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Behavioral Medicine Clinic

Division of Bio-Behavioral Medicine

The Behavioral Medicine Clinic offers a broad range of behavioral medicine (“BMED”) clinical services to patients with medical conditions, with an emphasis on coping and adjustment to chronic & complex health conditions, health behavior change, adherence behaviors and management of co-morbid psychiatric conditions.

We serve patient groups including Transplant surgery, GI/Metabolic and bariatric surgery, Psycho-oncology at Hollings Cancer Center, cardiovascular diseases, pulmonary diseases, and chronic pain. We primarily serve adults, though we occasionally see pediatric and adolescent patients for select services.

Services Offered

The Division of Bio-behavioral medicine provides empirically-based individual and group psychological interventions along with medication management to patients with a variety of medical conditions. We offer individual and group therapy to facilitate improvement of mood and well-being secondary to physical illness, improvements in health behaviors, and reduction of physical symptom experience while improving quality of life. Therapy session typically last 30-60 minutes and patients are seen anywhere from weekly to monthly depending on individual needs. Some patients benefit from working with our psychiatry team for concurrent medication management. We work with patients both in-person and via telemedicine (video).

Tertiary care clinics and most commonly seen medical conditions by our Division are listed below:

Transplant Surgery

(Divisions: Cardiology, Hepatology, Nephrology, Pulmonary and Critical Care)

  • Conduct pre-surgical psychosocial evaluations for heart, liver, lung, kidney, & living donor (kidney and liver) candidates
    • Newly developed expedited transplant evaluation options for acutely ill transplant candidates- namely acute alcohol hepatitis related liver failure
  • Provide evidence-based individual and group therapeutic services for patients both pre- and post-transplant including psychotherapies and pharmacotherapies
    • Group therapy options include:
      • Transplant and Staying Sober
        • Liver transplant recipients with history of alcohol or other substance use disorder
      • Transplant Therapy Group (2/monthly)
        • Open to any transplant candidate or recipient across organ groups
  • Treatment focuses on adjustment to chronic health conditions, health behavior change and adherence behaviors, management of co-morbid psychiatric conditions
  • Behavioral medicine representation on all 4 weekly solid organ transplant selection committees along with select attendance at various operational. Watchlist, and quality control monthly meetings

Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery

  • Conduct pre-surgical psychosocial evaluations for adolescent and adult patients seeking weight-loss surgeries (WLS)
  • Provide evidence-based therapeutic services for patients both pre- and post-WLS including psychotherapies and pharmacotherapies
  • Treatment focuses on treating co-occurring psychiatric conditions, successful adjustment to WLS, optimizing adherence and health behavior change
  • Integrated behavioral medicine clinic focused on brief, solution-focused interventions at follow-up clinic

Chronic Pain

  • Provide pre-surgical evaluations for patients being considered for neurostimulation (including spinal cord stimulators), intrathecal pain pumps, and other spinal surgeries.
  • Provide pain psychology consultation services for providers in Interventional Pain Management
  • Provide Comprehensive Pain Management Program for select patient group within GI surgery including opioid management
  • Opioid medication evaluation, monitoring and outpatient detoxification
  • Behavioral and psychological approaches to pain management
  • Provide evidence-based therapeutic services for patients experiencing chronic pain due to wide range of etiologies including fibromyalgia, orthopedic pain, complex regional pain syndrome, pancreatitis, headache, etc.
  • Provide evidence-based group treatment for chronic pain

Sickle Cell Disease

  • Integrated behavioral medicine screening and intervention services within the pediatric and adult sickle cell disease programs
  • Outpatient therapeutic services, including psychological intervention and pharmacotherapies, for adult and pediatric patients with sickle cell disease

Psych-oncology

  • Provide co-located and integrated psychotherapeutic and pharmacotherapies at Hollings Cancer Center
    • Provide evidence-based therapeutic services for patients diagnosed with cancer and their families. Referrals come from all disease sites.
  • Conduct pre-procedure evaluations for patients being considered for bone marrow transplant (BMT)
    • Participation in an integrated post-BMT clinic to provide ongoing psychological support
  • Maintain the Distress Screening program for Hollings Cancer Center, necessary for accreditation
  • Leads monthly breast cancer support group
  • Inpatient behavioral medicine services for pre- and post-BMT patients and Malignant Hematology patients

Pulmonary Behavioral Medicine

  • Integrated behavioral medicine services within the MUSC Cystic Fibrosis Center for adult and pediatric patients
  • Integrated behavioral medicine services within the MUSC nontuberculous mycobacteria (NTM) Program
  • Outpatient therapeutic services including psychological intervention and pharmacotherapies for patients with a wide range of pulmonary and advanced lung diseases

Cardiology and Cardiac Rehab

  • Outpatient therapeutic services including psychotherapies and pharmacotherapies for patients with a wide range of cardiovascular conditions, including adult congenital heart disease, arrhythmias and implantable cardioverter defibrillators, patients with mechanical cardiac support