August 2006 Briefing - Psychiatry

Here are what the editors at HealthDay consider to be the most important developments in Psychiatry for August 2006. This roundup includes the latest research news from journal articles, as well as the FDA approvals and regulatory changes that are the most likely to affect clinical practice.

Mania in HIV-Positive Individuals Clinically Distinct

THURSDAY, Aug. 31 (HealthDay News) -- HIV-positive individuals from sub-Saharan Africa presenting with mania tend to be older, female, of lower socioeconomic status, have more manic symptoms and have lower CD4 counts than HIV-negative individuals with mania, according to a study in the August issue of the American Journal of Psychiatry.

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Cognitive Dysfunction Tied to Poor Diabetes Control in Elderly

WEDNESDAY, Aug. 30 (HealthDay News) -- Older diabetic patients have an increased risk of developing undiagnosed cognitive dysfunction, depression and various functional disabilities that are associated with poor diabetes control, according to a report in the August issue of Diabetes Care.

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Early Neurologic Symptoms Can Forecast Tardive Dyskinesia

WEDNESDAY, Aug. 30 (HealthDay News) -- Extrapyramidal symptoms induced by antipsychotic drugs could forecast tardive dyskinesia in about 50 percent of schizophrenics, researchers report in the August issue of the American Journal of Psychiatry.

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Neurotransmitter Levels Predict Post-Traumatic Stress

TUESDAY, Aug. 29 (HealthDay News) -- Blood levels of the neurotransmitter gamma-aminobutyric acid, or GABA, in trauma patients may predict the development of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), according to the results of a study of car-accident victims published in the August issue of the American Journal of Psychiatry.

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Longer Work Hours Can Be a Risk Factor for Hypertension

TUESDAY, Aug. 29 (HealthDay News -- Working for more than 51 hours a week increases the likelihood of self-reported hypertension by almost one-third compared with those who put in 11 to 39 hours per week, according to a study published online Aug. 28 in Hypertension.

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Sleep and Health Often Disrupted in Depressed Elders

MONDAY, Aug. 28 (HealthDay News) -- Older adults with a history of depression are more likely to show impairments in sleep quality and health functioning, according to a study published in the August issue of the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society.

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Five Percent of Violent Crimes Caused by Severely Mentally Ill

MONDAY, Aug. 28 (HealthDay News) -- Patients with severe mental illnesses may commit as many as one in 20 violent crimes, although the criminals vary by gender and age, according to a report in the August issue of the American Journal of Psychiatry.

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Brain Chemical Increases Anxiety, Reduces Depression

THURSDAY, Aug. 24 (HealthDay News) -- Transgenic brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) over-expression increases anxiety, which may be mediated by increased spine density in the amygdala. But it also reduces depression, according to an animal study published online Aug. 21 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences Early Edition.

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Lifestyle Benefits Seen From Sinus Rhythm Restoration

WEDNESDAY, Aug. 23 (HealthDay News) -- While restoration and maintenance of sinus rhythm may not confer survival benefits in patients with persistent atrial fibrillation, it does improve exercise performance and quality of life, according to a study published in the Aug. 15 issue of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

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Hypnotherapy May Help Alopecia Areata Patients

MONDAY, Aug. 21 (HealthDay News) -- Hypnotherapy may help relieve anxiety and depression as well as promote hair growth in patients with alopecia areata who are refractory to conventional treatments. However relapses do occur after treatment is stopped, according to a report in the August issue of the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology.

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Childhood Cancer Survivors at Risk for Suicide Ideation

MONDAY, Aug. 21 (HealthDay News) -- Suicidal ideation and attempts occur in a significant minority of adult childhood cancer survivors, and are related to both treatment type and post-treatment mental and physical health, according to a report in the Aug. 20 issue of the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Rate of Post-Traumatic Stress Among Vietnam Vets Revised

FRIDAY, Aug. 18 (HealthDay News) -- A reassessment of rates of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) among Vietnam veterans suggests that the lifetime rate of war-related PTSD is 18.7 percent, in between previous estimates of 30.9 percent and 14.7 percent, according to a report in the Aug. 18 issue of Science.

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Watching TV Has Analgesic Effect in Children

FRIDAY, Aug. 18 (HealthDay News) -- Watching TV is a better analgesic for children undergoing venipuncture than active distraction by mothers, according to a study published online Aug. 18 in the Archives of Disease in Childhood.

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Lower Overall Mortality Seen in Breast-Implant Patients

WEDNESDAY, Aug. 16 (HealthDay News) -- Women with breast implants have lower overall mortality but higher suicide rates compared to the general population, according to the results of a study published in the Aug. 15 issue of the American Journal of Epidemiology.

