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In recent years, a variety of efforts have been made in political science to enable, encourage, or require scholars to be more open and explicit about the bases of their empirical claims and, in turn, make those claims more readily evaluable by others. While qualitative scholars have long taken an interest in making their research open, reflexive, and systematic, the recent push for overarching transparency norms and requirements has provoked serious concern within qualitative research communities and raised fundamental questions about the meaning, value, costs, and intellectual relevance of transparency for qualitative inquiry. In this Perspectives Reflection, we crystallize the central findings of a three-year deliberative process—the Qualitative Transparency Deliberations (QTD)—involving hundreds of political scientists in a broad discussion of these issues. Following an overview of the process and the key insights that emerged, we present summaries of the QTD Working Groups’ final reports. Drawing on a series of public, online conversations that unfolded at www.qualtd.net, the reports unpack transparency’s promise, practicalities, risks, and limitations in relation to different qualitative methodologies, forms of evidence, and research contexts. Taken as a whole, these reports—the full versions of which can be found in the Supplementary Materials—offer practical guidance to scholars designing and implementing qualitative research, and to editors, reviewers, and funders seeking to develop criteria of evaluation that are appropriate—as understood by relevant research communities—to the forms of inquiry being assessed. We dedicate this Reflection to the memory of our coauthor and QTD working group leader Kendra Koivu.1
Prolonged survival of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) on environmental surfaces and personal protective equipment may lead to these surfaces transmitting this pathogen to others. We sought to determine the effectiveness of a pulsed-xenon ultraviolet (PX-UV) disinfection system in reducing the load of SARS-CoV-2 on hard surfaces and N95 respirators.
Chamber slides and N95 respirator material were directly inoculated with SARS-CoV-2 and were exposed to different durations of PX-UV.
For hard surfaces, disinfection for 1, 2, and 5 minutes resulted in 3.53 log10, >4.54 log10, and >4.12 log10 reductions in viral load, respectively. For N95 respirators, disinfection for 5 minutes resulted in >4.79 log10 reduction in viral load. PX-UV significantly reduced SARS-CoV-2 on hard surfaces and N95 respirators.
With the potential to rapidly disinfectant environmental surfaces and N95 respirators, PX-UV devices are a promising technology to reduce environmental and personal protective equipment bioburden and to enhance both healthcare worker and patient safety by reducing the risk of exposure to SARS-CoV-2.
Tobacco smoking is a leading cause of preventable death and disease worldwide. Adults with mental ill-health smoke tobacco at substantially higher rates than other adults, with public health approaches effective in the population overall having less impact on those with mental ill-health. However, less is known about the tobacco smoking behaviours, attitudes and knowledge of young people with mental ill-health, despite this being the peak period of onset for both mental illness and cigarette smoking.
Young people attending a youth mental health centre (providing both primary and specialist care) in Melbourne, Australia were approached by youth peer researchers and asked to complete a survey about smoking behaviours, attitudes and knowledge. We examined smoking and associated attitudes in the sample overall, and as a function of the services accessed.
In total, 114 young people completed the survey, with 56.3% reporting lifetime cigarette smoking, 42.0% smoking in the last 12 months and 28.6% in the past week. Of current regular smokers, 75.0% acknowledged they should quit in the future; however, only 23.5% planned to do so in the next month, with 44.4% confident that they could quit. Participants lacked knowledge about interactions between tobacco smoking, mental and physical health.
Youth presenting for mental ill-health had high rates of cigarette smoking relative to population rates. Presentation at youth mental health services may represent a critical window for early intervention to reduce the lifetime impacts of cigarette smoking in mental ill-health. Interventions to support smoking cessation in this group are urgently needed.
