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The prevalence of mental health conditions and national suicide rates are increasing in many countries. Lithium is widely and effectively used in pharmacological doses for the treatment and prevention of manic/depressive episodes, stabilising mood and reducing the risk of suicide. Since the 1990s, several ecological studies have tested the hypothesis that trace doses of naturally occurring lithium in drinking water may have a protective effect against suicide in the general population.
To synthesise the global evidence on the association between lithium levels in drinking water and suicide mortality rates.
The MEDLINE, Embase, Web of Science and PsycINFO databases were searched to identify eligible ecological studies published between 1 January 1946 and 10 September 2018. Standardised regression coefficients for total (i.e. both genders combined), male and female suicide mortality rates were extracted and pooled using random-effects meta-analysis. The study was registered with PROSPERO (CRD42016041375).
The literature search identified 415 articles; of these, 15 ecological studies were included in the synthesis. The random-effects meta-analysis showed a consistent protective (or inverse) association between lithium levels/concentration in publicly available drinking water and total (pooled β = −0.27, 95% CI −0.47 to −0.08; P = 0.006, I2 = 83.3%), male (pooled β = −0.26, 95% CI −0.56 to 0.03; P = 0.08, I2 = 91.9%) and female (pooled β = −0.13, 95% CI −0.24 to −0.02; P = 0.03, I2 = 28.5%) suicide mortality rates. A similar protective association was observed in the six studies included in the narrative synthesis, and subgroup meta-analyses based on the higher/lower suicide mortality rates and lithium levels/concentration.
This synthesis of ecological studies, which are subject to the ecological fallacy/bias, supports the hypothesis that there is a protective (or inverse) association between lithium intakes from public drinking water and suicide mortality at the population level. Naturally occurring lithium in drinking water may have the potential to reduce the risk of suicide and may possibly help in mood stabilisation, particularly in populations with relatively high suicide rates and geographical areas with a greater range of lithium concentration in the drinking water. All the available evidence suggests that randomised community trials of lithium supplementation of the water supply might be a means of testing the hypothesis, particularly in communities (or settings) with demonstrated high prevalence of mental health conditions, violent criminal behaviour, chronic substance misuse and risk of suicide.
Reconstructing the provenance of siliciclastic marine sediment is important for understanding sediment pathways and constraining palaeoclimate and erosion records. However, physical fractionation of different size fractions can occur during sediment transport, potentially biasing records derived from bulk sediment. In this study, records of radiogenic Sr and Nd isotopic composition and K/Al ratio of the separated clay fraction, as well as bulk grain size, are presented, measured from deep-sea sediments recovered from International Ocean Discovery Program (IODP) Sites U1456 and U1457 in the Arabian Sea. These new records are compared with published bulk sediment records to investigate the influence of sediment transport on these proxies and to constrain provenance evolution and its relationship to climate variability since middle Miocene time. Correlations between grain size and the bulk sediment isotopic composition confirm that transport processes are influencing the bulk sediment record. This relationship, although present, is not as strong in the clay-fraction isotopic records. Heterogeneity of bulk sediment likely drives differences between bulk and clay records, thought to be largely controlled by sediment transport processes. The isotopic records reveal variations in provenance that correlate with climatic change at 8–7 Ma, as well as an increase in overall provenance variability beginning at c. 3.5 Ma, likely linked to monsoon strength and glacial–interglacial cycles. The clay-fraction records highlight the potential value of measuring proxy records from multiple size fractions to help constrain provenance records as well as investigate sediment transport and/or weathering and erosion processes recorded in deep-sea sediment archives.
