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The ‘16Up’ study conducted at the QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute from January 2014 to December 2018 aimed to examine the physical and mental health of young Australian twins aged 16−18 years (N = 876; 371 twin pairs and 18 triplet sets). Measurements included online questionnaires covering physical and mental health as well as information and communication technology (ICT) use, actigraphy, sleep diaries and hair samples to determine cortisol concentrations. Study participants generally rated themselves as being in good physical (79%) and mental (73%) health and reported lower rates of psychological distress and exposure to alcohol, tobacco products or other substances than previously reported for this age group in the Australian population. Daily or near-daily online activity was almost universal among study participants, with no differences noted between males and females in terms of frequency or duration of internet access. Patterns of ICT use in this sample indicated that the respondents were more likely to use online information sources for researching physical health issues than for mental health or substance use issues, and that they generally reported partial levels of satisfaction with the mental health information they found online. This suggests that internet-based mental health resources can be readily accessed by adolescent Australians, and their computer literacy augurs well for future access to online health resources. In combination with other data collected as part of the ongoing Brisbane Longitudinal Twin Study, the 16Up project provides a valuable resource for the longitudinal investigation of genetic and environmental contributions to phenotypic variation in a variety of human traits.
There is limited knowledge of how individuals reflect on their involuntary admission.
To investigate, at one year after an involuntary admission,
(i) peoples perception of the necessity of their involuntary admission
(ii) the enduring impact on the relationship with their family, consultant psychiatrist and employment prospects
(iii) readmission rates to hospital and risk factors for readmission.
People that were admitted involuntarily over a 15 month period were re-interviewed at one year following discharge.
Sixty eight people were re-interviewed at one year and this resulted in a follow-up rate of 84%. Prior to discharge, 72% of people reported that their involuntary admission had been necessary however this reduced to 60% after one year. Over one third of people changed their views and the majority of these patients reflected negatively towards their involuntary admission.
One quarter of people continued to experience a negative impact on the relationship with a family member and their consultant psychiatrist one year after an involuntary admission, while 13% reported a positive impact. A similar proportion perceived that it had negative consequences in their employment.
Within one year, 43% of all patients involuntarily admitted in the study period were readmitted to hospital and half of these admissions were involuntary. Involuntary readmission was associated with a sealing over recovery style.
Peoples’ perception of the necessity of their involuntary admissions changes significantly over time. Involuntary admissions can have a lasting negative impact on the relationship with family members and treating consultant psychiatrist.
The use of physical coercion and involuntary admission is one of the most controversial practices in medicine, it is now understood that perceived coercion is multidimensional and is associated with procedural justice and perceived pressures, and not simply related to the legal status of the patient.
We sought to determine the rate of physical coercion used and the perceived pressures and procedural justice experienced by the person at the time of involuntary admission and whether this influenced future engagement with the mental health services.
Over a 15 month period, people admitted involuntarily were interviewed prior to discharge and at one year follow-up.
81 people participated in the study and 81% were interviewed at one year follow-up. At the time of involuntary admission, over half of people experienced at least one form of physical coercion and it was found that the level of procedural justice experienced was unrelated to the use of physical coercive measures. A total of 20% of participants intended not to voluntarily engage with the mental health services upon discharge and they were more likely to have experienced lower levels of procedural justice at the time of admission. At one year following discharge, 65% of participants were adherent with outpatient appointments and 18% had been readmitted involuntarily. The level of procedural justice experienced at admission did not predict future engagement with services.
This study demonstrates that the use of physical coercive measures is a separate entity from procedural justice and perceived pressures.
We sought to determine the level of procedural justice experienced by individuals at the time of involuntary admission and whether this influenced future engagement with the mental health services.
Over a 15-month period, individuals admitted involuntarily were interviewed prior to discharge and at one-year follow-up.
Eighty-one people participated in the study and 81% were interviewed at one-year follow-up. At the time of involuntary admission, over half of individuals experienced at least one form of physical coercion and it was found that the level of procedural justice experienced was unrelated to the use of physical coercive measures. A total of 20% of participants intended not to voluntarily engage with the mental health services upon discharge and they were more likely to have experienced lower levels of procedural justice at the time of admission. At one year following discharge, 65% of participants were adherent with outpatient appointments and 18% had been readmitted involuntarily. Insight was associated with future engagement with the mental health services; however, the level of procedural justice experienced at admission did not influence engagement.
