Editor's picks of psychiatry stories you may have missed: A medical society raises the alarm, first-ever practice guidelines for men, new discoveries in the immunopathology of schizophrenia, and more are covered in our January roundup.
Editor's picks of psychiatry stories you may have missed: A medical society raises the alarm, first-ever practice guidelines for men, new discoveries in schizophrenia, and more are covered in our January roundup.
Schizophrenia is Associated With an Aberrant Immune Response to Epstein–Barr Virus: “Individuals with schizophrenia have increased levels of antibodies to some but not all EBV proteins indicating an aberrant response to EBV infection. This aberrant response may contribute to the immunopathology of schizophrenia and related disorders.” –Dickerson and colleagues, Schizophrenia Bulletin
A Crisis in Health Care: A Call to Action on Physician Burnout: “Burnout among the nation’s physicians has become so pervasive that a new paper published today by the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, the Harvard Global Health Institute, the Massachusetts Medical Society and Massachusetts Health and Hospital Association has deemed the condition a public health crisis. The paper includes directives aimed toward curbing the prevalence of burnout among physicians and other care providers, including the appointment of an executive-level chief wellness officer at every major health care organization, proactive mental health treatment and support for caregivers experiencing burnout, and improvements to the efficiency of electronic health records.” –Massachusetts Medical Society
Guidelines for Psychological Practice With Boys and Men [PDF]: The American Psychological Association “has issued its first-ever guidelines for practice with men and boys. They draw on more than 40 years of research showing that traditional masculinity is psychologically harmful and that socializing boys to suppress their emotions causes damage.” According to Ryon McDermott, PhD: “The clinician’s role. . . can be to encourage men to discard the harmful ideologies of traditional masculinity (violence, sexism) and find flexibility in the potentially positive aspects (courage, leadership).” –American Psychological Association
This Is the World's Biggest Mental Health Problem: “The early years of the 21st century have witnessed a worldwide epidemic of poor mental health and related illnesses. But while depression is the condition most will associate with mental health issues, and the leading cause of disability worldwide, it is not the number one mental health concern people face. That unwanted accolade goes to anxiety.” –Fleming S, World Economic Forum
Peer Victimization and Its Impact on Adolescent Brain Development and Psychopathology: “Chronic peer victimization has long-term impacts on mental health; however, the biological mediators of this adverse relationship are unknown. We sought to determine whether adolescent brain development is involved in mediating the effect of peer victimization on psychopathology . . . data suggest that the experience of chronic peer victimization during adolescence might induce psychopathology-relevant deviations from normative brain development. Early peer victimization interventions could prevent such pathological changes.” –Quinlan and colleagues, Molecular Psychiatry
Mother’s mental health after childbirth: Does the delivery method matter? A University of York study found that “unplanned caesarean deliveries carry significant psychological risks, with women who give birth through this procedure being more vulnerable to depression (by 15 percentage points when estimated using linear IV models combined with hospital fixed effects).”–Valentina Tonei, Journal of Health Economics
Residency Program Factors Associated with Depressive Symptoms in Internal Medicine Interns: Over the course of three years, Patient Health Questionnaires from a total of 1276 medical interns revealed that “Poor faculty feedback and inpatient learning experience, long work hours, and high institutional research rankings were associated with increased depressive symptoms among internal medicine interns. These factors may be potential targets for interventions to improve wellness and mental health among these professionals.” –Pereira-Lima and colleagues, Academic Medicine
Deconstructing Theory-of-Mind Impairment in High-Functioning Adults with Autism: “Using a novel ToM [theory of mind] learning task together with model-based analyses, [the authors] uncovered a specific impairment in ASD: an impairment in the ability to use an understanding of another person’s beliefs in order to learn about their intentions from observing their choices.” –Rosenthal and colleagues, Current Biology
When a Patient Dies by Suicide - The Physician’s Silent Sorrow. “What we don’t openly talk about is suicide’s toll on the doctors who have treated these patients. Death is part of life, and for many physicians it becomes a routine element of the job. Oncology patients die, trauma patients die, geriatric patients die - indeed, everybody eventually dies. In psychiatry, however, death is not a usual or expected outcome, and suicide induces the sharpest feelings of failure. We may grieve the loss of patients when they die of cancer, but when they die by suicide, it leaves us changed, sometimes even devastated.” –Dinah Miller, MD, New England Journal of Medicine