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Psychiatry Review Articles

This section is a compilation of topic specific links from authoritative journals (British Journal of Psychiatry, Advances in Psychiatry, American Journal of Psychiatry etc.). The resource is beneficial for all trainees taking either the clinical or the written exams and for consultants looking for quality review articles.

We go through several renowned journals and try to identify succinct review articles that will benefit you most in exam preparation and your career as Consultant Psychiatrist. If you find an article that you feel will benefit the CTF Community then send it to us!

We would like to thank Dr Alastair Willis for his contribution in passing on some important links for your benefit.

This page is continually updated.


Tips for RANZCP and RCPsych Exams
5 Magic Steps to Pass the CASC and OSCE Exams

Are you planning on sitting the MRCPsych CASC or RANZCP or RCPSC OSCE exams? Are you wondering how to prepare for your Psychiatry exams? If you are, read on. 

Art of Formulation and Management in Psychiatry

 A short blog post with a video to give you tips about formulation and management.

Critical Analysis / Appraisal
Randomised Controlled Trials and Systematic Review
Understanding Absolute and Relative Risks
Number Needed to Treat (NNT)
Confidence Intervals
Appraisal of Diagnostic Tests
Qualitative Study
Basic Statistics

This paper explains correlation, regression, probability, confidence intervals and measures of effect in a succinct manner.

Survival Analysis
Economic Analyses - Basics
Cost Acceptability Curves in Economic Analysis

This is purely for further reading and relevant for Consultant Psychiatrists making economic decisions or evaluating Cost-Effectiveness studies. This depth is not required for the purposes of the exam.

Antipsychotics - Which one is better?

This article is an excellent article where the authors analyse the various biases and suggest improvements to minimise these in Drug Trials. A very useful article to go through reinforcing the importance of critical appraisal in reading papers.

The Placebo effect

An extremely thorough review where the author has put in alot of hard work and produced a fascinating read. Reiterates the fact that placebo is not 'no treatment'.

Pharmacological Management of Schizophrenia
Clozapine Resistant Schizophrenia

Influential independent effectiveness study sponsored by the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH, USA) that threw up some interesting results. This was complemented by the CUtLASS study in the UK, a Cost Utility study. Both these studies force us to think about the way we view Atypical and Typical antipsychotics. Are atypical antipsychotics really better than typical antipsychotics? For a critical discussion read this paper by Lewis and Lieberman.

Depression in Schizophrenia

The article is an excellent summary of depression in schizophrenia and its management. Particularly important is the distinction between depression and negative symptoms.

Cognition and Schizophrenia

With the increasing recognition  of cognitive deficits in schizophrenia, this article provides a succinct summary of  evidence for cognitive impairments and its management. Recognition is important due to its impact on psychosocial rehabilitation.

Schizophrenia and Violence

This article will be of benefit for forensic psychiatrists and for forensic clinical cases. Prof Paul Mullen has outlined the factors increasing the risk of violence and strategies in managing violence.

Psychosis in Old Age

Useful article that succinctly summarises clinical features and management of psychosis in old age.

First Episode Psychosis - Detection
First Episode Psychosis- Management

Although published in 2001, The article still provides a good template for the main issues in management of first episode psychosis. New evidence can then be integrated within the outlined principles.

RANZCP Conference (2010) - Metabolic Syndrome

Presented at the RANZCP 2010 conference in New Zealand, It provides an overview of the metabolic syndrome, its complex relationship with psychiatric disorders , the role of antipsychotics and the management of Metabolic syndrome based on evidence based guidelines for management of Hyperlipidemia and type 2 diabetes. The presentation is intended to highlight the dichotomy that exists between Psychiatry and Medicine and the non-inclusion of mental disorders in the high risk categories that would prompt treatment.

Cannabis Use and Psychosis
High Emotional Expression across Cultures
Treatment Resistant Depression

This article describes the pharmacological management of treatment resistant depression based on evidence. Based on recent evidence,  the STAR*D trial which is the largest independent trial to date , came up with some interesting results. Read about the STAR*D trial here . Dr Rush , one of the main investigators summarises the results here

Bipolar Disorder
BAP Guidelines for Bipolar Disorder 2009

Latest evidence for Bipolar disorder. Notice the different treatment approaches for Bipolar Depression.

Bipolar Disorder - CANMAT guidelines

This provides the latest and up to date research on the management of bipolar disorder. The guidelines incorporate the advances in bipolar depression and are set out in the form of algorithms.Psychological strategies for maintainence therapy are also included.

Antidepressants and bipolar disorder

The use of antidepressants in bipolar disorder is controversial . This issue was brought to light by Prof Ghaemi in this article which is a good read. The evidence suggests that antidepressants cause long term destabilsation of bipolar disorder through the kindling phenomenon.

