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We describe here efforts to create and study magnetized electron–positron pair plasmas, the existence of which in astrophysical environments is well-established. Laboratory incarnations of such systems are becoming ever more possible due to novel approaches and techniques in plasma, beam and laser physics. Traditional magnetized plasmas studied to date, both in nature and in the laboratory, exhibit a host of different wave types, many of which are generically unstable and evolve into turbulence or violent instabilities. This complexity and the instability of these waves stem to a large degree from the difference in mass between the positively and the negatively charged species: the ions and the electrons. The mass symmetry of pair plasmas, on the other hand, results in unique behaviour, a topic that has been intensively studied theoretically and numerically for decades, but experimental studies are still in the early stages of development. A levitated dipole device is now under construction to study magnetized low-energy, short-Debye-length electron–positron plasmas; this experiment, as well as a stellarator device that is in the planning stage, will be fuelled by a reactor-based positron source and make use of state-of-the-art positron cooling and storage techniques. Relativistic pair plasmas with very different parameters will be created using pair production resulting from intense laser–matter interactions and will be confined in a high-field mirror configuration. We highlight the differences between and similarities among these approaches, and discuss the unique physics insights that can be gained by these studies.
Although the relative importance of airborne transmission of the SARS-CoV-2 virus is controversial, increasing evidence suggests that understanding airflows is important for estimation of the risk of contracting COVID-19. The data available so far indicate that indoor transmission of the virus far outstrips outdoor transmission, possibly due to longer exposure times and the decreased turbulence levels (and therefore dispersion) found indoors. In this paper we discuss the role of building ventilation on the possible pathways of airborne particles and examine the fluid mechanics of the processes involved.
Households in Canada and Australia have exhibited similar trends in the gendered allocation of additional child care responsibilities resulting from policy responses to the COVID-19 pandemic. In this article, we employ survey data to analyze the extent to which policy interventions related to COVID-19 have exacerbated gender disparities in child care obligations. We find that existing asymmetrical distributions of child care obligations in Canada and Australia have been amplified during the pandemic, resulting in a disproportionate burden on women. During the pandemic we also find that, in households with children, women tend to report experiencing poorer mental health than men.
We give a list of statements on the geometry of elliptic threefolds phrased only in the language of topology and homological algebra. Using only notions from topology and homological algebra, we recover existing results and prove new results on torsion pairs in the category of coherent sheaves on an elliptic threefold.
Negative life events can result in adjustment disorders. If there are feelings of having been treated unfair, been let down or been humiliated one type of reaction are prolonged states of embitterment, which has been described as Posttraumatic Embitterment Disorder, PTED. A new approach in the treatment of PTED is cognitive behavioral psychotherapy which uses special strategies based on wisdom psychology. Wisdom has been defined as the capacity to cope with unsolvable and serious problems and questions in life.
In a controlled clinical trial psychosomatic inpatients which suffered from PTED, were randomly assigned to “wisdom therapy” (N=28), which focusses on the reframing of the traumatic event and to “wisdom and headonia therapy” (N=29), which additionally encourages patients to focus on positive aspects in life. Another group of PTED patients (N=50) and patients with other mental disorders (N=50) received treatment as usual.
PTED patients who were treated with wisdom psychotherapy showed a reduction in the SCL-90-PST score of initially 55,7 and at the end of 40,1 and those treated with hedonia therapy of initially 58,7 and at the end of 41,3. Measures of therapist adherence showed that therapists in both groups used wisdom strategies. PTED controls started initially with a SCL-90-PST score of 52,2 and ended with 50,2. Other patients started treatment with 39,3 and finished with 25,9.
This first treatment study on cognitive wisdom therapy suggests that wisdom can be helpful in the treatment of adjustment and embitterment disorders.
Pathological anxiety is characterized by the absence of a reason for anxiety. However, the presence of fear provoking stimuli does not exclude the possibility for a pathological course of anxiety, i.e. “Pathological Realangst”. An example are hypochondriac anxieties in patients with severe somatic disorders. An open question is to what degree severity of somatic morbidity is related with anxiety.
