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As the pathophysiology of Covid-19 emerges, this paper describes dysphagia as a sequela of the disease, including its diagnosis and management, hypothesised causes, symptomatology in relation to viral progression, and concurrent variables such as intubation, tracheostomy and delirium, at a tertiary UK hospital.
During the first wave of the Covid-19 pandemic, 208 out of 736 patients (28.9 per cent) admitted to our institution with SARS-CoV-2 were referred for swallow assessment. Of the 208 patients, 102 were admitted to the intensive treatment unit for mechanical ventilation support, of which 82 were tracheostomised. The majority of patients regained near normal swallow function prior to discharge, regardless of intubation duration or tracheostomy status.
Dysphagia is prevalent in patients admitted either to the intensive treatment unit or the ward with Covid-19 related respiratory issues. This paper describes the crucial role of intensive swallow rehabilitation to manage dysphagia associated with this disease, including therapeutic respiratory weaning for those with a tracheostomy.
Treatment resistance causes significant burden in psychosis. Clozapine is the only evidence-based pharmacologic intervention available for people with treatment-resistant schizophrenia; current guidelines recommend commencement after two unsuccessful trials of standard antipsychotics.
This paper aims to explore the prevalence of treatment resistance and pathways to commencement of clozapine in UK early intervention in psychosis (EIP) services.
Data were taken from the National Evaluation of the Development and Impact of Early Intervention Services study (N = 1027) and included demographics, medication history and psychosis symptoms measured by the Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale (PANSS) at baseline, 6 months and 12 months. Prescribing patterns and pathways to clozapine were examined. We adopted a strict criterion for treatment resistance, defined as persistent elevated positive symptoms (a PANSS positive score ≥16, equating to at least two items of at least moderate severity), across three time points.
A total of 143 (18.1%) participants met the definition of treatment resistance of having continuous positive symptoms over 12 months, despite treatment in EIP services. Sixty-one (7.7%) participants were treatment resistant and eligible for clozapine, having had two trials of standard antipsychotics; however, only 25 (2.4%) were prescribed clozapine over the 12-month study period. Treatment-resistant participants were more likely to be prescribed additional antipsychotic medication and polypharmacy, instead of clozapine.
Prevalent treatment resistance was observed in UK EIP services, but prescription of polypharmacy was much more common than clozapine. Significant delays in the commencement of clozapine may reflect a missed opportunity to promote recovery in this critical period.
Interventional neuroradiology (INR) has evolved from a hybrid mixture of daring radiologists and iconoclastic neurosurgeons into a multidisciplinary specialty, which has become indispensable for cerebrovascular and neurological centers worldwide. This manuscript traces the origins of INR and describes its evolution to the present day. The focus will be on cerebrovascular disorders including aneurysms, stroke, brain arteriovenous malformations, dural arteriovenous fistulae, and atherosclerotic disease, both intra- and extracranial. Also discussed are cerebral vasospasm, venolymphatic malformations of the head and neck, tumor embolization, idiopathic intracranial hypertension, inferior petrosal venous sinus sampling for Cushing’s disease, and spinal interventions. Pediatric INR has not been included and deserves a separate, dedicated review.
Diet has a major influence on the composition and metabolic output of the gut microbiome. Higher-protein diets are often recommended for older consumers; however, the effect of high-protein diets on the gut microbiota and faecal volatile organic compounds (VOC) of elderly participants is unknown. The purpose of the study was to establish if the faecal microbiota composition and VOC in older men are different after a diet containing the recommended dietary intake (RDA) of protein compared with a diet containing twice the RDA (2RDA). Healthy males (74⋅2 (sd 3⋅6) years; n 28) were randomised to consume the RDA of protein (0⋅8 g protein/kg body weight per d) or 2RDA, for 10 weeks. Dietary protein was provided via whole foods rather than supplementation or fortification. The diets were matched for dietary fibre from fruit and vegetables. Faecal samples were collected pre- and post-intervention for microbiota profiling by 16S ribosomal RNA amplicon sequencing and VOC analysis by head space/solid-phase microextraction/GC-MS. After correcting for multiple comparisons, no significant differences in the abundance of faecal microbiota or VOC associated with protein fermentation were evident between the RDA and 2RDA diets. Therefore, in the present study, a twofold difference in dietary protein intake did not alter gut microbiota or VOC indicative of altered protein fermentation.
