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There is controversy regarding whether the addition of cover gowns offers a substantial benefit over gloves alone in reducing personnel contamination and preventing pathogen transmission.
Simulated patient care interactions.
To evaluate the efficacy of different types of barrier precautions and to identify routes of transmission.
In randomly ordered sequence, 30 personnel each performed 3 standardized examinations of mannequins contaminated with pathogen surrogate markers (cauliflower mosaic virus DNA, bacteriophage MS2, nontoxigenic Clostridioides difficile spores, and fluorescent tracer) while wearing no barriers, gloves, or gloves plus gowns followed by examination of a noncontaminated mannequin. We compared the frequency and routes of transfer of the surrogate markers to the second mannequin or the environment.
For a composite of all surrogate markers, transfer by hands occurred at significantly lower rates in the gloves-alone group (OR, 0.02; P < .001) and the gloves-plus-gown group (OR, 0.06; P = .002). Transfer by stethoscope diaphragms was common in all groups and was reduced by wiping the stethoscope between simulations (OR, 0.06; P < .001). Compared to the no-barriers group, wearing a cover gown and gloves resulted in reduced contamination of clothing (OR, 0.15; P < .001), but wearing gloves alone did not.
Wearing gloves alone or gloves plus gowns reduces hand transfer of pathogens but may not address transfer by devices such as stethoscopes. Cover gowns reduce the risk of contaminating the clothing of personnel.
Efficient algorithm integration is a key issue in aerial robotics. However, only a few integration solutions rely on a cognitive approach. Cognitive approaches break down complex problems into independent units that may deal with progressively lower-level data interfaces, all the way down to sensors and actuators. A cognitive architecture defines information flow among units to produce emergent intelligent behavior. Despite the improvements in autonomous decision-making, several key issues remain open. One of these issues is the selection, coordination, and decision-making related to the several specialized tasks required for fulfilling mission objectives. This work addresses decision-making for the cognitive unmanned-aerial-vehicle architecture coined as ARCog. The proposed architecture lays the groundwork for the development of a software platform aligned with the requirements of the state-of-the-art technology in the field. The system is designed to provide high-level decision-making. Experiments prove that ARCog works correctly in its target scenario.
The European Psychiatric Association (EPA), the main association in the field of mental health in Europe, has long been supporting the development of early career psychiatrists. The EPA Early Career Psychiatrists Committee (ECPC) and its core task forces promote research activities among young psychiatrists, contribute to their professional development through organising courses and other educational events, prepare online educational materials and publications, and actively collaborate with other organisations. The EPA ECPC is always open to fostering cooperation on new professional, educational or research initiatives with early career psychiatrists from different countries.
For patients with methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) colonization, a traditional fist-bump greeting did not significantly reduce MRSA transfer in comparison to a handshake. However, transfer was reduced with a modified fist bump that minimized the surface area of contact and when hand hygiene was performed before the handshake.
