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When clinicians communicate effectively, patients retain more information, have higher trust and a better quality of life. Such a patient-centred approach is the future of clinical care, and this book is an essential how-to guide on improving these skills. Grounded in innovative and evidence-based methodology, perfected through over twenty years of teaching in the VitalTalk training program, content includes foundational communication skills, how to help patients plan for the future, what to do when you are really stuck, and strategies to work through conflicts with colleagues. In this updated edition, emphasis is placed on the roles privilege, race, and power play in the medical encounter, and new tools are provided to help clinicians navigate this landscape with greater self-awareness and sensitivity. This practical guide is filled with skills and roadmaps, demonstrating how to be clearer when sharing information, more competent at understanding patient concerns, and more effective when making recommendations.
Childhood trauma and adversity are common across societies and have strong associations with physical and psychiatric morbidity throughout the life-course. One possible mechanism through which childhood trauma may predispose individuals to poor psychiatric outcomes is via associations with brain structure. This study aimed to elucidate the associations between childhood trauma and brain structure across two large, independent community cohorts.
The two samples comprised (i) a subsample of Generation Scotland (n=1,024); and (ii) individuals from UK Biobank (n=27,202). This comprised n=28,226 for mega-analysis. MRI scans were processed using Free Surfer, providing cortical, subcortical, and global brain metrics. Regression models were used to determine associations between childhood trauma measures and brain metrics and psychiatric phenotypes.
Childhood trauma associated with lifetime depression across cohorts (OR 1.06 GS, 1.23 UKB), and related to early onset and recurrent course within both samples. There was evidence for associations between childhood trauma and structural brain metrics. This included reduced global brain volume, and reduced cortical surface area with highest effects in the frontal (β=−0.0385, SE=0.0048, p(FDR)=5.43x10−15) and parietal lobes (β=−0.0387, SE=0.005, p(FDR)=1.56x10−14). At a regional level the ventral diencephalon (VDc) displayed significant associations with childhood trauma measures across both cohorts and at mega-analysis (β=−0.0232, SE=0.0039, p(FDR)=2.91x10−8). There were also associations with reduced hippocampus, thalamus, and nucleus accumbens volumes.
Associations between childhood trauma and reduced global and regional brain volumes were found, across two independent UK cohorts, and at mega-analysis. This provides robust evidence for a lasting effect of childhood adversity on brain structure.
Why is misleading partisan content believed and shared? An influential account posits that political partisanship pervasively biases reasoning, such that engaging in analytic thinking exacerbates motivated reasoning and, in turn, the acceptance of hyperpartisan content. Alternatively, it may be that susceptibility to hyperpartisan content is explained by a lack of reasoning. Across two studies using different participant pools (total N = 1,973 Americans), we had participants assess true, false, and hyperpartisan news headlines taken from social media. We found no evidence that analytic thinking was associated with judging politically consistent hyperpartisan or false headlines to be accurate and unbiased. Instead, analytic thinking was, in most cases, associated with an increased tendency to distinguish true headlines from both false and hyperpartisan headlines (and was never associated with decreased discernment). These results suggest that reasoning typically helps people differentiate between low and high quality political news, rather than facilitate belief in misleading content. Because social media play an important role in the dissemination of misinformation, we also investigated willingness to share headlines on social media. We found a similar pattern whereby analytic thinking was not generally associated with increased willingness to share hyperpartisan or false headlines. Together, these results suggest a positive role for reasoning in resisting misinformation.
A substantial body of evidence suggests that favoring reason over intuition (employing an analytic cognitive style) is associated with reduced belief in God. In the current work, we address outstanding issues in this literature with two studies examining the relationship between analytic cognitive style (as measured by performance on the Cognitive Reflection Test) and belief in God. First, prior research focused on Judeo-Christian cultures, and it is uncertain whether the results generalize to other religious systems or beliefs. Study 1 helps to address this question by documenting a negative correlation between CRT performance and belief in God, r = −.18, in a sample of 513 participants from India, a majority Hindu country. Second, among 150 participants from the United Kingdom, Gervais et al. (2018) reported the first and (to date) only evidence for a positive relationship between CRT and belief in God. In Study 2, we assess the robustness of this result by recruiting 547 participants from the United Kingdom. Unlike Gervais et al., using the same items, we find a negative correlation between CRT and belief in God (r = −.19). Our results add further support to the argument that analytic thinking undermines belief in God.