Introduction: Paramedics commonly administer intravenous dextrose to severely hypoglycemic patients. Typically, the treatment provided is a 25g ampule of 50% dextrose (D50). This dose of D50 is meant to ensure a return to consciousness. However, this dose may be unnecessary and lead to harm or difficulties regulating blood glucose post treatment. We hypothesize that a lower dose such as dextrose 10% (D10) or titrating the D50 to desired level of consciousness may be optimal and avoid adverse events. Methods: We systematically searched Medline, Embase, CINAHL and Cochrane Central on June 5th 2019. PRISMA guidelines were followed. The GRADE methods and risk of bias assessments were applied to determine the certainty of the evidence. We included primary literature investigating the use of intravenous dextrose in hypoglycemic diabetic patients presenting to paramedics or the emergency department. Outcomes of interest were related to the safe and effective reversal of symptoms and blood glucose levels (BGL). Results: 660 abstracts were screened, 40 full text articles, with eight studies included. Data from three randomized controlled trials and five observational studies were analyzed. A single RCT comparing D10 to D50 was identified. The primary significant finding of the study was an increased post-treatment glycemic profile by 3.2 mmol/L in the D50 group; no other outcomes had significant differences between groups. When comparing pooled data from all the included studies we find higher symptom resolution in the D10 group compared to the D50 group; at 99.8% and 94.9% respectively. However, the mean time to resolution was approximately 4 minutes longer in the D10 group (4.1 minutes (D50) and 8 minutes (D10)). There was more need for subsequent doses in the D10 group at 23.0% versus 16.5% in the D50 group. The post treatment glycemic profile was lower in the D10 group at 5.9 mmol/L versus 8.5 mmol/L in the D50 group. Both treatments had nearly complete resolution of hypoglycemia; 98.7% (D50) and 99.2% (D10). No adverse events were observed in the D10 group (0/871) compared to 12/133 adverse events in the D50 group. Conclusion: D10 may be as effective as D50 at resolving symptoms and correcting hypoglycemia. Although the desired effect can take several minutes longer there appear to be fewer adverse events. The post treatment glycemic profile may facilitate less challenging ongoing glucose management by the patients.
Multiple lines of evidence suggest the presence of altered neuroimmune processes in patients with schizophrenia (Sz) and severe mood disorders. Recent studies using a novel free water diffusion tensor imaging (FW DTI) approach, proposed as a putative biomarker of neuroinflammation, atrophy, or edema, have shown significantly increased FW in patients with Sz. However no studies to date have investigated the longitudinal stability of FW alterations during the early course of psychosis, nor have studies focused separately on FE psychosis patients with Sz or bipolar disorder (BD) with psychotic features.
The current study included 188 participants who underwent diffusion magnetic resonance imaging scanning at baseline. Sixty-four participants underwent follow-up rescanning after 12 months. DTI-based alterations in patients were calculated using voxelwise tract-based spatial statistics and region of interest analyses.
Patients with FE psychosis, both Sz and BD, exhibited increased FW at illness onset which remained unchanged over the 12-month follow-up period. Preliminary analyses suggested that antipsychotic medication exposure was associated with higher FW in gray matter that reached significance in the BD group. Higher FW in white matter correlated with negative symptom severity.
Our results support the presence of elevated FW at the onset of psychosis in both Sz and BD, which remains stable during the early course of the illness, with no evidence of either progression or remission.
There is evidence that individuals with high levels of social anxiety utilize more safety behaviours and experience more post-event processing than those with lower levels of social anxiety. There are also data to suggest that the relationship between safety behaviour use and social anxiety symptoms is mediated by perceived control of one’s anxiety. Furthermore, it has been suggested that post-event processing influences anticipatory anxiety for a future social situation.
A direct link between the perpetuating factors of social anxiety described above has not been established in the literature. The aim of the current study was to test a model examining the relationship between these constructs.
Participants first completed a battery of questionnaires. They then participated in an impromptu, 3-minute speech and were informed they would be videotaped. Following the speech, participants completed measures of anxiety and were instructed to return the following week. During the second session, they were informed they would deliver an additional speech and provided ratings of their anxiety in anticipation of delivering the second speech.
The results of a serial mediation support that greater levels of social anxiety lead to less perceived control over one’s anxiety, leading to increased safety behaviour use. The increase in safety behaviours led to an increase of post-event processing which resulted in greater anticipatory anxiety for a future speech task.