Introduction: Despite recent advances in resuscitation, some patients remain in ventricular fibrillation (VF) after multiple defibrillation attempts during out-of-hospital cardiac arrest (OHCA). Vector change defibrillation (VC) and double sequential external defibrillation (DSED) have been proposed as alternate therapeutic strategies for OHCA patients with refractory VF. The primary objective was to determine the feasibility, safety and sample size required for a future cluster randomized controlled trial (RCT) with crossover comparing VC or DSED to standard defibrillation for patients experiencing refractory VF. Secondary objectives were to evaluate the intervention effect on VF termination and return of spontaneous circulation (ROSC). Methods: We conducted a pilot cluster RCT with crossover in four Canadian paramedic services and included all treated adult OHCA patients who presented in VF and received a minimum of three defibrillation attempts. In addition to standard cardiac arrest care, each EMS service was randomly assigned to provide continued standard defibrillation (control), VC or DSED. Services crossed over to an alternate defibrillation strategy after six months. Prior to the launch of the trial, 2,500 paramedics received in-person training for VC and DSED defibrillation using a combination of didactic, video and simulated scenarios. Results: Between March 2018 and September 2019, 152 patients were enrolled. Monthly enrollment varied from 1.4 to 6.1 cases per service. With respect to feasibility, 89.5% of cases received the defibrillation strategy they were randomly allocated to, and 93.1% of cases received a VC or DSED shock prior to the sixth defibrillation attempt. There were no reported cases of defibrillator malfunction, skin burns, difficulty with pad placement or concerns expressed by paramedics, patients, families, or ED staff about the trial. In the standard defibrillation group, 66.6% of cases resulted in VF termination, compared to 82.0% in VC and 76.3% of cases in the DSED group. ROSC was achieved in 25.0%, 39.3% and 40.0% of standard, VC and DSED groups, respectively. Conclusion: Findings from our pilot RCT suggest the DOSE VF protocol is feasible and safe. VF termination and ROSC were higher with VC and DSED compared to standard defibrillation. The results of this pilot trial will allow us to inform a multicenter cluster RCT with crossover to determine if alternate defibrillation strategies for refractory VF may impact patient-centered, clinical outcomes
Previous literature supports antipsychotics’ (AP) efficacy in acute first-episode psychosis (FEP) in terms of symptomatology and functioning but also a cognitive detrimental effect. However, regarding functional recovery in stabilised patients, these effects are not clear. Therefore, the main aim of this study is to investigate dopaminergic/anticholinergic burden of (AP) on psychosocial functioning in FEP. We also examined whether cognitive impairment may mediate these effects on functioning.
A total of 157 FEP participants were assessed at study entry, and at 2 months and 2 years after remission of the acute episode. The primary outcomes were social functioning as measured by the functioning assessment short test (FAST). Cognitive domains were assessed as potential mediators. Dopaminergic and anticholinergic AP burden on 2-year psychosocial functioning [measured with chlorpromazine (CPZ) and drug burden index] were independent variables. Secondary outcomes were clinical and socio-demographic variables.
Mediation analysis found a statistical but not meaningful contribution of dopaminergic receptor blockade burden to worse functioning mediated by cognition (for every 600 CPZ equivalent points, 2-year FAST score increased 1.38 points). Regarding verbal memory and attention, there was an indirect effect of CPZ burden on FAST (b = 0.0045, 95% CI 0.0011–0.0091) and (b = 0.0026, 95% CI 0.0001–0.0006) respectively. However, only verbal memory post hoc analyses showed a significant indirect effect (b = 0.009, 95% CI 0.033–0.0151) adding premorbid IQ as covariate. We did not find significant results for anticholinergic burden.
CPZ dose effect over functioning is mediated by verbal memory but this association appears barely relevant.
Mixed Bipolar patients are those who have co-existing depressive symptoms during mania. These patients are supposed to have a worse evolution.
The objective of this study was to compare the long-term outcomes of patients who had at least one mixed episode with those who experienced only pure manic episodes.
169 outpatients diagnosed of Bipolar I disorder and treated at least during two years were included. 120 patients (71%) complited the follow-up over 10 years. Baseline demographic and clinical variables were included.
The patients with mixed episodes (37%) had a significantly younger mean age at onset comparing with those with manic episodes (25.3 years vs. 30.8 years; p=0.025) they also had more previous mood- incongruent psychotic symptoms χ2= 6.77, p=0.034), more number of hospitalizations (OR= 1.36, 95% CI = 1.14; -1.63; p< 0.001), and more number of episodes (OR= 1.21, 95% CI = 1.10-1.31; p< 0.001). There were no significant differences relating to depressive episodes, alcohol use, drug abuse, suicidal behaviour and suicide attempts.
Age at onset differed significantly between the mixed episode and pure mania groups, with mixed episode patients having a younger age of onset. This is interesting as one of the major results of the study we have found that age at onset mediates some of the factors classically related to outcome in mixed episodes like alcohol abuse and suicide attempts. However, independently of age at onset, these patients represent a especially severe type of bipolar disorder.
Oxidative stress suposses an imbalance between oxidants and antioxidants molecules. Negative and positive family environment have been related with worse and better outcomes respectively in schizophrenic patients.
