Posts

September 17, 2014

+
6:30 AM | Bipolar disorder and leadership: evidence from a total population study
Elena Marcus writes her debut blog on a total population study that finds some interesting associations between bipolar disorder and leadership potential, executive roles and political professions. The post Bipolar disorder and leadership: evidence from a total population study appeared first on The Mental Elf.

September 16, 2014

+
7:03 AM | A History of the Essex Lunatic Asylum: Part 3
"...modern man no longer communicates with the madman. There is no common language: or rather, it no longer exists; the constitution of madness as mental illness, at the end of the eighteenth century, bears witness to a rupture in a dialogue, gives the separation as already enacted, and expels from the memory all those imperfect words, of no fixed syntax, spoken falteringly, in which the exchange between madness and reason was carried out. The language of psychiatry, which is a monologue by […]
+
6:50 AM | The schizophrenias (plural)
A micropost if you will, to draw your attention to the paper by Javier Arnedo and colleagues [1] mentioning the concept of 'the schizophrenias' (plural). Some media coverage of this paper can be found here and here. The crux of the paper is that although currently unified by a diagnostic label, schizophrenia seems to be comprised of various conditions: "caused by a moderate number of separate genotypic networks associated with several distinct clinical syndromes"."... dogs and cats living […]

Javier Arnedo, Dragan M. Svrakic, Coral del Val, Rocío Romero-Zaliz, Helena Hernández-Cuervo, Molecular Genetics of Schizophrenia Consortium, Ayman H. Fanous, Michele T. Pato, Carlos N. Pato, Gabriel A. de Erausquin & C. Robert Cloninger (2014). Uncovering the Hidden Risk Architecture of the Schizophrenias: Confirmation in Three Independent Genome-Wide Association Studies, The American Journal of Psychiatry, Other:

Citation
+
6:30 AM | Be nice to patients and they will get better? Therapeutic alliance and service user satisfaction
John Baker reviews a recent cross-sectional study of the relationship between therapeutic alliance and service user satisfaction in mental health inpatient wards and crisis house alternatives. The post Be nice to patients and they will get better? Therapeutic alliance and service user satisfaction appeared first on The Mental Elf.

September 15, 2014

+
8:47 AM | Zinc and copper and autism
The paper by Li and colleagues [1] looking at serum copper (Cu) and zinc (Zn) levels in a group of participants diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is the source material for today's post. Highlighting how "mean serum Zn levels and Zn/Cu ratio were significantly lower in children with ASD compared with normal cases... whereas serum Cu levels were significantly higher" the continued focus on the metallome in autism carries on at a pace. I should at this point out that I'm not […]

Li SO, Wang JL, Bjørklund G, Zhao WN & Yin CH (2014). Serum copper and zinc levels in individuals with autism spectrum disorders., Neuroreport, PMID: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25162784

Citation
+
7:00 AM | Physiotherapy led falls pathway service for adults with learning disabilities showed reduced falls in evaluation
Recent NICE guidance suggested that 30% of people over 65 and 50% of people over older than 80 fall at least once a year and there is evidence that in people with learning disabilities there is some increased risk and this impacts on people of younger age. Finlayson, in a prospective cohort study suggested that [read the full story...] The post Physiotherapy led falls pathway service for adults with learning disabilities showed reduced falls in evaluation appeared first on The Learning […]
+
6:30 AM | Can environmental changes reduce fear of crime and improve mental health and well-being?
Kathryn Walsh summarises a recent systematic review on crime, fear of crime and mental health, which highlights a number of interventions that are not effective in reducing the fear of crime. The post Can environmental changes reduce fear of crime and improve mental health and well-being? appeared first on The Mental Elf.

September 14, 2014

+
11:00 AM | A History of the Essex Lunatic Asylum: Part 2
The search for biological causes and effective remedies continued unsuccessful for some years, fostering a growing sense of therapeutic nihilism within the psychiatric profession. The available treatments were viewed as non specific, and a major emphasis remained on fresh air (outdoor relief) and a healthy environment, distinctly unglamorous interventions compared to the technological advances being made in medicine.

