Amen, Daniel G.

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AMEN, Daniel G.

PERSONAL: Male. Education: Attended University of Maryland, 1974-75; Orange Coast College, A.A., 1976; Southern California College (now Vanguard University), B.A., 1978; Oral Roberts University, M.D., 1982


ADDRESSES: Offıce—Mindworks Press, 4019 Westerly Place, Suite 100, Newport Beach, CA 92660.


CAREER: Psychiatrist, lecturer, and author. Founder of Amen Clinics, Inc., and Mindworks Press. Walter Reed Army Medical Center, intern, 1982-83, resident in psychiatry, 1983-85; Tripler Army Medical Center, HI, fellow in child and adolescent psychiatry, 1985-87; University of California, Irvine, assistant clinical professor in psychiatry and human behavior; Vanguard University, adjunct faculty in clinical psychobiology; nuclear brain imaging independent fellowship study, 1991-95; Medical Board of California medical expert reviewer, 1997—. Guest on various television and radio programs, including The Today Show, CNN News, MSNBC News, 48 Hours, The Leeza Show, The View, Discovery Channel News: Inside the Mind of a Killer, Lifetime Television for Women's Speaking of Women's Health, and UPN's The Truth about Drinking (educational television special; also producer). Military service: U.S. Army, combat field medic in West Germany, 1972-75; U.S. Army Reserves, 1975-78; U.S. Army, active duty physician, 1982-89, became major.

MEMBER: American Psychiatric Association, American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, American Neuropsychiatric Association (member of research committee), Group for the Advancement of Psychiatry (Ginsberg fellow, 1984-86), Alpha Gamma Sigma.


AWARDS, HONORS: General William C. Menninger Memorial Award for best paper presented by a psychiatric resident at the annual General William C. Menninger Military Psychiatry Course, 1985, for "The Target Theory of Suicide: Ideas on Evaluating the Need for Hospitalization"; Emmy Award for best educational television special, 1999, for The Truth about Drinking; Outstanding Alumnus Award, Vanguard University, 2002.


WRITINGS:

Don't Shoot Yourself in the Foot: A Program to End Self-Defeating Behavior Forever, Warner Books (New York, NY), 1992.

Ten Steps to Building Values within Children, Mindworks Press (Newport Beach, CA), 1994.

The Most Important Thing in Life I Learned from a Penguin: A Story of How to Help People Change, Mindworks Press (Newport Beach, CA), 1994.

Mindcoach: Teaching Kids and Teens to Think Positive and Feel Good, Mindworks Press (Newport Beach, CA), 1994.

The Instruction Manual That Should Have Come with Your Children: New Skills for Frazzled Parents, Mindworks Press (Newport Beach, CA), 1994.

The Secrets of Successful Students, Mindworks Press (Newport Beach, CA), 1994.

(With Antony Amen and Sharon Johnson) A Teenager's Guide to ADD, Mindworks Press (Newport Beach, CA), 1995.

Healing the Chaos Within: The Interaction between ADD, Alcoholism, and Growing up in an Alcoholic Home, Mindworks Press (Newport Beach, CA), 1995.

A Child's Guide to ADD, Mindworks Press (Newport Beach, CA), 1996.

Would You Give Two Minutes a Day for a Lifetime of Love?, St. Martin's Press (New York, NY), 1996.

ADD in Intimate Relationships, Mindworks Press (Newport Beach, CA), 1997.

Firestorms in the Brain: An Inside Look at Violence, Mindworks Press (Newport Beach, CA), 1998.

Change Your Brain, Change Your Life: The Breakthrough Program for Conquering Anxiety, Depression, Obsessiveness, Anger, and Impulsiveness, Times Books (New York, NY), 1998.

Healing ADD: The Breakthrough Program That Allows You to See and Heal the Six Types of Attention Deficit Disorder, Putnam (New York, NY), 2001.

Healing the Hardware of the Soul: How Making the Brain-Soul Connection Can Optimize Your Life, Free Press (New York, NY), 2002.