There are significant differences in psychiatric training across Europe. In the light of the current direction of Europe (without borders with free movement of workforce) it is inevitable to harmonize at least basic standards of psychiatric education across Europe. Ideally by working in partnership with relevant national and international bodies (European Union of Medical Specialists, Board of Psychiatry - UEMS, European Psychiatric Association - EPA and European Federation of Psychiatric Trainees - EFPT). A qualitative data analysis on the most important challenges of psychiatric trainees across Europe, carried out by the EFPT in 2009, revealed several interesting findings which might be of interest not only for trainees, but for all involved in the process of psychiatric education. As the most important issue trainees reported the imperfect structure of the training programs and problems with implementation of new ones. That is why new training programs based on a competency based framework are being developed lately in number of countries (e.g. United Kingdom, Ireland, Netherlands). However, not only the structure of the training and its implementation remains an issue, trainees are concerned also with topics related to working conditions, insufficient training opportunities, lack of supervision, funding and availability of psychotherapy courses, etc. Based on these findings EFPT will undertake specific actions which in cooperation with other organizations shall lead in the future to better postgraduate training opportunities in Europe.
To compare Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) and Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy (1H-MRS) between people with Alzheimer's disease (AD) and mild cognitive impairment (MCI).
AD is characterised by cognitive impairment. 10-15% of people with MCI progress to dementia each year. The hippocampus is involved in memory functioning and is one of the brain regions first affected by AD. MRI based hippocampal volumetric measurement enables accurate quantification of atrophy. In addition, 1H-MRS can be used to measure concentrations of brain metabolites including myoinositol (mI) and N-acetylaspartate (NAA). NAA is a proxy measure of neuronal density.
Subjects with AD (n=46), MCI (n=28) and controls (n=39) were scanned using a 1.5 Tesla MR system. Manual tracing of hippocampal volumes was undertaken using Measure software. 1H-MRS voxels of interest were defined in the left and right hippocampi. A point-resolved spectroscopy pulse sequence produced spectra from each voxel and clearly resolved NAA and mI peaks. Statistical analysis was undertaken using SPSS15.
Hippocampal volumes were significantly reduced between AD and controls (p=0.003) and between AD and MCI (p=0.001). Compared to controls, individuals with AD and MCI had a significant reduction in [NAA]. MCI showed a non-significant increase in [mI]. A positive relationship was found between hippocampal volume and [NAA] and between hippocampal volume and [mI] for MCI.
AD is associated with decreased viable neuronal density/function (as measured by NAA) and a reduction in hippocampal volume associated with impaired cognitive functioning. The elevated [mI] in MCI may be a “tipping point” into dementia.
Even if technology and information are omnipresent, they rarely meet harmoniously. Either the lack of sufficient means prevents good information to reach its target or the technology is too complex to integrate flawlessly in the daily workflow.
The use and misuse of information technologies (internet, email, e-learning, social networks) has recently significantly increased among psychiatrists and patients and the changes in behavior of communication and seeking informations are real challenges.
Using the European Federation of Psychiatric Trainees network, the self-questionnaires concerning the usage of information technologies and the local patients-therapists communication were distributed among psychiatric trainees of 31 European countries.
A review of the results of this study, as well as recommendations about netiquette and useful websites for psychiatrists and scientists will be presented in detail.
The education and training of doctors specialising in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry (CAP) varies substantially across Europe. There is a paucity of information available about training quality. This prompted an initial training survey led by Dr E Barrett (2010) which was expanded upon by the CAP working group in the 2010 EFPT international forum in Dubrovnik to create ‘country reports’ for 2010–2011.
The objectives of this study were to collect information relating to key aspects of CAP training programmes in Europe in a systematic way in order to start a ‘Training Database’ that can be held centrally by the EFPT. Information will be added to the database every year following EFPT annual international meetings.
We aim to better understand the training structures in CAP across europe to help inform best practice standards for training.
A pro-forma word document was emailed to all EFPT CAP contacts: there were 20 contacts emailed.
