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Evidence on the role of co-occurring psychiatric disorders in mortality associated with psychotic depression is limited.
To estimate the risk of cause-specific mortality in psychotic depression compared with severe non-psychotic depression while controlling for comorbid psychiatric disorders.
This cohort study used routine data from nationwide health registers in Finland. Eligible participants had their first diagnosis for psychotic depression or for severe non-psychotic depression between the years 2000 and 2018, had no pre-existing diagnoses for schizophrenia spectrum disorders or bipolar disorder, and were aged 18–65 years at the index diagnosis. Causes of death were defined by ICD-10 codes. The follow-up time was up to 18 years.
We included 19 064 individuals with incident psychotic depression and 90 877 individuals with incident non-psychotic depression. Half (1199/2188) of the deaths in those with psychotic depression occurred within 5 years from the index diagnosis and the highest relative risk was during the first year after the diagnosis. Compared with individuals with non-psychotic depression, those with psychotic depression had a higher risk of all-cause mortality (adjusted hazard ratio, aHR = 1.59, 95% CI 1.48–1.70), suicides (aHR = 2.36, 95% CI 2.11–2.64) and fatal accidents (aHR 1.63, 95% CI 1.26–2.10) during the subsequent 5-year period after the index diagnosis.
Psychotic symptoms markedly added to the mortality risk associated with severe depression after controlling for psychiatric comorbidity. Prompt treatment and enhanced monitoring for psychotic symptoms is warranted in all patients with severe depression to prevent deaths because of suicides and other external causes.
Research on the effectiveness of pharmacotherapies for schizophrenia and comorbid substance use disorder (SUD) is very sparse, and non-existent on the prevention of the development of SUDs in patients with schizophrenia.
To compare the real-world effectiveness of antipsychotics in schizophrenia in decreasing risk of developing an initial SUD, and psychiatric hospital admission and SUD-related hospital admission among patients with an SUD.
Two independent national cohorts including all persons diagnosed with schizophrenia (N = 45 476) were followed up for 22 (Finland: 1996–2017) and 11 (Sweden: 2006–2016) years. Risk of developing an SUD was calculated with between-individual models, and risks of psychiatric and SUD-related hospital admission were calculated with within-individual models, using Cox regression and adjusted hazard ratios (aHRs) for using versus not using certain antipsychotics.
For patients with schizophrenia without an SUD, clozapine use (Finland: aHR 0.20, 95% CI 0.16–0.24, P < 0.001; Sweden: aHR 0.35, 95% CI 0.24–0.50, P < 0.001) was associated with lowest risk of developing an initial SUD in both countries. Antipsychotic polytherapy was associated with second lowest risk (aHR 0.54, 95% CI 0.44–0.66) in Sweden, and third lowest risk (aHR 0.47, 95% CI 0.42–0.53) in Finland. Risk of relapse (psychiatric hospital admission and SUD-related hospital admission) were lowest for clozapine, antipsychotic polytherapy and long-acting injectables in both countries. Results were consistent across both countries.
Clozapine and antipsychotic polytherapy are most strongly associated with reduced risk of developing SUDs among patients with schizophrenia, and with lower relapse rates among patients with both diagnoses.
Higher incidence of psychotic disorders and underuse of mental health services have been reported among many migrant populations. This study examines the initiation and continuity of antipsychotic treatment among migrants and non-migrants with a non-affective psychosis during a new treatment episode.
This study is based on a nationwide sample of migrants and Finnish-born controls. Participants who were diagnosed with a psychotic disorder in 2011–2014 were identified from the Care Register for Health Care (n = 1693). Information on purchases of antipsychotic drugs in 2011–2015 was collected from the National Prescription Register. The duration of antipsychotic treatment since diagnosis was estimated using the PRE2DUP model. Cox regression analysis was used to study factors that are associated with discontinuing the use of medication.
There were fewer initiators of antipsychotic treatment after being diagnosed with psychosis among migrants (68.1%) than among Finnish-born patients (73.6%). After controlling for sociodemographic background and factors related to the type of disorder and treatment, migrants were more likely to discontinue medication (adjusted hazard ratio 1.28, 95% confidence interval 1.08–1.52). The risk of discontinuation was highest among migrants from North Africa and the Middle East and Sub-Saharan Africa and among recent migrants. Non-use of antipsychotic treatment before being diagnosed with psychosis, involuntary hospitalization and diagnosis other than schizophrenia were associated with earlier discontinuation both among migrants and non-migrants.
