Depression Treatment: A Longitudinal Assessment of Alcohol Intake and Incident Depression: The SUN Project.

A longitudinal assessment of alcohol intake and incident depression: the SUN project.

Filed under: Depression Treatment

BMC Public Health. 2012 Nov 7; 12(1): 954
Gea A, Martinez-Gonzalez MA, Toledo E, Sanchez-Villegas A, Bes-Rastrollo M, Nuñez-Cordoba JM, Sayon-Orea C, Beunza JJ

ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: Longitudinal studies assessing the long-term association between alcohol intake and depression are scarce. The type of beverage may also be important. Therefore we aim to prospectively evaluate the influence of alcohol intake on incident depression in a Mediterranean cohort. METHODS: We assessed 13,619 university graduates (mean age: 38 years, 42% men) participating in a Spanish prospective epidemiological cohort (the SUN Project), initially free of depression. They were recruited between 1999–2008 and biennially followed-up during 2001–2010. At baseline, a 136-item validated food frequency questionnaire was used to assess alcohol intake. Wine was the preferred beverage. Participants were classified as incident cases of depression if they reported a new clinical diagnosis of depression by a physician and/or initiated the use of antidepressant drugs. Cox regression and restricted cubic splines analyses were performed over 82,926 person-years. RESULTS: Only among women, an U-shaped relationship between total alcohol intake and depression risk was found (P=0.01). Moderate alcohol intake (5–15 g/day) was associated with lower risk (Hazard Ratio: 0.62; 95% Confidence Interval: 0.43-0.89). No association was apparent for higher intakes of alcohol or for any specific type of alcoholic beverage. CONCLUSIONS: Moderate alcohol intake might protect against depression among women. Further confirmatory studies are needed.
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Persistent cognitive impairment, hippocampal atrophy and EEG changes in sepsis survivors.

Filed under: Depression Treatment

J Neurol Neurosurg Psychiatry. 2012 Nov 7;
Semmler A, Widmann CN, Okulla T, Urbach H, Kaiser M, Widman G, Mormann F, Weide J, Fliessbach K, Hoeft A, Jessen F, Putensen C, Heneka MT

OBJECTIVES: The objective of this preliminary study was to explore long-term changes in neurobehavioral parameters, brain morphology and electroencephalography of sepsis patients who received intensive care compared to non-septic intensive care unit (ICU) patients. METHODS: Two-centre follow-up study 6-24 months after discharge from hospital using published norms and existing databases of healthy controls for comparison. Patients included 25 septic and 19 non-septic ICU survivors who were recruited from two ICUs of a university and community hospital. Measurements used include brain morphology, standard electroencephalography, cognition and psychiatric health and health-related quality of life. RESULTS: Sepsis survivors showed cognitive deficits in verbal learning and memory and had a significant reduction of left hippocampal volume compared to healthy controls. Moreover, sepsis and to some extent non-septic ICU patients had more low-frequency activity in the EEG indicating unspecific brain dysfunction. No differences were found in health-related quality of life, psychological functioning or depressive symptoms, and depression could be ruled out as a confounding factor. CONCLUSIONS: This study demonstrates permanent cognitive impairment in several domains in both septic and non-septic ICU survivors and unspecific brain dysfunction. In the sepsis group, left-sided hippocampal atrophy was found compared to healthy controls. Further study is needed to clarify what contribution sepsis and other factors at the ICU make to these outcomes. Specific neuroprotective therapies are warranted to prevent persisting brain changes in ICU patients.
HubMed – depression


Beliefs about medicine and illness are associated with fear of cancer recurrence in women taking adjuvant endocrine therapy for breast cancer.

Filed under: Depression Treatment

Br J Health Psychol. 2012 Nov 8;
Corter AL, Findlay M, Broom R, Porter D, Petrie KJ

OBJECTIVES: Adjuvant endocrine therapy for early-stage breast cancer has greatly reduced the morbidity and mortality associated with breast cancer recurrence. Despite this, a significant proportion of women report fears of cancer recurrence. This study examined the associations between fear of cancer recurrence (FoR) and illness perceptions, medication beliefs, and treatment side effects in women taking adjuvant endocrine therapy following breast cancer. METHODS: A total of 153 post-menopausal women with early-stage breast cancer completed a postal survey. Analyses were conducted to examine the association between FoR and illness perceptions, medication beliefs, treatment side effects, demographic factors, and emotional distress and to identify which of these factors would be most strongly associated with FoR in a regression model. RESULTS: All illness perceptions (apart from personal control) were associated with FoR, as were patient beliefs about endocrine therapy. Although treatment side effects, being unemployed, and higher levels of anxiety and depression were associated with FoR, only illness perceptions (identity, treatment control, timeline, and emotional representation) and medication necessity beliefs were significantly correlated with FoR in the final model. CONCLUSIONS: It appears that, in addition to directly targeting FoR, it may be worthwhile to address the illness and medication beliefs supporting the fear. Additionally, helping women to differentiate everyday symptoms from those indicative of breast cancer may help to reduce fear of recurrence. STATEMENT OF CONTRIBUTION: What is already known on this subject? A significant proportion of women report fear of cancer recurrence following breast cancer. The literature shows that illness perceptions, side effects of treatment, and beliefs about medicines are related to fear of recurrence among cancer patients. However, because these variables have often been looked at in isolation, it is not clear whether some perceptions or cues are more likely to relate to fear of recurrence than others. What does this study add? This study shows illness perceptions and medication beliefs are strongly related to fears of cancer recurrence. The results point to ways in which the self-regulatory model of illness may be used to reduce patients’ fear of recurrence. The study results show that women with higher fear of recurrence may be balancing a tension between believing that they need to take the medication to protect their future health alongside concerns that the treatment may not be working.
HubMed – depression


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