This study demonstrates that the use of physical coercive measures is a separate entity from procedural justice and perceived pressures.
Subjective reports of dysphoric responses to neuroleptic medication are common in clinical practice. However, cognitive and affective side effects of neuroleptic medications are difficult to differentiate from the symptoms of schizophrenia. We sought to elucidate the relative contribution of extrapyramidal side effects and symptomatology to dysphoric response.
Fifty clinically stable outpatients with schizophrenia attending a rehabilitation centre were assessed for extrapyramidal side effects and symptomatology before completing the drug attitude inventory (DAI).
Presence of extrapyramidal side effects, found in 28 patients (Z = −1.99, p = 0.05), and severity of negative symptoms (r = −0.47, p = 0.001) were independently associated with dysphoric response, explaining a significant proportion of the variance (R = 0.53, R2 = 25.2%, F = 9.27, df = 2, p = 0.0004).
Patients who report a dysphoric response which they associate with neuroleptic medications have more extrapyramidal side effects and more severe negative symptoms. While these responses may be part of the negative symptoms of the illness or due to other factors such as depression, we raise the possibility that they may be clinically indistinguishable from, and be a subjective measure of, the so-called ‘neuroleptic-induced deficit syndrome’.
Negative symptoms have been previously reported during the psychosis prodrome, however our understanding of their relationship with treatment-phase negative symptoms remains unclear.
We report the prevalence of psychosis prodrome onset negative symptoms (PONS) and ascertain whether these predict negative symptoms at first presentation for treatment.
Presence of expressivity or experiential negative symptom domains was established at first presentation for treatment using the Scale for Assessment of Negative Symptoms (SANS) in 373 individuals with a first episode psychosis. PONS were established using the Beiser Scale. The relationship between PONS and negative symptoms at first presentation was ascertained and regression analyses determined the relationship independent of confounding.
PONS prevalence was 50.3% in the schizophrenia spectrum group (n = 155) and 31.2% in the non-schizophrenia spectrum group (n = 218). In the schizophrenia spectrum group, PONS had a significant unadjusted (χ2 = 10.41, P < 0.001) and adjusted (OR = 2.40, 95% CI = 1.11–5.22, P = 0.027) association with first presentation experiential symptoms, however this relationship was not evident in the non-schizophrenia spectrum group. PONS did not predict expressivity symptoms in either diagnostic group.
PONS are common in schizophrenia spectrum diagnoses, and predict experiential symptoms at first presentation. Further prospective research is needed to examine whether negative symptoms commence during the psychosis prodrome.
To assess community mental health in suburban Dublin in 2018, 5 years after Ireland’s economic recession ended.
A cross-sectional, face-to-face, household survey was conducted in a random cluster sample of 351 households in Tallaght, a deprived suburb of Dublin.
A majority of respondents (61.3%) reported stress over the previous 12 months, with a higher rate in areas of high (66.9%) compared to lower deprivation (55.5%). Deprivation was not related to rates of loneliness (20.2%), feeling depressed (20.2%), loss of interest (19.7%) or anxiety (22.5%). Mean score for positive mental health (59.3/100, with a higher score indicating better mental health) was lower than that reported in a national sample in 2007 (68/100); positive mental health was associated with not living with a person with chronic illness, self-identifying as ‘non-Irish’ and greater age. Mean score for psychological distress (76.7/100, with a higher score indicating less distress) was also lower than that in 2007 (82/100); less psychological distress was associated with not living with a person with chronic illness or disability, greater age and identifying as non-Irish. The rate of ‘probable mental illness’ over the previous 4 weeks (13.1%) was higher than in 2007 (7%).
Our findings emphasise the high prevalence of stress, especially in deprived suburban areas; the centrality of carer burden in determining mental wellbeing; and associations between positive mental health on the one hand and greater age and identifying as non-Irish on the other.
