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We examine financial challenges of purchasing items that are readily-available yet symbolic of loving relationships. Using weddings and funerals as case studies, we find that people indirectly pay to avoid taboo monetary trade-offs. When purchasing items symbolic of love, respondents chose higher price, higher quality items over equally appealing lower price, lower quality items (Study 1), searched less for lower priced items (Study 2) and were less willing to negotiate prices (Study 3). The effect was present for experienced consumers (Study 1), affectively positive and negative events (Study 2), and more routine purchase events (Study 3). Trade-off avoidance, however, was limited to monetary trade-offs associated with loved ones. When either money or love was omitted from the decision context, people were more likely to engage in trade-off reasoning. By abandoning cost-benefit reasoning in order to avoid painful monetary trade-offs, people spend more money than if they engaged in trade-off based behaviors, such as seeking lower cost options or requesting lower prices.
Suicide risk is complex and nuanced, and how place impacts suicide risk when considered alongside detailed individual risk factors remains uncertain. We aimed to examine suicide risk in Denmark with both individual and neighbourhood level risk factors.
We used Danish register-based data to identify individuals born in Denmark from 1972, with full parental information and psychiatric diagnosis history. We fitted a two-level survival model to estimate individual and neighbourhood determinants on suicide risk.
We identified 1723 cases of suicide in Denmark during the follow-up period from 1982 to 2015. Suicide risk was explained mainly by individual determinants. Parental comorbidities, particularly maternal schizophrenia [incidence rate ratio (IRR): 2.29, 95% CI 1.56–3.16] and paternal death (2.29, 95% CI 1.31–3.72) partly explained suicide risk when adjusted for all other determinants. The general contextual effect of suicide risk across neighbourhoods showed a median incidence rate ratio (MRR) of 1.13 (1.01–1.28), which was further reduced with full adjustment. Suicide risk increased in neighbourhoods with a higher proportion of manual workers (IRR: 1.08; 1.03–1.14), and decreased with a higher population density (IRR: 0.89; 0.83–0.96).
Suicide risk varies mainly between individuals, with parental comorbidities having the largest effect on suicide risk. Suicide risk was less impacted by neighbourhood, though, albeit to a lesser extent than individual determinants, some characteristics were associated with suicide risk. Suicide prevention policies might consider targeting interventions towards individuals more vulnerable due to particular parental comorbidities, whilst taking into account that some neighbourhood characteristics might exacerbate this risk further.
There is substantial variation in patient symptoms following psychological therapy for depression and anxiety. However, reliance on endpoint outcomes ignores additional interindividual variation during therapy. Knowing a patient's likely symptom trajectories could guide clinical decisions. We aimed to identify latent classes of patients with similar symptom trajectories over the course of psychological therapy and explore associations between baseline variables and trajectory class.
Patients received high-intensity psychological treatment for common mental health problems at National Health Service Improving Access to Psychological Therapies services in South London (N = 16 258). To identify trajectories, we performed growth mixture modelling of depression and anxiety symptoms over 11 sessions. We then ran multinomial regressions to identify baseline variables associated with trajectory class membership.
Trajectories of depression and anxiety symptoms were highly similar and best modelled by four classes. Three classes started with moderate-severe symptoms and showed (1) no change, (2) gradual improvement, and (3) fast improvement. A final class (4) showed initially mild symptoms and minimal improvement. Within the moderate-severe baseline symptom classes, patients in the two showing improvement as opposed to no change tended not to be prescribed psychotropic medication or report a disability and were in employment. Patients showing fast improvement additionally reported lower baseline functional impairment on average.
Multiple trajectory classes of depression and anxiety symptoms were associated with baseline characteristics. Identifying the most likely trajectory for a patient at the start of treatment could inform decisions about the suitability and continuation of therapy, ultimately improving patient outcomes.
Scholars have treated images from the golden age of Transylvanian photography, recently elevated to prominence through the digitization of archives, as “authentic” portrayals of peasant culture. However, Hungarian, Romanian, and Saxon nationalists in Transylvania utilized photographs to brand place and nation in the global market, as well as to make claims to territory and assert competing national hierarchies. I examine here Saxon historian, folklorist and travel writer Emil Sigerus’ Durch Siebenbürgen: eine Touristenfahrt in 58 Bildern (Through Transylvania: a Tourist Trip in 58 Pictures), published repeatedly between 1905 and 1929. Sigerus’ photographic survey of Transylvania’s natural landscape, built environment and diverse populations branded Transylvania in general and Transylvanian Saxons in particular as a tourist destination unspoiled by the passage of time. Sigerus also projected an ethnically stratified social hierarchy on Transylvania’s heterogeneous population, with Saxons at the apex; asserted Saxon ownership of urban centers, thereby reinforcing Saxon claims to a “civilizing mission” in Transylvania; and laid claim to territory, simultaneously redirecting tourism from other parts of Transylvania to Saxon nationalists’ benefit. By careful curation, then, Sigerus projected a strong nationalist message often overlooked in the analysis of individual images as “objective” sources of evidence.