In 209 patients (37,8% women) from a cardiology inpatient unit general anxiety, heart-related anxiety, progression anxiety, and job-anxiety were measured. Physicians rated the degree of severity of the somatic (heart-)disorder using the Multidimensional Severity of Morbidity Rating (MSM rating). Relationships between the degree of anxiety and somatic morbidity parameters were investigated.
Anxiety did not or to a very low degree correlate with objective indicators of somatic morbidity. Subjective suffering showed a moderate significant correlation with heart-related anxiety and progression anxiety, and was also correlated with sick leave duration.
Severity of somatic illness is a multidimensional phenomenon and not regularly related in a special way with anxiety, except the dimension of subjective suffering. Pathological fears, even when occurring in the context of somatic disorders, are not related to objective endangerment, but have to be described as mental problems.
Health problems are often associated with activity limitations and participation restrictions (ICF, WHO, 2001). An example are problems at work or sick leave. The research question has been whether in these cases activity limitations and participation restrictions refer only to the workplace, or whether and to which degree other areas of life are similarly affected.
Type and degree of participation restrictions in different domains of life were assessed in 382 primary health care patients (aged 18-65) with the IMET, a questionnaire which measures participation restrictions across several domains of life. Additionally, the patients were interviewed about health-related problems at work. IMET scores were compared between patients with and without health related problems at work.
27% of 299 presently employed patients were suffering from workplace problems. These patients had significantly longer durations of sick leave than patients without problems at work and also reported significantly more problems in functioning in general daily activities.
Workplace problems are a frequent topic in primary health care and related to sick leave. Health related problems at work are indicative for problems in functioning in other areas of life as well. Participation restrictions in non-work areas can be early indicators for participation problems at work.
Generalized anxiety disorders (GAD) are characterized by persistent excessive worrying about minor hassles. GAD patients are high utilizers of medical services and medication.
According to an analysis of 21 double-blind placebo-controlled trials by of Hidalgo et al. (2007) highest effect sizes are reproted for pregabalin (0.50), hydroxyzine (0.45), venlafaxine XR (0.42), benzodiazepines (0.38), SSRIs (0.36), buspirone (0.17) and herbal medicines (-0.31). The question is how GAD is treated under conditions of routine treatment. This was studied in patients were admitted to inpatient treatment.
Psychotropic premedication and changes in medication during the inpatient treatment were analyzed in 107 patients.
Before admission, 27,1% of GAD patients got tricyclic antidepressants, 25,2% SSRI, 8,4% benzodiazepines, 7,4% atypical antidepressants, 1,9% anticonvulsants/pregabaline, 1,9% herbal drugs. Furthermore, 20,6% got betablocker, preferably because of hypertension.
During the inpatient stay changes in medication were made according to the clinical discretion of the therapist. At discharge 41,1% of GAD patients received SSRI, 23,4% tricyclic antidepressants, 22,4% pregabaline, 9,4% atypical antidepressants.
SSRI and tricyclic antidepressants play the major role in the drug treatment of GAD. Under clinical conditions there has been an optimization of treatment by increasing preferably the rate of SSRI treatments and of pregabaline treatment, while reducing benzodiazepine treatment and to some degree tricyclic antidepressants.
Hidalgo RB, Tupler LA, Davidson JRT (2007): An effect-size analysis of pharmacologic treatments for generalized anxiety disorder. J Psychopharmacol 21(8):864-872.
The concept of minimal emotional dysfunctions (MED) refers to traditional psychopathology in order to describe, classify, and understand personality disorders. Emotional dysfunctions encompass disorders of affect predominance, production, expression, experience, modulation, and regulation. MED can explain the dimensional nature of personality disorders, their multidimensionality and problems with categorical classifications. It can stimulate research on the etiology of personality disorders in reference to modern developmental brain research and trauma psychology. It can guide new developments in pharmacotherapy and psychotherapy. It is suggested to focus on MED in future developments of the description and classification of personality disorders.