This study provides novel evidence for the importance of perceived control in the genesis of social anxiety, which has implications for treatment.
Both blood- and milk-based biomarkers have been analysed for decades in research settings, although often only in one herd, and without focus on the variation in the biomarkers that are specifically related to herd or diet. Biomarkers can be used to detect physiological imbalance and disease risk and may have a role in precision livestock farming (PLF). For use in PLF, it is important to quantify normal variation in specific biomarkers and the source of this variation. The objective of this study was to estimate the between- and within-herd variation in a number of blood metabolites (β-hydroxybutyrate (BHB), non-esterified fatty acids, glucose and serum IGF-1), milk metabolites (free glucose, glucose-6-phosphate, urea, isocitrate, BHB and uric acid), milk enzymes (lactate dehydrogenase and N-acetyl-β-D-glucosaminidase (NAGase)) and composite indicators for metabolic imbalances (Physiological Imbalance-index and energy balance), to help facilitate their adoption within PLF. Blood and milk were sampled from 234 Holstein dairy cows from 6 experimental herds, each in a different European country, and offered a total of 10 different diets. Blood was sampled on 2 occasions at approximately 14 days-in-milk (DIM) and 35 DIM. Milk samples were collected twice weekly (in total 2750 samples) from DIM 1 to 50. Multilevel random regression models were used to estimate the variance components and to calculate the intraclass correlations (ICCs). The ICCs for the milk metabolites, when adjusted for parity and DIM at sampling, demonstrated that between 12% (glucose-6-phosphate) and 46% (urea) of the variation in the metabolites’ levels could be associated with the herd-diet combination. Intraclass Correlations related to the herd-diet combination were generally higher for blood metabolites, from 17% (cholesterol) to approximately 46% (BHB and urea). The high ICCs for urea suggest that this biomarker can be used for monitoring on herd level. The low variance within cow for NAGase indicates that few samples would be needed to describe the status and potentially a general reference value could be used. The low ICC for most of the biomarkers and larger within cow variation emphasises that multiple samples would be needed - most likely on the individual cows - for making the biomarkers useful for monitoring. The majority of biomarkers were influenced by parity and DIM which indicate that these should be accounted for if the biomarker should be used for monitoring.
Item 9 of the Patient Health Questionnaire-9 (PHQ-9) queries about thoughts of death and self-harm, but not suicidality. Although it is sometimes used to assess suicide risk, most positive responses are not associated with suicidality. The PHQ-8, which omits Item 9, is thus increasingly used in research. We assessed equivalency of total score correlations and the diagnostic accuracy to detect major depression of the PHQ-8 and PHQ-9.
We conducted an individual patient data meta-analysis. We fit bivariate random-effects models to assess diagnostic accuracy.
16 742 participants (2097 major depression cases) from 54 studies were included. The correlation between PHQ-8 and PHQ-9 scores was 0.996 (95% confidence interval 0.996 to 0.996). The standard cutoff score of 10 for the PHQ-9 maximized sensitivity + specificity for the PHQ-8 among studies that used a semi-structured diagnostic interview reference standard (N = 27). At cutoff 10, the PHQ-8 was less sensitive by 0.02 (−0.06 to 0.00) and more specific by 0.01 (0.00 to 0.01) among those studies (N = 27), with similar results for studies that used other types of interviews (N = 27). For all 54 primary studies combined, across all cutoffs, the PHQ-8 was less sensitive than the PHQ-9 by 0.00 to 0.05 (0.03 at cutoff 10), and specificity was within 0.01 for all cutoffs (0.00 to 0.01).
PHQ-8 and PHQ-9 total scores were similar. Sensitivity may be minimally reduced with the PHQ-8, but specificity is similar.