Our objetive is to determine antioxidant defense in healthy controls and unaffected relatives of early onset psychosis patients and to asses its relationship with familiar environment.
We included 82 healthy controls (HC) and 14 healthy controls with second degree family history of psychosis (HCWFHP), aged between 9 to 17.
Total antioxidant status and lipid peroxidation test were determined in plasma and antioxidant enzime activities and glutathione levels were determined in erytrocytes.
We used the Global Assesment Functioning scale (GAF) and the Family Environment Scale (FES). The FES is made up of ten subscales: cohesion, expressiveness, conflict, independence, achievement, intellectual-cultural, social, moral, organization and control.
The analyses showed a significant decrease in total antioxidant level in HCWFHP compared with the HC (U Mann Withney = 281.00, p=0.009, effect size= -0.78).
HC and HCWFHP did not differ in the GAF scale, nevertheless the scores of HCWFHP were significantly higher in cohesion and intellectual-cultural dimensions of the FES (p=0.007, p=0.025).
Adjusting by this two FES dimensions, antioxidant status remained significantly different between groups: OR= 10.86, p=0.009.
Although we cannot induce causative relations, we can state that family environment is not playing a role in inducing oxidative stress in these subjects. It could be hypothesized that families with affected relatives protect themselves with positive envionmental factors such as cohesion and intellectual-cultural activities.
To evaluate the influence of cannabis in the long-term follow-up in patients with a first psychotic episode, comparing those who have never used cannabis with (a) those who used cannabis before the first psychotic episode but stopped it during the follow-up, and (b) those who used cannabis both before and after the first psychotic episode.
Patients were followed from the first psychotic admission. They were assessed at 1, 3 and 5 years obtaining information about functional outcome, positive and negative symptoms. At 8th year functional outcome was evaluated. Patients were classified in 3 groups: 40 that never used cannabis (NU), 27 that used cannabis and stopped during follow-up (CUS), and 25 that had continued use during follow-up (CU).
At baseline, there were differences neither in functional outcome nor in negative symptoms. The CUS group improved the functional outcome during the follow-up (p< 0.001), while CU and NU groups did not show any significant results (p= 0.466 and p= 0.370 respectively). CUS group had also a significant decreasing trend in negative symptoms (p= 0.012), whereas for the other two groups no significant results were observed (p= 0.069 and p= 0.226 respectively). All groups improved in positive symptoms during follow-up.
Although cannabis use has deleterious effect, to stop it after the first psychotic episode produces a clearly improvement in the long-term follow-up.
Allelic variation in the promoter region of the serotonin transporter (5-HTTpro) contributes for the risk of alcohol dependence (AD). The short allele (S) of this polymorphism has been associated with co-occurring clinical features in severe AD such as depression, early onset or impulsivity. We studied the putative link between this allele and relapse in AD.
60 male alcohol dependent patients were followed for 3 months after withdrawal. Persistent abnormalities in lab tests (GGT and CDT) or failure to show up at scheduled interviews were considered as relapse. PCR amplifying the 5-HTTpro polymorphism from genomic DNA were performed. The impact of the S allele on relapse was assessed by a non-parametric Pearson χ2 test.
67.27 % of the patients relapsed during follow-up. The S allele of the 5-HTTpro was significantly associated with relapse (χ2 = 7.66 ; p < .006) while no other factor influenced relapse.
Responsible for a 5-HT hypo-functioning, the S allele of the 5-HTTpro may be associated with relapse in abstinent alcohol dependent patients, possibly through intermediate phenotypes such as personality features or lack of behavioral inhibition.
Patients with schizophrenia and bipolar disorder appear to have more difficulties with smoking cessation than the general population. Moreover, gender and unsuccessful smoking cessation are associated with depression and negative emotional experience. Less attention has been given to the association of cigarette smoking in women and the use of other substances.
To determine the influence of gender and substance abuse on smoking cessation in a long-term follow up after a first psychotic episode.
Patients were evaluated at years 1, 3, and 5 obtaining information about functional outcome, positive and negative symptoms and substance use. At 8th year, functional outcome and use of substance were recorded. Patients were classified in two groups: those who stopped smoking during follow-up, and those who did not stop.
