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Advances in Mental Health

Welcome to Advances in Mental Health, a blog developed by McLean Hospital featuring commentary on mental health topics in the news, opinions by hospital thought-leaders and discussion about local, regional and national mental health policy. Advances in Mental Health provides our community with an opportunity to educate, while working toward reducing and ultimately eliminating the stigma of mental illness.

Pictured: McLean's Lois Choi-Kain, MD, medical director of McLean Gunderson and Stephanie Pinder-Amaker, PhD, director of the College Mental Health Program.


Dr. Jim Ellison weighs in on the new film "Still Alice" and its portrayal of early onset Alzheimer’s Disease

By Jim Ellison, MD, MPH

Some five percent of people afflicted with Alzheimer’s show mental deterioration before age 65 and while Alzheimer’s disease is one of the most feared illnesses among our rapidly increasing aging population, newer research findings suggest that we may be thinking about “early onset” and “late onset” in the wrong way.

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"Recent research into biomarkers leads us to the frightening realization that every case of Alzheimer’s disease is “early onset.” At first glance, this will seem an outrageous statement, but consider what we now know about this disorder. "

~Jim Ellison, MD, MPH

Advances in Mental Health

Using the Right Strategies, New Year's Goals Are Attainable

This New Year's Eve, millions of Americans will resolve to lose weight, give up smoking, save money, do volunteer work, or find a new job. Chances are, they made the same resolution last year and the year before. Research shows that nearly 90...

A Crisis Point: Staving Off the Epidemic of Opiate Use

We have all heard about the recent rash of opiate overdoses that many have termed an “epidemic.”  Earlier this month, numbers from the Minnesota Department of Health revealed that overdose deaths from opiates, including...

Death of Robin Williams Puts Spotlight on Suicide

We are all stunned and saddened by the apparent suicide of actor and comedian Robin Williams and our collective hearts go out to his family, friends and fans. While we remember his enormous talent and the joy that he brought so many of us...

Leading the Way in Psychiatry and Mental Health

This blog originally appeared on

These are both very exciting and challenging times in the field of psychiatry and mental health. It is progressively well appreciated that diseases of brain and behavior are among...


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