Sultan Lab for Mental Health Informatics
The Sultan Lab focuses on the interface of electronic databases, mental health, and substance use epidemiology, and evidence-based treatments for common mental health conditions.
Areas of Research Expertise
- Anxiety/mood disorders
- Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)
- Cannabis and vaping
- Child and Adolescent Psychiatry
- Electronic Health Records (EHRs)
- Natural Language Processing (NLP)
- Substance use disorders
Using Natural Language Processing (NLP) to Process Electronic Health Record (EHR) Data to Evaluate Electronic Nicotine Delivery Systems (ENDS) Use in Individuals with Comorbid Psychiatric Conditions. The Sultan Lab’s current project aims to integrate pediatric psychiatry and research with Natural Language Processing (NLP), to identify key factors with e-cigarette (ENDS) use in individuals with mental health conditions through clinical notes.
Treatment Patterns and Outcomes for Youth: Using epidemiological methods and administrative datasets, the Sultan Lab described pharmacologic treatment patterns of youth, high risk outcomes in ADHD youth and antipsychotic and stimulant treatment patterns of youth with ADHD. This research advanced the field by identifying population level trends in rates of prescribing of antipsychotics in ADHD youth, demonstrating links to comorbidity, and identifying potential problematic prescribing. Further, this research has demonstrated that the age and sex distribution of stimulant and antidepressant use among young people is broadly consistent with known national epidemiological patterns of their established indications for ADHD, anxiety, and depression. Lastly, in studying adverse behaviors in youth with ADHD, the Sultan Lab identified early clinical antecedents of future problematic behaviors in this population. Specifically, adolescents with ADHD have elevated risks for suicide behaviors, aggression, emotional dysregulation, and legal issues.
Psychopharmacology Safety, Prescribing, and Nomenclature: Through research on rates of neutropenia and agranulocytosis for clozapine treated individuals, the Sultan Lab identified that new FDA monitoring guidelines are likely to substantially reduce the percentage of patients who meet criteria for clozapine-associated hematologic events requiring treatment interruption. This decrease may reduce the clinical burden of managing patients who can be safely treated with clozapine and therefore increase the number of individuals treated with this uniquely effective medication. Further, to combat misrepresentations of psychotropic medications, the Sultan Lab worked to advance our nomenclature through a more neuroscience-based model.
- Elaine Schlosser Lewis Fund for Attention and Learning Disorders (American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry)
- Translational Research in Child Psychiatric Disorders (National Institute for Mental Health, Federal Government)