Utilization of low-input feed resources rich in plant bioactive compounds is a promising strategy for modulating the fatty acid profile in ruminant products. They manipulate microbes involved in rumen biohydrogenation and increase the accumulation of desirable fatty acids at the tissue level. Therefore, the present study was undertaken to assess the effect of dietary supplementation of aniseed straw and eucalyptus leaves on growth performance, carcass traits and fatty acid profile of finisher lambs. Thirty-six Malpura hogget were divided into three treatment groups of 12 each, reared individually in pen (1.6 m × 1.1 m) and fed ad libitum complete feed blocks made up of 55 parts concentrate, 5 parts molasses and 40 parts roughage. Roughage in control (Con) was 20 parts each of ardu (Ailanthus excelsa) leaves and oat (Avena sativa) straw. In test diets, that is, Con-as and Con-el, 10% aniseed (Pimpinella anisum) straw and Eucalyptus rudis leaves, respectively, were added by replacing 5% each of oat straw and eucalyptus leaves. The lambs were weighed weekly; and at the end of 3 months of feeding trial, the lambs were slaughtered to study the carcass traits, composition and product evaluation. Average daily gain (ADG) and DM intake (DMI) was higher (P < 0.05) in Con-as compared to Con and Con-el, while ADG and feed conversion ratio decreased (P < 0.05) by 29.4% and 36.4%, respectively, in Con-el compared to Con. Carcass traits showed lower (P < 0.05) loin eye area and chilling loss in the Con-el group compared to the Con-as and Con, and the total carcass fat compared to Con-as. However, the keeping quality of meat improved in both Con-as and Con-el which was reflected by lower (P < 0.05) thiobarbituric acid-reactive substances values. Nuggets prepared from Con and Con-as meat had superior (P < 0.05) sensory attributes with an overall palatability. Fatty acid profile of longissimus thoracis muscle showed lower (P < 0.05) atherogenic and thrombogenic indices in Con-as and higher (P < 0.05) in Con-el group. Moreover, in Con-as group, the proportion of C16:0 was lower (P < 0.05) and C18:3n-3 was higher (P < 0.05), but no effect was observed on the amount of conjugated linoleic acid (CLA; C18:2 c9t11). In case of adipose tissue, the content of CLA was higher (P < 0.05), and the ratio of n-6:n-3 was more nearer to desirable levels in Con-as group. Therefore, it can be concluded that aniseed straw is a promising feed supplement compared to eucalyptus leaves for improving meat quality and fatty acid profile in lambs.
The flow over a superhydrophobic and a smooth circular cylinder is investigated using particle image velocimetry-based experiments. The objective is to understand the effect of surface modification on the ensuing flow. The experiments are conducted over a wide range of Reynolds numbers,
, thereby uncovering the effect of superhydrophobicity in various flow regimes of a cylinder wake. Superhydrophobicity is found to substantially affect the flow. An increased recirculation length is observed for the superhydrophobic cylinder in the steady regime. The onset of vortex shedding is delayed for the superhydrophobic cylinder. The superhydrophobic cylinder helps in an early rolling-up of vortices; therefore, the recirculation length reduces in unsteady regimes. The velocity deficit experienced by the superhydrophobic cylinder wake is comparatively less and the effect is more profound in the
range 300–860. A maximum drag reduction of 15 % is observed at
. The Reynolds shear stress and turbulent kinetic energy values are higher for the superhydrophobic cylinder in the unsteady regime. Also, the peaks of the turbulent wake parameters lie closer to the superhydrophobic cylinder compared to the smooth cylinder. The effect of superhydrophobicity on coherent structures is examined using proper orthogonal decomposition, and a considerable difference in the wake structure is noticed at
. A larger number of coherent structures and change in vortex shedding pattern to
are observed in the near wake of the superhydrophobic cylinder. The results of this study show that surface modification can reduce the drag coefficient and have a profound effect on the near wake.
