APM Annual Meeting 2015 Highlights: Day 3

Telephone timeSo I appreciate the great advice from my former teacher, Dr. Bill Yates, MD on the value of the smartphone, coming on the heels of finding out that the Academy of Psychosomatic Medicine (APM) now has an APM App for navigating their extraordinary meetings.

I’m thinking about it.

Highlights from today’s meeting have to include the the workshop “Humor as a Potent Tool for the Consultation Psychiatrist” which helps me understand my own use of humor on my blog. That reminds me; I’ve gotten a couple of new Patient Alerts from the Clozapine REMS Program on patients who are managed by other doctors and TO WHOM THESE MESSAGES OUGHT TO GO, PLEASE!Dr. Amos on phone 2

Now that’s a load off my mind. Seriously, humor can be an important way to convey a physician’s personhood to patients as well as faciliate teaching trainees. One attendee asked a great question about whether it’s possible to teach trainees to use humor or whether it’s a genetically determined skill.

There’s probably no clear answer, but I suspect it runs in families, as a modeled trait at least.

I did think a workshop on writing and reading called “Narrative Medicine in Clinical Practice: Reading, Writing, Reading” was very well done. Dr. Rita Charon, MD, framed it around a piece of literature and invited people to write a little something from their own experience. Some of the pieces were very powerful.

I keep wondering how we can transfer these skills to working on the Electronic Health Record (EHR).

The afternoon session yesterday of the pre-conference course, Essentials of Psychosomatic Medicine, was excellent.

Dr. James Levenson gave a superb presentation on “Psychiatric Issues in Dermatology,” reminding us that there is no evidence that Pimozide works any better than any other antipsychotic for Delusional Infestation (a better name in his opinion than Delusional Disorder, Somatic Type).

Dr. Sanjeev Sockalingham updated us on what’s new in the treatment of patients with eating disorders, indicating that a new book “CBT for the Treatment of Obesity” by Fairburn is out as well as another on mindfulness for treatment of binge eating disorders.

Dr. Rebecca Brendel updated us about selected “Legal Topics” and the take-home message was “Think clinically not legally.”

Dr. John Shuster, in his talk about “Palliative Care” discussed the importance of ensuring non-abandonment for terminally ill patients, distinguishing fear from anxiety around issues at the end of life, and reminded us that “It is possible to die healed.”

Dr. Stephen Nicholson gave a very thorough talk about Neuropsychiatric Assessment at the Bedside,” indicating that the Mini-Cog and Months Backward Test are pretty good assessments of some aspects of executive function. I’ll have to do more investigation of the EXIT25 Interview which might correlate with decisional capacity.

Hey, it’s not all work. My wife and I actually got out to the Riverwalk and strolled through the French Quarter. Now that’s what I call atmosphere! Pictures will be coming later!

We had a lot of fun at very un-pricey place for beer and pizza, Gordon Biersch, just down the street from our hotel. Their motto is “Every Guest. Every Time.”

Are you wondering why you’re not an APM member yet?

Beignet! I almost forgot; We ate our first beignets today, for breakfast!

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