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Impairments in social cognition contribute significantly to disability in schizophrenia patients (SzP). Perception of facial expressions is critical for social cognition. Intact perception requires an individual to visually scan a complex dynamic social scene for transiently moving facial expressions that may be relevant for understanding the scene. The relationship of visual scanning for these facial expressions and social cognition remains unknown.
In 39 SzP and 27 healthy controls (HC), we used eye-tracking to examine the relationship between performance on The Awareness of Social Inference Test (TASIT), which tests social cognition using naturalistic video clips of social situations, and visual scanning, measuring each individual's relative to the mean of HC. We then examined the relationship of visual scanning to the specific visual features (motion, contrast, luminance, faces) within the video clips.
TASIT performance was significantly impaired in SzP for trials involving sarcasm (p < 10−5). Visual scanning was significantly more variable in SzP than HC (p < 10−6), and predicted TASIT performance in HC (p = 0.02) but not SzP (p = 0.91), differing significantly between groups (p = 0.04). During the visual scanning, SzP were less likely to be viewing faces (p = 0.0001) and less likely to saccade to facial motion in peripheral vision (p = 0.008).
SzP show highly significant deficits in the use of visual scanning of naturalistic social scenes to inform social cognition. Alterations in visual scanning patterns may originate from impaired processing of facial motion within peripheral vision. Overall, these results highlight the utility of naturalistic stimuli in the study of social cognition deficits in schizophrenia.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Division of State and Local Readiness (DSLR), Public Health Emergency Preparedness(PHEP) program funds 62 recipients to strengthen capability standards to prepare for and respond to public health emergencies. Recipients use these PHEP resources in addition to CDC’s administrative and scientific guidance to support preparedness and response program planning and requirements. It is expected that public health agencies develop and maintain comprehensive emergency preparedness and response plans in preparation for disasters such as hurricanes. The 2017 historic hurricane season highlighted how emergency planning and collaborative operational execution is important for public health agencies to effectively prepare for and respond to both the immediate and long-term population health consequences of these disasters. In 2017, the southeastern United States (US) and US Caribbean territories experienced 3 Category 4 or higher Atlantic hurricanes (Harvey, Irma, and Maria) within a 5-week period. This paper highlights selected case studies that illustrate the contributions and impact of jurisdictional emergency management planning and operational capacity supported by capability standards during the 2017 hurricane season. Although the magnitude of the 2017 hurricanes required public health officials to seek additional assistance, the following case studies describe the use of public health preparedness systems and recovery resources supported by the PHEP program.
The COVID-19 outbreak could be considered as an uncontrollable stressful life event. Lockdown measures have provoked a disruption of daily life with a great impact over older adults’ health and well-being. Nevertheless, eudaimonic well‐being plays a protective role in confronting adverse circumstances, such as the COVID-19 situation. This study aims to assess the association between age and psychological well-being (personal growth and purpose in life). Young–old (60–70 years) and old–old (71–80 years) community-dwelling Spaniards (N = 878) completed a survey and reported on their sociodemographic characteristics and their levels of health, COVID-19 stress-related, appraisal, and personal resources. Old–old did not evidence poorer psychological well-being than young–old. Age has only a negative impact on personal growth. The results also suggest that the nature of the COVID-19 impact (except for the loss of a loved one) may not be as relevant for the older adults’ well-being as their appraisals and personal resources for managing COVID-related problems. In addition, these results suggest that some sociodemographic and health-related variables have an impact on older adults’ well-being. Thus, perceived-health, family functioning, resilience, gratitude, and acceptance had significant associations with both personal growth and purpose in life. Efforts to address older adults’ psychological well-being focusing on older adults’ personal resources should be considered.
Studies have shown that there are overlapping traits and symptoms between autism and psychosis but no study to date has addressed this association from an epidemiological approach in the adult general population. Furthermore, it is not clear whether autistic traits are associated with specific symptoms of psychosis or with psychosis in general. We assess these associations for the first time by using the Adult Psychiatric Morbidity Survey (APMS) 2007 and the APMS 2014, predicting an association between autistic traits and probable psychosis, and specific associations between autistic traits and paranoia and strange experiences.
Participants (N = 7353 in 2007 and 7500 in 2014) completed the Psychosis Screening Questionnaire (PSQ) and a 20-item version of the Autism Quotient (AQ-20). Binomial logistic regressions were performed using AQ-20 as the independent variable and probable psychosis and specific symptoms as dependent variables.