We analyze optimal budget allocations to acquire protected areas for carbon storage while balancing risk and return from protection under economic growth uncertainty in a local community. Our study is the first to explore how risk of uncertain economic growth affects cost of protected area acquisition using real estate values at the parcel level, enabling us to estimate the site-specific opportunity cost of carbon storage. The Pareto optimal trade-off frontier between the expected carbon storage benefit and its variance provides a continuum of risk-return combinations. The pattern of the trade-off relationship implies that risk mitigation is less costly in terms of foregone expected benefit when risk is higher than when it is lower. Our results also find that the difference in cluster-specific budget allocations between the strong economic growth scenario and the weak economic growth scenario subsequently decreases between the point of expected benefit maximization and the point of variance minimization. Our findings of optimal hectares of land for protected area acquisition for carbon storage and corresponding benefits and costs serve as an empirically informed knowledge base to help a local community prioritize acquisition of potential protected areas for carbon storage under economic growth uncertainty.
The current study was undertaken to identify the sources of tolerance to bruchid in cowpea, by screening a set of germplasm accessions as a source for natural resistance. A total of 103 diverse accessions of cowpea were evaluated for resistance to Callosobruchus maculatus Fab. under no-choice artificial infestation conditions. Significant differences among the cowpea accessions were observed for oviposition, adult emergence, exit holes and per cent seed weight loss (PSWL) caused by the bruchid infestation. The accessions showed variation in physical seed parameters viz., colour, shape, testa texture, length, width and seed hardness. Among the seed biochemical parameters studied, per cent sugar content ranged from 0.322 (IC330950) to 1.493 (IC249137), and per cent phenol content ranged from 0.0326 (EC390261) to 1.081 (EC528423). Correlation studies indicated that PSWL had significant positive correlation (r = 0.335) with exit holes, oviposition (r = 0.219), adult emergence (r = 0.534) and seed roundness (r = 0.219). Adult emergence had a significant negative correlation with seed hardness (r = −0.332). Correlation with biochemical parameters indicated that PSWL had a significant positive correlation (r = 0.231) with sugar content and a significant negative correlation with phenol content (r = −0.219). None of the accessions were found to be immune to bruchid infestation. However, out of studied accessions, EC528425 and EC528387 were identified as resistant based on PSWL and moderately resistant based on adult emergence. These resistance sources of cowpea germplasm can be used as potential donors for development of bruchid tolerant/resistant cultivars.
Introduction: Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are first-line analgesics for emergency department (ED) patients with renal colic. Lower doses of intravenous (IV) ketorolac may provide similar pain relief to standard dosing in patients with acute pain. Patients with renal colic may be at increased risk of acute kidney injury; exposing them to lower doses of NSAIDs may put them at lower risk while providing equally effective analgesia. We conducted a pilot study to determine the feasibility of a randomized trial comparing the effectiveness and safety of low with standard ketorolac dosing in ED patients with suspected renal colic. The primary objective was to demonstrate the ability to achieve an enrolment target of 2 patients per week. Methods: We enrolled a convenience sample of adults presenting to an academic urban ED with unilateral flank pain suspected to be renal colic. We randomized patients to 10 mg (low dose, intervention) or 30 mg (standard dose, control). Participants, treating physicians and nurses, and researchers were blinded to treatment allocation. Our main feasibility outcome was the recruitment rate. Secondary outcomes were changes in pain scores (0-10) at 30 and 120 minutes post-ketorolac administration, vital signs, adverse events and ED length of stay. Results: We approached 82 patients, of whom 47 (57.3%) were eligible. Of these, 36 consented to participating and 30 were randomized. The proportion of screened patients who were enrolled was 36.6% (30/82). We completed enrolment over a 21-week period, with an average recruitment rate of 1.5 patients/week (range 0-4). The average baseline pain score for all participants was 6.9 (SD = 2.1). At 30 minutes post-ketorolac administration, the low dose group had a mean pain reduction of 2.0 points compared to a pain reduction of 1.7 in standard dose group (difference = 0.3, 90% CI: -0.7 to 1.4). Conclusion: These preliminary results support the possibility that low dose ketorolac may be efficacious in this patient population. We did not meet our target recruitment of 2 patients per week as this was primarily due to restricted recruitment hours. To successfully conduct a larger trial, we would need to expand both recruitment hours and the number of sites.