While studies from the start of the COVID-19 pandemic have described initial negative effects on mental health and exacerbating mental health inequalities, longer-term studies are only now emerging.
In total, 34 465 individuals in the UK completed online questionnaires and were re-contacted over the first 12 months of the pandemic. We used growth mixture modelling to identify trajectories of depression, anxiety and anhedonia symptoms using the 12-month data. We identified sociodemographic predictors of trajectory class membership using multinomial regression models.
Most participants had consistently low symptoms of depression or anxiety over the year of assessments (60%, 69% respectively), and a minority had consistently high symptoms (10%, 15%). We also identified participants who appeared to show improvements in symptoms as the pandemic progressed, and others who showed the opposite pattern, marked symptom worsening, until the second national lockdown. Unexpectedly, most participants showed stable low positive affect, indicating anhedonia, throughout the 12-month period. From regression analyses, younger age, reporting a previous mental health diagnosis, non-binary, or self-defined gender, and an unemployed or a student status were significantly associated with membership of the stable high symptom groups for depression and anxiety.
While most participants showed little change in their depression and anxiety symptoms across the first year of the pandemic, we highlight the divergent responses of subgroups of participants, who fared both better and worse around national lockdowns. We confirm that previously identified predictors of negative outcomes in the first months of the pandemic also predict negative outcomes over a 12-month period.
We detected no correlation between standardized antimicrobial administration ratios (SAARs) and healthcare facility-onset Clostridioides difficile infection (HO-CDI) rates in 102 acute-care Veterans Affairs medical centers over 16 months. SAARs may be useful for investigating trends in local antimicrobial use, but no ratio threshold demarcated HO-CDI risk.
As part of surveillance of snail-borne trematodiasis in Knowsley Safari (KS), Prescot, United Kingdom, a collection was made in July 2021 of various planorbid (n = 173) and lymnaeid (n = 218) snails. These were taken from 15 purposely selected freshwater habitats. In the laboratory emergent trematode cercariae, often from single snails, were identified by morphology with a sub-set, of those most accessible, later characterized by cytochrome oxidase subunit 1 (cox1) DNA barcoding. Two schistosomatid cercariae were of special note in the context of human cercarial dermatitis (HCD), Bilharziella polonica emergent from Planorbarius corneus and Trichobilharzia spp. emergent from Ampullacaena balthica. The former schistosomatid was last reported in the United Kingdom over 50 years ago. From cox1 analyses, the latter likely consisted of two taxa, Trichobilharzia anseri, a first report in the United Kingdom, and a hitherto unnamed genetic lineage having some affiliation with Trichobilharzia longicauda. The chronobiology of emergent cercariae from P. corneus was assessed, with the vertical swimming rate of B. polonica measured. We provide a brief risk appraisal of HCD for public activities typically undertaken within KS educational and recreational programmes.
Worldwide type 2 diabetes (T2D) prevalence is increasing dramatically. The present study aimed to evaluate the association between dietary habits and T2D in an Iranian adult population using a cross-sectional analysis of the Shahedieh cohort study. Participants were adults aged 35–70 years (n 9261) from Zarch and Shahedieh, Yazd, Iran, who attended the baseline phase of the Shahedieh cohort study. Dietary habits including meal frequency, fried-food consumption, adding salt to prepared meals and grilled-food consumption were assessed by a standard questionnaire. T2D was defined as fasting plasma glucose (FPG) ≥126 mg/dl according to the American Diabetes Association. Multiple logistic regression assessed the association between dietary habits and T2D. Individuals who consumed a meal more than six times per day compared to three times per day had greater odds for T2D (OR 2⋅503, 95 % CI 1⋅651, 3⋅793). These associations remained significant in a fully adjusted model. There was a significant association between greater intakes of fried foods and prevalence of T2D (OR 1⋅294, 95 % CI 1⋅004, 1⋅668) in the adjusted model. No significant associations were observed between other dietary habits (adding salt to prepared meals and grilled-food consumption) and odds of T2D in all crude and adjusted models. In conclusion, we have highlighted the association between meal and fried-food consumption frequencies with risk of T2D. Large longitudinal studies in different ethnicities are needed to confirm these associations.