Migrants with a psychotic disorder are less likely to continue antipsychotic treatment than non-migrants. The needs of migrant patients have to be addressed to improve adherence.
Although clozapine is often discontinued, there is a paucity of guidelines and evidence on treatment options after clozapine discontinuation. Moreover, it is currently unknown whether reinstating clozapine in patients formerly using clozapine should be avoided.
To compare the real-world effectiveness of antipsychotics after clozapine cessation.
From Finnish registry data (1995–2017), we identified 2250 patients with schizophrenia who had been using clozapine for ≥1 year before treatment cessation. The primary analysis consisted of adjusted within-individual analyses of psychiatric ward readmission owing to psychosis and treatment failure. Secondary analyses concerned between-individual mortality differences.
Compared with no use of antipsychotics, risk of psychiatric ward readmission was lowest for reinitiation of clozapine (adjusted hazard ratio (aHR) 0.49; 95% CI 0.40–0.61; P < 0.0001), oral olanzapine (aHR 0.58; 95% CI 0.48–0.71; P < 0.0001) and antipsychotic polypharmacy (aHR 0.62; 95% CI 0.53–0.72; P < 0.0001). Risk of treatment failure was lowest for aripiprazole long acting injectable (aHR 0.42; 95% CI 0.27–0.65; P < 0.0001), reinitiation of clozapine (aHR 0.49; 95% CI 0.43–0.57; P < 0.0001) and oral olanzapine (aHR 0.69; 95% CI 0.61–0.77; P < 0.0001). Mortality risk was lowest for reinitiation of clozapine (aHR 0.18; 95% CI 0.09–0.36; P < 0.0001) and oral olanzapine (aHR 0.26; 95% CI 0.17–0.40; P < 0.0001).
Clozapine and olanzapine are the most effective and safest treatment options in those discontinuing clozapine for undefined reasons. Clozapine should therefore be reconsidered in patients with schizophrenia who previously discontinued this compound.
There is uncertainty about the incidence of breakthrough psychosis in treatment adherent patients, and the role that factors, such as cumulative antipsychotic exposure, play in this phenomenon.
In a nationwide cohort of individuals treated for schizophrenia-spectrum disorders in Finland between 1 January 1996 and 31 December 2015, ‘Breakthrough Psychosis on Antipsychotic Maintenance Medication’ (BAMM) was defined as hospitalization for psychosis despite ongoing continuous treatment with long-acting injectable antipsychotics (LAIs) or oral antipsychotics (OAPs) for ⩾8 weeks. Incidence rates, survival curves, and risk factors were presented.
In a cohort of 16 031 continuous LAI treatment episodes with virtually assured adherence [median duration = 441 days, interquartile range (IQR) = 155–1277], BAMM incidence was 31.5%. For 42 867 OAPs treatment episodes (median duration = 483 days, IQR = 167–1491), for whom adherence was modeled by the PRE2DUP method, BAMM incidence was 31.1%. Factors related to illness instability at treatment onset were associated with BAMM, although median time to BAMM was 291 days (IQR = 121–876) for LAIs and 344 days (IQR = 142–989) for OAPs, and 27.4% (N = 1386) of the BAMM events in the LAI, and 32.9% (N = 4378) in the OAP group occurred despite >1 year since last hospitalization at treatment onset. Cumulative antipsychotic exposure was not a consistent risk factor.
BAMM was relatively common even when adherence was confirmed with LAIs. Illness instability at treatment onset accounted for most cases, but relapse after years of continuous treatment was still prevalent. There was insufficient evidence to support causality between cumulative antipsychotic exposure and BAMM. Future research needs to address the role of symptom severity and neurobiology in BAMM.
We analyzed the impact of opioid initiation on the prevalence of antipsychotic and benzodiazepine and related drug (BZDR) use among community-dwelling persons with Alzheimer's disease (AD).
We utilized the register-based Medication use and Alzheimer's disease (MEDALZ) cohort for this study. We included all community-dwelling persons diagnosed with AD during 2010–2011 in Finland initiating opioid use (n = 3,327) and a matched cohort of persons not initiating opioids (n = 3,325). Interrupted time series analyses were conducted to compare the prevalence of antipsychotic and BZDR use in 30-day periods within six months before opioid initiation to 30-day periods six months later.