Applied psychologists commonly use personality tests in employee selection systems because of their advantages regarding incremental criterion-related validity and less adverse impact relative to cognitive ability tests. Although personality tests have seen limited legal challenges in the past, we posit that the use of personality tests might see increased challenges under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and the ADA Amendments Act (ADAAA) due to emerging evidence that normative personality and personality disorders belong to common continua. This article aims to begin a discussion and offer initial insight regarding the possible implications of this research for personality testing under the ADA. We review past case law, scholarship in employment law, Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) guidance regarding “medical examinations,” and recent literature from various psychology disciplines—including clinical, neuropsychology, and applied personality psychology—regarding the relationship between normative personality and personality disorders. More importantly, we review suggestions proposing the five-factor model (FFM) be used to diagnose personality disorders (PDs) and recent changes in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM). Our review suggests that as scientific understanding of personality progresses, practitioners will need to exercise evermore caution when choosing personality measures for use in selection systems. We conclude with six recommendations for applied psychologists when developing or choosing personality measures.
Introduction: The Prehospital Evidence-Based Practice (PEP) program is an online, freely accessible, continuously updated Emergency Medical Services (EMS) evidence repository. This summary describes the research evidence for the identification and management of adult patients suffering from sepsis syndrome or septic shock. Methods: PubMed was searched in a systematic manner. One author reviewed titles and abstracts for relevance and two authors appraised each study selected for inclusion. Primary outcomes were extracted. Studies were scored by trained appraisers on a three-point Level of Evidence (LOE) scale (based on study design and quality) and a three-point Direction of Evidence (DOE) scale (supportive, neutral, or opposing findings based on the studies’ primary outcome for each intervention). LOE and DOE of each intervention were plotted on an evidence matrix (DOE x LOE). Results: Eighty-eight studies were included for 15 interventions listed in PEP. The interventions with the most evidence were related to identification tools (ID) (n = 26, 30%) and early goal directed therapy (EGDT) (n = 21, 24%). ID tools included Systematic Inflammatory Response Syndrome (SIRS), quick Sequential Organ Failure Assessment (qSOFA) and other unique measures. The most common primary outcomes were related to diagnosis (n = 30, 34%), mortality (n = 40, 45%) and treatment goals (e.g. time to antibiotic) (n = 14, 16%). The evidence rank for the supported interventions were: supportive-high quality (n = 1, 7%) for crystalloid infusion, supportive-moderate quality (n = 7, 47%) for identification tools, prenotification, point of care lactate, titrated oxygen, temperature monitoring, and supportive-low quality (n = 1, 7%) for vasopressors. The benefit of prehospital antibiotics and EGDT remain inconclusive with a neutral DOE. There is moderate level evidence opposing use of high flow oxygen. Conclusion: EMS sepsis interventions are informed primarily by moderate quality supportive evidence. Several standard treatments are well supported by moderate to high quality evidence, as are identification tools. However, some standard in-hospital therapies are not supported by evidence in the prehospital setting, such as antibiotics, and EGDT. Based on primary outcomes, no identification tool appears superior. This evidence analysis can guide selection of appropriate prehospital therapies.
Different diagnostic interviews are used as reference standards for major depression classification in research. Semi-structured interviews involve clinical judgement, whereas fully structured interviews are completely scripted. The Mini International Neuropsychiatric Interview (MINI), a brief fully structured interview, is also sometimes used. It is not known whether interview method is associated with probability of major depression classification.
To evaluate the association between interview method and odds of major depression classification, controlling for depressive symptom scores and participant characteristics.
Data collected for an individual participant data meta-analysis of Patient Health Questionnaire-9 (PHQ-9) diagnostic accuracy were analysed and binomial generalised linear mixed models were fit.
A total of 17 158 participants (2287 with major depression) from 57 primary studies were analysed. Among fully structured interviews, odds of major depression were higher for the MINI compared with the Composite International Diagnostic Interview (CIDI) (odds ratio (OR) = 2.10; 95% CI = 1.15–3.87). Compared with semi-structured interviews, fully structured interviews (MINI excluded) were non-significantly more likely to classify participants with low-level depressive symptoms (PHQ-9 scores ≤6) as having major depression (OR = 3.13; 95% CI = 0.98–10.00), similarly likely for moderate-level symptoms (PHQ-9 scores 7–15) (OR = 0.96; 95% CI = 0.56–1.66) and significantly less likely for high-level symptoms (PHQ-9 scores ≥16) (OR = 0.50; 95% CI = 0.26–0.97).