A cross sectional study was conducted to examine the nature of insight in schizophrenia and bipolar disorder as well as compare it between the two disorders. Forty patients with schizophrenia and forty patients with bipolar disorder matched on age, age of onset of illness and duration of illness, were recruited consecutively from the outpatient clinic of a psychiatric hospital. The patients had to be clinically stable on follow-up treatment for at least three months. Insight was measured using Schedule for Assessment of Insight- Extended Version (SAI-E) and Scale of Unawareness of Mental Disorders (SUMD). Both schizophrenia and bipolar disorder had modest level of insight as measured on both the instruments. There was no qualitative difference in insight between the two disorders. However, patients with bipolar disorder had significantly better awareness of illness than patients with schizophrenia. This was evident on both the instruments that showed significant concordance on the items of insight for both the disorders.
Drug users have an increased rate of developing physical health problems, such as Hepatitis, HIV, skin infection, tuberculosis, lymphatic system, and tissue and vein damage. The nature of drug use makes it difficult to integrate IV drug users into a managed care system and monitoring of their physical health is difficult to achieve. An audit was conducted in a suburban population in the west midland region of the United Kingdom, where intravenous drug use is prevalent. The first part of the audit highlighted that despite increased morbidity in this population, physical health monitoring was incomplete, inaccurate and sometimes completely lacking. Recommendations were made, which included attaching a pro-forma to the assessment form, to enhance accurate and complete documentation of physical health monitoring.
To determine whether the recommendations are being followed. To re-establish the detection rate of medical co morbidity in IDUs.
30 injecting drug users have randomly been selected from the computer database. Case notes of these patients are being checked for quality of documentation, and whether the pro-forma for physical health monitoring is being completed. Drug workers will be contacted to verify the findings.
Previous results have shown that 80% of patients had some documentation, 20% had good quality health documentation and 60% was found to meet standards. We will expect to see an improvement in these figures, and 100% completion of the pro-formas.
Physical health monitoring is vital in this patient population and means to improve this should be employed globally.
Schizophrenia is a mental disorder characterized by social problems and disorders of thought, behaviour and cognitive functions. These impaired cognitive functions may be associated with alterations in resting state functional connectivity in schizophrenia. Therefore, the present study has been carried out to determine the resting state functional brain connectivity changes associated with schizophrenia in all the resting state networks (RSNs) using independent component analysis approach (ICA) and dual-regression based approach.
The objective of this study was to investigate the aberrant resting-state functional connectivity patterns in schizophrenia patients as compared to healthy controls.
35 schizophrenia patients and 31 healthy controls were recruited for the study and scanned by using resting state functional magnetic resonance (rsfMRI). Pre-processing and post-processing of the resting state functional data were performed using the FMRI Expert Analysis Tool (FEAT), which is a part of FSL (FMRIB's Software Library, www.fmrib. ox.ac.uk/fsl).
Our results showed significantly decreased functional connectivity in the regions of left fronto-parietal network, lateral visual network, medial visual network, motor network and default mode network (DMN) in schizophrenia patients as compared with healthy controls.
The overall findings suggest that the alterations in these resting state network connectivity may, in part, contribute to the impairments in cognitive functions associated with schizophrenia. These findings also suggest that aberrant resting state network connectivity contributes to regional functional pathology in schizophrenia and bears significance for core symptoms.
Prevalence and incidence rates of both Hepatitis B and C is on the rise in United Kingdom, and worldwide. Intravenous drug users (IVDU) are particularly at risk due to their chaotic lifestyle. Testing enables early treatment, and vaccination is an effective method of prevention.
Assess awareness of screening and vaccination programmes (VP) amongst IVDUs, and willingness to engage in these if they were available and accessible.
