who are considering them, and those who are just fascinated by the powerful effects of these simple chemicals on our thoughts and our feelings.

About The Author

Samuel H. Barondes, M.D., is Jeanne and Sanford Robertson Professor and Director of the Center for Neurobiology and Psychiatry at the University of California, San Francisco. His books include Molecules and Mental Illness and Mood Genes: Hunting for Origins of Mania and Depression, both selected as "Great Brain Books" by the Dana Alli...

Details & Specs

Title:Better than Prozac: Creating the Next Generation of Psychiatric DrugsFormat:PaperbackDimensions:240 pages, 5.2 × 7.91 × 0.51 inPublished:January 26, 2005Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:019517979X

ISBN - 13:9780195179798

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"Samuel Barondes, one of the great expositors of biological psychiatry, has done it again! He has used his wonderful knowledge of medicine and psychiatry and his insights into the biological basis of drug therapy to give us an historical overview of the development of psychiatric drugs. In sodoing, he not only explains how these drugs work and the benefits they bring, he also teaches us about their shortcomings and the roads we have to traverse to go beyond the currently available pharmacological therapies. These roads include, at their core, a better understanding of the biologicalbases of mental processes and mental disorders, areas which Barondes describes masterfully. In short, this book is a must read for those who want to know where drug therapy in psychiatry is, where it has come from, and where it is heading."--Eric R. Kandel, University Professor, Columbia University,and Nobel Laureate