In the APMS 2007 dataset, significant associations were found between autism traits and probable psychosis, paranoia, thought insertion, and strange experiences. These results were replicated in APMS 2014 but with the additional significant association between autistic traits and hallucinations. Participants in the highest quartile of the AQ-20, compared with the lowest quartile, had an increased risk of probable psychosis of odds ratio (OR) = 15.5 [95% confidence interval (CI) 4.57–52.6] in APMS 2007 and OR = 22.5 (95% CI 7.64–66.3) in APMS 2014.
Autistic traits are strongly associated with probable psychosis and psychotic experiences with the exception of mania. Limitations such as the cross-sectional nature of the study are discussed.
Nowadays several authors defend the existence of an obsessive-compulsive (OC) spectrum in which eating disorders (ED), especially anorexia nervosa, would be include. We investigated the presence of OC symptoms in bulimic and anorexic patients and its relationships with personality traits.
The Maudsley Obsessive Compulsive Questionnaire (MOCQ) and the revised version of the Temperament and Character Inventory (TCI-R) were administered to patients and healthy controls.
Patients show higher scores than controls in the global punctuation of de MOCQ, and in the checking and doubt subscales. Cases also score higher in harm avoidance (dimension associated with personality disorders of cluster C) and in its subscale anticipatory worry. No differences were found between patients subgroups.
Restricting Anorexia Nervosa (RAN, n = 21)
Binging-Purging Anorexia Nervosa (BPAN, n = 29)
Bulimia Nervosa (BN, n = 34)
Control (C, n = 52)
RAN, BPAN, BN > C
Checking subscale (MOCQ)
BPAN, BN > C
RAN, BPAN, BN > C
Harm avoidance (TCI-R)
BPAN, BN > C
Anticipatory worry vs optimism (TCI-R)
RAN, BPAN, BN > C
Patients present more OC behaviours in comparison with healthy population but measures of obsessivity do not differ between the types of ED. Traits of personality characteristically associated to cluster C and to anxiety disorders seem to be also common features. These results do not support a separated classification of RAN into the OC spectrum.
The aim of this study is to assess the personality traits in a sample of Spanish anorexic and bulimic outpatients.
The revised version of the Temperament and Character Inventory was administered to 76 women attended in an Eating Disorders Unit and to 46 healthy controls. Both groups were matched by gender, age and instruction.
Diagnoses in the sample were distributed as follows: bulimia nervosa (BN) 33, binging-purging type anorexia nervosa (BPAN) 23 and restricting anorexia nervosa (RAN) 18. RAN patients were significantly younger (21.6 vs. 26.3 p < 0.01). Differences in the harm avoidance, persistence and selfdirectedness subscales of the TCI were found (see table).
BPAN, BN > C
RAN > C
C > RAN, BPAN, BN
In concordance with previous reports, compared with healthy controls, patients show lower scores in self-directedness. Persistence seems to be associated with restricting behaviours, whereas harm avoidance with binging and purging. RAN trends to have low scores in novelty seeking items and BN shows lower reward dependence, but this differences are not statistically significant, perhaps because of sample size.
Oxidative stress suposses an imbalance between oxidants and antioxidants molecules. Negative and positive family environment have been related with worse and better outcomes respectively in schizophrenic patients.
Our objetive is to determine antioxidant defense in healthy controls and unaffected relatives of early onset psychosis patients and to asses its relationship with familiar environment.
We included 82 healthy controls (HC) and 14 healthy controls with second degree family history of psychosis (HCWFHP), aged between 9 to 17.
Total antioxidant status and lipid peroxidation test were determined in plasma and antioxidant enzime activities and glutathione levels were determined in erytrocytes.
We used the Global Assesment Functioning scale (GAF) and the Family Environment Scale (FES). The FES is made up of ten subscales: cohesion, expressiveness, conflict, independence, achievement, intellectual-cultural, social, moral, organization and control.
The analyses showed a significant decrease in total antioxidant level in HCWFHP compared with the HC (U Mann Withney = 281.00, p=0.009, effect size= -0.78).
HC and HCWFHP did not differ in the GAF scale, nevertheless the scores of HCWFHP were significantly higher in cohesion and intellectual-cultural dimensions of the FES (p=0.007, p=0.025).
Adjusting by this two FES dimensions, antioxidant status remained significantly different between groups: OR= 10.86, p=0.009.
Although we cannot induce causative relations, we can state that family environment is not playing a role in inducing oxidative stress in these subjects. It could be hypothesized that families with affected relatives protect themselves with positive envionmental factors such as cohesion and intellectual-cultural activities.