September 13, 2014

+
9:45 PM | A History of the Essex Lunatic Asylum: Part 1
“...aims at making the Institution really and truly an Asylum, a place of refuge and retreat from pain and sorrow; an Hospital and a home.” Extract from the Essex Lunatic Asylum Medical Superintendent’s Annual Report, 1874

September 12, 2014

+
3:47 PM | Insulin, growth hormone and risk of schizophrenia?
"Overall, the present findings suggest that metabolic and hormonal disturbances such as effects on insulin and growth hormone may represent a vulnerability factor to develop mental disorders". That was the conclusion reported by van Beveren and colleagues [1] (open-access) looking at "disruption of insulin and growth factor signaling pathways as an increased risk factor for schizophrenia"."Years ago you served my father in the Clone Wars"Drawing on data derived from participants taking part […]

van Beveren NJ, Schwarz E, Noll R, Guest PC, Meijer C, de Haan L & Bahn S (2014). Evidence for disturbed insulin and growth hormone signaling as potential risk factors in the development of schizophrenia., Translational psychiatry, 4 PMID: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25158005

Citation
+
7:59 AM | Alcoholism is a Family Disease!
It is so great and very heartening that Dr George Koob, imminent researcher into addiction and Director of the US National Institute of Alcohol Abuse and Addiction is so profoundly knowledgeable about the consequences of alcoholism on the suffering families … Continue reading →
+
7:00 AM | Care pathway approach in assessment and treatment unit increased throughput and improved outcomes for adults with learning disabilities
A recent report by the Royal College of Psychiatrists attempted to set out the range of in-patient service provision for adults with learning disabilities and set the role of assessment and treatment beds in the context of a broader range of services. They stated very clearly in that report that in-patient services should form part [read the full story...] The post Care pathway approach in assessment and treatment unit increased throughput and improved outcomes for adults with learning […]
+
6:30 AM | Making parity a reality: RCPsych launch manifesto to improve the nation’s mental health
The Royal College of Psychiatrists have launched a new manifesto today, which calls on the next government to ensure that mental and physical health are given equal value. André Tomlin summarises the key aims and reflects on what has changed in the world of mental health in the 3 years since the Mental Elf was launched. The post Making parity a reality: RCPsych launch manifesto to improve the nation’s mental health appeared first on The Mental Elf.

September 11, 2014

+
10:51 PM | Brilliance Often Springs from Boredom
Every so often, we face a job we dread because it seems exceedingly dull. As a child, I felt that way about household chores—scrubbing a toilet, sweeping a floor, wiping a countertop, weeding. I... -- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
+
10:03 PM | A History of the Essex Lunatic Asylum: Part 1
“...aims at making the Institution really and truly an Asylum, a place of refuge and retreat from pain and sorrow; an Hospital and a home.” Extract from the Essex Lunatic Asylum Medical Superintendent’s Annual Report, 1874
+
1:55 PM | Treating autism in the first year of life
I had been waiting y'know. Waiting a while for the paper by Sally Rogers and colleagues [1] to finally appear quite a few days after the media headlines about 'reducing', 'reversing' and even 'eliminating' the signs and symptoms of autism in early infancy had appeared. Personally, I prefer the New Scientist headline: 'Early autism intervention speeds infant development' given the text of the paper. I should perhaps also add the words 'for some' to that sentence as you will hopefully […]

S. J. Rogers, L. Vismara, A. L. Wagner, C. McCormick, G. Young & S. Ozonoff (2014). Autism Treatment in the First Year of Life: A Pilot Study of Infant Start, a Parent-Implemented Intervention for Symptomatic Infants, Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, Other:

Citation
+
8:42 AM | Omega-3 fatty acids rescues Fragile X phenotypes in Fmr1-Ko mice
"These results demonstrate that n-3 PUFAs dietary supplementation, although not a panacea, has a considerable therapeutic value for FXS [Fragile X syndrome] and potentially for ASD [autism spectrum disorder], suggesting a major mediating role of neuroinflammatory mechanisms".A view @ Wikipedia That was the conclusion reached by Susanna Pietropaolo and colleagues [1] who "evaluated the impact of n-3 PUFA dietary supplementation in a mouse model of fragile X syndrome […]