At baseline, rates of tobacco smoking were high with no differences between genders. Difficulty with smoking cessation was associated with female (p = 0.017) and typical antipsychotics (p = 0.032). Those who used alcohol continuously were less likely to stop smoking (p = 0.050) controlling for typical antipsychotics. The interaction with gender was not significant. Continuous cannabis use was not associated with smoking cessation, but women who use cannabis continuously were less able to stop smoking than men (adjusted p = 0.036).
Women are less prone to quit smoking than men during long-term follow-up after the development of psychosis. Different treatments should be considered for men and women in relation to tobacco dependence in patients with psychotic disorder. Treatment for women smokers should probably be more supportive and intensive.
Cloninger's type II is a severe, early-onset, male-limited, genetically influenced, impulsive form of alcoholism. We assessed the association of two gene polymorphisms (TaqI A DRD2 and 5-HTTpro) with Cloninger's typology, as defined by age at onset of alcohol-related problems, and family history of alcohol abuse, which is thought to be more frequent in type II alcoholics.
58 male alcohol dependent patients were discriminated according to age at onset of alcohol-related problems and interviewed about family history of alcoholism. Genomic DNA was extracted and PCR amplifying the studied polymorphisms were performed. The associations between DRD2 (A1 or A2 alleles), 5-HTTpro (L and S alleles), family history and typology were assessed by Pearson chi2 analyses.
While typology was not influenced by any of the studied polymorphisms, a higher rate of general family history of alcohol abuse was still observed in type II patients (χ2= 4.53; p = 0.033). Furthermore, the A1 allele of the DRD2 was significantly associated with paternal history of alcoholism (χ2= 4.66; p = 0.031) and male, first-degree, collateral history of alcoholism (χ2= 4.40; p = 0.036).
Age at onset as main discriminator between type I and type II does not seem to be influenced by TaqI A DRD2 and 5-5HTTpro polymorphisms. However, the A1 allele of the DRD2 may be a marker of male familial alcoholism, which is in line with previous studies showing association between TaqI A DRD2 with some clinical features of type II alcoholism.
P300 is an event-related brain potential (ERP) particularly interesting to the study of cognitive processes in normal subjects and in psychopathology. P300 has been applied in depression with controversial results. A major source for these controversial results could result from the diversity of depressed patients included in the different studies. Supporting this assumption, impulsivity, blunted affect, suicidal behavior and psychotic features significantly influence P300 amplitude. However, no data are available on the possible influences of the personality of depressed patients on P300. Since personality is related to P300 in normal subjects, the aim of the present study is to investigate the relationship between ERPs (P200, N200, and P300) and the Temperament and Character Inventory (TCI) in 54 depressed patients. The main results of the study concern the absence of major correlations between personality dimensions as assessed by the TCI and ERP parameters among depressed patients. Only weak partial positive correlations relate N200 latency with harm avoidance, and P300 amplitude (Pz) with the self-directedness dimension. N200 amplitude is also negatively correlated to persistence. However, the preliminary nature of the presented results with respect to the weak statistical significance should be underlined.
Both oxidative stress and the inflammatory chemokine MCP-1 have been linked to the pathophysiology of certain mental illnesses such as psychosis. There are previous studies in rats and dogs suggesting that oxidative stress can cause cognitive impairment.
To correlate oxidative stress and the chemokine MCP-1 levels with cognitive impairment in first episode psychosis.
28 patients with first episode psychosis and 28 healthy controls matched by sex and age were included in the study, who were given a battery of neurocognitive tests and we determined their blood levels of lipid peroxidation (TBARS), nitric oxide, total antioxidant status (TAS), glutathione, activity of enzymes catalase (CAT), glutathione peroxidase (cGPx) and superoxide dismutase (SOD) and the inflammatory chemokine MCP-1.
Healthy controls had better TAS than patients and increased activity of enzymes cGPx and CAT.
We found a statistically significant negative relationship between levels of MCP-1 and working memory, attention and verbal memory. At higher levels of chemokines, worse cognitive functioning in these areas.