Numerous reports have pointed out the risks adverse hematological effects associated with psychotropic drugs. We report a severe case of thrombocytopenia in a healthy 79 year-old patient happened after mirtazapine administration. Suggesting an immune mechanism.
Report a case of mirtazapina-induced inmuno tromnbocitopenia, review of bibliography and to propose monitoring and management strategies.
Aims and methods
Care report: PPD (n°HC 16996) treatment with mirtazapina 15 mg/d.Clinical: equimosis cutaneous multiple. Without focalidad. From the point of view etiológico discards organicity (aplasia megacariocítica, processes linfoproliferativos and infectious). An analytical previous examination supports normal platelets until April, 2009, in February the dose doubles from 15 to 30 mg (of mirtazapina). Fatal conclusion: exitus for hemorrhage intracraneal in September, 2009. Clinical judgment: Several Trombopenia, uncertain origin.
Literature review: The first well-documented case of mirtazapine-induced immune thrombocytopenia is “Glycoprotein IIb/IIIa complex is the target in mirtazapine-induced immune thrombocytopenia” (Blood Cells, Molecules, and Diseases, 2003).The analysis “Proportion of drug-related serious rare blood dyscrasias” (American Journal of Hematology, 2004) suggests that a substantial fraction of blood dyscrasias may be attributable to drug therapy.
Hematologic side effects from psychotropics may present as serious or even fatal consequences of treatment. Incidences of hematological changes for antidepressants were much lower (about 0.01%).
Before initiating therapy with antidepressants, a carefully case history, with special attention to heart disease, family record and medical treatments, should be obtained. Clinical best practice regarding the safe and effective use of psychotropic medications is based on appropriate monitoring of drug-related problems.
Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is one of the most prevalent psychiatric disorders in children (5.29%) worldwide, and highly comorbid with other psychiatric disorders.
To evaluate ADHD symptoms prevalence/frequency in young ambulatory patients diagnosed with other psychiatric disorders.
Non-interventional, multicentre, and cross-sectional, retrospective study. Patients aged 15-24 having a primary diagnosis of: Substance Use (SUD), Borderline personality (BPD), Anxiety (AD), Affective, Antisocial Personality (APD), or Conduct Disorders(CD) or Bulimia, giving inform consent were included (not previously treated/diagnosed with ADHD). ADHD symptoms prevalence was captured following DSM-IV criteria and moderate ADHD symptoms was considered as scoring >24 in the ADHD RS (DuPaul).
795 patients meeting in- and exclusion criteria were analyzed in the study. Mean age was 21.12 (SD: 2.64), and the majority were men (57.5%).A probable ADHD diagnosis (6 or more DSMIV symptoms and ADHD RS moderate symptoms) was apparent in: 40.3% of SUD patients, 23.7% of AD, 21.7% of Affective Disorders, 30.3% of Bulimia, 48.3% of BPD, 41.7% of CD and 57.1% of APD. Moreover, patients with SUD (ODD: 1.54) and BPD (ODD: 2.2) had significantly more risk vs. rest of population studied of having moderate ADHD symptoms. Also, patients having a probable ADHD diagnosis were significantly rated more severe in the GCI-Severity scale than the rest of population studied.
This cross-sectional study showed that ADHD symptoms are highly prevalent in young ambulatory patients diagnosed primarily with other psychiatric disorders, what seems to worse patient outcome if not diagnosed/managed on time. ADHD comorbidity risk varied significantly depending on the primary diagnosis.
Describe Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder's (ADHD) prevalence in Bipolar Disorders (BD) and relatives.
78 admissions for Bipolar Disorder (DSM-IV) in Impatient Psychiatric Unit, in Hospital Clínico Universitario of Valladolid (Spain). Only 36/78 patients participate in study. Demographic, social and clinical information were registered. ADHD symptomatology was evaluated from patient and descendant (Conners short version).
ADHD symptomatology suggestive in childhood/adolescence were detected in 13,9% (5/36). Conners score were negative (below 15) in all case.
ADHD symptomatology suggestive in their children were detected in 6,25% (n=3). Conner score were positive in 2,1%. Family psychiatry history in 72,2% (n=26), affective disorder in 60,52% (n=23). No family history with ADHD diagnosis. Only one case (2,8%) with symptomatology suggestive of ADHD in relatives.
The ADHD prevalence in our sample of BD and relatives weren’t higher than general population.
