Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 7

Mental Disorders Related Abstracts

7 Genetic Counseling for Severe Mental Disorders. Integrating Innovative Services and Prophylactic Interventions in an Online Platform - MENTALICA

Authors: Ramona Moldovan, Doina Cosman, Sebastian Moldovan, Radu Popp, Victor Pop


MENTALICA is a project aimed at developing and evaluating a platform that can assist individuals diagnosed with severe mental disorders and their families in managing the consequences associated with severe mental disorders, recurrence risks, prevention strategies and treatment options. MENTALICA is a platform based on guidance issued by some of the most prominent scientific organizations in the world. In order to personalize the information provided, the program explores details about the personal and family history of mental disorders. MENTALICA summarizes the answers and gives respondents a personal assessment. This includes personalized information and support about schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and schizoaffective disorder. MENTALICA includes several modules: Family history tools, Risk assessment tools and Risk factor sheets, Practical guides for patients, Practical guides for families, Guidelines for clinicians. Currently, there are no available guidelines for genetic counselling for mental disorders. Respondents can print out their reports and discuss them with family members or their doctors. We will briefly present the current status of MENTALICA and its implications for patients, professionals and the community.

Keywords: Platform, Genetic Counseling, Mental Disorders

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6 Heat Waves and Hospital Admissions for Mental Disorders in Hanoi Vietnam

Authors: Phan Minh Trang, Joacim Rocklöv, Kim Bao Giang, Gunnar Kullgren, Maria Nilsson


There are recent studies from high income countries reporting an association between heat waves and hospital admissions for mental health disorders. It is not previously studied if such relations exist in sub-tropical and tropical low- and middle-income countries. In this study from Vietnam, the assumption was that hospital admissions for mental disorders may be triggered, or exacerbated, by heat exposure and heat waves. A database from Hanoi Mental Hospital with mental disorders diagnosed by the International Classification of Diseases 10, spanning over five years, was used to estimate the heatwave-related impacts on admissions for mental disorders. The relationship was analysed by a Negative Binomial regression model accounting for year, month, and days of week. The focus of the study was heat-wave events with periods of three or seven consecutive days above the threshold of 35oC daily maximum temperature. The preliminary study results indicated that heat-waves increased the risks for hospital admission for mental disorders (F00-79) from heat-waves of three and seven days with relative risks (RRs) of 1.16 (1.01–1.33) and 1.42 (1.02–1.99) respectively, when compared with non-heat-wave periods. Heatwave-related admissions for mental disorders increased statistically significantly among men, among residents in rural communities and in elderly. Moreover, cases for organic mental disorders including symptomatic illnesses (F0-9) and mental retardation (F70-79) raised in high risks during heat waves. The findings are novel studying a sub-tropical middle-income city, facing rapid urbanisation and epidemiological and demographic transitions.

Keywords: Mental Disorders, admissions for F0-9 or F70-79, maximum temperature, heat waves

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5 Decoding Mental Disorders: The Value of Practical Experience in Perceptions of Autism Spectrum Disorder

Authors: Ryan Tehini


The purpose of this paper is to explore the value of practical experience with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) as a microcosm of mental disorders, in psychology students’ attempt to fully understand it in all of its intricacies. The study follows a one-year program where students of psychology volunteer at a school for Autistic children of ages 3-18. The individual levels of experience with, and theoretical understanding of, ASD varies measurably amongst the volunteers; these volunteers are then intermittently interviewed, observed and surveyed throughout the program in order to determine any decline or growth in their understanding of Autism Spectrum Disorder. A panel of professionals all of whom are active in the world of ASD (headmasters of Autistic schools, psychologists, child development specialists, special needs teachers, parents of autistic children and Occupational Therapists) were used specifically for this study, in order to develop the guideline for understanding ASD that will be used comparatively against the information gained from the volunteers in order to establish the individual results. The paper concludes by illustrating how psychology has a responsibility to the community to understand disorders past what is academic and theoretical, and how increasing student experience with a disorder can aid in a more holistic psychological approach to mental disorders in the future.

