Here are what the editors at HealthDay consider to be the most important developments in Psychiatry for December 2009. 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.
Psychotropic Medications Linked to Pregnancy Outcomes
THURSDAY, Dec. 31 (HealthDay News) -- In pregnant women, the use of psychotropic medications, especially benzodiazepines, is associated with adverse perinatal outcomes, according to a study in the December issue of the American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology.
Antidepressants Reduce Odds of Suicidal Teens' Readmission
THURSDAY, Dec. 31 (HealthDay News) -- Suicidal adolescents who are prescribed an antidepressant medication on discharge from the hospital are far less likely to be readmitted than those who are not given the drug, but patients who leave with three or more drugs from different drug classes are more likely to end up back in the hospital, according to a retrospective cohort study published in the December issue of The Annals of Pharmacotherapy.
Family Medical History Sharing With Adopters Debated
WEDNESDAY, Dec. 30 (HealthDay News) -- More specific adoption guidelines on the sharing of family medical history information with adoptive parents are needed to ensure the welfare of the adoptee and family medical record confidentiality, according to a study in the January issue of the Archives of Disease in Childhood.
Ginkgo biloba May Not Reduce Cognitive Decline in Adults
TUESDAY, Dec. 29 (HealthDay News) -- Ginkgo biloba, an herbal extract used to prevent memory loss and cognitive decline, was not effective in reducing the incidence of cognitive decline in individuals 72 to 96 years of age with normal brain function or mild cognitive impairment, according to the Ginkgo Evaluation of Memory study published in the Dec. 23/30 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.
Longer Maternity Leave Found Beneficial for Working Mothers
FRIDAY, Dec. 25 (HealthDay News) -- Female urologists who take nine weeks or more of maternity leave are more likely to report satisfaction with leave arrangements than their counterparts who take less time off; however, they often take a shorter postnatal break due to financial and peer-group pressures, according to a study in the January issue of The Journal of Urology.
Pruritic Symptoms Linked to Psychological Stress
FRIDAY, Dec. 25 (HealthDay News) -- In the general population, frequency of pruritic symptoms is strongly associated with psychological stress, according to a study in the December issue of the Archives of Dermatology.
Drug Treatments Compared in Bipolar Disorder
WEDNESDAY, Dec. 23 (HealthDay News) -- Bipolar disorder patients are less likely to have a relapse if they take lithium monotherapy or lithium combined with valproate than if they take valproate alone, but there is no evidence to support the use of combination therapy over lithium alone, according to a study published online Dec. 23 in The Lancet.
Study Evaluates Postnatal Depression Screening
WEDNESDAY, Dec. 23 (HealthDay News) -- Routine screening for postnatal depression is not cost-effective, largely because of the expense incurred in treating women with an incorrect postnatal depression diagnosis, according to a study published online Dec. 22 in BMJ.
Omega-3 Fatty Acids May Help Brain Cope With Overload
WEDNESDAY, Dec. 23 (HealthDay News) -- Low intake of omega-3 fatty acids may reduce the brain's ability to handle sensory overload, which could explain some of the symptoms seen in conditions such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and attention-deficit disorder, according to an animal study published in the December issue of Behavioral Neuroscience.
Policy Statement Addresses Child Abuse, Neglect Issues
MONDAY, Dec. 21 (HealthDay News) -- Pediatricians should be aware of their legal rights and responsibilities when child abuse or neglect is suspected in a clinical setting, according to an American Academy of Pediatrics policy statement published online Dec. 21 in Pediatrics.
Prenatal Aspirin Not Linked to Adverse Infant Outcomes
MONDAY, Dec. 21 (HealthDay News) -- Among infants born preterm, low-dose aspirin (LDA) during pregnancy is not associated with fetal or infant deaths, infant cerebral damage, or brain development disorders, according to research published online Dec. 21 in Pediatrics.
Parents Not Stressed by Child's Genetic Risk for Diabetes
MONDAY, Dec. 21 (HealthDay News) -- Parents of children with diabetes-associated autoantibodies did not report an increased level of stress until there was an actual diabetes diagnosis, according to a study in the December issue of Diabetes Care.
Many Support Screening Newborns for More Disorders
MONDAY, Dec. 21 (HealthDay News) -- Most prospective Dutch parents favor adding childhood-onset disorders to the national newborn screening program even if they're untreatable, according to research published online Dec. 21 in Pediatrics.
