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AAN 2022 | Cognitive behavioral therapy with versus without pharmacologic treatment for insomnia

Michelle Jonelis, MD, Redwood Pulmonary Medical Associates, Redwood City, CA, shares her thoughts on the interplay of pharmacologic approaches and cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) in the management of insomnia. CBT has overtaken medication as the gold standard treatment approach in patients with insomnia. Since pharmacologic management has been used – with varying degrees of success – for many years, many have questioned if its use alongside CBT is preferable to CBT alone. Some studies have shown that insomnia symptoms improve more quickly when the two approaches are used in conjunction. However, continued use of medication after CBT completion is associated with worse outcomes than CBT alone. Dr Jonelis emphasizes that pharmacologic treatment of insomnia should only be viewed as a short-term intervention. This interview took place at the American Academy of Neurology 2022 Congress in Seattle, WA.