Keywords: Psychology, autism, Mental Disorders, practical experience

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4 Mental Disorders and Physical Illness in Geriatric Population

Authors: Vinay Kumar, M. Kishor, Sathyanarayana Rao Ts


Background: Growth of elderly people in the general population in recent years is termed as ‘greying of the world’ where there is a shift from high mortality & fertility to low mortality and fertility, resulting in an increased proportion of older people as seen in India. Improved health care promises longevity but socio-economic factors like poverty, joint families and poor services pose a psychological threat. Epidemiological data regarding the prevalence of mental disorders in geriatric population with physical illness is required for proper health planning. Methods: Sixty consecutive elderly patients aged 60 years or above of both sexes, reporting with physical illness to general outpatient registration counter of JSS Medical College and Hospital, Mysore, India, were considered for the Study. With informed consent, they were screened with General Health Questionnaire (GHQ-12) and were further evaluated for diagnosing mental disorders according to WHO International Classification of Diseases (ICD-10) criteria. Results: Mental disorders were detected in 48.3%, predominantly depressive disorders, nicotine dependence, generalized anxiety disorder, alcohol dependence and least was dementia. Most common physical illness was cardiovascular disease followed by metabolic, respiratory and other diseases. Depressive disorders, substance dependence and dementia were more associated with cardiovascular disease compared to metabolic disease and respiratory diseases were more associated with nicotine dependence. Conclusions: Depression and Substance use disorders among elderly population is of concern, which needs to be further studied with larger population. Psychiatric morbidity will adversely have an impact on physical illness which needs proper assessment and management. This will enhance our understanding and prioritize our planning for future.

Keywords: Psychiatry, Mental Disorders, Geriatric, physical illness

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3 Association between Hypertensive Disorders of Pregnancy and the Development of Offspring Mental and Behavioural Problems: Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis

Authors: Abdullah Mamun, Berihun Dachew, Joemer Maravilla, Rosa Alati


Background: Hypertensive disorders of pregnancy are a major cause of maternal and childhood morbidity and mortality worldwide. However, its effect on offspring mental and behavioural disorders is unclear. Aims:The aim of this study was to provide the best scientific evidence regarding the association between hypertensive disorders of pregnancy and offspring mental and behavioural problems. Methods: We systematically searched Scopus, PubMed, Cochrane, EMBASE, CINAH and PsycINFO databases. A total of 23 studies (11 included in meta-analysis) were identified. A qualitative analysis was conducted by summarizing, comparing, and contrasting the abstracted data for all included studies. For quantitative analysis, relative risk (RR) with 95% confidence interval (95% CI) was used as pooled effect size. Heterogeneity was assessed by measuring Cochran’s Q and I2 test statistics. Results: Of the 23 studies included in this review, 15 studies found that hypertensive disorders of pregnancy had a negative impact for at least one mental or behavioural problem. The pooled effect of 11 studies included in the meta-analysis showed that preeclampsia was associated with increased risk of offspring schizophrenia (RR=1.37; 95% CI, 1.08-1.72). Conclusions: Intrauterine exposure to pre-eclampsia increased the risk of schizophrenia among offspring. However, we found inconclusive finding on the effect of hypertensive disorders of pregnancy and other mental and behavioural problems. Further high quality, large sample, mother child cohort studies are needed to further progress this area of research.

Keywords: Mental Disorders, offspring, behavioural disorders, hypertensive disorders of pregnancy

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2 The Social Aspects of Mental Illness among Orthodox Christians of the Tigrinya Ethnic Group in Eritrea