Antidepressants Not Found to Increase Heart Risk
FRIDAY, Dec. 18 (HealthDay News) -- Postmenopausal women taking antidepressants, whether they are tricyclic medications or selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), are not at increased risk of coronary heart disease compared to their counterparts not taking the drugs, but there is a modestly higher risk of mortality and stroke, according to a study in the Dec. 14/28 issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine.
Twins' Academic Success and Classroom Situation Studied
FRIDAY, Dec. 18 (HealthDay News) -- In twin children, sharing or not sharing classrooms during primary school years does not affect academic achievement, according to a study in the January issue of the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health.
Work-Related Stress May Raise Women's Diabetes Risk
THURSDAY, Dec. 17 (HealthDay News) -- Middle-aged women who are under psychosocial stress at work have a higher risk of developing diabetes than their non-stressed counterparts, according to a study in the December issue of Diabetes Care.
Personality Traits May Predict Medical School Success
WEDNESDAY, Dec. 16 (HealthDay News) -- During medical school, personality traits such as extraversion, openness and conscientiousness are increasingly predictive of academic success, according to a study in the November issue of the Journal of Applied Psychology.
Combination Therapies Prove Best to Help Smokers Quit
WEDNESDAY, Dec. 16 (HealthDay News) -- Combination pharmacotherapies offered in the primary care setting are more effective than monotherapies in helping smokers quit, according to a study published in the Dec. 14/28 issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine.
Tarenflurbil Not Found to Reduce Declines in Alzheimer's
TUESDAY, Dec. 15 (HealthDay News) -- Tarenflurbil, an amyloid-β-lowering treatment, isnt associated with reduced cognitive decline or functional loss in patients with mild Alzheimer's disease, according to research published in the Dec. 16 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.
Leptin Linked to Lower Risk of Alzheimer's Disease
TUESDAY, Dec. 15 (HealthDay News) -- Older adults with higher leptin levels may have a lower risk of Alzheimer's disease and dementia in general, according to research published in the Dec. 16 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.
Spiritual Care Often Benefits Terminally Ill Cancer Patients
TUESDAY, Dec. 15 (HealthDay News) -- In terminally ill cancer patients, adequate spiritual support is associated with an increased usage of hospice care and an improved quality of life, according to a study published online Dec. 14 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.
Physicians Aware of Choking Game; Few Treat in Practice
MONDAY, Dec. 14 (HealthDay News) -- Nearly two-thirds of physicians surveyed were aware of the choking game, an activity typically played by children and teenagers that has been linked to numerous fatalities in recent years, but a small percentage discussed it with adolescent patients, according to research published online Dec. 14 in Pediatrics.
Diverse Reasons Cited for Skipping Diabetes, Pain Meds
MONDAY, Dec. 14 (HealthDay News) -- Financial pressures may cause patients who take both pain and diabetes medications to forgo both, but those who selectively cut out only diabetes medications often do so because of depression or negative beliefs about the medications, according to a study in the December issue of Diabetes Care.
Part-Time Work Increasingly Common for Pediatricians
MONDAY, Dec. 14 (HealthDay News) -- Pediatricians are increasingly working part time, a trend which may keep experienced pediatricians in active practice longer, according to a pair of studies published online Dec. 14 in Pediatrics.
Urinary Symptoms Tied to Psychiatric Issues in Women
FRIDAY, Dec. 11 (HealthDay News) -- Female veterans who have lower urinary tract symptoms (LUTS) have high rates of psychiatric comorbidity and history of sexual trauma compared to women in the general population, according to a study in the December issue of The Journal of Urology.
Patients Often Lack Knowledge of Their Own Medications
THURSDAY, Dec. 10 (HealthDay News) -- Patients routinely under-report, or even over-report, their outpatient and inpatient medications, and should be included in hospital medication management to improve safety, according to a study published online Dec. 10 in the Journal of Hospital Medicine.
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Helps Elders With Depression
THURSDAY, Dec. 10 (HealthDay News) -- Elderly patients with depression respond well to cognitive behavioral therapy, and such counseling is more helpful than talking to a warm and empathic listener, according to a study in the December issue of the Archives of General Psychiatry.
Blood Lead Levels Associated With Risk of Depression
THURSDAY, Dec. 10 (HealthDay News) -- Young adults in populations with low levels of environmental exposure to lead are at increased risk of depression and panic disorders if they have higher levels of blood lead, according to a study in the December issue of the Archives of General Psychiatry.