So far we have a response rate of over 60% and we are continuing to collect and collate relevant data. This survey highlighted a large variation in CAP training across Europe. It represents the basis for systematic data collection on an international level, and will help focus on areas where CAP training could be improved.
This survey highlights a large variation in CAP training across Europe. It represents the basis for systematic data collection on an international level, and will help focus on areas where CAP training could be improved.
Training schemes in psychiatry are developed and evaluated by national education policy makers in the majority of European countries. However, the requirements that a training program in psychiatry should meet are also defined on the European level in a form of recommendations by the Board of Psychiatry - European Union of Medical Specialists (UEMS).
Recently, the European Federation of Psychiatric Trainees (EFPT) which represent trainees from more then 30 European countries, reported data pertaining to the structure of training programs and to the evaluation of training programs in 30 European countries. Whereas in the majority of European countries the structure of training programs and methods of assessment of trainees' competencies are partially compatible with one another and with the existing recommendations at the European level, the quality assurance of training programs varies significantly among countries. Regular evaluations of training programs and mentors, however, contribute to the proper implementation of training programs and help that the theoretical training principles are followed through in practice. As quality assurance of training schemes is an important mechanism how to improve the delivery of training programs, it should gain more focus by responsible authorities who structure the psychiatric training on the national and international European level.
The European Federation of Psychiatric Trainees (EFPT) is an independent federation of psychiatric trainees’ associations. Previous studies have shown that up to 1/3 of countries surveyed did not have separate CAP training We surveyed trainees to gain insights regarding current training within the member countries of the EFPT.
Ten item Survey of Trainee representatives from 32 countries- using surveymonkey questionnaire.
Industry standard encryption technology utilisied.
27 respondent countries. Response rate 84.4% In many countries CAP and General Adult Psychiatry training were not separate Variable availability of training posts (surplus posts 23%, no posts/ long waits 19.2%) Duration of training: 3 years (19.2%),4 years (23.1%), 5 years (26.9%). In 35% of countries CAP training was entirely separate from commencement of training. In 40%, entry to CAP training occurred after training in general adult psychiatry. Trainees in 61.5% of respondent countries indicate their intention to specialise in CAP before entering training in psychiatry; 15% of trainees can indicate this at any time.
This is a survey of trainee representatives to the EFPT of ten items related to CAP training experiences. It highlights significant differences in training experiences in 27 respondent countries. From 2010 the EFPT aims to record detailed information on CAP training yearly. CAP trainees are an integral part of EFPT, and there are specific areas of needs in CAP training.
Alterations of the Hypothalamic-Pituitary-Adrenal Axis (HPAA) may be related to the development of psychiatric disorders, especially in the context of childhood adversity. The “attenuation hypothesis” postulates that chronic childhood adversity leads to initial hyperactivation of the HPAA, which subsequently may turn into hypoactivation during adolescence, and support the development of emotional and behavioural problems. However, studies investigating this hypothesis during the course of adolescence are rare.
The sample comprised 49 adolescents (f/m 19/30), subsampled from a larger longitudinal study on adolescent development. Assessments were performed at three points in time (T1-T3). Pituitary Gland Volume (PGV) as an estimate of chronic HPAA activity was measured by MRI at T1 (mean age 12.5) and T3 (mean age 16.5). HPAA functioning was assessed via multiple salivary cortisol measures at T2 (mean age 15.5). The Cortisol Awakening Response (CAR) was calculated as a measure of HPAA activity. Additionally, childhood adversity was assessed at T2 using the Childhood Trauma Questionnaire (CTQ).
There was a significant sex-specific association of PGV at T1 and HPAA activity at T2. While PGV was positively predicting HPAA activity in boys, girls showed a reverse pattern (attenuation of the HPAA). A blunted CAR in girls was significantly related to their report of childhood adversity.
The results show that girls may have a higher tendency of attenuation of the HPAA in the context of childhood adversity and initial hyperactivation of the HPAA. This may contribute to their higher risk for diverse psychiatric disorders during adolescence.