Healing Anxiety and Depression, Putnam (New York, NY), 2003.

(With William Rodman Shankle) Preventing Alzheimer's: Prevent, Detect, Diagnose, and Even Halt Alzheimer's Disease and Other Memory Loss, Putnam (New York, NY), 2004.


Also author of Which Brain Do You Want? (DVD), and Images of Human Behavior: A Brain SPECT Atlas, 2001. Contributor to books, including The Neuropsychology of Mental Disorders, 1994; Children and Adolescents: An Integrative Approach, 1999; and The Comprehensive Textbook of Psychiatry, 2000. Contributor to periodicals, including Neuropsychiatry Reviews, Molecular Psychiatry, Journal of Psychoactive Drugs, Primary Psychiatry, Journal of Neurotherapy, Diagnostic Imaging, Military Medicine, Resident and Staff Physician, General Hospital Psychiatry, Annals of Clinical Psychiatry, Men's Health, Journal of Nuclear Medicine, Journal of Neuropsychiatry, and Clinical Neurosciences.


SIDELIGHTS: Daniel G. Amen is a psychiatrist and a pioneer in the use of brain scans in clinical practice. He utilizes a type of functional brain scan called single photon emission computerized tomography (SPECT) to examine which parts of his patients' brains are unusually active or inactive when they are concentrating on various topics or mental tasks. The resulting information helps Amen formulate appropriate diagnoses and treatment plans. Although the use of functional brain imaging has been common in psychological research for many years, its use in clinical practice is still very rare.


Amen has written many books that explain his findings to a lay audience and explain how to improve one's own mental health by applying his discoveries. In one such book, Preventing Alzheimer's: Prevent,Detect, Diagnose, and Even Halt Alzheimer's Disease and Other Memory Loss, Amen and his coauthor, neurologist William Rodman Shankle, provide three basic steps for slowing mental deterioration: know the risk factors for dementia and reduce your risk if you can; test your memory regularly; and, once problems are noticed, get an accurate diagnosis and begin treatment as soon as possible. A Publishers Weekly reviewer commented that some of the extensive treatment information might be "too technical for lay readers" but praised the "extremely helpful" section listing caregiver resources and numerous "useful tables."


Many of Amen's books—among them Healing ADD: The Breakthrough Program That Allows You to See and Heal the Six Types of Attention Deficit Disorder; A Child's Guide to ADD; and Healing the Chaos Within: The Interaction between ADD, Alcoholism, and Growing up in an Alcoholic Home—focus on attention deficit disorder (ADD). Throughout these books, Amen argues that ADD is sorely misunderstood by most people within and outside of the medical establishment. Contradicting the many observers who believe that ADD is overdiagnosed and who worry that potent drugs are being prescribed to children who do not really need them, he claims that the disorder is actually underdiagnosed and undertreated. He also posits the existence of six different types of ADD, four more than are currently recognized. As in his other books, Amen backs up his theories with illustrations of the physical differences between healthy brains and brains with the various types of ADD.


BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:

PERIODICALS

Library Journal, December, 1998, Maria Uzdavinis, review of Change Your Brain, Change Your Life: The Breakthrough Program for Conquering Anxiety, Depression, Obsessiveness, Anger, and Impulsiveness, p. 134; March 15, 2002, Dale Farris, review of Healing the Hardware of the Soul: How Making the Brain-Soul Connection Can Optimize Your Life, p. 96.

Publishers Weekly, December 7, 1998, review of Change Your Brain, Change Your Life, p. 57; April 26, 2004, review of Preventing Alzheimer's: Prevent, Detect, Diagnose, and Even Halt Alzheimer's Disease and Other Memory Loss, p. 55.

ONLINE

Amen Clinic Web site,http://www.amenclinic.com/ (November 4, 2004).

BrainPlace.com,http://www.brainplace.com/ (November 4, 2004), "Daniel G. Amen, M.D."

Mindworks Press Web site,http://www.mindworkspress.com/ (November 4, 2004).*

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Amen, Daniel G.

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