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It is important to understand the temporal trend of the paediatric severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) viral load to estimate the transmission potential of children in schools and communities. We determined the differences in SARS-CoV-2 viral load dynamics between nasopharyngeal samples of infected asymptomatic and symptomatic children. Serial cycle threshold values of SARS-CoV-2 from the nasopharynx of a cohort of infected children were collected for analysis. Among 17 infected children, 10 (58.8%) were symptomatic. Symptomatic children, when compared to asymptomatic children, had higher viral loads (mean cycle threshold on day 7 of illness 28.6 vs. 36.7, P = 0.02). Peak SARS-CoV-2 viral loads occurred around day 2 of illness in infected children. Although we were unable to directly demonstrate infectivity, the detection of significant amount of virus in the upper airway of asymptomatic children suggest that they have the potential to shed and transmit SARS-CoV-2. Our study highlights the importance of contact tracing and screening for SARS-CoV-2 in children with epidemiological risk factors regardless of their symptom status, in order to improve containment of the virus in the community, including educational settings.
Little is known about the early phases of bipolar disorders (BPAD) and most of current knowledge derives from putative “high-risk” studies conducted in populations of bipolar off-spring; such information may therefore be relevant only to a subgroup of at-risk subjects.
Retrospective assessment of the phase preceding the emergence of mania and of premorbid characteristics of patients treated for a first episode of psychotic mania. The collected data was used mainly to generate hypotheses.
Before onset of a first episode of psychotic mania, patients go through a phase of change from previous mental state where they present mood symptoms, sleep disruption and general functional decline. These clinical manifestations are likely to have low specificity. However, their occurrence in patients presenting certain risk factors or markers of vulnerability that were identified at a relatively high prevalence in our sample, may be an indicator of impending first episode mania.
This is a retrospective study, in a small sample of patients presenting with psychotic mania. Criteria identified need therefore to be validated in larger prospective studies.
Early identification of patients at risk to develop a first episode of psychotic mania is unlikely to be possible on the basis of symptoms alone. However, the occurrence of certain clinical characteristics in patients who have risk factors or markers of vulnerability to BPAD may be a sign of impending first episode mania.
Role functioning is key to optimal health and inoculates against life-long inequality. Depression is a leading cause of functional disability. In most cases, improved symptomatology corresponds with improved functioning; however, functioning does not always return to “normal”, despite symptom remission. Furthermore, the relationship between symptom remission and the likelihood of being Not in Employment, Education or Training (NEET) is unknown.
Objectives and aim
To examine the temporal associations between depression course, functioning, and NEET status in young adults with mental health problems.
A prospective and multisite clinical cohort study of young people aged 15–25 years seeking help from a primary mental health service (n = 448). Participants completed a clinical interview (incl. QIDS-C16) and self-report battery (incl. WHODAS 2.0, employment, education) at baseline which was repeated at 12-month follow-up whilst continuing treatment as usual.
Remitted depression was significantly associated with improved functioning; however, 12 month functioning was still lower than the normative ranges for age-matched peers. Remittance of depression did not change the likelihood of being NEET. Only 10% of those who were NEET had received vocational support during the study.
Remittance of depression was associated with improved functioning but it did not reduce the likelihood of being NEET. This may be explained by economic influences or alternatively, a time lag may exist where improvements in functioning do not immediately correspond with reduced NEET rates. Lastly, there may be a scarring effect of depression such that change in NEET status requires an additional intervention to depression treatment.
Disclosure of interest
The authors have not supplied their declaration of competing interest.
In the 1990s criteria were developed to detect individuals at high and imminent risk of developing a psychotic disorder. These are known as the at risk mental state, ultra high risk or clinical high risk criteria. Individuals meeting these criteria are symptomatic and help-seeking. Services for such individuals are now found worldwide. Recently Psychological Medicine published two articles that criticise these services and suggest that they should be dismantled or restructured. One paper also provides recommendations on how ARMS services should be operate.
In this paper we draw on the existing literature in the field and present the perspective of some ARMS clinicians and researchers.
Many of the critics' arguments are refuted. Most of the recommendations included in the Moritz et al. paper are already occurring.