Whole-genome sequencing (WGS) shotgun metagenomics (metagenomics) attempts to sequence the entire genetic content straight from the sample. Diagnostic advantages lie in the ability to detect unsuspected, uncultivatable, or very slow-growing organisms.
To evaluate the clinical and economic effects of using WGS and metagenomics for outbreak management in a large metropolitan hospital.
Intensive care unit and burn unit of large metropolitan hospital.
Simulated intensive care unit and burn unit patients.
We built a complex simulation model to estimate pathogen transmission, associated hospital costs, and quality-adjusted life years (QALYs) during a 32-month outbreak of carbapenem-resistant Acinetobacter baumannii (CRAB). Model parameters were determined using microbiology surveillance data, genome sequencing results, hospital admission databases, and local clinical knowledge. The model was calibrated to the actual pathogen spread within the intensive care unit and burn unit (scenario 1) and compared with early use of WGS (scenario 2) and early use of WGS and metagenomics (scenario 3) to determine their respective cost-effectiveness. Sensitivity analyses were performed to address model uncertainty.
On average compared with scenario 1, scenario 2 resulted in 14 fewer patients with CRAB, 59 additional QALYs, and $75,099 cost savings. Scenario 3, compared with scenario 1, resulted in 18 fewer patients with CRAB, 74 additional QALYs, and $93,822 in hospital cost savings. The likelihoods that scenario 2 and scenario 3 were cost-effective were 57% and 60%, respectively.
The use of WGS and metagenomics in infection control processes were predicted to produce favorable economic and clinical outcomes.
The target article presents strong empirical evidence that knowledge is basic. However, it offers an unsatisfactory account of what makes knowledge basic. Some current ideas in cognitive neuroscience – predictive coding and analysis by synthesis – point to a more plausible account that better explains the evidence.
Studying phenotypic and genetic characteristics of age at onset (AAO) and polarity at onset (PAO) in bipolar disorder can provide new insights into disease pathology and facilitate the development of screening tools.
To examine the genetic architecture of AAO and PAO and their association with bipolar disorder disease characteristics.
Genome-wide association studies (GWASs) and polygenic score (PGS) analyses of AAO (n = 12 977) and PAO (n = 6773) were conducted in patients with bipolar disorder from 34 cohorts and a replication sample (n = 2237). The association of onset with disease characteristics was investigated in two of these cohorts.
Earlier AAO was associated with a higher probability of psychotic symptoms, suicidality, lower educational attainment, not living together and fewer episodes. Depressive onset correlated with suicidality and manic onset correlated with delusions and manic episodes. Systematic differences in AAO between cohorts and continents of origin were observed. This was also reflected in single-nucleotide variant-based heritability estimates, with higher heritabilities for stricter onset definitions. Increased PGS for autism spectrum disorder (β = −0.34 years, s.e. = 0.08), major depression (β = −0.34 years, s.e. = 0.08), schizophrenia (β = −0.39 years, s.e. = 0.08), and educational attainment (β = −0.31 years, s.e. = 0.08) were associated with an earlier AAO. The AAO GWAS identified one significant locus, but this finding did not replicate. Neither GWAS nor PGS analyses yielded significant associations with PAO.
AAO and PAO are associated with indicators of bipolar disorder severity. Individuals with an earlier onset show an increased polygenic liability for a broad spectrum of psychiatric traits. Systematic differences in AAO across cohorts, continents and phenotype definitions introduce significant heterogeneity, affecting analyses.
As approximately one-third of peer-victimized children evidence heightened aggression (Schwartz, Proctor, & Chien, 2001), it is imperative to identify the circumstances under which victimization and aggression co-develop. The current study explored two potential moderators of victimization–aggression linkages: (a) attentional bias toward cues signaling threat and (b) attentional bais toward cues communicating interpersonal support. Seventy-two fifth- and sixth-grade children (34 boys; Mage = 11.67) were eye tracked while watching video clips of bullying. Each scene included a bully, a victim, a reinforcer, and a defender. Children's victimization was measured using peer, parent, and teacher reports. Aggression was measured using peer reports of overt and relational aggression and teacher reports of aggression. Victimization was associated with greater aggression at high levels of attention to the bully. Victimization was also associated with greater aggression at low attention to the defender for boys, but at high attention to the defender for girls. Attention to the victim was negatively correlated with aggression regardless of victimization history. Thus, attentional biases to social cues integral to the bullying context differentiate whether victimization is linked to aggression, necessitating future research on the development of these biases and concurrent trajectories of sociobehavioral development.
