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Human ascariasis is the most common and prevalent neglected tropical disease and is estimated that ~819 million people are infected around the globe, accounting for 0.861 million years of disability-adjusted life years in 2017. Even with the existence of highly effective drugs, the constant presence of infective parasite eggs in the environment contribute to a high reinfection rate after treatment. Due to its high prevalence and broad geographic distribution Ascaris infection is associated with a variety of co-morbidities and co-infections. Here, we provide data from both experimental models and humans studies that illustrate how complex is the interaction of Ascaris with the host immune system, especially, in the context of reinfections, co-infections and associated co-morbidities.
The objective of this study was to analyse the dynamics of spatial dispersion of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) in Brazil by correlating them to socioeconomic indicators. This is an ecological study of COVID-19 cases and deaths between 26 February and 31 July 2020. All Brazilian counties were used as units of analysis. The incidence, mortality, Bayesian incidence and mortality rates, global and local Moran indices were calculated. A geographic weighted regression analysis was conducted to assess the relationship between incidence and mortality due to COVID-19 and socioeconomic indicators (independent variables). There were confirmed 2 662 485 cases of COVID-19 reported in Brazil from February to July 2020 with higher rates of incidence in the north and northeast. The Moran global index of incidence rate (0.50, P = 0.01) and mortality (0.45 with P = 0.01) indicate a positive spatial autocorrelation with high standards in the north, northeast and in the largest urban centres between cities in the southeast region. In the same period, there were 92 475 deaths from COVID-19, with higher mortality rates in the northern states of Brazil, mainly Amazonas, Pará and Amapá. The results show that there is a geospatial correlation of COVID-19 in large urban centres and regions with the lowest human development index in the country. In the geographic weighted regression, it was possible to identify that the percentage of people living in residences with density higher than 2 per dormitory, the municipality human development index (MHDI) and the social vulnerability index were the indicators that most contributed to explaining incidence, social development index and the municipality human development index contributed the most to the mortality model. We hope that the findings will contribute to reorienting public health responses to combat COVID-19 in Brazil, the new epicentre of the disease in South America, as well as in other countries that have similar epidemiological and health characteristics to those in Brazil.
We aimed at evaluating the association of maternal pre-pregnancy nutritional status with offspring anthropometry and body composition. We also evaluated whether these associations were modified by gender, diet and physical activity and mediated by birth weight.
Birth cohort study.
Waist circumference was measured with an inextensible tape, and fat and lean mass were measured using dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry. Multiple linear regression was used to adjust for possible confounders and allele score of BMI. We carried out mediation analysis using G-formula.
In 1982, 1993 and 2004, all maternity hospitals in Pelotas (South Brazil) were visited daily and all live births whose families lived in the urban area of the city were evaluated. These subjects have been followed up at different ages.
Offspring of obese mothers had on average higher BMI, waist circumference and fat mass index than those of normal weight mothers, and these differences were higher among daughters. The magnitudes of the association were similar in the cohorts, except for height, where the association pattern was not clear. In the 1982 cohort, further adjustment for a BMI allele score had no material influence on the magnitude of the associations. Mediation analyses showed that birth weight captured part of this association.
Our findings suggest that maternal pre-pregnancy nutritional status is positively associated with offspring BMI and adiposity in offspring. And this association is higher among daughters whose mother was overweight or obese and, birth weight explains part of this association.
This study aimed to analyse the spatial–temporal distribution of COVID-19 mortality in Sergipe, Northeast, Brazil. It was an ecological study utilising spatiotemporal analysis techniques that included all deaths confirmed by COVID-19 in Sergipe, from 2 April to 14 June 2020. Mortality rates were calculated per 100 000 inhabitants and the temporal trends were analysed using a segmented log-linear model. For spatial analysis, the Kernel estimator was used and the crude mortality rates were smoothed by the empirical Bayesian method. The space–time prospective scan statistics applied the Poisson's probability distribution model. There were 391 COVID-19 registered deaths, with the majority among ⩾60 years old (62%) and males (53%). The most prevalent comorbidities were hypertension (40%), diabetes (31%) and cardiovascular disease (15%). An increasing mortality trend across the state was observed, with a higher increase in the countryside. An active spatiotemporal cluster of mortality comprising the metropolitan area and neighbouring cities was identified. The trend of COVID-19 mortality in Sergipe was increasing and the spatial distribution of deaths was heterogeneous with progression towards the countryside. Therefore, the use of spatial analysis techniques may contribute to surveillance and control of COVID-19 pandemic.
