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 Neurobiology Considerations Case Study: SuzySuzy is a 27-year-old Caucasian woman with no children. At age 8, she witnessed her mother’s overdose of prescription pain medication. Her mother subsequently recovered but was addicted to prescription pain medication throughout Suzy’s childhood. Suzy’s father did not live with them. Suzy’s mother suggested that this was because of his alcoholism. Rage-filled fights between her parents were commonplace for Suzy since she was an infant. Over the last several years, Suzy has become increasingly anxious. It seems that she is always on edge and worried. In fact, her doctor suspects she may have generalized anxiety disorder. She has been referred to your counseling clinic in hopes of getting better. During the first session, you learn that Suzy abuses alcohol frequently—six to seven drinks at least three times per week. Suzy believes she will have trouble coming to counseling if she does not have medication to help calm her down enough to “sit still.” 

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Developing appropriate pharmacological treatment  plans requires medical and mental health professionals to consider all  potential factors that may be contributing to the client’s  psychopathology. Contributing factors may include family history of  mental illness (Preston, O’Neal, & Talaga, 2010), personal history,  life circumstances, and drug abuse. Additionally, neurotransmitter  malfunctions (genetic or self-induced) may manifest as diagnosable  mental illnesses. Mental health care teams (e.g., counselors, medical  doctors, psychiatrists, psychologists, social workers, and support  teams) need to consider all of these factors in diagnosing and treating  psychopathology.
For this Discussion, review  the document “Neurobiology Considerations Case Study: Suzy” found in  this week’s Learning Resources and consider the recommendations you  might make to treat Suzy.

Post a brief description of the  possible pharmacological recommendations for treating Suzy. Explain any  neurobiological considerations that inform your recommendations.  Explain the benefits and limitations of your recommendations. Justify  your recommendations based on the Learning Resources and current  literature.
Be sure to support your postings and responses with specific references to the Learning Resources.

Lichtblau, L. (2011). Psychopharmacology demystified. Clifton Park, NY: Delmar, Cengage Learning.
Chapter 1, “Neuroanatomy and Neurophysiology” (pp. 1–18)
Preston, J. D., O’Neal, J. H., & Talaga, M. C. (2017). Handbook of clinical psychopharmacology for therapists (8th ed.). Oakland, CA: New Harbinger.
Chapter 3, “Neurobiology” (pp. 29–43)
Chapter 4, “Pharmacology” (pp. 45–56)
Chapter 9, “Anxiety Disorders” (pp. 107-122)

National Institute of Mental Health. (2016). Mental health medications: Overview. Retrieved from https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/topics/mental-health-medications/index.shtml

National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke. (2014). Brain basics: Understanding sleep. Retrieved on from http://www.ninds.nih.gov/disorders/brain_basics/understanding_sleep.htm#sleep_disorders

Document:  Neurobiology Considerations Case Study: Suzy (PDF)
Use this case study for this Week‘s Discussion and Assignment as you prepare a treatment plan for Suzy.

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