• The European Federation of Psychiatric Trainees is an independent federation of psychiatric trainees associations. 37 Countries were represented at the annual Forum in 2011.
• A Child and Adolescent Psychiatry (CAP) Working Group meets at this annual forum to discuss issues of relevance to CAP trainees. At the 2009 meeting, the group reflected on difficulties in collecting data on training across Euro.
1. Ten item survey was was circulated to trainee representatives to the European Federation of Psychiatric Trainees who attended the annual Forum in 2009.
2. Following this pilot study, a much larger study was conducted from 2010–2011.
• EFPT survey: In 2009–2010 pilot survey - 27 countries responded.
• The EFPT CAP group expanded this in 2010–2011. This survey collected data from 34 countries, 28 of whom provided full data-sets in the following domains:
○Structure and organisation of training;
○Training quality and content; and
○Working conditions and recruitment.
○Statistical analysis was performed on the data to achieve overall rankings of CAP training quality.
• This symposium will look at developing national and international surveys. Results from two completed EFPT CAP studies and ongoing work presented. These studies add significantly to extant literature- it is clear that training across Europe is extremely variable.
• This symposium will also highlight current opportunities for European Trainees. International collaborations and opportunities for trainees will be explored, and we will consider the role of trainees in international organisations
High potency cannabis has been associated with greater risk, and earlier onset of psychosis. However, its effect on brain structure, particularly white matter (WM), has never been explored.
Objectives and Aims
To elucidate the interplay between cannabis potency, pattern of use (frequency and age of first use) and CC microstructure; in patients with first-episode psychosis (FEP) and healthy controls.
56 FEP and 43 healthy controls underwent Diffusion-Tensor Imaging combined with WM mapping-tractography. CC was virtually dissected and segmented to calculate Fractional Anisotropy (FA), Mean Diffusivity (MD), Axial Diffusivity (AD) and Radial Diffusivity (RD) for each CC segment.
High potency cannabis users had higher Total CC MD and Total CC AD than both low potency users and those who never used (p=0.009 and p=0.02 respectively). Daily users also had higher Total CC MD and Total CC AD than both occasional users and those who never used (p=0.02 and p=0.01 respectively). Furthermore, daily/highpotency users had higher Total CC MD than those who never used or used weekly [F(2,57)=4.7, p=0.01]. There was no effect of diagnosis or diagnosis X potency/patterns of use interactions; neither differences between users who started before the age of 15 and those who started later were detected, in any diffusivity measures.
Frequent use of high-potency cannabis significantly affects callosal microstructure, regardless of the presence of a psychotic disorder. Given the increased availability and use of high potency preparations in Europe, raising awareness about some of their detrimental effects is an important avenue to pursue.
EFPT - The European Federation of Psychiatric Trainees is an independent federation of psychiatric trainees associations and its function is to provide a forum in which trainees can learn about the diversity of the current training of psychiatrists in Europe.
EFPT consists of several working groups that focus on supporting different fields (e.g. psychotherapy, child and adolescent psychiatry etc) and carry out various projects. The aim of CAP working group is firstly to represent CAP trainees and develop common recommendations regarding training while furthering links with organisations such as UEMS. In recent years the group has also recognised the need to collect information in order to assess the quality level of training in european countries, to recognise differences and build upon positives. In 2010–2011 this focused on training standards around Europe. In 2011–2012 we focus on:
A. The field of psychotherapy. The CAP group recognises that family relationships play a major role in the formation of a child's personality. The survey is being conducted in conjunction with the Psychotherapy WG within EFPT; thus training in this area in both adult psychiatry and CAP will be compared. Initial results will be presented at this symposium.
B. We believe that awareness of mental illness in the childhood should be an important part of the education in medical faculties. Therefore, we are keen to ascertain what placement opportunities in CAP are currently offered to medical students around Europe. Gathering information on this isT is our second aim for the next year.
