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Anti-retroviral therapy (ART) regimes for HIV are associated with raised levels of circulating triglycerides (TGs) in western populations. However, there are limited data on the impact of ART on cardiometabolic risk in sub-Saharan African (SSA) populations.
Pooled analyses of 14 studies comprising 21 023 individuals, on whom relevant cardiometabolic risk factors (including TG), HIV and ART status were assessed between 2003 and 2014, in SSA. The association between ART and raised TG (>2.3 mmol/L) was analysed using regression models.
Among 10 615 individuals, ART was associated with a two-fold higher probability of raised TG (RR 2.05, 95% CI 1.51–2.77, I2 = 45.2%). The associations between ART and raised blood pressure, glucose, HbA1c, and other lipids were inconsistent across studies.
Evidence from this study confirms the association of ART with raised TG in SSA populations. Given the possible causal effect of raised TG on cardiovascular disease (CVD), the evidence highlights the need for prospective studies to clarify the impact of long term ART on CVD outcomes in SSA.
Major depressive disorder (MDD) and anxiety disorders (ANX) are debilitating and prevalent conditions that often co-occur in adolescence and young adulthood. The leading theoretical models of their co-morbidity include the direct causation model and the shared etiology model. The present study compared these etiological models of MDD–ANX co-morbidity in a large, prospective, non-clinical sample of adolescents tracked through age 30.
Logistic regression was used to examine cross-sectional associations between ANX and MDD at Time 1 (T1). In prospective analyses, Cox proportional hazards models were used to examine T1 predictors of subsequent disorder onset, including risk factors specific to each disorder or common to both disorders. Prospective predictive effect of a lifetime history of one disorder (e.g. MDD) on the subsequent onset of the second disorder (e.g. ANX) was then examined. This step was repeated while controlling for common risk factors.
The findings supported relatively distinct profiles of risk between MDD and ANX depending on order of development. Whereas the shared etiology model best explained co-morbid cases in which MDD preceded ANX, direct causation was supported for co-morbid cases in which ANX preceded MDD.
Consistent with previous research, significant cross-sectional and prospective associations were found between MDD and ANX. The results of the present study suggest that different etiological models may characterize the co-morbidity between MDD and ANX based upon the temporal order of onset. Implications for classification and prevention efforts are discussed.
The clinical benefit for depression of an interactive computer-assisted cognitive-behavioral program on CD-ROM, the Wellness Workshop (WW), was evaluated in a randomized controlled trial.
A total of 191 individuals referred by primary-care physicians were randomly assigned to a control group, where physician-directed treatment as usual (TAU) was provided, or to a treatment group, where TAU was supplemented with the WW CD-ROM, delivered by mail (WW+TAU). Data were collected at baseline, at 6 weeks' post-intervention, and at a 6-month follow-up assessment. Participants were given a strong incentive by a reimbursement of $75 for completion of each assessment. Measures included symptom ratings obtained via structured clinical diagnostic interviews, as well as a battery of self-report questionnaires on symptoms specifically targeted by the intervention.
Analysis of results demonstrated evidence for skill acquisition for improving dysfunctional thinking and reducing anxiety. Among those who met diagnostic criteria for depression, WW+TAU participants were three times more likely to remit at 6 weeks' post-test than TAU participants.
The evidence supports the conclusion that the WW intervention added benefit to traditional care for depression. No placebo comparison group was included and the WW+TAU participants received slightly more attention (a supportive telephone contact, ⩽5 min from a psychologist 2 weeks after receiving the program). Overall, the findings add support to the accumulating evidence for the potential clinical benefit of computer-assisted behavioral health interventions.
Research on the long-term course of major depressive disorder (MDD) is hindered by the absence of established course criteria and by idiosyncratic definitions of chronicity. The aims of this study were to derive an empirical index of MDD course, to examine its predictive validity, and to identify the adulthood outcomes associated with a chronic course.
Indicators for a MDD course factor were rationally selected and subjected to principal components (PCA) and confirmatory factor analyses (CFA) among 426 subjects with a lifetime history of MDD by age 30. Scores on the index prior to age 19 were examined as predictors of course from age 19 to 30. Associations between the index and outcomes of interest at age 30 were examined.
Three indicators loaded highly on a chronic course index and displayed adequate internal consistency: early onset age, number of episodes, and duration of ill time. Predictive validity of the index was supported. A more chronic course was associated with greater symptom severity, greater likelihood of treatment utilization, and greater psychosocial impairment in multiple domains. Treatment utilization interacted with chronicity to predict relatively few outcomes and did not reduce the negative impact of a chronic course.
The course of MDD through early adulthood is best represented by a composite of early onset age, number of episodes, and duration of ill time. A chronic course through early adulthood is associated with numerous indicators of psychosocial impairment. Mental health treatment utilization in a naturalistic setting does not appear to reduce the negative impact of chronic MDD.
There has been increasing interest in the validity and familial transmission of subthreshold psychiatric conditions and the relationship between subthreshold conditions and full syndrome (FS) disorders. However, most of these studies examined a single subthreshold condition and thus fail to take into account the high co-morbidity among subthreshold conditions and between subthreshold conditions and FS disorders.
A family study of subthreshold psychiatric conditions was conducted with 739 community-drawn young adults and their 1744 relatives. We examined (1) whether relatives of probands with subthreshold major depression, bipolar disorder, anxiety disorders, alcohol use, substance use, and/or conduct disorder exhibited an increased rate of the corresponding (homotypic) FS disorder; (2) whether subthreshold disorders were associated with increased familial rates of other (heterotypic) FS disorders; (3) whether subthreshold and FS conditions are associated with similar familial liabilities; and (4) whether these homotypic and heterotypic associations persisted after controlling for co-morbidity.
Significant homotypic associations were observed for subthreshold anxiety, alcohol, conduct, and a trend was observed for major depression. Only the homotypic association for alcohol and conduct remained after controlling for co-morbid subthreshold and FS conditions. Many heterotypic associations were observed and most remained after controlling for co-morbidity.
It is important to broaden the study of subthreshold psychopathology to multiple disorders. In particular cases, controlling for co-morbidity with other subthreshold and FS conditions altered the patterns of familial aggregation. Etiological processes that are common to particular disorders and subthreshold conditions are discussed.
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