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Benzodiazepine (BZD) prescription rates have increased over the past decade in the United States. Available literature indicates that sociodemographic factors may influence diagnostic patterns and/or prescription behaviour. Herein, the aim of this study is to determine whether the gender of the prescriber and/or patient influences BZD prescription.
Cross-sectional study using data from the Florida Medicaid Managed Medical Assistance Program from January 1, 2018 to December 31, 2018. Eligible recipients ages 18 to 64, inclusive, enrolled in the Florida Medicaid plan for at least 1 day, and were dually eligible. Recipients either had a serious mental illness (SMI), or non-SMI and anxiety.
Total 125 463 cases were identified (i.e., received BZD or non-BZD prescription). Main effect of patient and prescriber gender was significant F(1, 125 459) = 0.105, P = 0 .745, partial η2 < 0.001. Relative risk (RR) of male prescribers prescribing a BZD compared to female prescribers was 1.540, 95% confidence intervals (CI) [1.513, 1.567], whereas the RR of male patients being prescribed a BZD compared to female patients was 1.16, 95% CI [1.14, 1.18]. Main effects of patient and prescriber gender were statistically significant F(1, 125 459) = 188.232, P < 0.001, partial η2 = 0.001 and F(1, 125 459) = 349.704, P < 0.001, partial η2 = 0.013, respectively.
Male prescribers are more likely to prescribe BZDs, and male patients are more likely to receive BZDs. Further studies are required to characterize factors that influence this gender-by-gender interaction.
Early withdrawal from the workforce is associated with a diagnosis of multiple sclerosis (MS), with employment retention rates also lower than in the general population. Despite legal requirements, equality in the workplace for people with MS has not been achieved. Disclosure of multiple sclerosis at work is essential for the implementation of accommodations enabling employment retention.
An interpretive descriptive study explored participants’ decision to disclose or not disclose their diagnosis of multiple sclerosis and the implications this had on work participation and working relationships. Semistructured interviews were used to collect data from 6 participants.
Three themes were identified, using a reflective approach to analysis, from the data: (a) Accommodations; (b) Workplace Relationships; and (c) Balancing Work and Home Life. Participants had mixed experiences of disclosing their diagnosis. Findings supported the implementation of workplace accommodations including physical, cognitive, and structural supports. Concealment of MS was associated with fear of workplace stigmatisation.
Disclosure is multidimensional and subjective. It is based on personal, systematic, and social factors. This study was limited by the small number of participants and not including stakeholders in the creation of the topic guide. The results are important for those involved in supporting people with multiple sclerosis to remain in the workplace.
This study examines the relationship of serum total tau, neurofilament light (NFL), ubiquitin carboxyl-terminal hydrolase L1 (UCH-L1), and glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) with neurocognitive performance in service members and veterans with a history of traumatic brain injury (TBI).
Service members (n = 488) with a history of uncomplicated mild (n = 172), complicated mild, moderate, severe, or penetrating TBI (sTBI; n = 126), injured controls (n = 116), and non-injured controls (n = 74) prospectively enrolled from Military Treatment Facilities. Participants completed a blood draw and neuropsychological assessment a year or more post-injury. Six neuropsychological composite scores and presence/absence of mild neurocognitive disorder (MNCD) were evaluated. Within each group, stepwise hierarchical regression models were conducted.
Within the sTBI group, increased serum UCH-L1 was related to worse immediate memory and delayed memory (R2Δ = .065–.084, ps < .05) performance, while increased GFAP was related to worse perceptual reasoning (R2Δ = .030, p = .036). Unexpectedly, within injured controls, UCH-L1 and GFAP were inversely related to working memory (R2Δ = .052–.071, ps < .05), and NFL was related to executive functioning (R2Δ = .039, p = .021) and MNCD (Exp(B) = 1.119, p = .029).
Results suggest GFAP and UCH-L1 could play a role in predicting poor cognitive outcome following complicated mild and more severe TBI. Further investigation of blood biomarkers and cognition is warranted.
Antibiotic-resistant Gram-negative bacteraemias (GNB) are increasing in incidence. We aimed to investigate the impact of empirical antibiotic therapy on clinical outcomes by carrying out an observational 6-year cohort study of patients at a teaching hospital with community-onset Escherichia coli bacteraemia (ECB), Klebsiella pneumoniae bacteraemia (KPB) and Pseudomonas aeruginosa bacteraemia (PsAB). Antibiotic therapy was considered concordant if the organism was sensitive in vitro and discordant if resistant. We estimated the association between concordant vs. discordant empirical antibiotic therapy on odds of in-hospital death and ICU admission for KPB and ECB. Of 1380 patients, 1103 (79.9%) had ECB, 189 (13.7%) KPB and 88 (6.4%) PsAB. Discordant therapy was not associated with increased odds of either outcome. For ECB, severe illness and non-urinary source were associated with increased odds of both outcomes (OR of in-hospital death for non-urinary source 3.21, 95% CI 1.73–5.97). For KPB, discordant therapy was associated with in-hospital death on univariable but not multivariable analysis. Illness severity was associated with increased odds of both outcomes. These findings suggest broadening of therapy for low-risk patients with community-onset GNB is not warranted. Future research should focus on the relationship between patient outcomes, clinical factors, infection focus and causative organism and resistance profile.
