Posts

December 10, 2014

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11:32 AM | The Neuroscience of Attachment (Part 1)
The Neuroscience of Attachment Here we borrow extensively from an excellent article by Linda Graham written six years ago but which gives such a comprehensive review of how the neural development of our brain is affected by attachment – as … Continue reading →
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10:44 AM | Maternal smoking during pregnancy and offspring autism: no measurable association but...
Oh. Yes sir. How doth the little bumblebee improve each..."We found no evidence to support a measurable association between maternal prenatal smoking and ASD [autism spectrum disorder] in offspring."That was the conclusion reached in the meta-analysis published by Brittany Rosen and colleagues [1] looking at the collected peer-review literature examining any correlation between maternal tobacco smoking during pregnancy and risk of offspring receipt of a diagnosis of autism or […]
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7:30 AM | Alcohol use disorders and mortality in Nordic countries
Andrew Jones appraises a recent study of mortality and life expectancy of people with alcohol use disorders in Denmark, Finland and Sweden, which provides some useful insight into the impact of hazardous alcohol use. The post Alcohol use disorders and mortality in Nordic countries appeared first on The Mental Elf.

December 09, 2014

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11:36 AM | Anti-Toxoplasma gondii IgM Antibodies in Acute Psychosis
A very brief post today to bring to your attention once again the paper by Joel Monroe and colleagues [1] which concluded that there was: "An increased seroprevalence of T. gondii [Toxoplasma gondii] IgM in patients with acute psychosis". I had touched upon this study in a previous post not-so-long-ago covering T. gondii infection and schizophrenia (see here) which also covered some of the various background research history on this topic.Looks like his optometrist has a sense of […]
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7:30 AM | CBT for insomnia in psychiatric populations: an effective alternative to hypnotics?
Amy Green appraises a systematic review of CBT for insomnia (CBTi) in people with comorbid mental illness, which concludes that cognitive behaviour therapy could be an effective alternative to hypnotics. However, concerns about the review methodology cast some doubt on the findings. The post CBT for insomnia in psychiatric populations: an effective alternative to hypnotics? appeared first on The Mental Elf.

December 08, 2014

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9:45 AM | Significantly shorter leukocyte telomere length in childhood autism
"These results provided the first evidence that shorter leukocytes telomere length is significantly associated with childhood autism." So said the results reported by Zongchang Li and colleagues [1] (open-access) based on quite a well-powered study (for an initial research foray anyway) looking at "110 autism patients (male 98 and female 12) and 129 healthy controls (male 98 and female 31)".On the behalf of scientists everywhere, I am ashamed to count you amongst us.Quite a good […]
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9:43 AM | Emotional Immaturity in Addicts Linked to Insecure Attachment
I have studied neuroscience for a number of years and see that it offers a great facility for challenging existing views about addiction and contributing to the greater arguments and debates about causes and consequences of addiction but I am … Continue reading →
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7:30 AM | What do acute mental health nurses do?
John Baker considers the findings of a recent meta-synthesis of research looking at the role of acute mental health nurses from the perspective of the nurses themselves. He concludes that, whilst this viewpoint is important, it's also vital that we consider what service users think nurses should provide. The post What do acute mental health nurses do? appeared first on The Mental Elf.

December 07, 2014

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8:00 PM | On Open Dialogue Part 2: Why do we need a new approach?
If we knew all we could do about the brain of a bat, we would still have no idea what it was like to be a bat’ - Thomas Nagel

December 06, 2014

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7:43 PM | Notes from James Davies’ “Cracked, the Unhappy Truth About Psychiatry”
Found this book at a bookstore and was hooked after reading the first few pages, based on it’s topic and clear and well-written prose. Chapter 1 James Davies, with a PhD in social and medical anthropology from Oxford, begins with a history of psychiatry starting in the 1970s and a crisis of confidence it faced. A […]
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5:15 PM | On Open Dialogue Part 6: Healing
“In principio erat Sermo”  (“In the beginning was the Conversation”) - Erasmus, an early humanist scholar, who controversially provided an alternative Latin translation of John’s Greek gospel) The Open in Open Dialogue Open in Open Dialogue refers to two different but linked concepts. One is transparency. No decisions about the person in distress are made outside […]
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5:15 PM | On Open Dialogue Part 5: Human Potential
“Experience is never limited, and it is never complete; it is an immense sensibility, a kind of huge spider-web of the finest silken threads suspended in the chamber of consciousness” - Henry James
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1:36 PM | On Open Dialogue Part 1: Introduction
Open Dialogue was developed in Finland in the 1980’s for the treatment of acute mental illness, such as psychosis. It involves a consistent family/social network approach to care, in which the primary treatment is carried out via meetings involving the patient together with his/her family members and extended social network.
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8:31 AM | Risk of cancer associated with autism: small but present
Whilst understanding the power that headlines can have, alongside the way that statistics can sometimes mislead and/or be misrepresented, I don't want to shy away from the findings presented by Huey-Ling Chiang and colleagues [1] reporting that: "patients with autistic disorder have an increased risk of cancer."Curiosity often leads to trouble.Based yet again on data derived from the fantastic resource that is the Taiwan National Health Insurance database (see here for some other research […]

