Patients Driving Need for Psychiatrists to Learn More About Genetics

SAN DIEGO—Psychiatrists need more knowledge of genetics because patients are coming to them armed with questions, and often their own genetic test results. But provider training has lagged, and the use of genetic data to inform treatment remains a work in progress, Indiana University Professor of Medicine John Nurnberger Jr., MD, PhD, said at Psych Congress 2019 .

Still, Dr. Nurnberger told a session audience that genetic research evidence, particularly in pharmacogenomic analysis of medication options, continues to grow more positive. While it may be too soon to recommend routine ordering of patient genetic tests for diagnosing a disorder or prescribing a treatment, many potential applications merit psychiatrists’ attention, he said.