WATCH 2011 Annual Meeting All-Access Right Here

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Women-Focused Sessions at 2011 APA Annual Meeting

Maternal Mental Health and Menopause Myths Addressed Next Month

Research has shown that nearly twice as many women as men are affected by a depressive or anxiety disorder. Sessions and workshops at the 2011 APA Annual Meeting in Honolulu will explore transitions in a woman’s reproductive life cycle linked to mood disorders and uncover ways to optimize overall mental well-being.

Sexuality and aging is one of several topics featured at the American Psychiatric Association’s 2011 Annual Meeting, when presenters examine moods, memory, and menopause. Related sessions look to debunk popular gender myths and identify effective treatments for depression, insomnia, and hot flashes. The APA’s 164th Annual Meeting, the world’s largest psychiatric meeting, will run Saturday, May 14, to Wednesday, May 18, 2011 in Honolulu at the Hawaii Convention Center.

Improving the mental health care of pregnant women and new mothers is another focus. Not always recognized as a mental health concern for women, posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is acknowledged by some as an issue new moms can face following a traumatic birth. The presidential symposium on translating neuroscience for advancing PTSD prevention, which is scheduled for Monday, May 16, will include a presentation on treating maternal PTSD. Another Annual Meeting session on optimizing maternal care will present research on treating pregnant women with bipolar disorder.

Reproductive concerns will also be addressed in a series of sessions examining the psychiatric effects of infertility, abortion, miscarriage, and genetics on women’s mental health. Gisele Apter, M.D., Ph.D. will chair a presentation on how to identify and manage antenatal maternal mental health dilemmas. Presentations on prenatal and newborn genetic screening will highlight the ethical and legal challenges surrounding psychiatric and behavioral genetics.

Several sessions focus on women’s mental health and cancer diagnosis, including new research on the psychological impact of cancer diagnosed during pregnancy. David Spiegel, M.D. will lead a presentation on how a woman’s mood can predict her survival rate with metastatic breast cancer. Additional studies showing the link between the mental attitudes of breast cancer patients and their cellular immunity will be discussed.

Online advanced registration for journalists is open. Review the guidelines for press participation in the meeting.

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