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Never-Married People Tend to Die Earlier Than Others

MONDAY, Aug. 14 (HealthDay News) -- People who have never been married are more likely to have premature mortality compared with married people, with a nearly fivefold higher risk of dying from infection, according to a study in the September issue of the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health.

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FDA Approves First Generic Version of Effexor

FRIDAY, Aug. 11 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has granted approval to TEVA Pharmaceuticals USA to manufacture a generic version of Effexor (venlafaxine), which is widely used in the treatment of major depressive disorder.

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Acute Stress May Exacerbate Ulcerative Colitis

WEDNESDAY, Aug. 9 (HealthDay News) -- Patients with ulcerative colitis may experience a flare-up or exacerbation of symptoms when subjected to acute stress, according to a study published in the August issue of Gastroenterology.

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Program Delays Eating Disorders in Some Women

TUESDAY, Aug. 8 (HealthDay News) -- An Internet-based, cognitive-behavioral intervention can significantly reduce the onset of eating disorders in certain high-risk college-age women, according to a study in the August issue of the Archives of General Psychiatry.

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Children on Antidepressants More Likely to Attempt Suicide

TUESDAY, Aug. 8 (HealthDay News) -- Children and teens, but not adults, who take antidepressants are more likely to attempt and complete suicide, concludes a new study in the August issue of the Archives of General Psychiatry. The findings support a recent U.S. Food and Drug Administration warning about risk of suicide among children and teens taking antidepressants.

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Family Critics Take Toll on Weight-Conscious Women

TUESDAY, Aug. 8 (HealthDay News) -- Criticism about weight gain from family members can have long-lasting, negative emotional effects on college-aged women already concerned about their weight, according to a report in the August issue of Pediatrics.

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Ketamine Infusion Can Relieve Depression in Two Hours

MONDAY, Aug. 7 (HealthDay News) -- A single infusion of the anesthetic ketamine, an N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) antagonist, can relieve the symptoms of treatment-resistant, major depression within two hours and the effect may last up to a week, according to the results of a randomized study published in the August issue of the Archives of General Psychiatry.

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Socially Isolated Children May Become Unhealthy Adults

MONDAY, Aug. 7 (HealthDay News) -- People who are socially isolated as children have a more than twofold higher risk of being unhealthy as young adults, even after taking into account established risk factors and unhealthy behaviors, according to a study in the August issue of Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine.

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New Fathers Also at Risk for Postpartum Depression

MONDAY, Aug. 7 (HealthDay News) -- Many new fathers join new mothers in experiencing postpartum depression, according to a report in the August issue of Pediatrics. The depression can affect both the health of the parent and interactions with their child.

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Variations in Oligodendrocyte Gene Linked to Schizophrenia

MONDAY, Aug. 7 (HealthDay News) -- Variations in the oligodendrocyte lineage transcription factor 2 (OLIG2) gene, which encodes a transcription factor responsible for oligodendrocyte development, are associated with schizophrenia, according to a report published online August 4 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences Early Edition.

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Violent Video Games Desensitize to Real Violence

FRIDAY, Aug. 4 (HealthDay News) -- Playing violent video games for as little as 20 minutes can desensitize people to real-life violence, according to a report published online July 17 in the Journal of Experimental Social Psychology.

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Citalopram May Improve Irritable Bowel Symptoms

FRIDAY, Aug. 4 (HealthDay News) -- The selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) citalopram may improve symptoms in patients with irritable bowel syndrome, according to the results of a small, controlled crossover study published in the August issue of the journal Gut.

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Domestic Violence Screening Accuracy Varies by Method

WEDNESDAY, Aug. 2 (HealthDay News) -- Screening methods for intimate partner violence vary by accuracy, completeness and acceptability, according to a report published in the Aug. 2 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association. Participants were least accepting of the face-to-face approach.

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Veterans of Iraq War at Risk for Neuropsychological Issues

TUESDAY, Aug. 1 (HealthDay News) -- U.S. veterans of Operation Iraqi Freedom are more likely to show at least transient signs of attention deficit, memory problems, confusion and tension compared with their counterparts who were not sent to Iraq, according to the results of a study published in the Aug. 2 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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PTSD, Depression, Anxiety Seen Among Tsunami Survivors

TUESDAY, Aug. 1 (HealthDay News) -- Adults and children who survived the December 2004 tsunami in Thailand are likely to experience post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depression and anxiety, according to two new studies in the Aug. 2 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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