Medical-Psychiatric Conditions: Treatment Management

Certain medical conditions may cause psychiatric disorders. Others may complicate the treatment of psychiatric conditions, or their treatment may be complicated by the psychiatric treatment provided. Providing holistic solutions that account for any and all psychiatric and medical conditions a patient has is key to successfully treating the patient.

Medical Conditions That Affect Psychiatric Treatment and Vice Versa

Medical conditions that may cause psychiatric symptoms or complicate or be complicated by psychiatric treatment include the following:

  • Anemia and other blood disorders
  • Brain tumors and other central nervous system (CNS) conditions
  • Cancer
  • Cirrhosis and other liver conditions
  • Endocrine dysfunction, such as hypothyroidism and hormone imbalances
  • Gastrointestinal (GI) dysfunction
  • Kidney disease
  • Lupus and other rheumatological disorders (illnesses that affect the body’s connective tissues)
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Seizure disorders

Treating Medical-Psychiatric Conditions

Treating medical conditions associated with psychiatric conditions requires an awareness of the possible connections between illnesses and knowledge of how various conditions and the medications used to treat those conditions may interact. Effective treatment often requires collaboration among medical professionals—typically, the patient’s primary care physician, psychiatrist, and one or more specialists, such as an internist, gastroenterologist, endocrinologist, rheumatologist, or oncologist.

If you or a loved one is struggling with a number of overlapping health conditions, having a doctor who can break down the silos and ensure continuity of care is very helpful. Otherwise, there is an increased risk of receiving medications and other treatments for one condition that may be contraindicated for another condition and a greater risk of potentially dangerous drug interactions.