- Frontiers Between Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder and Bipolar Disorder. Cathryn A. Galanter, MDa, Ellen Leibenluft, MD. Child Adolesc Psychiatric Clin N Am 17 (2008) 325-346.
- Co-occurrence of bipolar and attention-deficit hyperactivity disorders in children.
Obsessive compulsive-disorder (OCD) is a group of highly debilitating condition characterized by intrusive troubling thoughts, repetitive, compulsive behaviors or mental rituals. A notable percentage of patients are refractory to pharmacological treatment and cognitive behaviour therapy. Increasing attention has been paid to the efficacy of Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS) therapies in alleviating pharmacoresistant psychiatric disorders including OCD.
The aim of this prospective study was to determine the efficacy of DBS using several targets in a pharmacoresistant OCD population with heterogeneous symptoms.
Five patients (3 males) have been included in the study. Patients were classified according to their prominent features as follows: contamination/cleaning, symmetry/checking, exactness/counting and forbidden thoughts.
The entire surgical procedure was performed under general anaesthesia. Direct targeting based on stereotactic MRI without microelectrode recordings was done. A combination of two of the following targets was simultaneously implanted for all patients: subthalamic nucleus, accumbens nucleus and bed nucleus of stria terminalis, limbic globus pallidus internus.
Patients were assessed pre-and postoperatively using the Yale-Brown Obsessive Compulsive Scale.
Mean age at surgery was of 42.6±12.68 years. Mean follow-up with DBS was of 21±14.88 months.
Mean preoperative Y-BOCS scores was 31.6±2.70 and of 11±7.97 (p=0,057, Wilcoxon signed Rank test).
Subthalamic nucleus and accumbens nucleus targets seem to be comparable in alleviating several subtypes of compulsions (checking, cleaning, counting) as well as obsessions. Further investigations are required to assess the role of limbic globus pallidus in improving pharmacoresitant OCD. Implanted system was well accepted without triggering new obsessions.
The schizophrenia has associated traditionally with major rates of comorbilidad physics. In addition the antipsychotic ones of the second generation are causers of the so called metabolic syndrome (increase of weight, dislipemia and diabetes) that favor directly the cardiovascular disease in our patients.
To develop a therapeutic plan to diminish the sobremortalidad and sobremorbilidad of our schizophrenic patients (according to different studies between 25-50 % of cardiovascular risk). To detect the factors of risk, which influence the metabolic Syndrome: a high level of cholesterol HDL, IMC, smoking and hyperglycemia.
To apply measures of prevention for the diabetes, for the arterial hypertension and the dislipemias.
Retrospective study is realized, checking the clinical histories of the patients beginning medication with aripiprazol for symptomatology psychotic and support the treatment at least 6 months later. We realized preventive specific measures in the patients including education to the patient, careful selection of the antipsychotic with substitution if there appear signs of metabolic syndrome.
39 patients that initiated treatment with aripiprazol, therapeutic doses. Of 39 patients 24 (61,54 %) is smoking, 18 (46,16 %) has an IMC> 25, 11 (28,39 %) hipertriglicerinemia, 5 (12,82 %) index of glycemia basal> 125 and 6 (15,38 %) with hipercolesterolemia.
The antipsychotic atypical alter the metabolic regulation. The treatment with aripiprazol suggests minor risk of metabolic syndrome, in relation to previous similar studies, with antipsychotic others. We think it performs vital importance the prevention of the overweight orientated to patients with the first psychotic episode.
Comparative studies prove that levetiracetam therapy presents a major frequency of behavioral disturbances, producing problems of impulsive aggressiveness with a relative frequency. Principally if a previous psychiatric history is associated.
Report a case of Impulsive homicide aggression in a patient treated with Levetiracetam. Extensive bibliographical review.
We describe the case of a patient admitted in our Psychiatric acute unit because a major depressive disorder and mild cognitive impairment associated with vascular factors that developed strange impulsive aggressive behavior after the initiation of treatment with levetiracetam, even to try to assassinate his wife. Follow-up visits were performed at 6 and 12 months after discharge to assess aggressive behavior and the change in the Barratt impulsivity scale and the hostility inventory of Buss-Durkee. We conducted a literature review of behavioral and aggression problems associated with treatment with levetiracetam and its possible mechanisms.
After the phasing out of levetiracetam and replacement by oxcarbazepine, aggressive behaviors disappeared. No significant psychopathology was showed in the patient in the follow-up visits, except secondary to preexisting cognitive impairment.