ARMS services provide management of current problems, treatment to reduce risk of onset of psychotic disorder and monitoring of mental state, including attenuated psychotic symptoms. These symptoms are associated with a range of poor outcomes. It is important to assess them and track their trajectory over time. A new approach to detection of ARMS individuals can be considered that harnesses broad youth mental health services, such as headspace in Australia, Jigsaw in Ireland and ACCESS Open Minds in Canada. Attention should also be paid to the physical health of ARMS individuals. Far from needing to be dismantled we feel that the ARMS approach has much to offer to improve the health of young people.
Seasonal influenza virus epidemics have a major impact on healthcare systems. Data on population susceptibility to emerging influenza virus strains during the interepidemic period can guide planning for resource allocation of an upcoming influenza season. This study sought to assess the population susceptibility to representative emerging influenza virus strains collected during the interepidemic period. The microneutralisation antibody titers (MN titers) of a human serum panel against representative emerging influenza strains collected during the interepidemic period before the 2018/2019 winter influenza season (H1N1-inter and H3N2-inter) were compared with those against influenza strains representative of previous epidemics (H1N1-pre and H3N2-pre). A multifaceted approach, incorporating both genetic and antigenic data, was used in selecting these representative influenza virus strains for the MN assay. A significantly higher proportion of individuals had a ⩾four-fold reduction in MN titers between H1N1-inter and H1N1-pre than that between H3N2-inter and H3N2-pre (28.5% (127/445) vs. 4.9% (22/445), P < 0.001). The geometric mean titer (GMT) of H1N1-inter was significantly lower than that of H1N1-pre (381 (95% CI 339–428) vs. 713 (95% CI 641–792), P < 0.001), while there was no significant difference in the GMT between H3N2-inter and H3N2-pre. Since A(H1N1) predominated the 2018–2019 winter influenza epidemic, our results corroborated the epidemic subtype.
We carried out simultaneous observations of H2O and OH masers, and radio continuum at 1.3 cm with the Karl G. Jansky Very Large Array (VLA) towards 4 water-fountain candidates. Water fountains (WFs) are evolved stars, in the AGB and post-AGB phase, with collimated jets traced by high-velocity H2O masers. Up to now, only 15 sources have been confirmed as WFs through interferometric observations. We are interested in the discovery and study of new WFs. A higher number of these sources is important to understand their properties as a group, because they may represent one of the first manifestations of collimated mass-loss in evolved stars. These observations will provide information about the role of magnetic fields in the launching of jets in WFs. Our aim is to ascertain the WF nature of these candidates, and investigate the spatial distribution of the H2O and OH masers.
Exposure to traumatic experiences in childhood is a risk (and potentially causal) factor for the development of a range of adverse physical and mental health conditions. In addition to the onset of clinical disorders, there is emerging evidence that childhood trauma may also be associated with other long-term outcomes, such as the persistence and severity of an individual’s symptoms, as well as their long-term social and occupational functioning. However, the reasons for this remain poorly understood. A greater understanding both of the mediators that drive these associations, and those variables that enhance resilience against such damaging experiences may help to inform effective therapeutic interventions. In addition to biological and cognitive measures, there is a need to consider social and environmental factors, such as parental bonding and attachment, when investigating these complex relationships.