The objectives of this study were to evaluate the cross-cultural measurement equivalence of the Healthy Eating Index (HEI) for children aged 1–2 years and to analyse the quality of nutrition of preterm infants. This was a cross-sectional study with 106 premature infants attended in two specialised outpatient clinics of university hospitals. The quality of the diet was analysed through an adapted HEI to meet the dietary recommendations of Brazilian children aged 1–2 years. Food consumption was measured by 24-h recalls. The reliability of the instrument was evaluated by internal consistency analysis and inter-observer reliability using Cronbach’s α coefficient and κ with quadratic ponderation. The construct validity was evaluated by principal component analysis and by Spearman’s correlation coefficient with total energy and consumption of some groups’ food. The diet quality was considered adequate when the total HEI score was over 80 points. Cronbach’s α was 0·54. Regarding inter-observer reliability, ten items showed strong agreement (κ > 0·8). The item scores had low correlations with energy consumed (r ≤ 0·30), and positive and moderate correlation of fruit (r 0·67), meat (r 0·60) and variety of diet (r 0·57) with total scores. When analysing the overall quality of the diet, most patients need improvement (median 78·7 points), which can be attributed to low total vegetable intake and the presence of ultraprocessed foods in the diet. The instrument showed auspicious psychometric properties, being promising to evaluate the quality of the diet in children aged 1–2 years.
This study attempted to replicate whether a bias in probabilistic reasoning, or ‘jumping to conclusions’(JTC) bias is associated with being a sibling of a patient with schizophrenia spectrum disorder; and if so, whether this association is contingent on subthreshold delusional ideation.
Data were derived from the EUGEI project, a 25-centre, 15-country effort to study psychosis spectrum disorder. The current analyses included 1261 patients with schizophrenia spectrum disorder, 1282 siblings of patients and 1525 healthy comparison subjects, recruited in Spain (five centres), Turkey (three centres) and Serbia (one centre). The beads task was used to assess JTC bias. Lifetime experience of delusional ideation and hallucinatory experiences was assessed using the Community Assessment of Psychic Experiences. General cognitive abilities were taken into account in the analyses.
JTC bias was positively associated not only with patient status but also with sibling status [adjusted relative risk (aRR) ratio : 4.23 CI 95% 3.46–5.17 for siblings and aRR: 5.07 CI 95% 4.13–6.23 for patients]. The association between JTC bias and sibling status was stronger in those with higher levels of delusional ideation (aRR interaction in siblings: 3.77 CI 95% 1.67–8.51, and in patients: 2.15 CI 95% 0.94–4.92). The association between JTC bias and sibling status was not stronger in those with higher levels of hallucinatory experiences.
These findings replicate earlier findings that JTC bias is associated with familial liability for psychosis and that this is contingent on the degree of delusional ideation but not hallucinations.
The objective of this study was to evaluate the fermentative characteristics and chemical composition of cochineal nopal cactus silage additives with urea or Lactobacillus buchneri (LB), as well as the association of both additives in four storage times (7, 15, 60 and 120 days) and during aerobic stability, with evaluations at 0, 48 and 96 h. Four silages were used: no additive, addition of 2% urea, addition of LB and addition of 2% urea and LB. The study was divided into two experiments: the first experiment evaluated the silages at different storage times, and the second experiment evaluated the silages during the aerobic stability test. In both experiments, the experimental design was completely randomized in a factorial scheme (4 × 4 and 4 × 3) with three replicates per treatment. After the ensiling process, lactic acid bacteria predominated in all treatments. The concentration of lactic acid increased significantly from 60 days of ensiling. The concentration of acetic acid varied significantly between the storage times only for the silages treated with urea and LB alone. The silage treated with urea maintained a constant pH value up to 120 days of storage. During the 96 h aerobic stability test, no breaking in the stability of silages was observed. The exclusive or associated use of urea and LB promotes improvement in the fermentative characteristics of cochineal nopal cactus silage, without major alterations in the chemical composition or interfering with the aerobic stability of the silages.
