The Amen Clinics Method
“Progress is impossible without change and those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything.”
– George Bernard Shaw
The Amen Clinics Method is a multidisciplinary approach to mental and physical health that presents a true paradigm shift in the treatment of mood and behavioral disorders. We use brain imaging, targeted lab studies and the exploration of biological, psychological, social and spiritual influences to create an individualized, targeted treatment plan for each patient.
The Amen Clinics Method has been proven to get better results for patients than most conventional approaches to psychiatry, even for those with complicated cases. Founder of the Amen Clinics, Dr. Daniel Amen, outlines the Amen Clinics Method and how it has been proven to get better results for patients:
The shortcomings of conventional psychiatry
Today psychiatry is practiced by most doctors and clinics in the same way it was practiced 60 years ago: A doctor assesses your symptoms, forms a diagnosis based on those reported symptoms, then prescribes a medication at a dosage that may or may not work. From there, it’s a matter of watching to see if they got it right. Many times patients will get multiple diagnoses and prescriptions before they find relief – if at all. Treatment success rates have not improved in decades, even though technology and science have progressed dramatically.
The Amen Clinics “Four Circles” diagnostic approach
At the Amen Clinics we see the condition of every patient as a result of many influencing factors, all of which can have a meaningful impact on mental health. The Amen Clinics Four Circles include your biology, psychology, social life and spiritual life. We have designed our diagnostics to account for every circle, using several in-depth diagnostic tools:
- Detailed personal history. We spend time with each patient to understand details in every circle, taking a detailed personal history and conducting several standardized tests and surveys to objectively assess things like life satisfaction, mood, attitude, memory and focus. Through this detailed history-taking, we come to understand your family’s history, your past traumas (physical and emotional) and successes, diet and exercise habits, stress levels, social surroundings, spiritual beliefs and much more.
- Brain SPECT studies. How can we know everything that is going on with a patient’s brain unless we look at it? Images of the brain give special insight that is extraordinarily valuable and which leads to more targeted treatment and better treatment success.
Study reports 79% of diagnosis and/or treatment would have been different after the clinicians reviewed the SPECT images
In a recent study published in The Journal of Psychoactive Drugs, we gave the complete personal histories and symptom reports of 109 patients to 7 board certified psychiatrists. We asked them to provide a diagnosis and design a treatment plan for each patient based on this information, which is the typical amount of information that most psychiatrists use when they diagnose and treat patients. After the doctors provided their diagnoses and treatment plans, we provided them the patients’ brain SPECT study images. In 78.9% of cases the brain scan caused the doctors to change their diagnosis and treatment plan!
Brain images make a difference. That’s why we believe it is better that we look at your brain before prescribing medication or therapies that may make you better, but in some cases can make your condition worse.
- Diagnostic labs. Your biological state plays a powerful role in your mental health. For instance, if your hormones are out of balance, your mood and mental clarity will be out of balance, too—and no amount of antidepressants or stimulants are going to help. If deemed appropriate, we will order a set of diagnostic lab tests to measure your basic health numbers, and depending on the circumstances, we may also order genetic markers or more extensive testing.
Personalized, targeted treatment
At the Amen Clinics we understand that no two people are alike, and treatment is not one-size-fits-all, especially in psychiatry. With a complete picture of your biological, psychological, social and spiritual health, our doctors can provide personalized, targeted treatment formulated for your specific case.
Least toxic, most effective solutions
Did you know that some psychiatric medications are actually toxic for brain function? As they formulate individual treatments plans, Amen Clinics doctors follow a simple guiding precept: Find solutions that will treat the condition most effectively while imposing the least possible toxicity. We offer many natural therapies and robust support for patients as they make brain-healthy life changes. Where medication is indicated and appropriate, Amen Clinics doctors are able to prescribe them.
Higher than average success rates
Over the last 24years we have performed over 100,000 brain scans on patients from 111 countries and have seen how careful diagnosis and targeted, personalized treatment can literally and dramatically change a patient’s life.
Our experience was recently clinically confirmed in a major study involving over 500 Amen Clinics patients. They were complicated cases. On average, these patients had failed 3.3 providers, had received 4.2 diagnoses and had been prescribed 6 medications before coming to the Amen Clinics. After beginning treatment at Amen Clinics, six months later 77% of these patients were better across all measures, and 85% reported a better quality of life… and the results were even better when the patients were very compliant with their treatment plan. Compared to an average treatment success rate of 30% in conventional psychiatry, at the Amen Clinics, we get better results than any other psychiatric practice we know of. We believe this multidisciplinary approach is the future of psychiatry.
Schedule a visit
Find out if the Amen Clinics Method is right for you. Call us today at 1-888-564-2700 or tell us more to schedule an appointment.