According to studies reviewed a 7-13% of patients treated with levetiracetam may develop behavioral disorders with impulsive aggression that usually resolve after discontinuation of drug.
Comparative studies show that levetiracetam has a greater frequency of such effects, leading to problems of impulsive aggression relatively often, especially if there is a comorbid psychiatric pathology.
UPD is a regional referral hospital psychiatric care unit, endowed with multidisciplinary equipment. It provides care to people with light/moderate/severe intellectual incapacity coexisting with mental disease and/or severe behavioral disorders. It offers attention to patients who need a protected therapeutical environment for correcting behavior disorders. It was opened in September 2008.
Description of:therapeutic goals, inclusion/exclusion criteria, admission protocol and psychotherapeutic/pharmacological interventions.
Analysis of inpatients's sociodemographic/clinical characteristics and preliminary assessment of therapy goals.
Retrospective study(13-month) of patients admitted to UPD of Leon Hospital from its inception to date. Data are collected from medical histories.
47 referrals have been received,5 of them have been rejected not to fulfill criteria. We’ve 16 patients on waiting list.32 incomes have been realized and 22 discharges have occurred.
19 of the incomes correspond to Mild,6 to Moderate,6 to Severe and 1 to Profound mental Retardation.
Regarding co-morbidity:22 patients presented serious behavioral disorder. From this group, 2 met criteria for autistic disorder, 5 had schizophrenia or unspecific psychotic disorders, 5 presented Personality Disorder and one ADHD.
10 patients did’nt present any important behavioral disturbance. From this group 2 were diagnosed with OCD,3 presented problems due to Alcohol and Substance-related Disorders,3 had Psychotic Disorders, one met criteria for Impulse Control Disorder and one presented Mood Disorder.
Before admission, 12 patients resided in specific handicappeds center, 5 intermittently at selected centers and in family, and 15 lived with family.
Psychotherapeutic intervention and treatment were useful in most cases. It was particularly helpful in treatment of behavioral disturbances. Now we must determine effectiveness in maintenance of improvement when they return to their community.
Alexithymia is a term to describe a state of deficiency in understanding, processing, or describing emotions. It expresses the cognitive-emotional state of vulnerable subjects who prone to suffer from psychosomatic illnesses. It’s characterized by difficulties in relationship and emptiness of feelings. It has been incriminated in genesis and maintenance of various psychosomatic pathologies, included psoriasis. Psychological stress is important in onset and exacerbation of psoriasis. We assume hypothesis that emotions that cannot be expressed through the appropriate symbolic language will be expressed through a symbolic somatic symptom.
A case study of psoriasis in a woman of 27 years without a previous psychiatric history. She was treated jointly by the service of psychiatry and dermatology. Methodology: We performed a detailed history in the course of the disease, summarizing vital changes and outstanding events of her lifetime in the different vital areas (family, work, school and sex life).
From the comprehensive revision of the ailments and pathobiography we can establish a clear relationship between physical-psychological symptoms.
Skin is an envelope that represents the boundary line between body-psyche. Skin and psyche interact in many ways. The skin reacts to feelings and perceptions. Psychosomatic patients feel extreme anxiety when they have to cope with separation and merger situations. They experience these situations as if they were to lose their physical limit. Broadly speaking, because of their alexithymia, they cannot process a painful emotion properly, and though they will express it through somatisation disorders and the development of diseases. In the case of our patient, the skin verbalizes her emotional silence.
To examine the effectiveness of an Internet Based Therapy (IBT) for Bulimia Nervosa (BN), when compared to a brief psychoeducational group therapy (PET) or a waiting list (WL).
93 female BN patients, diagnosed according to DSM-IV criteria. An experimental group (31 IBT patients) was compared to two groups (31 PET and 31 WL). PET and WL were matched to the IBT group in terms of age, disorder duration, previous treatments and severity. All patients completed assesment, prior and after treatment.
Considering IBT, mean scores were lower at the end of treatment for some EDI scales and BITE symptoms scale, while the mean BMI was higher at post-therapy. Main predictors of good IBT outcome were higher scores in EDI perfectionism and higher scores on reward dependence. Drop-out was related to higher SCL-obsessive/compulsive (p=0.045) and novelty seeking (p=0.044) scores and lower reward dependence (p=0.018). At the end of the treatment bingeing and vomiting abstinence rates (22.6% for IBT, 33.3% for PET, and 0.0% for WL; p=0.003) and drop-out rates (35.5% IBT, 12.9% PET and 0% WL; p= 0.001) differed significantly between groups. While the concrete comparison between the two treatments (IBT and PET) did not evidence significant differences for success proportions (p=0.375), statistical differences for drop-out rates (p=0.038) were obtained.
