Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences
Full Time Faculty
Olga Brawman-Mintzer, M.D.
Olga has earned her BS and medical degrees at The Hebrew University, Hadassah Medical School in Jerusalem, Israel. She went on to serve as a Postdoctoral Research Fellow in immunology at UCLA. Following residency training in Psychiatry at the University of Miami School of Medicine, she completed a 2-year Research Fellowship in anxiety disorders at MUSC in the Department of Psychiatry. This double, post-doctorial training, both in basic and clinical research, has allowed her to successfully bridge the barriers between basic and clinical research.
Olga is a pioneer in several areas of knowledge. She was one of the first researchers to evaluate the potential role of atypical antipsychotics in the treatment of anxiety disorders. She also completed one of the two available trials to evaluate the role of selective serotonin uptake inhibitors in elderly patients suffering from generalized anxiety disorders. Her line of research has been possible through continuous funding stream from both federal and corporate sources. Her work has resulted in extensive peer-reviewed literature.
This work has been coupled with a focus on examining biological correlates impacting neuropsychological disorders. This has led to research addressing the urgent clinical issue of lasting effects of Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI), specifically cognitive impairment. The resulting clinical trial, performed through a large cooperative, nation-wide grant funded by the Veterans Health Administration, evaluates the potential role of cholinesterase inhibitors in the treatment of cognitive impairment in subjects with TBI. This is the only ongoing study of its kind evaluating a pharmacological treatment to manage cognitive impairment in combat Veterans who have suffered TBI. This trial, will attempt not only to provide information on effective pharmacological treatments for these patients but also help gain insights into the neurochemical basis of this disorder. Through collaborative research relationship with the Digestive Disease Center (DDC) team, Olga is also working on large-scale projects examining the psychological factors operating in functional GI disorders. Main findings have been recently published in JAMA, Journal of Clinical Gastroenterology, and Gastrointestinal Endoscopy.
Clinical and/or Research Expertise