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Psychotic experiences (PE) are highly prevalent in childhood and are known to be associated with co-morbid mental health disorders and functional difficulties in adolescence. However, little is known about the long-term outcomes of young people who report PE.
As part of the Adolescent Brain Development Study, 211 young people were recruited in childhood (mean age 11.7 years) and underwent detailed clinical interviews, with 25% reporting PE. A 10 year follow-up study was completed and 103 participants returned (mean age 20.9 years). Structured clinical interviews for DSM-5 (SCID-5) and interviewer-rated assessments of functioning were conducted. A detailed neuropsychological battery was also administered. Analyses investigated group differences between those who had ever reported PE and controls in early adulthood.
The PE group was at a significantly higher risk of meeting DSM-5 criteria for a current (OR 4.08, CI 1.16–14.29, p = 0.03) and lifetime psychiatric disorder (OR 3.27, CI 1.43–7.47, p = 0.005). They were also at a significantly higher risk of multi-morbid lifetime psychiatric disorders. Significantly lower scores on current social and global functioning measures were observed for the PE group. Overall, there were no differences in neuropsychological performance between groups apart from significantly lower scores on the Stroop Word task and the Purdue Pegboard task for the PE group.
Our findings suggest that reports of PE are associated with poorer mental health and functional outcomes in early adulthood, with some persisting cognitive and motor deficits. Young people who report such symptoms could be considered a target group for interventions to aid functional outcomes.
Psychotic experiences (PEs) are reported by a significant minority of adolescents and are associated with the development of psychiatric disorders. The aims of this study were to examine associations between PEs and a range of factors including psychopathology, adversity and lifestyle, and to investigate mediating effects of coping style and parental support on associations between adversity and PEs in a general population adolescent sample.
Cross-sectional data were drawn from the Irish centre of the Saving and Empowering Young Lives in Europe study. Students completed a self-report questionnaire and 973 adolescents, of whom 522 (53.6%) were boys, participated. PEs were assessed using the 7-item Adolescent Psychotic Symptom Screener.
Of the total sample, 81 (8.7%) of the sample were found to be at risk of PEs. In multivariate analysis, associations were found between PEs and number of adverse events reported (OR 4.48, CI 1.41–14.25; p < 0.011), maladaptive/pathological internet use (OR 2.70, CI 1.30–5.58; p = 0.007), alcohol intoxication (OR 2.12, CI 1.10–4.12; p = 0.025) and anxiety symptoms (OR 4.03, CI 1.57–10.33; p = 0.004). There were small mediating effects of parental supervision, parental support and maladaptive coping on associations between adversity and PEs.
We have identified potential risk factors for PEs from multiple domains including adversity, mental health and lifestyle factors. The mediating effect of parental support on associations between adversity and PEs suggests that poor family relationships may account for some of this mechanism. These findings can inform the development of interventions for adolescents at risk.
Many studies have reported associations between prenatal stress and the development of psychotic, anxiety and depressive disorders; however, to date no studies have investigated potential associations with personality disorders.
This study investigated potential associations between exposure to prenatal stress and personality disorder in offspring.
In a subsample (N = 3626) of a large Finnish birth cohort, we used logistic regression models to examine associations between self-reported maternal stress during pregnancy, collected monthly during antenatal clinic appointments, and personality disorder in offspring. Familial and outcome information were obtained by linking data from the Finnish Hospital Discharge Register and the Finnish Population Register.
Compared with those unexposed, children exposed to any maternal stress during gestation had three times the odds of developing a personality disorder (odds ratio 2.76, 95% CI 1.59–4.80, P = 0.000). Those exposed to moderate stress had three times the odds (odds ratio 3.13, 95% CI 1.42–6.88, P = 0.005) and those exposed to severe stress had seven times the odds (odds ratio 7.06, 95% CI 2.10–23.81, P = 0.002) of developing a personality disorder. These associations remained after adjusting for parental psychiatric history, comorbid psychiatric diagnoses, prenatal smoking and antenatal depression.*
Exposure to stress during gestation increases the odds of personality disorder in offspring, independent of other psychiatric disorders. These results suggest the assessment of maternal stress and well-being during pregnancy may be useful in identifying those at greatest risk of developing personality disorder, and highlight the importance of prenatal care for good maternal mental health during pregnancy.