Environmental factors, size-related isotopic changes of the most abundant species and isotopic niche overlap were investigated using stable isotopes in order to evaluate spatial changes of fish trophic guilds in the Araruama Lagoon. Based on 440 muscle samples, 17 fish species were grouped into five trophic guilds. Mean salinity was above 40 at both sites sampled and a significant spatial difference was observed. The highest δ13C mean value was observed for an omnivorous species, whereas the lowest carbon signatures were found for the three fish species belonging to the planktivorous guild. Analysis of the carbon signature of fish species in lower trophic levels showed influence of salinity variation, whilst size appeared to play a role for others. A narrow δ15N difference was observed, but the piscivorous fish species showed the highest δ15N values. The Standard Ellipses Analysis (SEA) detected spatial differences and varying degrees of isotopic niche overlap among trophic guilds, but the percentages of most overlaps (<60%) suggest that, to some extent, the guilds had a unique isotopic niche space. These results are in agreement with data previously reported for the Araruama Lagoon, that found the same prey items with varying relative importance among the most abundant species. Further studies are necessary to understand how the interaction between salinity and other factors, such as migration patterns, changes in prey availability, changes in contribution of primary sources and changes in baseline isotopic signatures could affect the stable isotope signatures shown here.
This study aimed to analyse the trend and spatial–temporal clusters of risk of transmission of COVID-19 in northeastern Brazil. We conducted an ecological study using spatial and temporal trend analysis. All confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the Northeast region of Brazil were included, from 7 March to 22 May 2020. We used the segmented log-linear regression model to assess time trends, and the local empirical Bayesian estimator, the global and local Moran indexes for spatial analysis. The prospective space–time scan statistic was performed using the Poisson probability distribution model. There were 113 951 confirmed cases of COVID-19. The average incidence rate was 199.73 cases/100 000 inhabitants. We observed an increasing trend in the incidence rate in all states. Spatial autocorrelation was reported in metropolitan areas, and 178 municipalities were considered a priority, especially in the states of Ceará and Maranhão. We identified 11 spatiotemporal clusters of COVID-19 cases; the primary cluster included 70 municipalities from Ceará state. COVID-19 epidemic is increasing rapidly throughout the Northeast region of Brazil, with dispersion towards countryside. It was identified high risk clusters for COVID-19, especially in the coastal side.
Compulsory admission procedures of patients with mental disorders vary between countries in Europe. The Ethics Committee of the European Psychiatric Association (EPA) launched a survey on involuntary admission procedures of patients with mental disorders in 40 countries to gather information from all National Psychiatric Associations that are members of the EPA to develop recommendations for improving involuntary admission processes and promote voluntary care.
The survey focused on legislation of involuntary admissions and key actors involved in the admission procedure as well as most common reasons for involuntary admissions.
We analyzed the survey categorical data in themes, which highlight that both medical and legal actors are involved in involuntary admission procedures.
We conclude that legal reasons for compulsory admission should be reworded in order to remove stigmatization of the patient, that raising awareness about involuntary admission procedures and patient rights with both patients and family advocacy groups is paramount, that communication about procedures should be widely available in lay-language for the general population, and that training sessions and guidance should be available for legal and medical practitioners. Finally, people working in the field need to be constantly aware about the ethical challenges surrounding compulsory admissions.
Accurate estimates of methane (CH4) production by cattle in different contexts are essential to developing mitigation strategies in different regions. We aimed to: (i) compile a database of CH4 emissions from Brazilian cattle studies, (ii) evaluate prediction precision and accuracy of extant proposed equations for cattle and (iii) develop specialized equations for predicting CH4 emissions from cattle in tropical conditions. Data of nutrient intake, diet composition and CH4 emissions were compiled from in vivo studies using open-circuit respiratory chambers, SF6 technique or the GreenFeed® system. A final dataset containing intake, diet composition, digestibility and CH4 emissions (677 individual animal observations, 40 treatment means) obtained from 38 studies conducted in Brazil was used. The dataset was divided into three groups: all animals (GEN), lactating dairy cows (LAC) and growing cattle and non-lactating dairy cows (GCNL). A total of 54 prediction equations available in the literature were evaluated. A total of 96 multiple linear models were developed for predicting CH4 production (MJ/day). The predictor variables were DM intake (DMI), gross energy (GE) intake, BW, DMI as proportion of BW, NDF concentration, ether extract (EE) concentration, dietary proportion of concentrate and GE digestibility. Model selection criteria were significance (P < 0.05) and variance inflation factor lower than three for all predictors. Each model performance was evaluated by leave-one-out cross-validation. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (2006) Tier 2 method performed better for GEN and GCNL than LAC and overpredicted CH4 production for all datasets. Increasing complexity of the newly developed models resulted in greater performance. The GCNL had a greater number of equations with expanded possibilities to correct for diet characteristics such as EE and NDF concentrations and dietary proportion of concentrate. For the LAC dataset, equations based on intake and animal characteristics were developed. The equations developed in the present study can be useful for accurate and precise estimation of CH4 emissions from cattle in tropical conditions. These equations could improve accuracy of greenhouse gas inventories for tropical countries. The results provide a better understanding of the dietary and animal characteristics that influence the production of enteric CH4 in tropical production systems.
