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First-episode psychosis (FEP) is a major life event and can have an adverse impact on the diagnosed individual and their families. The importance of intervening early and providing optimal treatments is widely acknowledged. In comparison to patient groups, literature is scarce on identifying treatment predictors and moderators of caregiver outcomes. This study aimed to identify pre-treatment characteristics predicting and/or moderating carer outcomes, based on data from a multi-element psychosocial intervention to FEP patients and carers (GET-UP PIANO trial).
Carer demography, type of family relationship, patient contact hours, pre-treatment carer burden, patient perceptions of parental caregiving and expressed emotion (EE) were selected, a priori, as potential predictors/moderators of carer burden and emotional distress at 9 months post treatment. Outcomes were analysed separately in mixed-effects random regression models.
Analyses were performed on 260 carers. Only patient perceptions of early maternal criticism predicted reports of lower carer burden at follow-up. However, multiple imputation analysis failed to confirm this result. For treatment moderators: higher levels of carer burden at baseline yielded greater reductions in carer emotional distress at follow-up in the experimental group compared with treatment as usual (TAU). Higher levels of perceived EE moderated greater reductions in carer reports of tension in experimental group, compared with TAU, at follow-up. In younger caregivers (<51 years old), there were greater reductions in levels of worry during the baseline to follow-up period, within the experimental group compared with TAU.
The study failed to identify significant treatment predictors of FEP carer outcomes. However, our preliminary findings suggest that optimal treatment outcomes for carers at first episode might be moderated by younger carer age, and carers reporting higher baseline levels of burden, and where patients perceive higher levels of negative effect from caregivers.
A K-band (18-25 GHz) reflected-wave ruby maser (Moore and Clauss 1979) has been borrowed from the National Radio Astronomy Observatory for radio astronomy use on the NASA 64-m antenna of the Deep Space Network at the Tidbinbilla Tracking Station, near Canberra. The purpose of the installation is to provide additional sensitive spectral line, continuum, and VLBI capabilities in the southern hemisphere. Previous measurements at 22.3 GHz (λ = 13.5 mm) determined that the Tidbinbilla 64-m antenna has a peak aperture efficiency of ˜22%, a well-behaved beam shape and consistent pointing (Fourikis and Jauncey 1979). Before installing the maser on the antenna a cooled (circulator) switch was added to provide a beam-switching capability, and a spectral line receiver following the maser was incorporated. The system was assembled and tested at JPL in late 1980 and installed at Tidbinbilla early in 1981. We give here a brief description and present some of the first line observations made in February and March 1981. Extensive line and continuum observations are planned with the present system and a program is under way to determine the telescope pointing characteristics.
Being physically assaulted is known to increase the risk of the occurrence of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms but it may also skew judgements about the intentions of other people. The objectives of the study were to assess paranoia and PTSD after an assault and to test whether theory-derived cognitive factors predicted the persistence of these problems.
At 4 weeks after hospital attendance due to an assault, 106 people were assessed on multiple symptom measures (including virtual reality) and cognitive factors from models of paranoia and PTSD. The symptom measures were repeated 3 and 6 months later.
Factor analysis indicated that paranoia and PTSD were distinct experiences, though positively correlated. At 4 weeks, 33% of participants met diagnostic criteria for PTSD, falling to 16% at follow-up. Of the group at the first assessment, 80% reported that since the assault they were excessively fearful of other people, which over time fell to 66%. Almost all the cognitive factors (including information-processing style during the trauma, mental defeat, qualities of unwanted memories, self-blame, negative thoughts about self, worry, safety behaviours, anomalous internal experiences and cognitive inflexibility) predicted later paranoia and PTSD, but there was little evidence of differential prediction.
Paranoia after an assault may be common and distinguishable from PTSD but predicted by a strikingly similar range of factors.
Evidence is accumulating that child sexual abuse (CSA) is associated with many psychiatric disorders in adulthood. This paper uses the detailed information available from the 2007 Adult Psychiatric Morbidity Survey of England (APMS 2007) to quantify links between CSA and a range of psychiatric conditions.
The prevalence of psychiatric disorder was established in a random sample of the English household population (n=7403), which also provided sociodemographic and experiential information.