The results of this study suggest that an online self-help approach appears to be a valid treatment option for BN, especially for people who present lower severity of their eating disorder (ED) symptomatology and some specific personality traits.
The neurodevelopmental hypothesis defends the existance of factors that would cause an early impairment on the normal brain development. The neurodegenerative hypothesis proposes the existance of later and progressive pathological phenomena, responsible of the appearance of clinical manifestations and changes on neuroimaging. Both hypotheses would be complementary. Neurodevelopment is completed during adolescence. Within this period, these deficts on executive functions would become apparent, reflecting a neurodevelopmental impairment. Glutamate is the main excitatory neurotransmitter, present throughout the normal postnatal brain development and maduration. In schizophrenic patients and unaffected relatives, a glutamatergic hypofunction has been found and so, an alteration of the dopaminergic mesocortical limbic and nigrostriatal pathways.
Usage of molecules that are capable of reversing the glutamatergic hypofunction would be potentially benefitial for either positive or negative symptomathology in schizophrenia.
We have performed a review of several clinical trials (on humans and animals) using glutamatergic drugs alone and combined with neuroleptics to diminish behavioural disturbances related to NMDA blockage.
Usage of glycine binding site agonists (glycine, D- cicloserine, D-serine) has been proposed. D-serine is effective both as monotherapy and combined with neuroleptics. D-cicloserine is not effective on negative symptoms. Usage of high doses of oral glycine (30–60 mg a day) on its own has not shown any clinical change but there is an improvement on negative and positive symptoms if combined with neuroleptics.
Nowadays, there is no glutamatergic agonist used in schizophrenia treatment. Out of the three previously mentioned drugs, only D-serine has shown some efficacy.
Up to 45% of individuals who commit suicide contact their Primary Care physician (PCP) the month before. The objective is to study clinical characteristics of patients presenting death and/or suicidal ideation (SI) in Primary Care.
195 patients attending their PCP were evaluated using systematic sampling in three Primary Care Centres. Patients completed the PHQ and a Life Changes Checklist. Demographic data, both psychiatric and medical conditions and treatments, visits to their PCP, and days out of work (last year) were also collected.
24 patients had death or suicidal ideation for the previous two weeks (12,4%; IC95% 8,3-18,8%). Most of them (87,5%) had a mental disease, major depressive disorder (62,5%) and general anxiety disorder (50%). Patients with SI had more somatic symptoms (p<0,001), a greater number and score of recent life changes (p<0,001) and days out of work (last year) ((p=0,028) than the rest of the sample.
Compared to patients with any psychiatric disorder, patients with SI had more depressive symptoms (p<0,001) and a higher score in life changes in the 6-12 month period (p=0,044).
14 (58,3%) patients with SI had no previous psychiatric diagnosis and only 8 (33%) were receiving treatment.
In spite of a greater severity in depressive and other clinical characteristics of patients with SI most of them are not correctly detected and treated. Improving the rate of detection and treatment by the PCP of such patients would probably play a key role in the prevention of suicide.
Psychotic diseases in the elderly are underdiagnosed due to the limited use of medical resources. Advanced age makes psychoses of any cause less pure and differentiated, since old age adds a cognitive-impairment component to the basal psychotic defect.
We intend to estimate the prevalence of paranoid symptoms in older patients, and to study the many medical conditions associated with psychosis.
We conducted a literature review and we have performed a review of several clinical trials.
We found 12.1% of paranoid symptoms in the elderly with cognitive impairment. In absence of this factor, we found a prevalence of 14.1% for suspicion tendencies, 6.9% for paranoid thoughts and 5.5% for evident delusions. These figures were significantly higher in old black people.
We present a table of the main medical conditions that can produce psychotic symptoms. Some cases of apparently typical delusional disorder can appear as a long-term complication of some of these diseases. If organic factors are subtle and long lasting, the clinical may reproduce a fairly typical delusional disorder and may respond to treatment with neuroleptic drugs.
It seems possible that organic brain factors are more common that we believe, becoming essential a comprehensive study of the old psychotic patient. We should pay more attention to psychotic symptoms in elderly patients and avoid conclusions based on cross-evaluations. Diagnosis will be defined by evolution in most of the cases.