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The COVID-19 pandemic led to the implementation of digital psychiatry (DP) in everyday clinical practice, resulting in the need for a skilled healthcare workforce.
Our purpose was to investigate the level of training, knowledge and expertise of young mental health professionals and medical students in DP, as well as exploring their beliefs and experiences in this field.
An ad hoc cross-sectional survey was designed and administered to Italian medical students, psychiatry trainees, and early career psychiatrists.
Most of the sample declared that the topic of DP was never discussed within their academic training (89.1%), mainly revealing an overall lack of knowledge on DP. Nevertheless, they mostly declared that DP represents a valuable therapeutic tool in mental health (80%) and that the academic background should include a dedicated course/module (54.4%). Moreover, most subjects declared that DP is less effective than in-person interventions (73.2%), despite the emerging evidence that being trained in DP is significantly associated with the belief that digital and in-person interventions are comparable in their effectiveness (p≤0.05).
During the current pandemic, DP represented an ideal response to the need for physical distancing by ensuring the advantage of greater access to care. However, DP interventions are still uncommon, and there remains a certain resistance to their use in mental health care. The lack of formal training during the academic training could be a limiting factor. Therefore, addressing these issues in academic settings could be crucial to spreading this innovative practice also in the post-COVID-19
The aim of the present study is to evaluate the effects of Pet Therapy intervention on cognitive function, mood and perceived quality of life on elderly subjects (mean age 84.7 years; 95.2% women) living in a nursing home.
Participants were 21 subjects affected by mental illness including dementia, depression and psychosis (diagnosis based on the International Statistical Classification of Disease - ICD-10). The Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE) and the 15-items Geriatric Depression Scale (GDS) were administered to ten persons (pet-group) and eleven subjects (control-group) together with a self-perceived quality of life questionnaire. The pet-group underwent a dog-assisted educational intervention lasting 90 minutes, once a week for six weeks. MMSE and GDS mean scores were compared between and within groups by Student's t-test.
The mean age ± standard deviation of the overall sample was 84.7±9.9 years. Mean schooling level was 4.0±3.4 years. Dementia was the most frequent diagnosis (47.6%), followed by psychosis (33.3%) and depression (19.0%). Both pet-group and control-group improved on GDS and MMSE. Within the pet-group, GDS symptoms decreased by 50% (from 5.9 to 2.7, p=0.013), whereas mean MMSE score increased by 4.5 (p=0.060). The between group comparison showed positive effect of Pet intervention on GDS (p=0.070). Furthermore, most of the participants reported an improvement of their perceived quality of life.
According to the most recent literature, our findings suggest that Pet Therapy program can be efficient in improving depressive symptoms and cognitive function in residents of long-term care facilities with mental illness.
Our current knowledge of star formation and accretion luminosity at high redshift (z > 3–4), as well as the possible connections between them, relies mostly on observations in the rest-frame ultraviolet, which are strongly affected by dust obscuration. Due to the lack of sensitivity of past and current infrared instrumentation, so far it has not been possible to get a glimpse into the early phases of the dust-obscured Universe. Among the next generation of infrared observatories, SPICA, observing in the 12–350 µm range, will be the only facility that can enable us to trace the evolution of the obscured star-formation rate and black-hole accretion rate densities over cosmic time, from the peak of their activity back to the reionisation epoch (i.e., 3 < z ≲ 6–7), where its predecessors had severe limitations. Here, we discuss the potential of photometric surveys performed with the SPICA mid-infrared instrument, enabled by the very low level of impact of dust obscuration in a band centred at 34 µm. These unique unbiased photometric surveys that SPICA will perform will fully characterise the evolution of AGNs and star-forming galaxies after reionisation.
Occult differentiated thyroid carcinomas are not uncommon. The initial presentation of a thyroid carcinoma is often detection of a metastatic cervical lymph node.
A retrospective review was performed of the medical records of 304 patients who underwent neck dissection between 1996 and 2008 for squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck.
Ten patients (3.3 per cent) had nodal metastasis originating from papillary thyroid cancer. All of these patients underwent thyroidectomy and post-operative 131iodine radiometabolic therapy. No patient developed a thyroid tumour after surgery.
Despite its metastatic spread, thyroid cancer does not affect the overall prognosis of patients who are already being treated for a more aggressive malignancy. However, in otherwise healthy patients, it is worth treating this second malignancy to avoid potential complications related to local disease or metastatic thyroid cancer.
Adaptive Optics (AO) will be essential for accomplishing many, if not most, of the science objectives currently planned for Extremely Large Telescopes including GMT, OWL, and TMT. AO will be needed to support a range of instrumentation, including near infrared (IR) imagers and spectrometers, mid IR imagers and spectrometers, “planet finding” instrumentation and wide-field optical spectrographs. Multiple advanced AO systems, utilizing the full range of concepts currently under development, will need to be combined into an integrated architecture to meet a broad range of requirements for field-of-view, spatial resolution and spectral bandpass.
In this paper, we describe several of the possible options for these systems and outline the range of issues, trade studies and component development activities which must be addressed. Some of these challenges include very high-order, large-stroke wavefront correction, tip-tilt sensing with faint natural guide stars to maximize sky coverage, laser guide star wavefront sensing on a very large aperture and achieving extremely high contrast ratios for the detection of extra-solar planet and other faint companions of nearby bright stars.
Background: Volumetric magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) has been extensively studied in the last decade as a method to help with the clinical diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease (AD). In recent years, researchers have also started investigating if that technique would be useful to identify individuals with mild cognitive impairment (MCI), differentiating them from AD patients and from normal elderly controls. This research project was planned to assess the accuracy of volumetric MRI to differentiate those groups of individuals. Method: The investigation involved 39 patients with diagnosis of mild to moderate dementia in AD, according to the criteria of the NINCDS-ADRDA, DSM-III-R, and ICD-10; 21 subjects with complaints of cognitive decline without other psychiatric disorders (MCI); and 20 normal elderly controls. All the subjects were submitted to a standard protocol, including volumetric MRI evaluations. Results: The results indicated that all regions of interest measured (amygdala, hippocampus, and parahippocampal gyrus) were significantly different (p < .005) in AD patients compared to MCI subjects and controls. The left volumetric measures (amygdala, hippocampus, and parahippocampal gyrus) were also significantly different between the MCI subjects and controls (p < .05). The discriminant function analysis correctly classified 88.14% of the AD patients and controls, 81.67% of AD patients and MCI subjects, and 80.49% of the MCI subjects and controls. Conclusions: The results suggest that measures of medial temporal lobe regions are useful to identify mild to moderate AD patients and MCI subjects, separating them from normal elderly individuals.
Optical properties of size restricted Cu2O obtained through aqueous and non aqueous preparations are compared with those of commercially available bulk crystals. One method of synthesis involved using polyvinyl alcohol as a restraining agent in an aqueous preparation to produce nanocrystals having diameters with a mean of 11 nm and a standard deviation of 6 nm. Low-temperature spectroscopie studies indicate size restriction effects are manifest by a decrease in exciton luminescence and a 3.0 to 9.0 meV blue shift in 0,0 transition. No noticeable changes in the dynamics were observed for the nanocrystals, indicating no alteration or relaxation of the selection rules for the direct forbidden transition.
The Authors study the distribution of the various classes of Arneth's formula in 39 healthy MZ pairs, 38 healthy DZ pairs, 10 MZ pairs with non-concordant disease.
They conclude that borh genetic and pathologic factors are relevant in the determination of the formula, and they will try to establish the importance of each factor through a further study on a group of DZ pairs with non-concordant disease.
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