The MINI may identify more people as depressed than the CIDI, and semi-structured and fully structured interviews may not be interchangeable methods, but these results should be replicated.
Declaration of interest
Drs Jetté and Patten declare that they received a grant, outside the submitted work, from the Hotchkiss Brain Institute, which was jointly funded by the Institute and Pfizer. Pfizer was the original sponsor of the development of the PHQ-9, which is now in the public domain. Dr Chan is a steering committee member or consultant of Astra Zeneca, Bayer, Lilly, MSD and Pfizer. She has received sponsorships and honorarium for giving lectures and providing consultancy and her affiliated institution has received research grants from these companies. Dr Hegerl declares that within the past 3 years, he was an advisory board member for Lundbeck, Servier and Otsuka Pharma; a consultant for Bayer Pharma; and a speaker for Medice Arzneimittel, Novartis, and Roche Pharma, all outside the submitted work. Dr Inagaki declares that he has received grants from Novartis Pharma, lecture fees from Pfizer, Mochida, Shionogi, Sumitomo Dainippon Pharma, Daiichi-Sankyo, Meiji Seika and Takeda, and royalties from Nippon Hyoron Sha, Nanzando, Seiwa Shoten, Igaku-shoin and Technomics, all outside of the submitted work. Dr Yamada reports personal fees from Meiji Seika Pharma Co., Ltd., MSD K.K., Asahi Kasei Pharma Corporation, Seishin Shobo, Seiwa Shoten Co., Ltd., Igaku-shoin Ltd., Chugai Igakusha and Sentan Igakusha, all outside the submitted work. All other authors declare no competing interests. No funder had any role in the design and conduct of the study; collection, management, analysis and interpretation of the data; preparation, review or approval of the manuscript; and decision to submit the manuscript for publication.
Coinfection with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and viral hepatitis is associated with high morbidity and mortality in the absence of clinical management, making identification of these cases crucial. We examined characteristics of HIV and viral hepatitis coinfections by using surveillance data from 15 US states and two cities. Each jurisdiction used an automated deterministic matching method to link surveillance data for persons with reported acute and chronic hepatitis B virus (HBV) or hepatitis C virus (HCV) infections, to persons reported with HIV infection. Of the 504 398 persons living with diagnosed HIV infection at the end of 2014, 2.0% were coinfected with HBV and 6.7% were coinfected with HCV. Of the 269 884 persons ever reported with HBV, 5.2% were reported with HIV. Of the 1 093 050 persons ever reported with HCV, 4.3% were reported with HIV. A greater proportion of persons coinfected with HIV and HBV were males and blacks/African Americans, compared with those with HIV monoinfection. Persons who inject drugs represented a greater proportion of those coinfected with HIV and HCV, compared with those with HIV monoinfection. Matching HIV and viral hepatitis surveillance data highlights epidemiological characteristics of persons coinfected and can be used to routinely monitor health status and guide state and national public health interventions.
The provision of healthcare education in developing countries is a complex problem that simulation has the potential to help. This study aimed to evaluate the effectiveness of a low-cost ear surgery simulator, the Ear Trainer.
The Ear Trainer was assessed in two low-resource environments in Cambodia and Uganda. Participants were video-recorded performing four specific middle-ear procedures, and blindly scored using a validated measurement tool. Face validity, construct validity and objective learning were assessed.
The Ear Trainer provides a realistic representation of the ear. Construct validity assessment confirmed that experts performed better than novices. Participants displayed improvement in all tasks except foreign body removal, likely because of a ceiling effect.
This study validates the Ear Trainer as a useful training tool for otological microsurgical skills in developing world settings.