This study aimed to examine the effects of re-ensiling time and Lactobacillus buchneri on the fermentation profile, chemical composition and aerobic stability of sugarcane silages. The experiment was set up as a repeated measure design consisting of four air-exposure periods (EP)(0, 6, 12, and 24 h) microbial additive (A) (L. buchneri; or lack of there), with five replicates. Sugarcane was ground through a stationary forage chopper and ensiled in four plastic drums of 200-L capacity. After 210 days of storage, the drums were opened and half of the silage mass was treated with L. buchneri at the concentration of 105 cfu/g of forage. Subsequently, the silages were divided into stacks. The re-ensiling process was started immediately, at 0, 6, 12 and 24-hour intervals, by transferring the material to PVC mini-silos. Silos were opened after 120 days of re-ensiling. The use of L. buchneri reduced butyrate concentration but did not change ethanol or acetic acid concentrations and aerobic stability. An interaction effect between L. buchneri and re-ensiling time was observed for dry matter (DM) losses and composition. Lactobacillus buchneri is not effective in improving aerobic stability in re-ensiled sugarcane silages. However, less DM is lost in silages treated with L. buchneri and exposed to air for 24 h. Re-ensiling sugar cane in up to 24 h of exposure to air does not change final product quality.
The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of Cactus (Opuntia spp) levels in total mixed ration silages based on Cactus and Gliricidia (Gliricidia sepium (Jacq.) Steud) on the fermentation profile, microbial populations, aerobic stability and taxonomic diversity. The completely randomized design was used in a 4 × 4 factorial design with four replications, being four rations with different levels of Cactus (15, 30, 45, 60% based on the dry matter) and four opening periods (0, 15, 30 and 60 days of fermentation). An interaction effect (P < 0.050) was observed among the diets and opening times for mould and yeast populations. An interaction effect for the levels of acetic acid was observed, where the diets 15, 30, 45 and 60% showed higher values at 60 days (0.44, 0.41, 0.35 and 0.40 g/kg DM, respectively). A significant difference was observed for the richness and diversity index (Chao1 and Shannon). The most abundant bacterial phyla were Proteobacteria and Firmicutes and the genera Lactobacillus and Weissella. Cactus can be added in total mixed ration silages up to the level of 60% in a way that it positively affects the qualitative indicators of the silages, modulating the taxonomic communities and allowing the predominance of important groups for preservation of the ensiled mass.
The farrowing process is one of the most energy-demanding activities for the modern hyperprolific sow. This study evaluated the effects of supply of energy on the expected date of farrowing on the farrowing kinetics and piglets’ performance during the first 24 h after birth. A total of 80 sows were used. The sows and their respective litters were considered as the experimental unit. On the expected day of farrowing, the sows were allocated to one of the following groups: sows that did not have access to feed from farrowing induction until the end of the farrowing process (CON, n = 40); sows fed 500 g of energetic supplement, which consisted of 250 g of the basal lactation diet plus 250 g of cane sugar, 18 h after farrowing induction (SUP, n = 40). The farrowing duration, farrowing assistance, birth interval, number of total born, stillborn and mummified piglets were recorded for each sow. Piglets were weighed individually at birth and 24 h later. The interval from birth to first suckle was evaluated individually for each piglet in 16 randomly selected litters (eight litters per treatment group). Blood glucose concentrations of six sows were measured shortly after expulsion of the first piglet. Farrowing duration, farrowing assistance and stillborn rate tended to be greater (P = 0.06, P = 0.09 and P = 0.07, respectively) in sows from the CON group compared to sows from the SUP group. However, there was no difference (P > 0.05) between the groups for birth interval. Colostrum intake was greater (P < 0.05) for piglets from the SUP group compared to piglets from the CON group. Additionally, BW gain of the piglets suckling the SUP group was greater (P < 0.05) than those suckling the CON group at 24 h after birth. The blood glucose concentrations during the expulsive stage of farrowing were greater (P < 0.05) in the SUP group than for sows from the CON group. In conclusion, supplying modern hyperprolific sows energy on the expected day of farrowing is a valuable nutritional intervention to improve the farrowing kinetics and piglets’ performance in early life.