Our sample population was IVDUs presenting to a Community Substance Misuse team, in central England and the criteria we assessed were: whether they admitted to needle-sharing, awareness of screening and VPs, previous screening and vaccination history, and willingness to engage in VPs.
Data was collected through a performa with related questions, after identifying and communicating to key workers; and presented in graphs. We looked at the first 100 responses.
More than a third of IVDU in the population shared needles, one-third had not even been tested for Hep B/C, a half had been immunised. Most of them are aware of the risks, and would agree to the immunisation programme if available, at Lantern House.
Prevalence of IVDU presenting to a Substance Misuse clinic is quite high. Screening and vaccination against Hepatitis of IVDU is lacking, despite it being feasible, necessary and acceptable by patients. Screening for the disease will aid diagnosis and hence early treatment, and will create a gateway for prevention by using VPs.
Headache is a common complaint among adolescents and is associated with several comorbid conditions particularly anxiety and depression. Transdiagnostic cognitive behavior therapy (TCBT) is an alternative approach to third wave CBT. It attempts to address multiple diagnoses at the same time while focusing on shared pathology and common processes (McEvoy et al., 2009).
To develop a group transdiagnostic cognitive behavior therapy intervention module for adolescents with comorbid headache and anxiety disorder and to evaluate the module in terms of feasibility, acceptance and efficacy.
A TCBT intervention module for headache and anxiety disorder for use with adolescents was developed. Fifteen adolescents diagnosed with comorbid headache and anxiety disorder were recruited from the outpatient psychiatric clinic at AIIMS, New Delhi. Baseline, mid-and post- intervention assessments was done on Youth Self Report, M.I.N.I KID, Anxiety Disorders Interview Schedule, STAI – Y, CDI – 2, Headache Diary, Headache Impact Test (HIT) and Global Assessment Scale for Children (CGAS). TCBT was carried out over a period of 12 weeks with one group session per week for each of the three groups.
85% participants showed clinically significant improvement as rated on scores on STAI-Y, HIT and CGAS. Qualitative interpretation of headache diary showed significant decrease in the frequency, intensity and duration of headache for all participants.
TCBT module was found to be feasible, acceptable and efficacious leading to significant symptom reduction.
Possible benefits of TCBT as pertaining to the Indian context along with barriers are further discussed.
Limbic encephalitis is an autoimmune inflammation of the brain tissues. This category has been increasingly diagnosed over the last few years. This is important as clinicians in neurology and psychiatry need to raise their awareness about this disease.
This is a case of a 63 years old retired man who was admitted following a three week history of generalized weakness, gait disturbance and flu like symptoms.
During admission he developed nystagmus and agitation and was treated with high potency vitamin B complex and Thiamine on the suspicion of Wernicke's Encephalopathy.
A referral was later made to the liaison psychiatry team as the patient was trying to leave the ward and was verbalizing suicidal thoughts.
A suspicion of limbic encephalitis was considered and anti-neuronal Voltage gated potassium antibodies VGKA were measured. The results came back as significantly positive.
He was treated with high dose of steroids. The patient became less aggressive and agitated with time and was eventually discharged to a nursing home.
Limbic Encephalitis is a potentially treatable cause of encephalopathy that can present in a variety of neuropsychiatric manifestations like psychotic symptoms, agitation, memory and sleep impairment. Early diagnosis and treatment is very important as in many cases the disorder is associated with malignancies.
Further emphasis and research is needed on this topic. There is a tertiary centre at the John Radcliffe Hospital, Oxford, UK that follows up patients from all over the United Kingdom.
OCD is a complex disorder with multiple aetiological theories. Recent research points to role of autoimmunity as well as hyperactivity of glutaminergic pathways in aetiopathogenesis of the disorder. It is possible that autoimmune mechanisms may modulate excitatory neurotransmission resulting in OCD.
This study aimed to study the association between serum anti-basal ganglia autoantibodies (ABGA) and Glx (glutamate + glutamine) levels in caudate nucleus and anterior cingulate cortex as demonstrated by 1H-MRS (proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy).
