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    Unraveling the Mysteries of Resistant Anxiety and Depression: A Root Cause Psychiatry Success Story

    Imagine living with anxiety so severe that it paralyzes you, depression so deep it dims every joy. This was the reality for Anna, a 60-year-old former senior executive, whose mental health struggles seemed insurmountable despite years of conventional treatment. At Potomac Psychiatry, we approach such challenges differently. We practice Root Cause Psychiatry, delving into the intricate web of genetic, biological, and environmental factors that contribute to mental illness. This blog explores how immunotherapy, alongside a comprehensive treatment strategy, revolutionized Anna's life.

    The Root Cause Approach
    When Anna first visited us, she was accompanied by her husband Tom, a physician. Her complex medical history included severe anxiety episodes, past pulmonary emboli, and an array of neurological symptoms that puzzled many experts. Despite numerous therapies and consultations, including a stint at the Mayo Clinic, relief was fleeting.

    Our Root Cause Psychiatry approach starts with a deep dive into the patient's genetic, cellular biochemical, gut microbiome, medical and lifestyle factors, identifying underlying contributors or root cause drivers that traditional methods might overlook. For Anna, this meant exploring potential autoimmune responses and their impact on her neurological and mental health.

    Immunotherapy's Role in Mental Health
    Our investigation revealed significant indicators: elevated autoantibodies against brain and thyroid tissues and a background of tickborne disease. These findings suggested a possible autoimmune component, where Anna's immune system was mistakenly attacking her own body, contributing to her psychiatric symptoms. A positive Cunningham Panel test result, often used in the evaluation of children to help diagnose PANDAS or PANS, was a significant help in Anna’s case.

    In such cases, immunotherapy can be a game-changer. It involves using medical strategies to modulate the immune system, reducing harmful autoimmunity. For Anna, this meant considering treatments like steroids or IVIG (Intravenous Immunoglobulin) to curb the inflammatory processes affecting her brain.

    Addressing the Whole Person
    At Potomac Psychiatry, treatment is not just about alleviating symptoms but restoring wellness. For Anna, our comprehensive strategy included:

    • Modulating Gene Expression: Anna had two “Orchid Genes,” BDNF and COMT, and also a variant in ANK3 which is a sodium channel gene. We increased her BDNF levels, stabilized her COMT, and decreased the influence of ANK3 using targeted supplements.
    • Micronutrient Replenishment: Addressing her numerous deficiencies, including B vitamins and omega-3, essential for brain health and reducing inflammation.
    • Mitochondrial Support: Using supplements to boost mitochondrial function, critical for energy production and cellular health.
    • Oxidative Stress Reduction: Implementing antioxidant therapies to reduce oxidative stress markers that damage cells and tissues, by eliminating and excess of free radicals (as James Bond learned here).
    • Dietary Adjustments: An elimination diet helped identify and remove foods triggering her immune response, complementing the food sensitivity testing.

    Positive Outcomes and Moving Forward
    The results were transformative. Within months, Anna reported substantial improvements in mood and mobility. Her anxiety became manageable, and her depressive episodes lessened. As we adjusted her therapies, including the careful management of her thyroid condition and the innovative use of immunotherapy prescribed by a neuroimmunologist, Anna regained the quality of life she thought was lost.

    Conclusion: A New Dawn with Root Cause Psychiatry
    Anna's journey is a testament to the power of understanding and treating the underlying causes of mental illness. At Potomac Psychiatry, we're committed to exploring every facet of our patients' health to provide not just relief but a pathway to true healing.

    If you're struggling with treatment-resistant mental health issues, don't lose hope.

    Together, we can uncover the root causes of your symptoms and embark on a journey towards recovery and wellness.

    Contact us for a no-cost 15-minute consultation to explore Root Cause Psychiatry.
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