Early intervention in psychosis is a complex intervention, usually delivered in a specialist stand-alone setting, which aims to improve outcomes for people with psychosis. Previous studies have been criticised because the control used did not accurately reflect actual practice.
To evaluate the cost-effectiveness of early intervention by estimating the incremental net benefit (INB) of an early-intervention programme, delivered in a real-world setting. INB measures the difference in monetary terms between alternative interventions.
Two contemporaneous incidence-based cohorts presenting with first-episode psychosis, aged 18–65 years, were compared. Costs and outcomes were measured over 1 year. The main outcome was avoidance of a relapse that required admission to hospital or home-based treatment.
From the health sector perspective, the probability that early intervention was cost-effective was 0.77. The INB was €2465 per person (95% CI − €4418 to €9347) when society placed a value of €6000, the cost of an in-patient relapse, on preventing a relapse requiring admission or home care. Following adjustment, the probability that early intervention was cost-effective was 1, and the INB to the health sector was €3105 per person (95% CI −€8453 to €14 663). From a societal perspective, the adjusted probability that early intervention was cost-effective was 1, and the INB was €19 928 per person (95% CI − €2075 to €41 931).
Early intervention has a modest INB from the health sector perspective and a large INB from the societal perspective. The perspective chosen is critical when presenting results of an economic evaluation of a complex intervention.
Childhood adversity is a well-established risk factor for psychopathology; however, many who experience adversity do not go on to develop psychopathology. Poor self-concept and poor parental support are known risk factors for adolescent psychopathology, which may account for some of this mechanism.
To investigate candidate mediators in the relationship between childhood adversity and psychopathology.
We used data from the age 9 and 13 waves of the child-cohort of the Growing Up in Ireland study. We undertook mediation analysis by path decomposition of the relationship between childhood adversity and psychopathology (internalising and externalising problems) at age 13 and persistent psychopathology. Candidate mediators were self-concept, parent–child relationship and hobby participation at age 9.
Childhood adversity was reported by 28.2% of participants, and was significantly associated with internalising and externalising problems. Parent–child conflict mediated the relationship between childhood adversity and both age 13 and persistent psychopathology, accounting for 52.4% of the relationship between childhood adversity and persistent externalising problems (indirect odds ratio, 1.30; 95% CI 1.19–1.43) and 19.2% for persistent internalising problems (indirect odds ratio, 1.24; 95% CI 1.15–1.34). There was a small mediating effect of self-concept. Hobby participation and positive parent–child relationship did not mediate these relationships.
Parent–child conflict explains almost half the relationship between childhood adversity and persisting externalising problems in adolescence, and a fifth of the relationship with persisting internalising problems. This suggests parent–child conflict is a good target for interventions in childhood to prevent adolescent psychopathology.
Psychotic experiences (PEs) are common in childhood and adolescence and their association with mental disorders is well-established. We aim to conduct a quantitative synthesis the literature on the relationship between childhood and adolescent PEs and (i) any mental disorder; and (ii) specific categories of mental disorder, while stratifying by study design.
Three electronic databases (PUBMED, PsycINFO and EMBASE) were searched from inception to August 2017 for all the published literature on childhood and adolescent PEs and mental disorder (outcome) in non-help-seeking community samples. Study quality was assessed using a recognised quality assessment tool for observational studies. Two authors conducted independent data extraction. Pooled odds ratios were calculated for mental disorders using random-effects models. Additional analyses were conducted investigating different categories of mental disorder while stratifying by study design.
Fourteen studies from 13 community samples (n = 29 517) were identified with 9.8% of participants reporting PEs. PEs were associated with a three-fold increased risk of any mental disorder [odds ratio (OR) 3.08, confidence interval (CI) 2.26–4.21, k = 12]. PEs were associated with four-fold increase risk of psychotic disorder (OR 3.96, CI 2.03–7.73, population-attributable-fraction: 23.2%, k = 5). In addition, PEs were associated with an increased risk of affective disorders, anxiety disorders, behavioural disorders and substance-use disorders. Few longitudinal studies have investigated childhood and adolescent PEs and subsequent non-psychotic disorders which limited a meaningful synthesis and interpretation of these results.