Before opioid initiation, prevalence of antipsychotic use among opioid initiators was 13.3%, 18.3% at opioid initiation, and 17.3% six months later. Prevalences of BZDR use were 27.1% six months prior, 28.9% at opioid initiation, and 26.9% six months later. After opioid initiation, antipsychotic and BZDR use declined by 0.3 percentage points (pps, 95% confidence interval 0.1–0.5) and 0.4 pps (0.2–0.7) per month, respectively, until the end of the follow-up. Compared to persons not initiating opioid use, opioid initiation immediately resulted in an increase in prevalence of 1.9 pps (0.9–2.8) for antipsychotics and of 1.6 pps (0.9–2.2) for BZDR use. However, in total there was a comparative decrease of 0.5 pps (0.3–0.8) per month for antipsychotics and of 0.4 pps (0.2–0.6) for BZDR use until the end of the follow-up.
Our results suggest that opioid initiation may reduce antipsychotic and BZDR use among persons with AD.
Behavioural and psychological symptoms of dementia are frequently treated
To determine the incidence of antipsychotic use in relation to diagnosis
of Alzheimer's disease.
Cohort of all community-dwellers in Finland diagnosed with Alzheimer's
disease in 2005 and matched controls. All antipsychotics dispensed
between 1995 and 2009 were extracted from the Finnish National
Altogether 1996/6087 (32.8%) persons with Alzheimer's disease initiated
antipsychotic use. The incidence of antipsychotic use was fivefold among
persons with Alzheimer's disease compared with controls, started to
increase 2–3 years before diagnosis and was highest during the first 6
months after diagnosis.
A distinct increase in antipsychotic initiations occurs in the same time
window as Alzheimer's disease diagnosis.
Objective: To date no studies have investigated the personality functioning underlying patients diagnosed with polycystic lipomembranous osteodysplasia with sclerosing leukoencephalopathy (PLOSL) using the performance-based Rorschach test.
Methods: We scored and interpreted the Rorschach protocols of eight carefully diagnosed PLOSL patients according to Exner's Comprehensive System. The structural variables in the Rorschach are organised around the seven dimensions of personality functioning that they assess: coping style and resources, organising information, perceiving events, forming concepts and ideas, handling of emotions, self-perception and interpersonal perception.
Results: As a group PLOSL patients had many personality liabilities when contrasted with typical avoidant non-patient adults. A majority of patients showed an avoidant coping style (Lambda > 0.99), low productivity and poor verbal output in the low number of responses and few Blends. Also, they showed limited available resources to cope with problem-solving test. Problems in organising information efficiently, and perceiving events realistically as well as signs of disturbed thinking and concept formation were observed in many patients. Handling of emotions was characterised by avoidance of emotional stimuli but at the same time poor affect modulation. Capacities to view themselves and others were thoroughly limited.
Conclusions: PLOSL tends to have repercussions throughout the personality functioning. In line with clinical findings and later neuroradiological and neuropathological examinations the Rorschach revealed personality features typical for frontal type of dementia.
The presence of cavum septum pellucidum (CSP) has been reported to be a neurodevelopmental marker of psychopathy. We scanned 26 violent offenders and 25 controls; 2 offenders and 2 controls had CSP (8% in both groups). Thus, the presence of CSP is not a common or a unique feature of antisocial personality disorder or psychopathy.
Violent crime is one of the most detrimental factors affecting the quality of life in many industrialized countries, and most persons incarcerated due to violent offenses have committed previous offenses (Hamparin, Schuster, Dinstz, & Conrad, 1978; Lindqvist, 1986; Tracy, Wolfgang, & Figlio, 1990; Vankeinhoitolaitos, 1997). The majority of all violent crime is attributable to a relatively small population exhibiting recidivistic violent behavior (Hamparin et al., 1978; Tracy et al., 1990). It is remarkable how little systematic and controlled scientific research has focused on the mental disorders underlying habitual violent behavior: The first studies on the quantitative risk assessment of recidivistic violent behavior were only published in the 1990s.
Several practical difficulties have hindered research on violent behavior. Many violent offenses are mild and are even not registered in police records. This obstacle can be avoided by focusing only on the most serious crimes, such as homicide. Even this does not help to improve the coverage of the offenders completely, since in many industrialized countries a large proportion of homicides remains unsolved (e.g., about 30% in the United States, International Criminal Police Organisation, 1991). It is difficult to obtain comprehensive groups of recidivistic offenders for research purposes in countries with high crime rates caused by extensive use of illicit drugs, a high incidence of organized crime, and gun violence. This is probably because higher crime rates mean lower crime clearance rates.
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