In neuroleptic long-term medication, only part of the patients accept regular intake of neuroleptic drugs. The question is whether an interval medication regimen as opposed to continuous medication can help to reduce drop outs in patients with critical attitudes towards long-term medication. In a 2-year prospective study, 122 patients were randomised to an interval and 164 to a continuous neuroleptic medication regimen. The drop out rates were 62.5% in the interval and 53.7% in the continuous medication group. Drop outs generally show more negative attitudes towards treatment. Patients with negative attitudes do not do better under interval medication. Moreover, this regimen even requires more cooperation and trust in terms of the necessity of medication on the part of the patient compared to the continuous medication regimen. Interval medication therefore is a strategy which can only be successful in highly cooperative, but not in treatment-reluctant patients.
In an interim evaluation on baseline data of the German PADRE observational study the correlation between physician- and patient assessment of emotional and physical symptoms of depressed patients was evaluated.
This multicenter, prospective, 6-month observational study focused on adult outpatients with a depressive episode as diagnosed according to ICD-10 criteria, chosen by their physician to start new anti-depressive treatment with duloxetine. Correlations between the applied depression and/or pain scales were calculated via Spearman's correlation coefficient. Symptoms were evaluated via clinician rated 'Inventory for Depressive Symptomatology' ([IDS-C], total score, including item 25), patient rated 5-item scale 'KUSTA', (rating mood, activity, tension-relaxation, sleep and appetite on visual analog scales [VAS]), and patient rated VAS for 'Pain'.
All participating physicians are psychiatrists/neurologists. 2.748 patients (71% female, mean age 52.7 yrs) were evaluated. Any pain symptoms were documented in 88.9% of patients at baseline. When comparing patient- with physician-assessments, correlation of PPS scales was low to moderate and varied for different pain types: IDS-C item 25 (="somatic disorders") vs. overall pain-VAS: r=0.421 (95% CI 0.390, 0.452), IDS-C item 25 vs. abdominal pain: r=0.189; IDS-C item 25 vs. chest-pain: r=0.179. When comparing IDS-C total vs. the KUSTA items, correlation was moderate in all cases (e.g.: r= -0.510 for IDS total vs. KUSTA mood).
Only a low to moderate correlation was observed between physician- and patient assessment for PPS in depressed patients. Therefore, patient pain ratings should explicitly be included in the assessment of depressed patients.
Negative public reactions concerning mental illness, and in particular schizophrenia, may result in a number of negative consequences, including aggravating their clinical condition and making it even more difficult for patients to assimilate into society. The present study examined young people's attitudes about schizophrenia and furthermore evaluated the effect of a documentary film (that depicts the lives of schizophrenia patients) on reducing stigmatization about schizophrenia. One hundred and fifteen undergraduate psychology students first provided information concerning their attitudes and knowledge about schizophrenia, in addition to filling out a questionnaire assessing their degree of acceptance of stereotypes and degree of social distance towards schizophrenia patients. One week later, participants viewed the documentary film and completed the same questionnaire. The film significantly and positively influenced participants’ attitudes concerning schizophrenia. In particular, after having watched the film, participants revealed less stereotypical attitudes about schizophrenia and desired less social distance with schizophrenia patients. This change was not related to social desirability or to age, sex or years of education.
Pathological anxiety is typically characterized by the absence of a real threat or danger. But, a persistent reason for anxiety, such as a severe life threatening illness, does not prevent the development of additional pathological anxieties, which has been described as “Pathological Realangst”.
The question is to what degree pathological realangst can be explained by the real threat or preexisting anxiety.
209 patients (37,8% female) of a cardiology inpatient unit were given the State-Trait-Anxiety-Inventory, the Heart-Anxiety-Questionnaire, and the Progression Anxiety Questionnaire. Treating physicians gave a rating on the severity of somatic morbidity including subjective suffering, short and long term prognosis, impairment in daily living, degree of acute and chronic multimorbitity, and objective parameters of the cardiac condition.
Global or specific ratings on the severity of somatic morbidity did not correlate with general or heart related anxiety. Correlation coefficients ranged between .001 and a maximum of .22 (heart anxiety and subjective suffering).