Authors: Erimias Firre


This study is situated within the religio-cultural milieu of Coptic Orthodox Christians of the Tigrinya ethnic group in Eritrea. With this ethnic group being conservative and traditionally bound, extended family structures dissected along various clans and expansive community networks are the distinguishing mark of its members. Notably, Coptic Tigrinya constitutes the largest percentage of all Christian denominations in Eritrea. As religious, cultural beliefs, rituals and teachings permeate in all aspects of social life, a distinct worldview and traditionalized health and illness conceptualization are common. Accordingly, this study argues that religio-culturally bound illness ideologies immensely determine the perception, help seeking behavior and healing preference of Coptic Tigrinya in Eritrea. The study bears significance in the sense that it bridges an important knowledge gap, given that it is ethno-linguistically (within the Tigrinya ethnic group), spatially (central region of Eritrea) and religiously (Coptic Christianity) specific. The conceptual framework guiding this research centered on the social determinants of mental health, and explores through the lens of critical theory how existing systems generate social vulnerability and structural inequality, providing a platform to reveal how the psychosocial model has the capacity to emancipate and empower those with mental disorders to live productive and meaningful lives. A case study approach was employed to explore the interrelationship between religio-cultural beliefs and practices and perception of common mental disorders of depression, anxiety, bipolar affective, schizophrenia and post-traumatic stress disorders and the impact of these perceptions on people with those mental disorders. Purposive sampling was used to recruit 41 participants representing seven diverse cohorts; people with common mental disorders, family caregivers, general community members, ex-fighters , priests, staff at St. Mary’s and Biet-Mekae Community Health Center; resulting in rich data for thematic analysis. Findings highlighted current religio-cultural perceptions, causes and treatment of mental disorders among Coptic Tigrinya result in widespread labelling, stigma and discrimination, both of those with mental disorders and their families. Traditional healing sources are almost exclusively tried, sometimes for many years, before families and sufferers seek formal medical assessment and treatment, resulting difficult to treat illness chronicity. Service gaps in the formal medical system result in the inability to meet the principles enshrined in the WHO Mental Health Action Plan 2013-2020 to which the Eritrean Government is a signatory. However, the study found that across all participant cohorts, there was a desire for change that will create a culture whereby those with mental disorders will have restored hope, connectedness, healing and self-determination.

Keywords: Mental Disorders, traditional healing, Coptic Tigrinya, psychosocial model social integration and recovery

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1 The Economic Burden of Mental Disorders: A Systematic Review

Authors: Maria Klitgaard Christensen, Carmen Lim, Sukanta Saha, Danielle Cannon, Finley Prentis, Oleguer Plana-Ripoll, Natalie Momen, Kim Moesgaard Iburg, John J. McGrath


Introduction: About a third of the world’s population will develop a mental disorder over their lifetime. Having a mental disorder is a huge burden in health loss and cost for the individual, but also for society because of treatment cost, production loss and caregivers’ cost. The objective of this study is to synthesize the international published literature on the economic burden of mental disorders. Methods: Systematic literature searches were conducted in the databases PubMed, Embase, Web of Science, EconLit, NHS York Database and PsychInfo using key terms for cost and mental disorders. Searches were restricted to 1980 until May 2019. The inclusion criteria were: (1) cost-of-illness studies or cost-analyses, (2) diagnosis of at least one mental disorder, (3) samples based on the general population, and (4) outcome in monetary units. 13,640 publications were screened by their title/abstract and 439 articles were full-text screened by at least two independent reviewers. 112 articles were included from the systematic searches and 31 articles from snowball searching, giving a total of 143 included articles. Results: Information about diagnosis, diagnostic criteria, sample size, age, sex, data sources, study perspective, study period, costing approach, cost categories, discount rate and production loss method and cost unit was extracted. The vast majority of the included studies were from Western countries and only a few from Africa and South America. The disorder group most often investigated was mood disorders, followed by schizophrenia and neurotic disorders. The disorder group least examined was intellectual disabilities, followed by eating disorders. The preliminary results show a substantial variety in the used perspective, methodology, costs components and outcomes in the included studies. An online tool is under development enabling the reader to explore the published information on costs by type of mental disorder, subgroups, country, methodology, and study quality. Discussion: This is the first systematic review synthesizing the economic cost of mental disorders worldwide. The paper will provide an important and comprehensive overview over the economic burden of mental disorders, and the output from this review will inform policymaking.

Keywords: Health Economics, Cost-of-illness, Mental Disorders, systematic review

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