Pietropaolo S, Goubran MG, Joffre C, Aubert A, Lemaire-Mayo V, Crusio WE & Layé S (2014). Dietary supplementation of omega-3 fatty acids rescues fragile X phenotypes in Fmr1-Ko mice., Psychoneuroendocrinology, 49C 119-129. PMID: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25080404

Citation
+
6:30 AM | Prenatal SSRI exposure and autism risk: a dilemma for mums-to-be with depression
Amy Green summarises a population-based study of young children which looks at prenatal exposure to SSRI antidepressants and the social responsiveness symptoms of autism. The post Prenatal SSRI exposure and autism risk: a dilemma for mums-to-be with depression appeared first on The Mental Elf.

September 10, 2014

+
2:00 PM | Have You Fallen Victim to the Guru Effect?
Four years ago a paper by Dan Sperber published in the Review of Philosophy and Psychology coined the term: The Guru Effect - the tendency for people to "judge profound what they have failed to grasp." The paper examines how self-professed Gurus have a knack for inspiring devotion through speaking ...Read More
Editor's Pick
+
1:05 PM | Attachment Style, Alexithymia and Alcohol Craving
Research on alexithymia (1) has found significant positive associations between alexithymia, difficulties identifying feelings, difficulties describing feelings and alcohol problems (Thorberg, Young, Sullivan, & Lyvers, 2009; Thorberg, Young, Sullivan, Lyvers, Connor & Feeney, 2010). Individuals with alcohol-dependence and alexithymia report more … Continue reading →
+
9:01 AM | Donepezil and D-cycloserine rescue behaviours in VPA exposed animals
In a post not-so-long-ago I talked about an interesting piece of research by Ahn and colleagues [1] suggesting that a ketogenic diet might yet hold some promise to "modify complex social behaviors and mitochondrial respiration" affected in the "prenatal valproic acid (VPA) rodent model of ASD [autism spectrum disorder]". The idea being that exposure to valproic acid (valproate) during the nine months that made us might carry some heightened risk for adverse effects on offspring development (see […]

Wellmann KA, Varlinskaya EI & Mooney SM (2014). D-Cycloserine Ameliorates Social Alterations That Result From Prenatal Exposure To Valproic Acid., Brain research bulletin, PMID: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25130667

Kim JW, Seung H, Kwon KJ, Ko MJ, Lee EJ, Oh HA, Choi CS, Kim KC, Gonzales EL, You JS & Choi DH (2014). Subchronic Treatment of Donepezil Rescues Impaired Social, Hyperactive, and Stereotypic Behavior in Valproic Acid-Induced Animal Model of Autism., PloS one, 9 (8) PMID: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25133713

Citation
+
6:30 AM | Cannabis use in young people linked with lower high school completion and degree attainment
André Tomlin and Douglas Badenoch voice a note of caution about the Lancet Psychiatry meta-analysis of cannabis use in young people. The study links cannabis use in children with low educational attainment, cannabis dependence, illicit drug use and suicide attempts in later life. The post Cannabis use in young people linked with lower high school completion and degree attainment appeared first on The Mental Elf.

September 09, 2014

+
8:35 AM | The gondii and generalised anxiety disorder
Toxoplasma gondii (T. gondii) has been absent from discussions on this blog for a while now. I'm going to remedy that today with this post talking about the paper from Markovitz and colleagues [1] who concluded: "T. gondii infection may play a role in the development of GAD [generalized anxiety disorder]"."You have saved our lives. We are eternally grateful"Based on participants taking part in the Detroit Neighborhood Health Study exposure to T. gondii "defined by seropositivity […]

Markovitz A, Simanek AM, Yolken R, Galea S, Koenen KC, Chen S & Aiello AE (2014). Toxoplasma gondii and anxiety disorders in a community-based sample., Brain, behavior, and immunity, PMID: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25124709

Citation
+
6:30 AM | E-cigarettes: a review of the evidence-base for regulation
Sally Adams summarises a recent review of e-cigarettes, which looks at use, content, safety, effects on smokers and the potential for harm and benefit. The post E-cigarettes: a review of the evidence-base for regulation appeared first on The Mental Elf.