The results speak against the assumption that the threat by the illness is the explanation for the present anxiety. Instead, anxious patients who are suffering from a somatic illness are also afraid of their health status and present this as cause of their anxiety. Inspite of the persistent threat this anxiety is pathological i.e. realangst. It should be treated like other anxiety disorders, although it is more difficult to convince the patient and possibly their treating physicians that the present anxiety is not “normal” but pathological and in need of treatment.
The International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health, ICF, discriminates between functions, activities/capacities, context factors and participation. There is only limited information on disorders of capacity in neurotic disorders.
213 inpatients of a department of behavioral and psychosomatic medicine (70% women, median age 45 years) were rated with the “Mini-ICF-Rating for Pychological Disorders, Mini-ICF-P”. This instrument assesses thirteen dimensions of capacity, derived fom the ICF, which can be impaired by mental disorders. Rating varies between 0 (no problem) to 4 (can not fullfill respective requirements at all).
61% of patients suffered from disorders from section F4 (neurotic, adjustment and somatoform disorders) of the ICD-10 (WHO, 1991), 29% from F3 (affective disorders) and 10% from F6 (personality disorders).
41% were on sick leave before admission. The average global score of the Mini-ICF-P was 0,84 (SD = 0,56), corresponding to “mild disability”. Highest disability was found for “flexibility” (M = 1,64, SD = 0,94), and lowest for “self maintenance” (M = 0,19, SD = 0,44) and “mobility” (M = 0,43, SD = 0,85). The Mini-ICF-P-score and profile was correlated with rate and duration of sick leave, but also type of disorder (e.g. depression vs. phobias), and course of treatment.
Comparatively minor disorders of capacity are associated with high rates of sick leave, i.e. disorders of participation. Not only restoration of functons but also of capacities should be targets of treatment.
The goal of this training workshop is to give an introduction in recent developments of wisdom psychology and their bearing for cognitive psychotherapy of adjustment disorders.
Negative life events like divorce, dead of a beloved one, job loss etc. require enhanced coping. If this is not sufficient it can result in adjustment or other mental disorders. One factor which often contributes to pathological developments in the context of negative life events is embitterment because of the feeling of having been treated unfair, been let down or been humiliated. If embitterment is present then there is a tendency not to recover spontaneously but rather to take a chronic course.
There is a new approach in the treatment for such adjustment disorders which is based on recent developments in wisdom psychology. Wisdom has been defined as the capacity to cope with unsolvable and serious problems and questions in life. It has been shown:
a. that persons who are not successful in coping with negaive life events lack wisdom capacities,
b. that wisdom capacities can be trained, and
c. that cognitive treatment which uses wisdom strategies is helpful in the treatment of adjustment disorders and especially those with prolonged embitterment reactions.
This training workshop will:
• inform about the clincial features of adjustment disorders and especially posttraumatic embitterment disorders;
• give an introduction in recent developments of wisdom psychology;
This study examined the relation between schizotypy and the encoding style in a sub-clinical sample. We evaluated, first, the level of schizotypy with the Schizotypal Personality Questionnaire (SPQB) (Raine and al, 1995). Three factors are evaluated
a) cognitive-perceptual factor,
b) b) interpersonal factor and disorganisation.
For the encoding style, we use the Encoding Style Questionnaire (ESQ) (Lewicki, 2005). Two type of encoding process exist, the “hasty” (or internal, based on internal encoding schemata) versus conservative (or external, base on data from external stimuli) (Lewicki, 2005). Internal encoding style may contribute to the development of different psychopathological symptoms, like Paranoia, Anxiety disorders and Depression (Hill, Lewiski and Neubauer, 1991), because of the self-perpetuation of dysfunctional schemata.
Participants and procedure
A total of 184 students (113 women and 71 men) participated at this study. The mean age of the sample was 22,58 years (SD = 1,96). They were test using a French version of the ESQ, the brief SPQB, State-Trait Anxiety Inventory (STAI), The Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression (CES-D) Scale.
The results demonstrated that we have a positive correlation between internal encoding style, schizotypy, depression and anxiety. Secondly, a high level of internal encoding style means a high level of congnitivo-perceptual and for interpersonal factors with an impact of depression and anxiety.
An internal encoding style is link with a high score in schizotypy.