The STEP-BD trial

The largest independent trial for bipolar disorder also supports the above view that the role of antidepressants is limited and that antidepressants do no better than placebo in bipolar depression.

More evidence against antidepressants
Bipolr Disorder -Pregnancy and Postpartum

Excellent article on Management of Bipolar disorder in pregancy and postpartum .Useful as a general reference tool but also for exam going candidates as it is often asked in OSCE's.

Bipolar Disorder - CBT
Compliance and Compliance therapy

This article about compliance is not specific to bipolar disorder despite being included under this sub-section. The article provided a good overview of reasons affecting compliance and principles of adherence/compliance therapy.


This article provides an overview of the role of circadian rhythms in the genesis of psychiatric disorders , the principles of which are a part of the IPSRT for Bipolar Disorder.

Forensic Psychiatry
Management of Stalking Victims
Forensic Report Writing
Cognitive Behavioural Therapy -Theory and Practice
CBT in Older Age Group
Motivational Interviewing
Dialectical Behavioural Therapy (DBT)
Addiction Psychiatry
Alcohol Dependence - Management
Alcohol Detoxification
Alcohol and Depression
Drug Dependence - Management
Drug Misuse in Pregnancy
Pathological Gambling - Assessment and Treatment
Pathological Gambling - RANZCP statement
End of Life Decisions

Detailed Guidelines on End of Life issues

Ethical Guidelines - Hunger Strike
Capacity and its Assessment

Article on Capacity mainly within the United Kingdom setting but the same principles apply to Australia, Canada and the U.S .

Capacity Assessment - Older Adults
Capacity assessment in C&A's
Confidentiality in Adolescents

This article gives a number of real life scenarios about making health care decisions for adolescents and the ethical issues arising in such cases.

Testamentary Capacity

Article on Testamentary capacity within the American context but the principles can be applied to any setting.

Old Age Psychiatry
Molecular Biology of Alzheimer's Disease
Cholinesterase inhibitors in Dementia

An older article but nonetheless valuable summary about cholinesterase inhibitors in dementia

Parkinson's Disease and Psychiatry
Palliative Care in Dementia
Child and Adolescent Psychiatry
C and A Psychiatry- ADHD and Affective Disorders

This article provides you with a succinct review of ADHD and Affective disorders in children . The focus is mainly on current evidence based treatments and issues rather than the diagnostic assessment. Nevertheless, it is extremely useful as a educational tool for a quick revision of child and adolescent issues.

The next article focusses on Autism, OCD, Schizophrenia, Tourette's and Anxiety

C and A Psychiatry- Schizophrenia, OCD, Autism
Adult ADHD

An excellent article for those wanting to know more about the current status of Adult ADHD and the controversies around this.

Making decisions - Ethical challenges in Children
Essay Writing
ADHD debate

A stimulating debate from two experienced Child and Adolescent Psychiatrists about the validity. This article is useful for exam going candidates to improve their essay writing skills by combining both arguments to provide a balanced view on ADHD.It has to be noted that the exam essay requires a discursive method as opposed to an argumentative method as adopted in this article.

Psychiatry and the pharmaceutical industry

A useful article for essay writing . The style is often in the first person , however in the exam this has to be modified to the third person as it is not meant to be an opinion piece. Nonetheless , a number of themes within the editorial are relevant to essay writing in the exam.

Health implications of a size zero culture

This is an excellent editorial which provides not only a number of important themes in essay writing but also provides a format and style that is applicable to the critical essay. The first two paragraphs( background and introduction) provide an ideal way of putting the essay into perspective and then guiding the examiner to the most important aspects that will be covered in the main body of the essay. Definitely worth a read !!

Patient choice in psychiatry
Risk, Psychiatry and The Military
Psychiatric Illness and Society
Psychiatry and The Pharmaceutical Industry

An article by Joanna Moncrieff , who is well known for her outspoken views on the relationship between psychiatry and pharma. For the purposes of the essay , it is important to present a balanced view however.

Personality disorder - An Illness?

Useful article that outlines the concept of illness and how it applies to personality disorder. The concepts can be widened for psychiatry as a whole and incorporated in many essay topics.

Distinction between Mental and Physical Illness

A must read. Outlines the dichotomy that pervades medicine.

Stigma in Psychiatry
Essay tips

 Essay Tips by Dr Lillian Ng and Dr Mark Burns

Asylum Seekers and Psychiatry
Tips on DSM-V
Controversies in DSM-V
Leadership and Management
Recovery Based Services
Clinical Governance
Lessons in Leadership - Small Words Count
Lessons in Leadership - Keep it Simple


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