Spontaneous abortion is considered a public health problem having several causes, including infections. Among the infectious agents, bacteria of the vaginal microbiota and Ureaplasma parvum have been associated with abortion, but their participation needs to be further elucidated. This study aims to evaluate the influence of Mollicutes on the development of spontaneous abortion. Women who underwent spontaneous abortion and those with normal birth (control) were studied. Samples of cervical mucus (CM) and placental tissue were collected to identify Mollicutes using the quantitative polymerase chain reaction methodology. Eighty-nine women who had a miscarriage and 20 women with normal pregnancies were studied. The presence of Mollicutes in placental tissue increased the chance of developing miscarriage sevenfold. The prevalence of U. parvum in women who experienced spontaneous abortion was 66.3% in placental tissue. A positive association was observed between the detection of U. parvum in samples of placental tissue and abortion. There was a significant increase in microbial load in placental tissue for M. hominis, U. urealyticum and U. parvum compared to the control group. Detection of U. parvum in CM in pregnant women can ascend to the region of the placental tissue and trigger a spontaneous abortion.
Pigs exposed to stressors might change their daily typical feeding intake pattern. The objective of this study was to develop a method for the early identification of deviations from an individual pig’s typical feeding patterns. In addition, a general approach was proposed to model feed intake and real-time individual nutrient requirements for pigs with atypical feeding patterns. First, a dynamic linear model (DLM) was proposed to model the typical daily feed intake (DFI) and daily gain (DG) patterns of pigs. Individual DFI and DG dynamics are described by a univariate DLM in conjunction with Kalman filtering. A standardized tabular cumulative sum (CUMSUM) control chart was applied to the forecast errors generated by DLM to activate an alarm when a pig showed deviations from its typical feeding patterns. The relative feed intake (RFI) during a challenge period was calculated. For that, the forecasted individual pig DFI is expressed as its highest DFI relative to the intake during pre-challenge period. Finally, the DLM and RFI approaches were integrated into the actual precision-feeding model (original model) to estimate real-time individual nutrient requirements for pigs with atypical feeding patterns. This general approach was evaluated with data from two studies (130 pigs, at 35.25 ± 3.9 kg of initial BW) that investigated during 84 days the effect of precision-feeding systems for growing-finishing pigs. The proposed general approach to estimating real-time individual nutrient requirements (updated model) was evaluated by comparing its estimates with those generated by the original model. For 11 individuals out of 130, the DLM did not fit the observed data well in a specific period, resulting in an increase in the sum of standardized forecast errors and in the number of time steps that the model needed to adapt to the new patterns. This poor fit can be identified by the increase in the CUMSUM with a consequent alarm generated. The results of this study show that the updated model made it possible to reduce intra-individual variation for the estimated lysine requirements in comparison with the original model, especially for individuals with atypical feeding patterns. In conclusion, the DLM in conjunction with CUMSUM could be used as a tool for the online monitoring of DFI for growing-finishing pigs. Moreover, the proposed general approach allows the estimation of real-time amino acid requirements and accounts for the reduced feed intake and growth potential of pigs with atypical feeding patterns.