September 08, 2014

+
8:22 AM | Homocysteine, MTHFR and schizophrenia studied AND meta-analysed
"Our study suggests that increased plasma total homocysteine levels may be associated with an increased risk of schizophrenia". Further: "The meta-analysis of the Japanese genetic association studies demonstrated a significant association between the MTHFR C677T polymorphism and schizophrenia".MTHFR (again!) @ Paul WhiteleySo said the results of the study and meta-analysis carried out by Akira Nishi and colleagues [1] (open-access) looking at the 'big H' alongside everyone's genetic […]

Nishi A, Numata S, Tajima A, Kinoshita M, Kikuchi K, Shimodera S, Tomotake M, Ohi K, Hashimoto R, Imoto I & Takeda M (2014). Meta-analyses of Blood Homocysteine Levels for Gender and Genetic Association Studies of the MTHFR C677T Polymorphism in Schizophrenia., Schizophrenia bulletin, PMID: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24535549

Citation
+
7:00 AM | Eight stories in film showing people with learning disabilities living their own lives
Living your own life in your own home is something most of take for granted. It’s just something you do. We don’t tend to think about community, or independent living, or planning, we get on with it. This is not always the case for people with learning disabilities. In this post, we wanted to link [read the full story...] The post Eight stories in film showing people with learning disabilities living their own lives appeared first on The Learning Disabilities Elf.
+
6:30 AM | Ketamine for depression: new review highlights the need for an RCT
Helge Hasselmann reviews a new systematic review of ketamine for depression, which highlights the need for an RCT to provide reliable data on the safety, tolerability and best route of administration. The post Ketamine for depression: new review highlights the need for an RCT appeared first on The Mental Elf.
+
5:47 AM | Your Brain On Coffee
In this video the effects of caffeine on the brain are explained. Want to know the half life of caffeine? Watch the video.   Related posts:Brain-healthy lifestyle Video Games Affect The Brain, Good or Bad? Deep Brain Stimulation for Depression

September 06, 2014

+
6:11 PM | Unpacking Recovery Part 5: Clinical Recovery Without a Clinic?
It can be somewhat controversial to suggest that untreated recovery from eating disorders is possible. Certainly, people have varied opinions about whether someone can enact the difficult behavioral and attitudinal changes necessary to recover without the help of (at the very least) a therapist and a dietitian. Nonetheless, we still hear stories about individuals who consider themselves recovered without having sought out external sources of professional support. When I think about untreated […]

Vandereycken W (2012). Self-change in eating disorders: is "spontaneous recovery" possible?, Eating disorders, 20 (2) 87-98. PMID: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22364341

Woods S (2004). Untreated recovery from eating disorders., Adolescence, 39 (154) 361-71. PMID: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15563044

Citation

September 05, 2014

+
9:04 AM | Extremes of a self-limiting diet in autism
I'll draw your attention to three papers in today's post which represent the extremes of where self-imposed dietary restrictions can potentially lead in relation to the autism spectrum disorders (ASDs). Issues with diet - outside of use of diet as an intervention measure - are something which have been talked about quite a bit in the autism research literature (see here)."You look like a gangster"The first paper by Baird & Ravindranath [1] describes a case report of an 11-year old with […]

Baird JS & Ravindranath TM (2014). Vitamin B Deficiencies in a Critically Ill Autistic Child With a Restricted Diet., Nutrition in clinical practice : official publication of the American Society for Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition, PMID: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25112945

Gulko E, Collins LK, Murphy RC, Thornhill BA & Taragin BH (2014). MRI findings in pediatric patients with scurvy., Skeletal radiology, PMID: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25109378

Keown K, Bothwell J & Jain S (2014). Nutritional implications of selective eating in a child with autism spectrum disorder., BMJ case reports, 2014 PMID: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24654242

Citation
123
76 Results