To date, Ireland has been a leading light in the provision of youth mental health services. However, cognisant of the efforts of governmental and non-governmental agencies working in youth mental health, there is much to be done. Barriers into care as well as discontinuity of care across the spectrum of services remain key challenges. This editorial provides guidance for the next stage of development in youth mental care and support that will require significant national engagement and resource investment.
This review will outline the role of visiting cardiac surgical teams in low- and middle-income countries drawing on the collective experience of the authors in a wide range of locations. Requests for assistance can emerge from local programmes at a beginner or advanced stage. However, in all circumstances, careful pre-trip planning is necessary in conjunction with clinical and non-clinical local partners. The clinical evaluation, surgical procedures, and postoperative care all serve as a template for collaboration and education between the visiting and local teams in every aspect of care. Education focusses on both common and patient-specific issues. Case selection must appropriately balance the clinical priorities, safety, and educational objectives within the time constraints of trip duration. Considerable communication and practical challenges will present, and clinicians may need to make significant adjustments to their usual practice in order to function effectively in a resource-limited, unfamiliar, and multilingual environment. The effectiveness of visiting trips should be measured and constantly evaluated. Local and visiting teams should use data-driven evaluations of measurable outcomes and critical qualitative evaluation to repeatedly re-assess their interim goals. Progress invariably takes several years to achieve the final goal: an autonomous self-governing, self-financed, cardiac programme capable of providing care for children with complex CHD. This outcome is consistent with redundancy for the visiting trips model at the site, although fraternal, professional, and academic links will invariably remain for many years.
Brucellosis is usually acquired by humans through contact with infected animals or the consumption of raw milk from infected ruminants. Brucella suis biovar 2 (BSB2) is mainly encountered in hares and wild boars (Sus scrofa), and is known to have very low pathogenicity to humans with only two case reports published in the literature. Human cases of brucellosis caused by BSB2 were identified through the national mandatory notification of brucellosis. The identification of the bacterium species and biovar were confirmed by the national reference laboratory. Epidemiological data were obtained during medical follow-up visits. Seven human cases were identified between 2004 and 2016, all confirmed by the isolation of BSB2 in clinical specimens. All patients had direct contact with wild boars while hunting or preparing wild boar meat for consumption. Five patients had chronic medical conditions possibly responsible for an increased risk of infection. Our findings suggest that BSB2 might be an emerging pathogen in hunters with massive exposure through the dressing of wild boar carcasses. Hunters, especially those with chronic medical conditions, should be informed about the risk of BSB2 infection and should receive information on protective measures.
The incidence of psychotic disorders varies between geographical areas and it has been hypothesized that neighbourhood-level factors may influence this variation. It is also plausible that the duration of untreated psychosis (DUP) is associated with neighbourhood characteristics. The aims of this study were to determine whether the incidence of first-episode psychosis (FEP) and the DUP are associated with the level of social deprivation, fragmentation, social capital and population density.
All individuals with a FEP from a geographical defined catchment area over a 5-year period were included. Age-standardized incidence rates were calculated for each neighbourhood factor.
A total of 292 cases of FEP were included in the study and 45% had a diagnosis of a schizophrenia-spectrum disorder. The age standardized incidence rate of FEP in the most deprived area was 72.4 [95% confidence interval (CI) 26.4–162.7] per 100 000 person-years compared with 21.5 (95% CI 17.6–26.0) per 100 000 person-years in the most affluent areas. This represents a 3.4-fold increase in FEP incidence in the most deprived areas. The incidence of FEP was also increased in neighbourhoods that were more socially fragmented [incidence rate ratio (IRR) = 2.40, 95% CI 1.05–5.51, p = 0.04] and there was a trend for the incidence to be increased in neighbourhoods with lower social capital (IRR = 1.43, 95% CI 0.99–2.06, p = 0.05). The median DUP was 4 months and was higher in more socially fragmented neighbourhoods.
The incidence of psychotic disorders is related to neighbourhood factors and it may be useful to consider neighbourhood factors when allocating resources for early intervention services.
Study of illness characteristics and symptoms in a young population with psychosis can assist for understanding of their needs, and can inform service planning strategies. The aims of the current study were to describe illness characteristics and symptoms of a first episode psychosis (FEP) sample aged 25 years and under, and compare with a sample aged over 25 years.