This meta-analysis confirms that PEs are prevalent in childhood and adolescent community samples and are associated with a variety of mental disorders beyond psychotic disorders. Further longitudinal research is necessary to fully determine the longitudinal relationship between PEs and non-psychotic disorders.
Background: Central neuropathic pain syndromes are a result of central nervous system injury, most commonly related to stroke, traumatic spinal cord injury, or multiple sclerosis. These syndromes are distinctly less common than peripheral neuropathic pain, and less is known regarding the underlying pathophysiology, appropriate pharmacotherapy, and long-term outcomes. The objective of this study was to determine the long-term clinical effectiveness of the management of central neuropathic pain relative to peripheral neuropathic pain at tertiary pain centers. Methods: Patients diagnosed with central (n=79) and peripheral (n=710) neuropathic pain were identified for analysis from a prospective observational cohort study of patients with chronic neuropathic pain recruited from seven Canadian tertiary pain centers. Data regarding patient characteristics, analgesic use, and patient-reported outcomes were collected at baseline and 12-month follow-up. The primary outcome measure was the composite of a reduction in average pain intensity and pain interference. Secondary outcome measures included assessments of function, mood, quality of life, catastrophizing, and patient satisfaction. Results: At 12-month follow-up, 13.5% (95% confidence interval [CI], 5.6-25.8) of patients with central neuropathic pain and complete data sets (n=52) achieved a ≥30% reduction in pain, whereas 38.5% (95% CI, 25.3-53.0) achieved a reduction of at least 1 point on the Pain Interference Scale. The proportion of patients with central neuropathic pain achieving both these measures, and thus the primary outcome, was 9.6% (95% CI, 3.2-21.0). Patients with peripheral neuropathic pain and complete data sets (n=463) were more likely to achieve this primary outcome at 12 months (25.3% of patients; 95% CI, 21.4-29.5) (p=0.012). Conclusion: Patients with central neuropathic pain syndromes managed in tertiary care centers were less likely to achieve a meaningful improvement in pain and function compared with patients with peripheral neuropathic pain at 12-month follow-up.
The psychological security index is an important predictor of democratic norm support. However, insufficient attention has been paid to the separate but independent contributions of dogmatism, self-esteem, and trust, the three components typically combined to create that index. Thus, we do not know the unique influence of these components on democratic norm commitment. We also do not know the exact nature of the influence of the multiple dimensions of religion (belief, belonging, behavior) on the separate psychological security components. Using structural equation modeling and two national surveys, we examine the religion-psychological security-democratic norm support relationship. Our findings do not fully support a negative association between religion and democratic values. In fact, no matter the influence of religious belief, belonging, or behavior on psychological security, the mediating link of psychological security to democratic norm support is what is most important. Indeed, any differences that manifest as a consequence of the various dimensions of religion disappear in the religion-psychological security-democratic norm support linkage. As such, anti-democratic values are a product of one's psychological attributes and are almost entirely unrelated to one's religion. Further, our findings challenge the theoretical underpinnings of the psychological security index, as we find little evidence that the separate components used to construct the composite measure, particularly trust, are an appropriate proxy for authoritarianism.
Background: Painful diabetic neuropathy (PDN) is a frequent complication of diabetes mellitus. Current treatment recommendations are based on short-term trials, generally of ≤3 months’ duration. Limited data are available on the long-term outcomes of this chronic disease. The objective of this study was to determine the long-term clinical effectiveness of the management of chronic PDN at tertiary pain centres. Methods: From a prospective observational cohort study of patients with chronic neuropathic non-cancer pain recruited from seven Canadian tertiary pain centres, 60 patients diagnosed with PDN were identified for analysis. Data were collected according to Initiative on Methods, Measurement, and Pain Assessment in Clinical Trials guidelines including the Brief Pain Inventory. Results: At 12-month follow-up, 37.2% (95% confidence interval [CI], 23.0-53.3) of 43 patients with complete data achieved pain reduction of ≥30%, 51.2% (95% CI, 35.5-66.7) achieved functional improvement with a reduction of ≥1 on the Pain Interference Scale (0-10, Brief Pain Inventory) and 30.2% (95% CI, 17.2-46.1) had achieved both these measures. Symptom management included at least two medication classes in 55.3% and three medication classes in 25.5% (opioids, antidepressants, anticonvulsants). Conclusions: Almost one-third of patients being managed for PDN in a tertiary care setting achieve meaningful improvements in pain and function in the long term. Polypharmacy including analgesic antidepressants and anticonvulsants were the mainstays of effective symptom management.