Chiang, H., Liu, C., Hu, Y., Chen, S., Hu, L., Shen, C., Yeh, C., Chen, T. & Gau, S. (2014). Risk of Cancer in Children, Adolescents, and Young Adults with Autistic Disorder, The Journal of Pediatrics, DOI: 10.1016/j.jpeds.2014.10.029

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December 05, 2014

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3:57 PM | Blog 3 – Diagnosis: Towards Validity and Consistency – Addiction Recovery Blog – addictionland.com
Diagnosis: Towards Validity and Consistency – Addiction Recovery Blog – addictionland.com.  
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1:27 PM | Treating Severe Anorexia Nervosa in the Community
Can treatment for severe anorexia nervosa be delivered safely in a community setting? According to a recent paper by Calum Munro and colleagues (2014, open access), the answer is yes. In 2001, a systematic review by Meads, Gold, and Burls found that inpatient treatment is not more or less effective than outpatient treatment for individuals with AN. Of course there will always be patients who will require inpatient care, but given the high cost, lack of clear efficacy, and known risks, it is […]
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1:00 PM | Brain stimulation offers hope for depression, but don’t try it at home
Today's blog is reposted from the excellent Conversation UK website. It's written by Kerrie-Anne Ho and Colleen Loo from the University of New South Wales in Australia. They provide an overview of recent research looking at the efficacy and safety of transcranial direct current stimulation for depression. The post Brain stimulation offers hope for depression, but don’t try it at home appeared first on The Mental Elf.
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11:17 AM | How Insecure Attachment Effects the Neglected Brain
Following our from our blog Is Addiction an Attachment Disorder?  we look at a videos that explains a figure in this blog by Dr Perry which shows the different levels of the brain and illustrates how brains may be affected … Continue reading →
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9:48 AM | Probiotics degrading gluten peptides?
Probiotics again on this blog?OK, consider this a micropost if you will, as I draw your attention to the paper by Duar and colleagues [1] and their study results suggested to provide: "a basis for the selection of Lactobacillus strains for probiotic applications aimed to reduce epitope-containing gluten peptides before reaching the epithelium of the small intestine of celiac patients." What the Duar findings translate into is a possible gluten peptide degrading role for certain strains of […]

Duar RM, Clark K, Patil PB, Hernández C, Brüning S, Burkey TE, Madayiputhiya N, Taylor SL & Walter J (2014). Identification and characterization of intestinal lactobacilli strains capable of degrading immunotoxic peptides present in gluten., Journal of applied microbiology, PMID: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25376327

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December 04, 2014

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9:47 AM | Gut dysbiosis in treated coeliac disease: time for a probiotic or worse?
"Our findings indicate that dysbiosis of microbiota is associated with persistent gastrointestinal symptoms in treated celiac disease patients and open new possibilities to treat this subgroup of patients."That was the summary of the paper published by Pirjo Wacklin and colleagues [1] who looked at the bacterial constitution of the duodenal microbiota [the bacteria which inhabit us] in a small group of participants diagnosed with coeliac (celiac) disease who "had been following a strict […]

Wacklin, P., Laurikka, P., Lindfors, K., Collin, P., Salmi, T., Lähdeaho, M., Saavalainen, P., Mäki, M., Mättö, J., Kurppa, K. & Kaukinen, K. (2014). Altered Duodenal Microbiota Composition in Celiac Disease Patients Suffering From Persistent Symptoms on a Long-Term Gluten-Free Diet, The American Journal of Gastroenterology, DOI: 10.1038/ajg.2014.355

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7:30 AM | Reflections on #UnderstandingPsychosis
Something a bit different today; a reflective blog from André Tomlin who has spent most of the last week discussing the new DCP #UnderstandingPsychosis report on Twitter. He considers the pros and cons of social media and what this whole discussion means for the future of the Mental Elf. The post Reflections on #UnderstandingPsychosis appeared first on The Mental Elf.