During the recent Ebola crisis in West Africa, individual person-level details of disease onset, transmissions, and outcomes such as survival or death were reported in online news media. We set out to document disease transmission chains for Ebola, with the goal of generating a timely account that could be used for surveillance, mathematical modeling, and public health decision-making. By accessing public web pages only, such as locally produced newspapers and blogs, we created a transmission chain involving two Ebola clusters in West Africa that compared favorably with other published transmission chains, and derived parameters for a mathematical model of Ebola disease transmission that were not statistically different from those derived from published sources. We present a protocol for responsibly gleaning epidemiological facts, transmission model parameters, and useful details from affected communities using mostly indigenously produced sources. After comparing our transmission parameters to published parameters, we discuss additional benefits of our method, such as gaining practical information about the affected community, its infrastructure, politics, and culture. We also briefly compare our method to similar efforts that used mostly non-indigenous online sources to generate epidemiological information.
Introduction/Innovation Concept: University Departments of Emergency Medicine are responsible for the supervision of research and other scholarly projects for fellows, residents and students, though often lack resources to provide adequate input and oversight. Many departments cover large geographical areas and several programs. We piloted new research committee structures and processes to improve oversight and output of research projects. Methods: We created an interactive group supervision tool based around formation of a collaborative research committee, with rotating chairs from each program, to provide supervision and face to face interaction, and direction for research learners. Included were all Dalhousie University adult and pediatric emergency medicine residency and fellowship programs, as well as trauma and EMS programs across Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, and Prince Edward Island. In addition to providing expertise in clinical trial coordination, database management, research administration, grant applications and Research Ethics Board submissions, we have completed a 2-year pilot of our interactive group supervision tool for research projects. Curriculum, Tool, or Material: The interactive tool consists of a structured PICOD form; allocation of topic and research mentors; standardized yearly milestones from project development through presentation and publication; and regular video-conferenced and in-person interactive group sessions involving several project leads, as well as program research directors, researchers, and co-ordinators. To date, all participating program learners have engaged with the tool, with positive feedback from learners, supervisors and program directors. Conclusion: We report our development of a regional collaborative interactive group supervision tool, that maximizes expert resources in the provision of research and scholarly project supervision.
In a previous study we investigated three-scalar mixing in a turbulent coaxial jet (Cai et al.J. Fluid Mech., vol. 685, 2011, pp. 495–531). In this flow a centre jet and a co-flow are separated by an annular flow; therefore, the resulting mixing process approximates that in a turbulent non-premixed flame. In the present study, we investigate the effects of the velocity and length scale ratios of the annular flow to the centre jet, which determine the relative mean shear rates between the streams and the degree of separation between the centre jet and the co-flow, respectively. Simultaneous planar laser-induced fluorescence and Rayleigh scattering are employed to obtain the mass fractions of the centre jet scalar (acetone-doped air) and the annular flow scalar (ethylene). The results show that varying the velocity ratio and the annulus width modifies the scalar fields through mean-flow advection, turbulent transport and small-scale mixing. While the evolution of the mean scalar profiles is dominated by the mean-flow advection, the shape of the joint probability density function (JPDF) was found to be largely determined by the turbulent transport and molecular diffusion. Increasing the velocity ratio results in stronger turbulent transport, making the initial scalar evolution faster. However, further downstream the evolution is delayed due to slower small-scale mixing. The JPDF for the higher velocity ratio cases is bimodal at some locations while it is always unimodal for the lower velocity ratio cases. Increasing the annulus width delays the progression of mixing, and makes the effects of the velocity ratio more pronounced. For all cases the diffusion velocity streamlines in the scalar space representing the effects of molecular diffusion generally converge quickly to a curved manifold, whose curvature is reduced as mixing progresses. The curvature of the manifold increases significantly with the velocity and length scale ratios. Predicting the observed mixing path along the manifold as well as its dependence on the velocity and length scale ratios presents a challenge for mixing models. The results in the present study have implications for understanding and modelling multiscalar mixing in turbulent reactive flows.