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The study of drugs that effect a person's thinking, behaviors or emotions.
4 areas of social work knowledge/ practice impacted by pharmocology
1) Understanding- the effectiveness of medications in symptom reduction. 2) Monitoring- physical, psychological, and social side effects/ consequences. 3) Educating clients/ families about physical and psychological adjustments. 4) Communicating with physicians and pharmacists.
Entirely devoted to processing visual input.
Areas of the brain targeted by psychotropic medications
never pathways involved in thinking and feeling. Many other Brain areas.
Parietal Lobes (L.I.S)
Involved in Long-term memory, info processing, and receive sensory information from the body (L.I.S).
Temporal Lobes (H.P.S)
Hearing, Perception, and storage of memory (H.P.S).
Basic Functions of the Brain (R.D.I)
Receive- info from outside. Decide- use the information to decided on a response. Implement- send commands to various muscles and glads to enact a response.
- Important center of learning. Converts information from short term to long term memory.
- Located in the midbrain
- Helps regulate movement.
- Site at which dopamine is depleted in Parkinson's disease.
- Motivational and addictive behavior.
- Connects the cerebral cortex to other parts of the brain.
- Impacted by stimulants.
- Located on both sides of the Limbic system/ brain.
7 processes of Neurotransmitters: Step 1.
Neurotransmitter molecules are synthesized from precursors with the help of enzymes.
7 processes of Neurotransmitters: Step 2
Neurotransmitter molecules are stored in vesicles.
7 processes of Neurotransmitters: Step 3
Neurotransmitter molecules the leak from vesicles are destroyed by enzymes.
7 processes of Neurotransmitters: Step 4
Action potentials cause vesicles to fuse with the pre-synaptic membrane and release neurotransmitters into the synapse.
7 processes of Neurotransmitters: Step 5
Neurotransmitters bind with auto-receptors and inhibit neurotransmitter release.
7 processes of Neurotransmitters: Step 6.
Neurotransmitters bind with the post-synaptic receptors.
7 processes of Neurotransmitters: Step 7
Neurotransmitter molecules are deactivated either by reuptake or made into waste (degradation).
Study of how the human body responds to drugs.
One reason why pharmacokinetics is important
It helps explain why some people respond differently to the same drugs
4 bodily processes involved in pharmacokinetics
- 1) absorption
- 2) distribution
- 3) metabolism
- 4) excertion
Process by which the drug enters the blood stream. Typically through the bowel walls.
How a drug travels to the desired sight (the brain for psychotropic drugs). Most commonly by dissolving in the blood plasma or becoming attached to plasma proteins.
Is how the body breaks down the drug. Usually done by liver enzymes; molecules are altered from lipid-soluble substances into water-soluble salts, making theme easier to excrete.
How the drug is eliminated from the body by both metabolism and excretion, which lower the concentration of a drug in the body.
Important factors related to excretion
Blood level, steady state, peak (plasma) level, Clearance, halflife.
Body fluids involved in excretion.
Typically urine or bile, although sweat, feces, saliva, tears, and even milk in lactating women can play a role.
Study of how drugs effect the body.
Important concepts involved in pharmacodynamics.
- 1) Therapeutic Index
- 2) Dose Response
- 3) Lag Time
- 4) Side Effect
Individual characteristics that impact drug effect.
- Age (efficiency of metabolism)
- Weight (rate of absorption)
- Gender/Sex (hormonal difference)
- Any organ problems or diseases.
is the ratio of the lowest average concentration needed to produce a desired effect and the lowest average concentration that produces toxic effects.
High Vs. Low therapeutic index
A high therapeutic index implies that a drug is relatively safe, a drug with lower therapeutic index is not as safe.
- measure of therapeutic effect by increasing the dose.
- Many drugs demonstrate an enhanced therapeutic effect when given in greater amounts, to a point.
- is the time a medication takes to affect the targeted behavior.
- in part depends on the delay caused by the natural distribution of the drug, but m some cases it may reflect adaptive responses by the central nervous system.
Important things to remember for tolerance.
- does not affect the therapeutic effects of most psychotropic drugs.
- Is sometimes positive because certain unwanted side effects of medications may diminish over time.
- Any physical effects of a drug that are unintentional and unrelated to its desired effect.
