Each patient metabolizes medications differently. That’s why they often go through a trial-and-error process before arriving at the best dose of the most appropriate medication. Shabbir A. Chowdhury, MD, at Carolina Psychiatry, PC, uses genetic testing to shorten that process and determine the treatment that’s right for you. Genetic testing also helps patients who already take medications for a mental health disorder but haven’t yet achieved optimal results. Schedule an appointment online or call the office in Fayetteville, North Carolina.
When it comes to prescribing medications to improve your mental health, Dr. Chowdhury has extensive training and years of experience that give him the ability to choose medications that are best suited for your symptoms. However, there’s a critical variable that expertise can’t overcome: Each patient metabolizes medications differently.
All the classes of psychopharmaceuticals, such as antidepressants, antipsychotics, and mood stabilizers, include numerous types of medications. Each medication has a different formula. Your body may respond well to one medication from one group, all of them, or in some cases, none of them.
Finding the appropriate dose is another variable. While medications have dosing guidelines, each patient metabolizes drugs differently, which affects the dose they need to achieve optimal symptom relief.
Due to these individual differences, you go through a period of trial-and-error to find the best medication and dose. You begin with one medication at a specific dose, then Dr. Chowdhury makes adjustments based on the changes in your symptoms.
Thanks to the evolving field of genetics, you can reduce the time spent trying medications and get personalized medical treatment that improves your symptoms as quickly as possible. When you undergo genetic testing, Dr. Chowdhury gains information about:
The results of your genetic testing may show that you metabolize specific drugs rapidly. Armed with that information, Dr. Chowdhury knows to start you at a higher dose or to prescribe more frequent doses so that your blood levels maintain the concentration needed to improve your symptoms.
You might have the opposite result. Your genetic testing may reveal that you metabolize some drugs slowly. Then Dr. Chowdhury knows to give you a lower dose to improve your symptoms while avoiding side effects.
Pharmacogenetic testing is quick and painless. Dr. Chowdhury swabs the inside of your cheeks and sends the sample to a lab for testing. When your results come back, he can customize your treatment.
To learn whether you might benefit from genetic testing, call Carolina Psychiatry, PC, or book an appointment online.