In clinical and translational research, data science is often and fortuitously integrated with data collection. This contrasts to the typical position of data scientists in other settings, where they are isolated from data collectors. Because of this, effective use of data science techniques to resolve translational questions requires innovation in the organization and management of these data.
We propose an operational framework that respects this important difference in how research teams are organized. To maximize the accuracy and speed of the clinical and translational data science enterprise under this framework, we define a set of eight best practices for data management.
In our own work at the University of Rochester, we have strived to utilize these practices in a customized version of the open source LabKey platform for integrated data management and collaboration. We have applied this platform to cohorts that longitudinally track multidomain data from over 3000 subjects.
We argue that this has made analytical datasets more readily available and lowered the bar to interdisciplinary collaboration, enabling a team-based data science that is unique to the clinical and translational setting.
Estimation of RMR using prediction equations is the basis for calculating energy requirements. In the present study, RMR was predicted by Harris–Benedict, Schofield, Henry, Mifflin–St Jeor and Owen equations and measured by indirect calorimetry in 125 healthy adult women of varying BMI (17–44 kg/m2). Agreement between methods was assessed by Bland–Altman analyses and each equation was assessed for accuracy by calculating the percentage of individuals predicted within ± 10 % of measured RMR. Slopes and intercepts of bias as a function of average RMR (mean of predicted and measured RMR) were calculated by regression analyses. Predictors of equation bias were investigated using univariate and multivariate linear regression. At group level, bias (the difference between predicted and measured RMR) was not different from zero only for Mifflin–St Jeor (0 (sd 153) kcal/d (0 (sd 640) kJ/d)) and Henry (8 (sd 163) kcal/d (33 (sd 682) kJ/d)) equations. Mifflin–St Jeor and Henry equations were most accurate at the individual level and predicted RMR within 10 % of measured RMR in 71 and 66 % of participants, respectively. For all equations, limits of agreement were wide, slopes of bias were negative, and intercepts of bias were positive and significantly (P < 0⋅05) different from zero. Increasing age, height and BMI were associated with underestimation of RMR, but collectively these variables explained only 15 % of the variance in estimation bias. Overall accuracy of equations for prediction of RMR is low at the individual level, particularly in women with low and high RMR. The Mifflin–St Jeor equation was the most accurate for this dataset, but prediction errors were still observed in about one-third of participants.
Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) gene variants may potentially influence behaviour. In order to test this hypothesis, we investigated the relationship between BDNF Val66Met polymorphism and aggressive behaviour in a population of schizophrenic patients. Our results showed that increased number of BDNF Met alleles was associated with increased aggressive behaviour.
Post hoc analysis of occupational attainment and performance on a standard neurocognitive battery suggests that performance on letter-number sequencing is strongly associated with work attainment. Letter-number sequencing may warrant further investigation as a clinically useful tool to inform decisions around vocational rehabilitation.
Background – Ecstasy is a recreational drug with an anecdotal reputation for safety. However, reports of adverse effects and fatalities have increased in the medical and popular press.
Method – Literature search and review.
Results – Acute Ecstasy toxicity does not appear to be due to overdose and cannot be solely attributed to the nature of the usual ambient environment. Adverse effects include hyperthermia, seizures, cardiac arrhythmias, hepatotoxicity, hyponatraemia and many psychiatric disorders. Ecstasy causes serotonergic neurotoxicity in the brains of animals at doses close to those used by humans, but its long-term effect on the human brain is unknown.
Conclusion – Ecstasy toxicity should be considered in the differential diagnosis of a variety of medical and psychiatric conditions. Given its popularity, both the acute and the potential long-term effects are a cause for concern.
The advent of genome wide association studies have resulted in the identification of a number of novel genetic loci for schizophrenia and related disorders. Understanding the functional impact of these variants on brain structure and function is crucial to understand their role in disease pathology. We presents data based on our genetic and neuropsychological assessment of almost 700 patients and healthy participants for a number of these variants and replication of our findings in independent samples of almost 1500 cases and controls. Specifically, we will use this data to suggest that the risk associated with some genetics variants (e.g. NOS1) is being mediated by an influence on variation in intelligence and other cognitive phenotypes, while other risk variants (e.g. ZNF804A) delineate illness subtypes in which cognitive deficits are a less prominent feature.