We introduce the newly developed database of circumstellar maser sources. Until now, the compilations comprehensively including the three major maser species in evolved stars (i.e., SiO, H2O, OH) has been practically limited only to the Benson’s catalog (Benson et al. 1990), which was published more than a quarter of a century ago. For OH masers alone, there exists the University of Hamburg (UH) database, but there is no updated compilation work for H2O and SiO masers. In order to utilize the information of masers in actual studies, it is highly desirable to have a database containing all the three masers. We are currently constructing a database covering SiO, H2O and OH masers. This database consists of a web-service, which accesses compiled maser observations in available archives and combines them with the data we newly collected and IR databases. The archives currently used are the OH maser archive from Engels & Bunzel (2015), and H2O and SiO archives, which are currently under construction. So far, the information of about 27,000 observations (about 10,000 objects) has been implemented. We also have a plan to extend the database by including higher transitions and other types of objects, such as young stellar objects, in future. In this paper, we briefly summarize, (1) outline of the data collected, and (2) future development plans of the eDAMS system. The URL of the database is as follows: http://maserdb.ins.urfu.ru/
Mycobacterium marinum, a bacterium found in freshwater and saltwater, can infect persons with direct exposure to fish or aquariums. During December 2013, the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene learned of four suspected or confirmed M. marinum skin or soft tissue infections (SSTIs) among persons who purchased whole fish from Chinese markets. Ninety-eight case-patients with non-tuberculous mycobacteria (NTM) SSTIs were identified with onset June 2013–March 2014. Of these, 77 (79%) were female. The median age was 62 years (range 30–91). Whole genome sequencing of clinical isolates revealed two main clusters and marked genetic diversity. Environmental samples from distributors yielded NTM though not M. marinum. We compared 56 case-patients with 185 control subjects who shopped in Chinese markets, frequency-matched by age group and sex. Risk factors for infection included skin injury to the finger or hand (odds ratio [OR]: 15·5; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 6·9–37·3), hand injury while preparing fish or seafood (OR 8·3; 95% CI 3·8–19·1), and purchasing tilapia (OR 3·6; 95% CI 1·1–13·9) or whiting (OR 2·7; 95% CI 1·1–6·6). A definitive environmental outbreak source was not identified.
Faster eating rates are associated with increased energy intake, but little is known about the relationship between children’s eating rate, food intake and adiposity. We examined whether children who eat faster consume more energy and whether this is associated with higher weight status and adiposity. We hypothesised that eating rate mediates the relationship between child weight and ad libitum energy intake. Children (n 386) from the Growing Up in Singapore Towards Healthy Outcomes cohort participated in a video-recorded ad libitum lunch at 4·5 years to measure acute energy intake. Videos were coded for three eating-behaviours (bites, chews and swallows) to derive a measure of eating rate (g/min). BMI and anthropometric indices of adiposity were measured. A subset of children underwent MRI scanning (n 153) to measure abdominal subcutaneous and visceral adiposity. Children above/below the median eating rate were categorised as slower and faster eaters, and compared across body composition measures. There was a strong positive relationship between eating rate and energy intake (r 0·61, P<0·001) and a positive linear relationship between eating rate and children’s BMI status. Faster eaters consumed 75 % more energy content than slower eating children (Δ548 kJ (Δ131 kcal); 95 % CI 107·6, 154·4, P<0·001), and had higher whole-body (P<0·05) and subcutaneous abdominal adiposity (Δ118·3 cc; 95 % CI 24·0, 212·7, P=0·014). Mediation analysis showed that eating rate mediates the link between child weight and energy intake during a meal (b 13·59; 95 % CI 7·48, 21·83). Children who ate faster had higher energy intake, and this was associated with increased BMI z-score and adiposity.
The Chronic Otitis Media Questionnaire 12 was developed initially in the UK to assess patient-reported health-related quality of life associated with chronic otitis media. This study aimed to determine whether this tool is applicable to the Russian population, which has a materially different healthcare system.
A total of 108 patients with different forms of chronic otitis media completed the Russian Chronic Otitis Media Questionnaire 12.
The average Russian Chronic Otitis Media Questionnaire 12 score was 19.4 (standard deviation = 8.3). The internal consistency of the Russian Chronic Otitis Media Questionnaire 12 was high, with a Cronbach's alpha value of 0.860.
The Russian version of the Chronic Otitis Media Questionnaire 12 was found to be a reliable tool for the assessment of health-related quality of life in patients with chronic otitis media. This sets the scene for international collaboration, using this tool to assess the effectiveness of surgical treatments even amongst countries with different healthcare systems.
When used as an adjunctive with antipsychotics, certain vitamins and minerals may be effective for improving symptomatic outcomes of schizophrenia, by restoring nutritional deficits, reducing oxidative stress, or modulating neurological pathways.