Verbal memory was also negatively related, in a meaningful way, with nitric oxide levels in blood.
Likewise, we found that higher levels of glutathione correlated with better scores on the 3 tests performed of verbal fluency.
In patients with a PEP, levels of certain markers of oxidative stress and inflammation are associated with poorer cognitive functioning.
The possibility of detention for treatment of mental patients may be controversial since introduces the possibility of the judicial power to dominate one's private life.
It is made an analysis of the legal problems in compulsory internment and treatment in mental patients in Portugal.
Material and Methods
The diplomas mainly analysed were the Portuguese mental health law, Constitution and Penal Code. The study was based in four legal principles: necessity, proportionality, subsidiary and adequacy whenever a compulsory detention for mental treatment is imposed and the requisites for that decision.
Compulsory internment may only be determined when it is the only way to guarantee that patient is submitted to treatment, and when is deemed proportional to the danger of the legally protected value in question. Restrictions on patient’s fundamental rights shall be those strictly necessary and suitable to the effectiveness of treatment. Compulsory internment may be petitioned by the Public Attorney, patient's legal representative, public health authorities or any person.
In spite of the diversity of criteria for compulsory mental health care across several countries, Portuguese mental health law emphasizes the need for treatment as an essential condition for detaining patients with mental illness. The compulsory treatment is based on the judge decision supported in the psychiatric report. However, how can we be certain that a mental patient is going to practice a specific crime? Is it fair to punish without crime? Are there scientific criteria capable of ensuring that mental patients cause always violent behavior?
The management of treatment-resistant depression remains a major public health problem. Several acute depression trials suggest that only 45% of the patients achieve remission state with antidepressant monotherapy. An increasing body of evidence is emerging suggesting that multi-action antidepressants might be more effective in treatment-resistant depressed patients than single-action agents. In this context, the purpose of the study was to assess the effectiveness of duloxetine in treatment-resistant major depressed outpatients.
We performed a prospective study assessing the efficacy of duloxetine in major depressed outpatients who did not achieve full symptom remission (CGI-S (severity) ≥ 3) after treatment of adequate dose and duration (more than 8 weeks) with at least either one SSRI or the SNRI venlafaxine. We excluded patients with a severe medical illness and a personality disorder. CGI-S was used as a measure of symptom severity and administered before the administration of duloxetine and 6 weeks later. Five patients had been treated with venlafaxine and the others with a SSRI (Fluoxetine, Paroxetine, Citalopram).
The sample included 10 patients (3 M, 7 F). We observed a very significant decrease in CGI-S scores (5 ± 0.45 to 1.2 ± 0.63, p < 0.0001) after treatment with duloxetine (dose between 20 and 60 mg). Remission was achieved in 90% of the patients. The tolerance was excellent.
This study suggests the potential interest of duloxetine in treatment-resistant depressed patients.
Brain volume abnormalities and oxidative cell damage have been reported to be pathological characteristics of schizophrenia patients. This study aims to assess a potential relationship between these two characteristics in child and adolescent patients with first-episode psychosis.
26 child and adolescent patients with first-episode early-onset schizophrenia, and 78 age- and gender-matched healthy controls were assessed. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans were used for volumetric measurements of five cerebral regions: gray matter of the frontal, parietal, and temporal lobes, sulcal cerebrospinal fluid (CSF), and lateral ventricles. Oxidative cell damage was traced by means of a systemic increase in lipid hydroperoxides (LOOH).
Lateral ventricle volumes were significantly higher in schizophrenia patients than in controls. In schizophrenia patients, a significant positive relationship was found between oxidative cell damage (LOOH levels) and the abnormal enlargement of the lateral ventricles, after controlling for total intracranial volume, age, gender, daily smoking status, intelligence quotient (IQ), psychopathology, and time since onset of psychotic symptoms. No association was found between brain volumes and oxidative cell damage in control subjects.
Our results suggest that, in patients with first-episode early-onset schizophrenia, enlargement of the lateral ventricles is associated with chronic oxidative cell damage.