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As weight-gain and metabolic abnormalities during treatment with psychotropic drugs are of great concern, we evaluated effects of psycho-education and medical monitoring on metabolic changes among severely mentally ill patients.
Materials and methods
During repeated, systematic psycho-education about general health among 66 consecutive patients diagnosed with DSM-IV-TR schizophrenia (n = 33) or type-I bipolar disorder (n = 33), we evaluated (at intake 1, 2, 3, and 6 months) clinical psychiatric status, treatments and doses, recorded physiological parameters, and assessed attitudes about medication.
At intake, patients with schizophrenia vs bipolar disorder were receiving 3–7 times more psychotropic medication, with 14% higher initial body-mass index (BMI: 29.1 vs 25.6 kg/m2), 12 times more obesity, and significantly higher serum lipid concentrations. During 6-months follow-up, among bipolar disorder patients, polytherapy and serum lipid concentrations declined more than among schizophrenia patients (e.g., total cholesterol + triglycerides, by 3.21 vs 1.75%/month). BMI remained stable. Declining lipid levels were associated with older age, bipolar disorder, being unemployed, higher antipsychotic doses, and lower initial BPRS scores (all P ≤ 0.001).
Psychotropic treatments were more complex, and metabolic measures more abnormal among bipolar disorder than schizophrenia patients. Intensive psycho-education, clinical monitoring, and encouragement of weight-control for six months were associated with improvements in metabolic measures (but not to BMI), and more realistic attitudes about medication.
As weight-gain and metabolic abnormalities during treatment with psychotropic drugs are of great concern, we evaluated effects of psychoeducation and medical monitoring on metabolic changes among severely mentally ill patients.
Materials and Methods
During repeated, systematized psychoeducation about physical health among 66 consecutive patients diagnosed with DSM-IV schizophrenia (SZ; n=33) or type-I bipolar disorder (BD; n=33), we evaluated (at intake, 1, 2, 3, and 6 months) clinical psychiatric status, treatments and doses, rated drugs- attitude of patients, and recorded physiological parameters.
At intake, BD vs. SZ patients were receiving 3–7-times more psychotropic medication, with correspondingly higher initial body-mass index (BMI: 29.1 vs. 25.6 kg/m2), 12-times more obesity, and significantly higher serum lipid concentrations. During 6-month follow-up, ratings of drugs- attitude of patients improved, polytherapy decreased in BD, and BMI decreased slightly, as serum lipid concentrations declined continuously (e.g., total cholesterol+triglycerides: BD by 3.21 > SZ by 1.75%/month). Declining lipid levels were associated with: [a] older age, [b] BD diagnosis, [c] being unemployed, [d] higher antipsychotic dose, [e] lower initial BPRS scores (all p≤0.001).
Menarche age has been associated inconsistently with the occurrence, timing or severity of major depressive disorder (MDD), but rarely studied in women with bipolar (BDs) or anxiety disorders.
We investigated women patients at a Sardinian mood disorder center for associations of age at menarche with age at illness onset for major affective or anxiety disorders, year of birth, and other selected factors, using bivariate comparisons and multivariate regression modeling.
Among women (n = 1139) with DSM-IV MDD (n = 557), BD-I (n = 223), BD-II (n = 178), or anxiety disorders (n = 181), born in 1904–1998, of mean age 42.9 years, menarche age averaged 12.8 [CI: 12.7–12.9] years. Illness onset age averaged 30.9 [30.1–31.8] years, ranking: BD-I, 25.8; anxiety disorders, 28.0; BD-II, 30.3; MDD, 34.1 years. Menarche age declined secularly over birth years, and was associated with younger illness-onset, having no or fewer siblings, more psychiatrically ill first-degree relatives, living in rural environments, being suicidal, substance abuse, and being unemployed. Earlier menarche and earlier illness-onset were significantly associated for onset age groups of ≤ 20, 20–39, and > 40 years. Menarche age versus diagnosis ranked: BD-II < BD-I < anxiety disorders < MDD.
Age at menarche in Sardinia, as elsewhere, has declined over the past decades. It was strongly associated with age at onset of bipolar and anxiety, as well as major depressive disorders across the age range, suggesting sustained effects of biological maturational factors.
Severe depression is greatly impairing during adolescence and involves a high risk for suicidal behaviors.
Objectives and aims
Identify clinical and demographic factors associated with severity of depression in adolescents diagnosed with a major mood disorder so as to improve clinical treatment and prevent suicidal behaviors.
We analyzed factors associated with depression severity in 145 severely ill adolescents diagnosed with a major affective disorder using the K-SADS (Kiddie-Schedule for Affective Disorders and Schizophrenia) at the Mood Disorder Outpatient Program of Bambino Gesù Children's Hospital (Rome). Depressive and manic symptoms were rated with the CDRS-R (Children's Depression Rating Scale-Revised) and K-SADS-MRS (Mania Rating Scale), respectively. Bivariate comparisons were followed by multivariable linear regression modeling.
Depression severity was greater among females than males (mean CDRS scores: 53.0 vs. 42.8; P < 0.0001) and with major depressive versus bipolar disorder diagnosis (50.4 vs. 45.4; P = 0.001). Manic symptoms, including irritability, mood lability, crowded thoughts, delusions, and insomnia, were more likely with more severe depression; their number and severity correlated with CDRS-R total score (respectively, β = 1.53 and 5.44;both P < 0.0001). Factors independently and significantly associated with CDRS-R depression score in multivariate modeling were:
– presence of suicidal ideation;
– absence of ADHD;
– female sex;
– greater number of manic symptoms.
Severe depression was associated with manic symptoms and with suicidal ideation among adolescents diagnosed with either bipolar or major depressive disorders. This relationship should be considered in treatment planning and suicide prevention, including consideration of mood-stabilizing and antimanic agents in the treatment of severe adolescent depression.
Disclosure of interest
The authors have not supplied their declaration of competing interest.
Identifying factors predictive of long-term morbidity should improve clinical planning limiting disability and mortality associated with bipolar disorder (BD).
We analyzed factors associated with total, depressive and mania-related long-term morbidity and their ratio D/M, as %-time ill between a first-lifetime major affective episode and last follow-up of 207 BD subjects. Bivariate comparisons were followed by multivariable linear regression modeling.
Total % of months ill during follow-up was greater in 96 BD-II (40.2%) than 111 BD-I subjects (28.4%; P = 0.001). Time in depression averaged 26.1% in BD-II and 14.3% in BD-I, whereas mania-related morbidity was similar in both, averaging 13.9%. Their ratio D/M was 3.7-fold greater in BD-II than BD-I (5.74 vs. 1.96; P < 0.0001). Predictive factors independently associated with total %-time ill were: [a] BD-II diagnosis, [b] longer prodrome from antecedents to first affective episode, and [c] any psychiatric comorbidity. Associated with %-time depressed were: [a] BD-II diagnosis, [b] any antecedent psychiatric syndrome, [c] psychiatric comorbidity, and [d] agitated/psychotic depressive first affective episode. Associated with %-time in mania-like illness were: [a] fewer years ill and [b] (hypo)manic first affective episode. The long-term D/M morbidity ratio was associated with: [a] anxious temperament, [b] depressive first episode, and [c] BD-II diagnosis.
Long-term depressive greatly exceeded mania-like morbidity in BD patients. BD-II subjects spent 42% more time ill overall, with a 3.7-times greater D/M morbidity ratio, than BD-I. More time depressed was predicted by agitated/psychotic initial depressive episodes, psychiatric comorbidity, and BD-II diagnosis. Longer prodrome and any antecedent psychiatric syndrome were respectively associated with total and depressive morbidity.
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