Thirty psychotropic-naive OCD patients and an equal number of age, gender matched healthy controls were studied using 1H-MRS and levels of Glx were obtained. ABGA was measured using ELISA (enzyme linked immunosorbent assay) technique and categorised as present or absent in the serum.
ABGA was present in significantly higher proportion of patients as compared to controls (P < 0.05). Glx level was significantly higher (as measured by 1H-MRS) in patients with ABGA as compared to those without ABGA (P = 0.02). The study results did not differ based on age, gender, disease severity and illness duration.
The study demonstrates presence of ABGA in at least a subset of OCD population. The significant correlation between brain Glx levels and presence of ABGA provides a putative neurobiological framework for OCD. The strengths of the study include psychotropic-naive patients, blinded investigators and use of standardized instruments. The limitations include small sample size, use of Glx as proxy measure of glutamate and lack of other disorder controls. Similar studies on a larger sample are warranted for a better understanding.
Disclosure of interest
The authors have not supplied their declaration of competing interest.
In vitro studies have demonstrated possible neuroprotective effects of the following pro-inflammatory cytokines: IL-6, IL-1β and TNF-α against glutaminergic excitotoxicity in brain through different pathways.
In the current study, we aim to correlate level of the above pro-inflammatory cytokines in serum with glutamate levels in head of caudate nucleus measured using Proton Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy (1H-MRS) in patients with obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), a neuropsychiatric illness with possible multifactorial aetiology including immunological and excitotoxic factors.
Thirty psychotropic-naïve patients with OCD and an equal number of gender and age-matched normal controls were recruited in the study. A detailed psychiatric assessment was carried out including sociodemographic and clinical variables. A 3T MR imaging and spectroscopy session was carried out in head of caudate nucleus. Further, absolute quantification of glutamate level was obtained using LC model. Simultaneously, 5 mL of blood sample was collected and assayed for the above pro-inflammatory cytokines (Siemens, Immulite™). The level of glutamate was correlated with the cytokine levels in patients with OCD.
The level of Glx was significantly higher in patients with OCD as compared to controls (P < 0.05). The Glx level negatively correlated with two of the three pro-inflammatory cytokines: IL-6 and TNF-α (r = −0.807; r = −0.838; P < 0.05) while no significant correlation was demonstrated with IL-1β.
The findings provide preliminary evidence regarding possible neuroprotective effects of pro-inflammatory cytokines against glutaminergic excitotoxicity in patients with OCD. Further studies including patients with other psychiatric illnesses as controls are required for confirmation of the above findings.
Disclosure of interest
The authors have not supplied their declaration of competing interest.
The recent crash of Germanwings Flight 4U9525 appears to be the latest act of aircraft-assisted murder-suicide. The psychiatric preventive aspects of the murder-suicide need to be discussed, and effective measures for recognition and prevention of this murder-suicide are needed. Aircrew health is biased towards the physical ailments, and evaluation manuals have not discussed the mental health aspects, especially preventive strategies. These strategies involve multifactorial interventions, their applicability and usefulness are not globally validated.
Objectives and methods
Thanatology has since long, focused on early detection of mental distress and elucidating behavioural and psychological factors that predispose towards attempts at self-harm. Aircrew forms a different group from the general population. The recognition and preventive strategies in this special group, must, therefore, be tailored to this group with its special characteristics.
Data sources, study selection and data synthesis publications were identified via electronic searches using multiple search terms related to suicide prevention. The available effective preventive measures were juxtaposed on the current concepts in aerospace psychiatry.
Murder-suicide by aircrew is an event that is the culmination of undetected, ignored or even condoned discrete events that gradually progress and insidiously escalate. The importance of psychological factors in this catastrophic event needs to be disseminated amongst psychiatrists, and aircrew medical examiners. Ascertaining which components of suicide prevention programmes are effective in early recognition of aircrew who may attempt or complete the murder-suicide and putting into practice these to optimize the use of limited resources, is therefore essential and necessary.
Disclosure of interest
The authors have not supplied their declaration of competing interest.