Internet-Addicted Teens More Likely to Harm Themselves
WEDNESDAY, Dec. 9 (HealthDay News) -- Adolescents who are addicted to the Internet may be more likely to harm themselves as compared to their counterparts without Internet addiction, according to a study in the December issue of Injury Prevention.
Anti-Epileptic Drugs Found Safe to Treat Bipolar Disorder
WEDNESDAY, Dec. 9 (HealthDay News) -- The risk of suicidality among bipolar disorder patients treated with anti-epileptic drugs does not increase relative to those taking lithium or no drugs, according to a study published in the December issue of the Archives of General Psychiatry.
Bruising Pattern Can Predict Likelihood of Child Abuse
TUESDAY, Dec. 8 (HealthDay News) -- Bruising characteristics based on age can be used to predict whether a child's injuries are likely to be due to physical abuse or an accident, according to a study published online Dec. 7 in Pediatrics.
Depression Linked to Poorer Spinal Surgery Outcomes
MONDAY, Dec. 7 (HealthDay News) Lumbar spinal stenosis (LSS) patients who undergo decompressive surgery are more likely to report poorer outcomes from surgery if they were suffering from depression prior to surgery or in the early stages of recovery, according to a study in the Nov. 1 issue of Spine.
Children's Sexual Debut Often Precedes Parental Discussion
MONDAY, Dec. 7 (HealthDay News) -- Parents do discuss sexual matters with their children, but topics such as birth control and partner condom refusal are often brought up after the child's sexual debut, according to a study published online Dec. 7 in Pediatrics.
Decision Aid Can Increase Tamoxifen Awareness
MONDAY, Dec. 7 (HealthDay News) -- Among women at high risk of breast cancer, a state-of-the-art decision aid increases knowledge about tamoxifen prophylaxis but does not increase willingness to initiate therapy, according to a study published online Nov. 12 in Breast Cancer Research and Treatment.
Study Calls Coverage of Antidepressants Insufficient
MONDAY, Dec. 7 (HealthDay News) -- The news media often failed to convey important health messages regarding pediatric antidepressants after the U.S. Food and Drug Administration warned of an increased suicidality risk in children taking the drugs, according to a study published online Dec. 7 in Pediatrics.
New Cervical Spine Surgery Protocol May Reduce Delirium
FRIDAY, Dec. 4 (HealthDay News) -- A modified perioperative protocol for elderly patients undergoing cervical spine surgery that involves early commencement of mobilization, resumption of normal circadian rhythm, and reduction or avoidance of methylprednisolone may reduce postoperative delirium risk, according to a Japanese study published in the Nov. 1 issue of Spine.
Study Tracks Prevalence of Down Syndrome in America
FRIDAY, Dec. 4 (HealthDay News) -- In several regions across the country, one in 971 children and adolescents had Down syndrome in 2002, according to research assessing the prevalence of the condition published in the December issue of Pediatrics.
Beta 2 Adrenergic Agonist Use During Pregnancy Examined
FRIDAY, Dec. 4 (HealthDay News) -- The use of beta 2 adrenergic agonist medications in pregnancy can disrupt the fetus's sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous system activity, possibly resulting in autism spectrum disorders, poor cognition, impaired motor function, psychiatric problems, high blood pressure and poor school performance, according to a review published in the December issue of the American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology.
End-of-Life Video May Change Preferences of Cancer Patients
THURSDAY, Dec. 3 (HealthDay News) -- Patients with advanced cancer who watch a video with end-of-life options after a verbal description of those options are more likely to prefer symptom relief and avoid life-prolonging care such as cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) compared with patients who only receive the verbal description, according to a study published online Nov. 30 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.
Ecstasy Identified as Risk Factor for Sleep Apnea
THURSDAY, Dec. 3 (HealthDay News) -- The use of MDMA, commonly known as ecstasy, is associated with a higher risk of sleep apnea in young adults, according to research published online Dec. 2 in Neurology.
Patient Participation Affects Medical Decision Making
TUESDAY, Dec. 1 (HealthDay News) -- Patients with increased responsibility for medical decision making may be less likely to accept risky treatment options, according to a study in the Dec. 15 issue of Arthritis Care & Research.
Women Researchers Lag Behind Men in Grant Awards
TUESDAY, Dec. 1 (HealthDay News) -- Female physicians with a proven interest in research are less likely to receive prestigious research grants from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) than are male physicians, according to a study in the Dec. 1 issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine.
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