Field experiments were conducted across the north-central United States to determine the benefits of various weed control strategies in corn. Weed control, corn yield, and economic return increased when a preemergence (PRE) broad-spectrum herbicide was followed by (fb) postemergence (POST) herbicides. Weed control decisions based on field scouting after a PRE broad-spectrum herbicide application increased weed control and economic return. Application of a PRE grass herbicide fb a POST herbicide based on field scouting resulted in less control of velvetleaf and morningglory species, corn yield, and economic return compared with a PRE broad-spectrum herbicide application fb scouting. Cultivation after a PRE broad-spectrum herbicide application increased weed control and corn yield compared with the herbicide applied alone, but economic return was not increased. An early-postemergence herbicide application fb cultivation resulted in the highest level of broadleaf weed control, the highest corn yield, and the greatest economic return compared with all other strategies. Weed control based on scouting proved to be useful in reducing the effect of weed escapes on corn yield and increased economic return compared with PRE herbicide application alone. However, economic return was not greater than the PRE fb planned POST or total POST strategies.
This article reviews the most likely mechanisms of transmission of the commonly encountered respiratory viruses (influenza, respiratory syncytial virus, parainfluenza, rhinovirus), herpesviruses, and hepatitis viruses, and presents the guidelines used currently for prevention and control that are in use at Strong Memorial Hospital.
North American studies show bipolar disorder is associated with elevated
rates of problem gambling; however, little is known about rates in the
different presentations of bipolar illness.
To determine the prevalence and distribution of problem gambling in
people with bipolar disorder in the UK.
The Problem Gambling Severity Index was used to measure gambling problems
in 635 participants with bipolar disorder.
Moderate to severe gambling problems were four times higher in people
with bipolar disorder than in the general population, and were associated
with type 2 disorder (OR = 1.74, P = 0.036), history of
suicidal ideation or attempt (OR = 3.44, P = 0.02) and
rapid cycling (OR = 2.63, P = 0.008).
Approximately 1 in 10 patients with bipolar disorder may be at moderate
to severe risk of problem gambling, possibly associated with suicidal
behaviour and a rapid cycling course. Elevated rates of gambling problems
in type 2 disorder highlight the probable significance of modest but
unstable mood disturbance in the development and maintenance of such
To identify the source of a pseudo-outbreak of Mycobacterium gordonae
University Hospital in Chicago, Ilinois.
Hospital patients with M. gordonae-positive clinical cultures.
An increase in isolation of M. gordonae from clinical cultures was noted immediately following the opening of a newly constructed hospital in January 2012. We reviewed medical records of patients with M. gordonae-positive cultures collected between January and December 2012 and cultured potable water specimens in new and old hospitals quantitatively for mycobacteria.
Of 30 patients with M. gordonae-positive clinical cultures, 25 (83.3%) were housed in the new hospital; of 35 positive specimens (sputum, bronchoalveolar lavage, gastric aspirate), 32 (91.4%) had potential for water contamination. M. gordonae was more common in water collected from the new vs. the old hospital [147 of 157 (93.6%) vs. 91 of 113 (80.5%), P=.001]. Median concentration of M. gordonae was higher in the samples from the new vs. the old hospital (208 vs. 48 colony-forming units (CFU)/mL; P<.001). Prevalence and concentration of M. gordonae were lower in water samples from ice and water dispensers [13 of 28 (46.4%) and 0 CFU/mL] compared with water samples from patient rooms and common areas [225 of 242 (93%) and 146 CFU/mL, P<.001].
M. gordonae was common in potable water. The pseudo-outbreak of M. gordonae was likely due to increased concentrations of M. gordonae in the potable water supply of the new hospital. A silver ion-impregnated 0.5-μm filter may have been responsible for lower concentrations of M. gordonae identified in ice/water dispenser samples. Hospitals should anticipate that construction activities may amplify the presence of waterborne nontuberculous mycobacterial contaminants.