Water intoxication is a rare condition characterised by overconsumption of water. It can occur in athletes engaging in endurance sports, users of MDMA (Ecstasy) and in patients receiving total parenteral nutrition. This case outlines water intoxication in a patient with psychogenic polydipsia. When the kidney’s capacity to compensate for exaggerated water intake is exceeded, hypotonic hyperhydration results. Consequences can involve headaches, behavioural changes, muscular weakness, twitching, vomiting, confusion, irritability, drowsiness and seizures. Cerebral oedema can lead to brain damage and eventual death. In this case, psychogenic polydipsia led to significant hyponatraemia, cerebral oedema and tonic-clonic seizures. Differential diagnoses for hyponatraemia include SIADH, diabetes insipidus, hyperthyroidism and excess cortisol. Extreme water consumption, as in the case outlined, is also implicated. Psychogenic polydipsia is a disorder that can lead to significant morbidity and mortality and occurs in 6% to 20% of psychiatric patients. Although psychogenic polydipsia is relatively common in this population, only one fifth to one third of polydipsic patients will experience symptomatic hyponatraemia. A number of psychiatric disorders have been linked with psychogenic polydipsia. The most commonly reported is chronic schizophrenia, but it may also occur in anorexia nervosa, psychotic depression and bipolar psychosis. The aetiology of psychogenic polydipsia is uncertain, but postulated hypotheses are explored. Psychogenic polydipsia occurs in up 20% of psychiatric patients and this case serves to remind us to be cognisant of water overconsumption.
Antipsychotic polypharmacy is defined as the co-prescription of more than one antipsychotic for a single patient. The practice has been criticised because of a lack of convincing evidence for its effectiveness and safety. It is associated with increased hospitalisation rates, more adverse effects, elevated cost, pharmacokinetic interactions, reduced adherence and increased mortality.
This study aimed to identify patients attending a community psychiatric service who are currently prescribed more than one antipsychotic. It aimed to examine their diagnoses, comorbid physical illnesses and other medications. Patterns of co-prescription were also considered.
A computerised database was utilised to identify all patients prescribed any antipsychotic.
98 patients who were prescribed antipsychotics were identified. Of these, 22 (22%) were prescribed two antipsychotics. No pattern of a preferred combination of antipsychotics was identified. 15 of those prescribed more than one antipsychotic (68%) were prescribed two second generation drugs, with the remainder on a combination of a first and second generation antipsychotic.
Antipsychotic polypharmacy rates (22%) were in line with the European average (23%). Antipsychotic polypharmacy should be a last resort after evidence-based treatments have tried and failed. It is recommended that it is considered only after a minimum of two trials of single antipsychotics at adequate doses and durations; after at least one trial of depot antipsychotic; and following at least one trial of Clozapine, with consideration given to ECT. Focused interventions rather than passive dissemination of guidelines are more likely to reduce antipsychotic polypharmacy rates.
Depression and anxiety disorders show a high comorbidity based on common pathophysiological mechanisms. Childhood environmental and life stressors are leading factors in both disorders and result in stable changes of genetic expression mediated by epigenetics, which has been found to impact in the transcription of genes, influence neurogenesis, neuroplasticity and neuronal connectivity.
To provide an overview about functional neuroimaging genetics in MDD and anxiety disorders.
Functional MRI, epigenetic and genetic information was obtained in a cohort of patients with MDD with high and low levels of anxiety and healthy controls. Associations between methylation of SLC6A4, genetic variants and brain function and connectivity was analysed.
Higher methylation of SLC6A4 gene was associated with higher BOLD response during emotion processing and lower BOLD response during higher order cognitive processes. Specific asociation with anxiety and depression are further analysed.
Our study provides further support to the hypothesis that particular DNA methylation states that are associated with brain function during emotion processing are detectable in the periphery. The influence of anxiety or depression on this association is discussed.
Recent literature suggests that over 70% of cases of antibody-mediated encephalitis present to psychiatry services with features of psychosis predominantly.
To investigate the seroprevalence of N-Methyl-D-Aspartate receptor antibodies (NMDAr-Ab) in patients with first episode psychosis (FEP)
Following ethical approval, all cases meeting entry criteria were invited to participate. Participants were interviewed with SCID to obtain a DSM diagnosis. NMDAr-Ab were identified in serum by cell based assay using co-transfected Human Embryonic Kidney (HEK)cells. Positive cases were reviewed by clinical neurology. Decision to treat with immunotherapy was made on a case by case basis.
85/115 (72%) of patients with FEP entered the study. 49 (58%) participants were male, mean age (SD) 37 (15.7) years. 42 (52%) were outpatients at the time of assessment. Four cases (5%) were serum NMDAr-Ab positive. 3 of these cases were male, age 48 (16.3) years. All four were admitted as inpatients with normal brain MRI imaging. One case (female, 55) was confirmed as NMDAr-Ab encephalitis based on case presentation, EEG demonstrating bilateral cerebral dysfunction and NMDAr-Ab in CSF. Immunotherapy treatment lead to clinical improvement. In remaining cases, EEG was normal and CSF negative. All 3 of these cases showed clinical improvement following psychiatric treatment as usual.
Our findings support the current estimates as to NMDAr-Ab prevalence in FEP. Increased awareness has lead to rapid treatment of florid cases of NMDAr-Ab encephalitis in our service. Additional seropositive cases are being followed with neuro-cognitive testing for any evidence of decline.