My name is Amy Ricke, M.D. and I joined Axon Heath Associates in 2017. I am currently accepting patients age 16 and older for psychiatric evaluation and treatment.
I first became interested in mental health during my senior year of high school during an abnormal psychology class. Drawn to both biological science and the study of the mind and human behavior, I studied pre-medicine and psychology at the University of Notre Dame and graduated with a Bachelor of Science, summa cum laude. Entering medical school, I was relatively certain that I would choose psychiatry as a specialty given that it married both of my academic interests. While other areas of medicine fascinated me, I was always drawn back to a career in psychiatry by my recognition that the mind and body are inextricably linked. I came to realize that without good mental health, life cannot be fully lived. I received my M.D. from Case Western Reserve School of Medicine in Ohio, with the distinction of Alpha Omega Alpha Medical Honor Society. My medical education continued at Indiana University (IU) School of Medicine where I trained in the adult psychiatry residency program. Shortly after, I received my board certification in psychiatry.
My treatment approach combines both neurobiological and psychoanalytic perspectives, meaning that I believe that our earliest relationships not only determine how the brain develops, but also our understanding of ourselves and our relationship with others. My aim is to understand the complexity of a patient’s symptoms and, in conjunction with their therapist, to help provide a deeper understanding of themselves and the sources of their pain. In addition to prescribing medication, I take a holistic view of mental health and recommend therapy and lifestyle changes (i.e. nutrition, sleep, exercise, functional medicine) as part of my treatment plan. The foundation of my practice is careful assessment, with ample time spent looking back early into a patient’s history. My approach is in part captured by this quote, “A psychiatric diagnosis is a milestone in someone’s life. Done well, an accurate diagnosis is the beginning of an increased self-understanding and a launch to effective treatment and a better future. Done poorly, it can be a lingering disaster.”-Allen Frances, MD
My specific areas of clinical interest are mood and anxiety disorders, addiction, eating disorders, trauma, sleep disorders, personality disorders, and chronic medical illness. In addition, as a senior resident and later as faculty, I established a reproductive psychiatry clinic within the department of high-risk obstetrics at IU where I worked with women with perinatal mood & anxiety disorders, infertility, pregnancy loss, and addiction. I also have expertise in treating psychiatric issues surrounding menopause and PMS/premenstrual dysphoric disorder.
I have facilitated numerous professional talks, including at the Indiana Psychiatry Society regional conference, Postpartum Support International, several local hospitals, and the State Department of Health. Topics have included reproductive psychiatry, pharmacogenetics, nutritional therapies for psychiatric illness, and the meaning of medications. As volunteer Assistant Professor in the IU Department of Psychiatry, I remain active in teaching psychiatry residents. I am committed to staying up-to-date with the latest research and practice guidelines via psychiatric literature, professional memberships, and conferences. As a psychiatrist, I hope to lend my knowledge and skills to help my patients move through both long-standing and/or current difficulties to enjoy personal growth and a life more fully lived.