Sex Differences in Neurology and Psychiatry - Chapter 27 - Gender medicine: Towards a gender-specific treatment of neuropsychiatric disorders

Elsevier, Handbook of Clinical Neurology, Volume 175, 2020, Pages 437-448
Ewelina Biskup, Julie Martinkova, and Maria Teresa Ferretti

Sex and gender are increasingly recognized as major influencing factors in disorders across all medical specialties. Even though there is ample evidence of sex and gender differences in neuropsychiatric disorders, a sex and gender-differentiated approach has not yet been sufficiently applied to diagnostics and management. Therefore, there is an urgent need to establish general recommendations and guidelines toward precision and sex/gender medicine, with regard to dosage, tolerability, interactions and side effects, sensitivity of diagnostic tests, and distinct treatment strategies. This chapter illustrates the current knowledge about sex and gender aspects in neuropsychiatric disorders, providing a base not only to assist the clinician in the handling of specific pathologic entities, but also to sensitize medical practitioners to consider sex and gender in clinical decision-making. As such, the chapter is a call to action to physicians and researchers to produce more sex- and gender-stratified evidence, leading to an acceleration of guideline development. Such novel guidelines will provide a base for medical education, of both medical students and specialists, as well as a reference point for practitioners, toward precision medicine.