Most callers to emergency ambulance services are transported to hospital emergency departments (EDs), but ambulance services receive no information on patient outcomes. Pre-Hospital and Emergency Department (PHED) Data is a two-year mixed-methods observational study of the process and potential benefits of linking ambulance and ED data to allow analysis of patient outcomes. We report on our first aim, to examine the potential opportunities and challenges of this data linkage initiative.
We approached six hospital trusts in an English metropolitan area. We used a structured learning log to collect data on the process, time input and reflections. We analyzed these data with descriptive statistics, and qualitatively for themes.
All six trusts agreed to participate. We used an algorithm based on date, time and patient demographics to link data. We achieved a dataset of 775,018 records covering 2012 – 2016, and a linkage rate of 81 percent.
Initial set up tasks within the ambulance service took 30 hours 20 minutes. We then identified five stages of tasks with each hospital trust: negotiating senior approval; exploring data availability; information governance agreement; data transfer; and linking. Mean time spent by the research team on these processes was 30 hours 30 minutes per trust (range: 17 hours 20 minutes to 43 hours 10 minutes), plus additional time from staff of hospital trusts. The most intensive phases were: negotiating senior approval (mean: 8 hours 5 minutes), and data linking (mean: 12 hours 40 minutes). The stage which took the longest was information governance (mean: 19 weeks).
Key themes included the positive attitudes of trusts to participating, the range of decision makers involved, and the need for sustained input from the research team.
We found the process of data linkage was feasible, but requires dedicated time from research and trust staff, over a prolonged period, to achieve set up. Linked data are now being analyzed.
The fragmented ecosystems along the Niagara Escarpment World Biosphere Reserve provide important habitats for biota including lichens. Nonetheless, the Reserve is disturbed by dense human populations and associated air pollution. Here we investigated patterns of lichen diversity within urban and rural sites at three different locations (Niagara, Hamilton, and Owen Sound) along the Niagara Escarpment in Ontario, Canada. Our results indicate that both lichen species richness and community composition are negatively correlated with increasing human population density and air pollution. However, our quantitative analysis of community composition using canonical correspondence analysis (CCA) indicates that human population density and air pollution is more independent than might be assumed. The CCA analysis suggests that the strongest environmental gradient (CCA1) associated with lichen community composition includes regional pollution load and climatic variables; the second gradient (CCA2) is associated with local pollution load and human population density factors. These results increase the knowledge of lichen biodiversity for the Niagara Escarpment and urban and rural fragmented ecosystems as well as along gradients of human population density and air pollution; they suggest a differential influence of regional and local pollution loads and population density factors. This study provides baseline knowledge for further research and conservation initiatives along the Niagara Escarpment World Biosphere Reserve.
After a decade of civil war and four consecutive conservative administrations, El Salvador's leftist FMLN won its first presidential election in 2009. How has public policy changed under this New Left government, and why? This article addresses the question in the area of public health care. An alliance of health sector leaders with both technocratic and diplomatic abilities capitalized on the policy window opened by the FMLN's electoral victory and worked within the parameters set by President Mauricio Funes, the FMLN, and civil society to universalize health care. The new minister of health, a professional highly esteemed inside and outside the country, was able to engage both a large social movement protesting neoliberal policy and an energetic health diplomat sent by the Pan American Health Organization. In designing its reform, this alliance benefited from international as well as “bottom-up” policy diffusion.
The long-term care of collected and created data is an ethical obligation in the fields of archaeology and cultural heritage management. With the growing application of digital methodologies in these fields and the complexity of the resulting data, this task has become complicated. Digital data preservation firms have emerged since this methodological shift, but their policies—championing the democratization of academic data—may conflict with the legal obligations dictated by the countries where data originate. Scholars thus face an inevitable choice between two obligations, one ethical and one legal. While the amount of digital data grows and the options for preservation remain fundamentally misaligned with research norms and project workflows, the digital dilemma places the integrity of data at risk of loss. This article addresses this dilemma by evaluating the existing data publication, archiving, and preservation repositories and considering how, as solutions to the digital dilemma, they can be integrated into multiple workflows. I also propose new directions for archaeological associations, suggesting that they should establish a means of evaluation and approval for third-party preservation firms managing the future of academic research prior to their inevitable ubiquity.