- Typically can be treated by a physician with other medications.
How psychotropic drugs work
By modifying natural events in the synapse in pathways of certain areas in the brain.
4 ways Psychotropic drugs impact brain function
- 1) Altering presynaptic activity to excite neurotransmitter release (agonistic)
- 2) Altering postsynaptic activity to impact receptor binding.
- 3) Interfering with normal re-uptake responses (SSRIs)
- 4) Altering the manufacture of receptors.
Involved in the assignment of meaning to events. This is the fear and fight or flight center.
study of the way in which the brain works.
How the brain works according to nerurochemistry
Coverts chemical signals (neurotransmitters) to electrical signals in order to send messages from neuron-to-neuron or throughout pathways.
- Involved in the highest integrated functioning.
- - Like the ability to plan and combine emotional and cognitive info.
Structures made up of synapses. Foundation of behavior and consciousness.
- Molecules that act as modulatory (regulating) systems in the brain.
- Can be classified as excitatory or inhibitory effects.
Basic actions of drugs (6)
- - Mimics the neurotransmitter (agonist)
- - Blocks reuptake (SSRIs)
- - Increase the number of receptor cites
- - Increase sensitivity of receptor sites
- - alter how quickly the neurotransmitter is absorbed/ used (metabolism).
- - manipulating the amount of neurotransmitters produced (requires manipulation of precursors)
Selective Serotonin Re uptake Inhibitor. Also known as a transport blocker, increases the the transmission of serotonin by inhibiting it's re uptake back into the presynaptic terminal.
Can you predict side effects?
No because each individual is different and the brain has a "checks and balances" system which makes it difficult to predict drug effects.
3 neurotransmitters most involved in regulating mood, cognition, and sensory experiences?
Serotonin, norepinephrine,and dopamine. Together they only are found in 2 % of the brain.
Mechanisms of drug effect- Agonist drugs (6)
- 1) Increases the synthesis of neurotransmitter molecules
- 2) Increases to amount of neurotransmitter molecules by destroying enzymes that degrade them
- 3) Increases the release of neurotransmitters from the terminal
- 4) The drug blocks the inhibitory effects by binding to auto receptors.
- 5) Drug binds to postsynaptic receptors and increases their effect or activates them.
- 6) Decreases deactivation of neurotransmitters by blocking re uptake or degradation.
Mechanisms of Antagonistic Drugs (5)
- 1) Blocks the synthesis of neurotransmitter molecules (destroying synthesizing enzymes)
- 2) Causes molecules to leak from vesicles and be destroyed by degradation enzymes.
- 3) Blocks the release of neurotransmitters from the terminals
- 4) Inhibits neurotransmitter release by activating auto receptors.
- 5) Blocks the postsynapic receptor, inhibiting the effect of the neurotransmitter.
Permits people to maintain a constant internal state despite external conditions.
Things regulated by the limbic system
- Blood pressure
- Body temperature
- Heart rate
- Blood sugar levels
- Located in the forebrain
- Relays sensory information from the body two the brain.
- Because all info must pass through it, it classifies external information.
Central area and metabolic center of the neuron.
- Made up of lipid (fatty) material
- separates the neuron from the fluid around it
- molecules/ ions pass through this to enter/leave the cell
Space between the axon and dendrite.
Ending of the Axon containing neurotransmitters.
membrane of the dendrite which contains receptor sites
- located on presynaptic neurons
- regulate the release of neurotransmitters
Process by which the neurotransmitter crosses the synaptic cleft and attaches to the postsynaptic membrane
One thing all neurotransmitters have in common.
They are are crucial in regions of the nervous system associated with emotional behavior.
Potency of a drug
- Is the strength of a drug required to reach it's desired effect.
- can be measured in grams, milligrams, or micro grams.
occurs when the amount of the drug in the body exceeds the therapeutic amount putting the client in danger of serious negative side effects.
Median effective dose
The dose of a drug which leads to therapeutic effects in 50% of a client.
4 Classes of psychotropic medications (MAAA)
- Anti psychotic
- Almost all work by blocking dopamine receptors.
- Act on post synaptic receptors.
- Reduction of dopamine-> decrease in positive symptoms
- not as effective in reducing delusional thinking or negative symptoms