Los Angeles, CA -- (SBWIRE) -- 02/12/2014 -- It’s an established fact now that patients who do not benefit from usual psychiatric treatments or who experience unfavorable psychiatric medication side effects can respond better to treatments when psychiatric genetic testing is performed. The Los Angeles-based West Coast Life Center is a reputable name in psychiatric care and, when necessary, uses genetic testing to better personalize treatment according to the biology of their patients.
Center director Dr. Kira Stein, MD and psychiatrist Dr. Christine Tylka, MD, have been performing tests on patients in order to use genetic information to make more precise psychiatric medication choices and doses. The test procedure is rather simple. The patient is either given a plastic tube into which he/she puts a small measure of saliva, or a swab to brush the side of the mouth. The sample is then sent to a genetic laboratory for analysis. The results then come back in approximately two weeks. The information received can help doctors understand how a particular patient’s the brain works and how his/her body processes specific medications.
Why genetic tests?
Many depression patients have a gene that inhibits the alteration of dietary folate to Methylfolate, which in turn affects adversely the production of vital chemical messengers in the brain, including dopamine, serotonin, and norepinephrine. Insufficient amounts of these can limit the performance of psychiatric medications.
Other genetic tests can tell how quickly a patient’s liver enzymes digest specific medications, which help doctors tailor medication doses to a patient’s specific biochemistry. This can be helpful in patients who need medications to treat mood, anxiety, ADHD, or other emotional disorders.
Mental conditions like bipolar disorder and schizophrenia are treated with antipsychotic medicines. Testing can help guide whether or not a specific patient is more or less at risk of developing diabetes, high cholesterol, and weight gain in response to the antipsychotic medication.
In short, genetic testing results can clarify the genetic constitution of a patient, and make it easier for doctors to prescribe the right medicine in right doses, to minimize side-effects and maximize therapeutic efficacy.
“Psychiatry is going through an exciting phase right now,” said Dr. Stein, “as genetic testing can help us guide patients toward better treatments sooner.”
For more info on West Coast Life center and its genetic testing procedure, click here http://westcoastlifecenter.com/ or call 818-990-5901.
About West Coast Life Center
West Coast Life Center, http://westcoastlifecenter.com/ is a California based wellness center. West Coast Life Center has been providing compassionate psychiatric care to a wide base of patients.
West Coast Life Center