The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has placed significant burden on healthcare systems. We compared Clostridioides difficile infection (CDI) epidemiology before and during the pandemic across 71 hospitals participating in the Canadian Nosocomial Infection Surveillance Program. Using an interrupted time series analysis, we showed that CDI rates significantly increased during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The impact of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic on mental health is still being unravelled. It is important to identify which individuals are at greatest risk of worsening symptoms. This study aimed to examine changes in depression, anxiety and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms using prospective and retrospective symptom change assessments, and to find and examine the effect of key risk factors.
Online questionnaires were administered to 34 465 individuals (aged 16 years or above) in April/May 2020 in the UK, recruited from existing cohorts or via social media. Around one-third (n = 12 718) of included participants had prior diagnoses of depression or anxiety and had completed pre-pandemic mental health assessments (between September 2018 and February 2020), allowing prospective investigation of symptom change.
Prospective symptom analyses showed small decreases in depression (PHQ-9: −0.43 points) and anxiety [generalised anxiety disorder scale – 7 items (GAD)-7: −0.33 points] and increases in PTSD (PCL-6: 0.22 points). Conversely, retrospective symptom analyses demonstrated significant large increases (PHQ-9: 2.40; GAD-7 = 1.97), with 55% reported worsening mental health since the beginning of the pandemic on a global change rating. Across both prospective and retrospective measures of symptom change, worsening depression, anxiety and PTSD symptoms were associated with prior mental health diagnoses, female gender, young age and unemployed/student status.
We highlight the effect of prior mental health diagnoses on worsening mental health during the pandemic and confirm previously reported sociodemographic risk factors. Discrepancies between prospective and retrospective measures of changes in mental health may be related to recall bias-related underestimation of prior symptom severity.
Since the advent of direct-acting antiviral therapy, the elimination of hepatitis c virus (HCV) as a public health concern is now possible. However, identification of those who remain undiagnosed, and re-engagement of those who are diagnosed but remain untreated, will be essential to achieve this. We examined the extent of HCV infection among individuals undergoing liver function tests (LFT) in primary care. Residual biochemistry samples for 6007 patients, who had venous blood collected in primary care for LFT between July 2016 and January 2017, were tested for HCV antibody. Through data linkage to national and sentinel HCV surveillance databases, we also examined the extent of diagnosed infection, attendance at specialist service and HCV treatment for those found to be HCV positive. Overall HCV antibody prevalence was 4.0% and highest for males (5.0%), those aged 37–50 years (6.2%), and with an ALT result of 70 or greater (7.1%). Of those testing positive, 68.9% had been diagnosed with HCV in the past, 84.9% before the study period. Most (92.5%) of those diagnosed with chronic infection had attended specialist liver services and while 67.7% had ever been treated only 38% had successfully cleared infection. More than half of HCV-positive people required assessment, and potentially treatment, for their HCV infection but were not engaged with services during the study period. LFT in primary care are a key opportunity to diagnose, re-diagnose and re-engage patients with HCV infection and highlight the importance of GPs in efforts to eliminate HCV as a public health concern.
The coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic has presented unique challenges to pediatric emergency medicine (PEM) departments. The purpose of this study was to identify these challenges and ascertain how centers overcame barriers in creating solutions to continue to provide high-quality care and keep their workforce safe during the early pandemic.
This is a qualitative study based on semi-structured interviews with physicians in leadership positions who have disaster or emergency management experience. Participants were identified through purposive sampling. Interviews were recorded and transcribed electronically. Themes and codes were extracted from the transcripts by 2 independent coders. Constant comparison analysis was performed until thematic saturation was achieved. Member-checking was completed to ensure trustworthiness.
Fourteen PEM-trained physicians participated in this study. Communication, leadership and planning, clinical practice, and personal adaptations were the principal themes identified. Recommendations elicited include improving communication strategies; increasing emergency department (ED) representation within hospital-wide incident command; preparing for a surge and accepting adult patients; personal protective equipment supply and usage; developing testing strategies; and adaptations individuals made to their practice to keep themselves and their families safe.
By sharing COVID-19 experiences and offering solutions to commonly encountered problems, pediatric EDs may be better prepared for future pandemics.