December 03, 2014

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5:11 PM | Is This the Most Misleading Image in Neuroscience?
One image has had an incalculable effect on policy around the world, but is it even remotely representative of what happens in the real world? Children who have been neglected can look forward to a more positive outlook than this image would suggest.Read More
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3:04 PM | Translating Accurate Diagnosis into Effective Treatment – Part 1 – Blog 2 for Addictionland.com
http://www.addictionland.com/blogs/entry/translating-accurate-diagnosis-into-effective-treatment-part-1 We might as well start as we want to go on…Most of my “proof of concept” PhD and other research is attempting to demonstrate that there is more to alcoholism than alcohol, more to substance addiction than substances of … Continue reading →
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9:36 AM | Autism + ADHD equals greater risk of psychiatric comorbidity?
Because the name Mu-Hong Chen (and colleagues) has appeared so, so many times on this blog with reference to the various studies originating from investigations of the Taiwan National Health Insurance Research Database, I genuinely did have to make sure that I hadn't covered one of their recent papers [1] on here previously. Actually I can't 100% confirm that I haven't already covered a further addition to their research repertoire which concluded that: "Patients with […]
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7:30 AM | Sustained smoking cessation intervention for hospitalised smokers
Sally Adams summarises a new randomised controlled trial in JAMA, which tests a sustained care intervention and post-discharge smoking cessation for hospitalised smokers. The post Sustained smoking cessation intervention for hospitalised smokers appeared first on The Mental Elf.

December 02, 2014

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1:17 PM | By Way Of Introduction – Addiction Recovery Blog – addictionland.com
  Check out my First blog on Addictionland!!  :-) By Way Of Introduction – Addiction Recovery Blog – addictionland.com.
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9:44 AM | Coenzyme Q10 and NADH supplementation for Chronic Fatigue Syndrome?
A quick post today to direct your attention to the paper by Jesus Castro-Marrero and colleagues [1] reporting results which seemed to suggest that under double-blind, placebo-controlled conditions "oral CoQ10 [Coenzyme Q10] (200 mg/day) plus NADH [nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD) + hydrogen (H)] (20 mg/day) supplementation" might have some positive effects for cases of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS). The NIH entry for the trial can be found here.I volunteer as […]

Castro-Marrero J, Cordero MD, Segundo MJ, Saez-Francas N, Calvo N, Román-Malo L, Aliste L, Fernandez de Sevilla T & Alegre-Martin J (2014). Does oral Coenzyme Q10 plus NADH supplementation improve fatigue and biochemical parameters in Chronic Fatigue Syndrome?, Antioxidants & redox signaling, PMID: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25386668

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7:30 AM | Eating disorders: how can we care for carers?
Helen Bould summarises a meta-analysis of interventions for caregivers of someone with an eating disorder, which highlights a lack of high quality primary research. The post Eating disorders: how can we care for carers? appeared first on The Mental Elf.

December 01, 2014

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9:42 AM | Cortisol and cytokines: a diagnostic tag-team for autism?
A quote from the paper by Chang-Jiang Yang and colleagues [1] begins today's post: "The results of ROC [receiver operating characteristic] analysis indicated the cortisol VAR, IL-6 and TNF-α were potential biomarkers in diagnosis of ASD [autism spectrum disorder]."With many thanks to Natasa for providing me with a copy of this paper, I'd like to discuss these 'joined up' findings a little further. A few pointers to begin with:Boot the grime of this world in the crotch, […]

Yang, C., Tan, H., Yang, F., Liu, C., Sang, B., Zhu, X. & Du, Y. (2015). The roles of cortisol and pro-inflammatory cytokines in assisting the diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder, Research in Autism Spectrum Disorders, 9 174-181. DOI: 10.1016/j.rasd.2014.10.012

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8:00 AM | New charter of rights and mandatory commissioning framework recommended by Bubb Report
The Bubb report has now been published. It recommends a new commissioning framework for services provided for people with learning disabilities and/or autism who are currently in inappropriate hospital units. Here we take a look at the recommendations and ask if it is enough to bring about the change that is so clearly needed. The post New charter of rights and mandatory commissioning framework recommended by Bubb Report appeared first on The Learning Disabilities Elf.
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