The notion of spirituality/religious belief is recognized internationally as a domain within end-of-life care and is important in patients' and carers' quality-of-life. When faced with incurable illness, patients often become more philosophical about their life; many seek comfort in spiritual or religious philosophies. Our intention was to understand how personal spirituality and religious faith might help those living with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis/motor neuron disease (ALS/MND) cope with their impending death.
Unsolicited narratives (internet and print-published) written by individuals diagnosed with the terminal condition of ALS/MND were analyzed thematically. Narratives from 161 individuals diagnosed with ALS/MND written over a period of 37 years (from 1968 to 2005) were included.
Our findings reveal that religious faith sustains and helps people to avoid despair, and personal spirituality helps them make sense of what is happening to them.
Significance of Results:
The use of personal narratives by people with ALS/MND has provided a vehicle for sharing their deepest spiritual and religious thoughts with others. The place of spirituality and religious faith within ALS/MND care should not be underestimated. Assessment of religious or spiritual needs should become a routine part of practice and is the responsibility of all members of the multidisciplinary team.
Background: Transitioning from medical school to residency is difficult and stressful, necessitating innovation in easing this transition. In response, a Canadian neurosurgical Rookie Camp was designed and implemented to foster acquisition of technical, cognitive and behavioral skills among incoming Canadian post graduate year one (PGY-1) neurosurgery residents. Methods: The inaugural Rookie Camp was held in July 2012 in Halifax. The curriculum was developed based on a national needs-assessment and consisted of a pre-course manual, 7 case-based stations, 4 procedural skills stations and 2 group discussions. The content was clinically focused, used a variety of teaching methods, and addressed multiple CanMEDS competencies. Evaluation included participant and faculty surveys and a pre-course, post-course, and 3-month retention knowledge test. Results: 17 of 23 PGY-1 Canadian neurosurgical residents participated in the Camp. All agreed the course content was relevant for PGY-1 training and the experience prepared them for residency. All participants would recommend the course to future neurosurgical residents. A statistically significant improvement was observed in knowledge related to course content (F(2,32) = 7.572, p<0.002). There were no significant differences between post-test and retention-test scores at three months. Conclusion: The inaugural Canadian Neurosurgery Rookie Camp for PGY-1 residents was successfully delivered, with engagement from participants, training programs, the Canadian Neurosurgical Society, and the Royal College. In addition to providing fundamental knowledge, which was shown to be retained, the course eased junior residents’ transition to residency by fostering camaraderie and socialization within the specialty.
Background: Residents must develop a diverse range of skills in order to practice neurosurgery safely and effectively. The purpose of this study was to identify the foundational skills required for neurosurgical trainees as they transition from medical school to residency. Methods: Based on the CanMEDS competency framework, a web-based survey was distributed to all Canadian academic neurosurgical centers, targeting incoming and current PGY-1 neurosurgical residents as well as program directors. Using Likert scale and free-text responses, respondents rated the importance of various cognitive (e.g. management of raised intracranial pressure), technical (e.g. performing a lumbar puncture) and behavioral skills (e.g. obtaining informed consent) required for a PGY-1 neurosurgical resident. Results: Of 52 individuals contacted, 38 responses were received. Of these, 10 were from program directors (71%), 11 from current PGY-1 residents (58%) and 17 from incoming PGY-1 residents (89%). Respondents emphasized operative skills such as proper sterile technique and patient positioning; clinical skills such as lesion localization and interpreting neuro-imaging; management skills for common scenarios such as raised intracranial pressure and status epilepticus; and technical skills such as lumbar puncture and external ventricular drain placement. Free text answers were concordant with the Likert scale results. Discussion: We surveyed Canadian neurosurgical program directors and PGY-1 residents to identify areas perceived as foundational to neurosurgical residency education and training. This information is valuable for evaluating the appropriateness of a training program’s goals and objectives, as well as for generating a national educational curriculum for incoming PGY-1 residents.