We analyzed six types of common mental disorder, alcohol abuse and drug abuse, and people who screened positively for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and eating disorders. All were strongly and highly significantly associated with CSA, particularly if non-consensual sexual intercourse was involved, for which odds ratios (ORs) ranged from 3.7 to 12.1. These disorders were also related to adult sexual abuse (ASA), although the likelihood of reverse causality is then increased. Revictimization in adulthood was common, and increased the association of CSA with disorder. For several disorders, the relative odds were higher in females but formal tests for moderation by gender were significant only for common mental disorders and only in relation to non-consensual sexual intercourse. The population attributable fraction (PAF) was higher in females in all cases.
The detailed and high-quality data in APMS 2007 provided important confirmation both of the strength of association of CSA with psychiatric disorder and of its relative non-specificity. Our results have major implications at the public health level and the individual level, in particular the need for better recognition and treatment of the sequelae of CSA.
There is a paucity of controlled trials examining the effectiveness of individual psychotherapy in personality disorders, especially in patients with cluster C disorders.
To compare the effectiveness of brief dynamic therapy and cognitive–behavioural therapy as out-patient treatment for people with avoidant personality disorder.
Patients who met the criteria for avoidant personality disorder (n=62) were randomly assigned to 20 weekly sessions of either brief dynamic therapy (n=23) or cognitive–behavioural therapy (n=21), or they were assigned to the waiting-list control group (n=18). After the waiting period, patients in the control group were randomly assigned to one of the two therapies.
Patients who received cognitive–behavioural therapy showed significantly more improvements on a number of measures in comparison with those who had brief dynamic psychotherapy or were in the waiting-list control group. Results were maintained at follow-up.
Cognitive–behavioural therapy is more effective than waiting-list control and brief dynamic therapy. Brief dynamic therapy was no better than the waiting-list control condition.
An Eimeria acervulina protein fraction was identified which conferred partial protection against an E. acervulina challenge infection. From this fraction a 37 kDa protein was purified and its corresponding cDNA was cloned and shown to encode a lactate dehydrogenase (LDH). Full length cDNAs encoding LDH from two related species, E. tenella and E. maxima, were also cloned. The homology between the primary amino acid sequences of these three Eimeria LDH enzymes was rather low (66–80%), demonstrating an evolutionary divergence. The Plasmodium LDH crystal structure was used to generate a 3D-model structure of E. tenella LDH, which demonstrated that the many variations in the primary amino acid sequences (P. falciparum LDH and E. tenella LDH show only 47% identity) had not resulted in altered 3D-structures. Only a single LDH gene was identified in Eimeria, which was active as a homotetramer. The protein was present at similar levels throughout different parasitic stages (oocysts, sporozoites, schizonts and merozoites), but its corresponding RNA was only observed in the schizont stage, suggesting that its synthesis is restricted to the intracellular stage.
The ALFA mission is designed to map the entire sky at frequencies between approximately 0.3 and 30 MHz with angular resolution limited by interstellar and interplanetary scattering. Most of this region of the spectrum is inaccessible from the ground because of absorption and refraction by the Earth’s ionosphere. A wide range of astrophysical questions concerning solar system, galactic, and extragalactic objects could be answered with high resolution images at low frequencies, where absorption effects and coherent emission processes become important and the synchrotron lifetimes of electrons are comparable to the age of the universe.
This paper describes quantitative and qualitative aspects of social support in a sample of 40 long-term schizophrenic day patients attending a rehabilitation unit. The influence of symptomatology and experience of life stressors on network and support characteristics was also investigated. The primary networks of these patients were found to be small, comprising on average 7 members, of whom only 3 were seen regularly. Despite this, subjects rated their perceived support as adequate. The secondary networks were of the order of 32. It emerged that greater prevalence of negative symptoms was significantly associated with lower ideal levels of support and this group of patients was significantly less likely to seek support in the event of a life stressor. This may be a protective mechanism to insulate the person from the effects of stressful relationships but at the same time means that they are isolated from potential supports. The clinical implications are discussed in terms of offering optimum support for this marginalized group.
Seventy agoraphobic out-patients were followed up prospectively for four years after treatment; the improvements manifested during treatment were found to be maintained and partly augmented. At the end of follow-up, 75 per cent of the patients had improved on the main phobia. No clear relationship was found between external control, social anxiety, depression and duration of the complaint at the beginning of treatment on the one hand and the results at follow-up on the other. The disorders remained phobic, no other neurotic symptoms having developed during the follow-up period.
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