We conducted a systematic review of all randomized controlled trials (RCTs) reporting effects of vitamin and/or mineral supplements on psychiatric symptoms in people with schizophrenia. Random-effects meta-analyses were used to calculate the standardized mean difference between nutrient and placebo treatments.
An electronic database search in July 2016 identified 18 eligible RCTs, with outcome data for 832 patients. Pooled effects showed that vitamin B supplementation (including B6, B8 and B12) reduced psychiatric symptoms significantly more than control conditions [g = 0.508, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.01–1.01, p = 0.047, I2 = 72.3%]. Similar effects were observed among vitamin B RCTs which used intention-to-treat analyses (g = 0.734, 95% CI 0.00–1.49, p = 0.051). However, no effects of B vitamins were observed in individual domains of positive and negative symptoms (both p > 0.1). Meta-regression analyses showed that shorter illness duration was associated with greater vitamin B effectiveness (p = 0.001). There were no overall effects from antioxidant vitamins, inositol or dietary minerals on psychiatric symptoms.
There is preliminary evidence that certain vitamin and mineral supplements may reduce psychiatric symptoms in some people with schizophrenia. Further research is needed to examine how the benefits of supplementation relate to nutrient deficits and the impact upon underlying neurobiological pathways, in order to establish optimal nutrient formulations for improving clinical outcomes in this population. Future studies should also explore the effects of combining beneficial nutrients within multi-nutrient formulas.
Cannabis use shows a robust dose-dependent relationship with psychosis risk among the general population. Despite this, it has been difficult to link cannabis use with risk for transitioning to a psychotic disorder among individuals at ultra-high risk (UHR) for psychosis. The present study examined UHR transition risk as a function of cannabis use characteristics which vary substantially between individuals including age of first use, cannabis abuse severity and a history of cannabis-induced attenuated psychotic symptoms (APS).
Participants were 190 UHR individuals (76 males) recruited at entry to treatment between 2000 and 2006. They completed a comprehensive baseline assessment including a survey of cannabis use characteristics during the period of heaviest use. Outcome was transition to a psychotic disorder, with mean time to follow-up of 5.0 years (range 2.4–8.7 years).
A history of cannabis abuse was reported in 58% of the sample. Of these, 26% reported a history of cannabis-induced APS. These individuals were 4.90 (95% confidence interval 1.93–12.44) times more likely to transition to a psychotic disorder (p = 0.001). Greater severity of cannabis abuse also predicted transition to psychosis (p = 0.036). However, this effect was mediated by higher abuse severity among individuals with a history of cannabis-induced APS.
Findings suggest that cannabis use poses risk in a subpopulation of UHR individuals who manifest cannabis-induced APS. Whether this reflects underlying genetic vulnerability requires further study. Nevertheless, findings reveal an important early marker of risk with potentially significant prognostic utility for UHR individuals.
Exercise can improve clinical outcomes in people with severe mental illness (SMI). However, this population typically engages in low levels of physical activity with poor adherence to exercise interventions. Understanding the motivating factors and barriers towards exercise for people with SMI would help to maximize exercise participation. A search of major electronic databases was conducted from inception until May 2016. Quantitative studies providing proportional data on the motivating factors and/or barriers towards exercise among patients with SMI were eligible. Random-effects meta-analyses were undertaken to calculate proportional data and 95% confidence intervals (CI) for motivating factors and barriers toward exercise. From 1468 studies, 12 independent studies of 6431 psychiatric patients were eligible for inclusion. Meta-analyses showed that 91% of people with SMI endorsed ‘improving health’ as a reason for exercise (N = 6, n = 790, 95% CI 80–94). Among specific aspects of health and well-being, the most common motivations were ‘losing weight’ (83% of patients), ‘improving mood’ (81%) and ‘reducing stress’ (78%). However, low mood and stress were also identified as the most prevalent barriers towards exercise (61% of patients), followed by ‘lack of support’ (50%). Many of the desirable outcomes of exercise for people with SMI, such as mood improvement, stress reduction and increased energy, are inversely related to the barriers of depression, stress and fatigue which frequently restrict their participation in exercise. Providing patients with professional support to identify and achieve their exercise goals may enable them to overcome psychological barriers, and maintain motivation towards regular physical activity.