Microencapsulation of functioning cells for transplantation therapies is particularly promising, but the cells must retain their proper physiology and viability after being encapsulated. K-562 cells are multipotential and exhibit erythroid, megakaryocytic, or granulocytic properties that can be exploited by using an array of physiologically differentiating factors. The potential for cell differentiation makes it attractive the use of K-562 cells as functional model to the assessment of the effects of encapsulation on cell viability and physiology. Thus, alginate and hybrid alginate matrices were produced by extrusion technique for K-562 cell encapsulation. The produced systems were composed of bare alginate (1–3 wt%) and alginate in combination with chitosan or silica. The resulting materials were characterized by dynamic laser scattering, zeta potential measurements, small-angle X-ray scattering, and Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy. To assess viability, the encapsulated cells were subjected to the Trypan blue exclusion technique and NAD(P)H-dependent oxidoreductase (MTT) assays; hemin-induced erythroid differentiation capacity was also evaluated. The encapsulated alginate-based systems were shown to be monomodal and bimodal, depending on the nature of the capsule, with mean sizes in the range between 414 and 4.129 nm. Encapsulated cells exhibited viability ratios compatible with their use for prolonged cell cultures. Erythroid differentiation occurred in the range between 39 and 44%. The present results allow the consideration of the viability of therapeutic cells encapsulated in both bare alginate and in hybrid matrices.
The co-infection between visceral leishmaniasis (VL) and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) has increased in several countries in the world. The current serological tests are not suitable since they present low sensitivity to detect the most of VL/HIV cases, and a more precise diagnosis should be performed. In this context, in the present study, an immunoproteomics approach was performed using Leishmania infantum antigenic extracts and VL, HIV and VL/HIV patients sera, besides healthy subjects samples; aiming to identify antigenic markers for these clinical conditions. Results showed that 43 spots were recognized by antibodies in VL and VL/HIV sera, and 26 proteins were identified by mass spectrometry. Between them, β-tubulin was expressed, purified and tested in ELISA experiments as a proof of concept for validation of our immunoproteomics findings and results showed high sensitivity and specificity values to detect VL and VL/HIV patients. In conclusion, the identified proteins in the present work could be considered as candidates for future studies aiming to improvement of the diagnosis of VL and VL/HIV co-infection.
To study whether there are personality characteristics that discriminate between IPV women and non-abused control women, taking into account the effect of emotional state (depressive symptoms).
A total of 176 women victim of IPV and 193 non-abused control women were assessed with the Dimensional Assessment of Personality Pathology (DAPP-BQ; Livesley, 1990), the Beck Depression Inventory -II (BDI-II; Beck, 1996), and the Index of Spouse Abuse (ISA; Hudson & McIntosh, 1981). Women victim of IPV were recruited from Domestic Violence Centers, and non-abused control women were recruited from Primary Care Centers and Mental Health Services. A two way analysis of variance (IPV * Depression) were used for detecting differences in personality traits taking into account the effect of depression (BDI ≥ 17).
After controlling for depression, IPV victims scored higher than control women in submissiveness (F=6.41; p=0.01), cognitive distortion (F=4.35; p=0.04), intimacy problems (F=27.02; p< 0.001), suspiciousness (F=5.02; p=0.03) and self-harm (F=4.93; p=0.03), and lower in rejection (F=14.66; p< 0.001).
IPV victims showed high submission, low hostility, intimacy problems, suspiciousness, tendency to depersonalization or derealization, and suicidal ideation and attempts, as a result of chronic abuse. Some of these aspects could be explained by the presence of PTSD, more than by pre-existing personality characteristics. Traumatic and chronic stress can alter functional aspects of the brain and lead to the development of dysfunctional cognitive and behavioral characteristics that may be considered in the psychotherapeutic approach.
Involutional melancholia was first described by Kraeplin in 1896, who, since 1907, omitted this entity from his publications. However, involutional melancholia kept on being accepted under various names. We intend to analyse if there are still evidences for the existence of this entity nowadays and its clinical utility.
We describe and analyse a case of a woman with the diagnosis of involutional melancholia and make a bibliographic review about this disorder.
Nowadays the broadening concept of mood disorders denies involutional melancholia as a valid independent entity, so it is included in mood disorders as a unipolar endogenous depression with late onset. Psycopathologically, however, it still seems to have several differences that could justify its separation from the current mood disorder concept, such as proeminent motor agitation and restlessness, anxiety and apprehension, an exaggerated hypochondriasis sometimes with bizarre delusions and occasional paranoid ideation These differentiating symptoms arise on a basic depressive substrate, marked by insomnia, anorexia and weight loss. Some studies point out the fact that now patients are treated earlier with antidepressives or ECT and so these classical severe symptoms may not develop, because the syndrome is aborted at a prodromal stage.
Study results are contradictory and further controlled investigations are mandatory. Even if involutional melancholia does not stand as a separate entity, it is important to keep in mind that depressive illness appearing for the first time in the involutional period of life may present as a somewhat atypical clinical picture.