The impact of cannabis use on brain structure, particularly white matter (WM), is poorly understood. The CC is the largest WM structure in the brain. Abnormalities revealed in the CC may underlie functional anomalies of cannabis use. This is the largest study to explore the effect of cannabis on callosal WM connectivity among first episode psychosis (FEP) and controls.
To investigate the relationship between cannabis use and WM micro-structural integrity of the CC, in FEP and healthy controls.
We evaluated 56 FEP patients (67% current cannabis users), and 43 healthy controls (44% current cannabis users). We used Diffusion Tensor Imaging combined with a WM mapping-tractography technique to investigate the microstructural integrity of the CC.
Total CC Fractional anisotropy (FA) was lower in patients than controls (p=0.05). Cannabis-using patients had lower FA of the total CC than cannabis-using controls (p=0.04). There were no differences in FA between cannabis-using patients and those who had never used. However, cannabis-using patients had higher mean diffusivity (MD) of total CC (p= 0.02), Rostral-Body (p=0.003), Anterior Mid-Body (p=0.03) and the Splenium (p=0.06) than patients who never used cannabis. There were no differences in MD between patient users who started before the age of 16 and those who started later.
Cannabis is associated with a significant effect on callosal WM integrity only in patients with psychosis. Disturbed callosal connectivity may explain some of the abnormalities with regard to the functional and clinical outcomes in FEP cannabis users, including measures of cognitive impairment.
Childhood maltreatment (CM) plays an important role in the development of major depressive disorder (MDD). The aim of this study was to examine whether CM severity and type are associated with MDD-related brain alterations, and how they interact with sex and age.
Within the ENIGMA-MDD network, severity and subtypes of CM using the Childhood Trauma Questionnaire were assessed and structural magnetic resonance imaging data from patients with MDD and healthy controls were analyzed in a mega-analysis comprising a total of 3872 participants aged between 13 and 89 years. Cortical thickness and surface area were extracted at each site using FreeSurfer.
CM severity was associated with reduced cortical thickness in the banks of the superior temporal sulcus and supramarginal gyrus as well as with reduced surface area of the middle temporal lobe. Participants reporting both childhood neglect and abuse had a lower cortical thickness in the inferior parietal lobe, middle temporal lobe, and precuneus compared to participants not exposed to CM. In males only, regardless of diagnosis, CM severity was associated with higher cortical thickness of the rostral anterior cingulate cortex. Finally, a significant interaction between CM and age in predicting thickness was seen across several prefrontal, temporal, and temporo-parietal regions.
Severity and type of CM may impact cortical thickness and surface area. Importantly, CM may influence age-dependent brain maturation, particularly in regions related to the default mode network, perception, and theory of mind.
Evaluation of post-operative donor site disability remains unaddressed in radial forearm free flap cases. This study aimed to assess donor site dysfunction following radial forearm free flap harvest using validated general, disease-specific and site-specific disability questionnaires.
In this retrospective case series of 24 patients at a tertiary academic medical centre, patients were assessed using the Short Form 36 Health Survey, Short Musculoskeletal Function Assessment questionnaire, and Disabilities of the Arm, Shoulder and Hand questionnaire. One-sample z-tests were performed, comparing means of the cohort to controls.
Compared to population controls, the cohort had higher mean scores for the Disabilities of the Arm, Shoulder and Hand questionnaire (18.22 vs 10.1, p < 0.01), and Short Musculoskeletal Function Assessment questionnaire bothersome index (21.44 vs 13.77, p = 0.04), and a lower mean score for the Short Form 36 Health Survey physical component (38.88 vs 50, p < 0.01), indicating a greater disability for the cohort compared to controls.
Radial forearm free flap harvest causes significant long-term donor site disability in head and neck tumour patients. The Disabilities of the Arm, Shoulder and Hand questionnaire is a concise tool for measuring this dysfunction.