Careers in medicine are embarked on by people with various personalities, with highly strung and motivated characters usually drawn to surgery. This study was conducted to identify the personality types of ENT surgeons in comparison to a control group of foundation doctors.
A validated personality questionnaire was distributed to ENT specialty trainees and two cohorts of foundation doctors between October 2013 and November 2015. The questionnaires were scored and individuals were categorised as having either type A or type B personalities.
Response rates were 90 per cent (26 out of 29) for ENT specialty trainees and 76 per cent (79 out of 104) for foundation doctors. There was a significantly higher proportion of type A personalities in the ENT specialty trainees compared to the foundation doctors (18 out of 26 ENT specialty trainees vs 32 out of 79 foundation doctors; p = 0.01, chi-square = 6.4708). There were no associations between personality type and grade, gender or subspecialty of interest.
ENT surgeons are more likely to be of type A personality in comparison to foundation doctors. This could be a reflection of the recruitment process into the specialty or a characteristic of individuals that get drawn to ENT.
Surgeons are exposed to a variety of occupational risks, including work-related musculoskeletal disorders. This study investigated the prevalence of these latter disorders amongst UK ENT surgeons and compared this with the existing literature.
A survey containing questions on work-related musculoskeletal disorders was distributed to the entire membership of ENT-UK electronically, with the assistance of its Survey Guardian. A literature review on the subject was then performed.
A total of 323 completed questionnaires were received (a 24 per cent response rate). Work-related musculoskeletal disorders had been experienced by 47.4 per cent of respondents. There were no statistical differences between the occurrence of work-related musculoskeletal disorders and: grade, length of time spent in the specialty or the subspecialty of respondents. Eighty-five per cent of affected surgeons sought treatment, with 22.9 per cent taking time off work and six surgeons retiring early. The literature review only identified five related studies.
Despite the scarcity of studies, work-related musculoskeletal disorders are common amongst ENT surgeons in the UK. Such disparity highlights the need for more research and appropriate ergonomic intervention within the specialty.
Sharps injuries are a common occupational hazard amongst surgeons. Limited work has been conducted on their effects within the ENT community.
A literature review was performed and a survey on sharps injuries was distributed to the entire membership of ENT-UK electronically.
The literature review revealed 3 studies, with 2 of them performed more than 20 years ago. A total of 323 completed questionnaires were returned (24 per cent response rate). Of the respondents, 26.6 per cent reported having experienced sharps injuries. There was no statistical difference between the occurrence of sharps injuries and the grade, length of time spent in the specialty or subspecialty of respondents. Only 33.7 per cent of afflicted clinicians reported all their injuries as per local institutional policies. No seroconversions were reported.
The study found poor evidence on sharps injuries amongst ENT surgeons, and low reporting rates that were comparable to other studies conducted in the UK. This highlights the need for further research and increasing awareness on sharps injuries regulations within the specialty.
Dentinogenesis imperfecta type II (DGI-II) lacks intrafibrillar mineral with severe compromise of dentin mechanical properties. A Dspp knockout (Dspp–/–) mouse, with a phenotype similar to that of human DGI-II, was used to determine if poly-L-aspartic acid [poly(ASP)] in the “polymer-induced liquid-precursor” (PILP) system can restore its mechanical properties. Dentin from six-week old Dspp–/– and wild-type mice was treated with CaP solution containing poly(ASP) for up to 14 days. Elastic modulus and hardness before and after treatment were correlated with mineralization from Micro x-ray computed tomography (Micro-XCT). Transmission electron microscopy (TEM)/Selected area electron diffraction (SAED) were used to compare matrix mineralization and crystallography. Mechanical properties of the Dspp–/– dentin were significantly less than wild-type dentin and recovered significantly (P < 0.05) after PILP-treatment, reaching values comparable to wild-type dentin. Micro-XCT showed mineral recovery similar to wild-type dentin after PILP-treatment. TEM/SAED showed repair of patchy mineralization and complete mineralization of defective dentin. This approach may lead to new strategies for hard tissue repair.