Interviews were conducted for 437 individuals aged 16–65 years presenting with suspected psychosis between 2005 and 2012 in a defined catchment area (population of 390 000) using the Structured Clinical Interview for DSM IV to determine the presence of a psychosis diagnosis. Individuals with confirmed psychosis were assessed using standardised instruments to determine illness characteristics at first presentation.
Among the 25 years, and under FEP sample, 23.9% had their first onset of symptoms (prodromal or psychotic) before 18 years of age. After controlling for confounders, the sample aged 25 years and under had a significantly shorter log transformed duration of untreated psychosis (p=0.002), more negative symptoms (p=0.045) and greater frequency of comorbid cannabis abuse diagnosis (p=0.027).
Symptom onset in a youth FEP sample frequently occurs before age 18 years. Certain illness characteristics differed across the age categories, such as greater negative symptoms and cannabis abuse in the youth sample. Overall, the findings support the provision of adequate strategies for management of negative symptom deficits and substance abuse across all ages in FEP.
We explored the use of galvanostatic electrochemical deposition of Pt for cost-effective fabrication of interconnects in flexible implantable bio-medical devices. Initial studies were done on coupons diced from 200 mm Si wafers coated with PVD TiN. Based on the physical and chemical properties of the electrodeposited Pt films, optimal conditions were chosen for through-mask plating of centimeters long Pt lines on flexible, medical grade, releasable polyimide layers. Possibility for further up-scaling was considered with special emphasis on high throughput manufacturing of Pt interconnects with good adhesion to TiN/flexible substrates, low impurity content and resistivity, and acceptable roughness and uniformity.
Brewers’ spent grain (BSG) is a low-value co-product of the brewing industry produced in large quantities annually. This paper reviews the existing evidence regarding the phenolic component of BSG, focusing on composition, extraction and biofunctions such as antioxidant, anti-atherogenic, anti-inflammatory and anti-carcinogenic activities. Furthermore, the incorporation of BSG in foodstuffs will be discussed, including the use of BSG as an animal feed supplement and the potential of BSG to be incorporated into foods for human consumption. BSG contains hydroxycinnamic acids including ferulic acid, p-coumaric acid and caffeic acid; which have shown bioactivity in the pure form (antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, anti-atherogenic and anti-cancer). Phenolic extracts from BSG have also shown antioxidant potential, by protecting against oxidant-induced DNA damage, possibly by Fe chelation. Studies show that BSG has many benefits when used as a supplement in animal feed, such as increasing milk yield, milkfat content and in providing essential dietary amino acids. The incorporation of BSG in human foods such as cookies and ready-to-eat snacks has resulted in increased protein and fibre contents of the products, where the changes in organoleptic properties are controllable. It can be concluded that the phenolic component of BSG has potential bioactive effects, which are worth pursuing given that the inclusion of BSG into human foodstuffs is viable and beneficial.
To examine the prospective association of television (TV) watching from adolescence to young adulthood with BMI, waist circumference (WC), waist-to-hip ratio (WHR) and obesity.
A community-based longitudinal cohort study.
Mater–University of Queensland Study of Pregnancy (MUSP) Cohort, Brisbane, Australia.
A sub-sample of 2439 children was followed up at ages 14 years and 21 years as part of a population-based birth cohort. Offspring reported the number of TV viewing hours each day at 14 and 21 years. BMI, WC and WHR were measured at 21 years.
In the adjusted model, offspring who watched TV for <3 h/d at 14 years but for ≥3 h/d at 21 years, or who watched TV for ≥3 h/d at 14 and 21 years, had greater BMI, WC and WHR at 21 years. Offspring who watched TV for ≥3 h/d at 14 years but for <3 h/d at 21 years had similar mean BMI, WC and WHR at 21 years to those who watched TV for <3 h/d at 14 and 21 years. Those offspring who reduced their TV watching hours to <3 h/d during the transition from adolescence into young adulthood were at less risk of becoming obese and those who continued or increased their TV watching to ≥3 h/d were at greater risk of becoming obese. This association remained independent of the potential confounding factors considered.
The present findings suggest that our efforts to decrease obesity by reducing TV watching hours among adults should consider interventions to reduce TV time among adolescents.