Neurological Soft Signs in Individuals With Pathological Gambling.

Neurological Soft Signs in Individuals with Pathological Gambling.

PLoS One. 2013; 8(4): e60885
Elman I, Gurvits TV, Tschibelu E, Spring JD, Lasko NB, Pitman RK

Increased neurological soft signs (NSSs) have been found in a number of neuropsychiatric syndromes, including chemical addiction. The present study examined NSSs related to perceptual-motor and visuospatial processing in a behavioral addiction viz., pathological gambling (PG). As compared to mentally healthy individuals, pathological gamblers displayed significantly poorer ability to copy two- and three-dimensional figures, to recognize objects against a background noise, and to orient in space on a road-map test. Results indicated that PG is associated with subtle cerebral cortical abnormalities. Further prospective clinical research is needed to address the NSSs’ origin and chronology (e.g., predate or follow the development of PG) as well as their response to therapeutic interventions and/or their ability to predict such a response. HubMed – addiction


Cost of Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder Diagnosis in Canada.

PLoS One. 2013; 8(4): e60434
Popova S, Lange S, Burd L, Chudley AE, Clarren SK, Rehm J

Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) is underdiagnosed in Canada. The diagnosis of FASD is not simple and currently, the recommendation is that a comprehensive, multidisciplinary assessment of the individual be done. The purpose of this study was to estimate the annual cost of FASD diagnosis on Canadian society.The diagnostic process breakdown was based on recommendations from the Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder Canadian Guidelines for Diagnosis. The per person cost of diagnosis was calculated based on the number of hours (estimated based on expert opinion) required by each specialist involved in the diagnostic process. The average rate per hour for each respective specialist was estimated based on hourly costs across Canada. Based on the existing clinical capacity of all FASD multidisciplinary clinics in Canada, obtained from the 2005 and 2011 surveys conducted by the Canada Northwest FASD Research Network, the number of FASD cases diagnosed per year in Canada was estimated. The per person cost of FASD diagnosis was then applied to the number of cases diagnosed per year in Canada in order to calculated the overall annual cost.Using the most conservative approach, it was estimated that an FASD evaluation requires 32 to 47 hours for one individual to be screened, referred, admitted, and diagnosed with an FASD diagnosis, which results in a total cost of $ 3,110 to $ 4,570 per person. The total cost of FASD diagnostic services in Canada ranges from $ 3.6 to $ 5.2 million (lower estimate), up to $ 5.0 to $ 7.3 million (upper estimate) per year.As a result of using the most conservative approach, the cost of FASD diagnostic services presented in the current study is most likely underestimated. The reasons for this likelihood and the limitations of the study are discussed. HubMed – addiction


Increased Prefrontal and Parahippocampal Activation with Reduced Dorsolateral Prefrontal and Insular Cortex Activation to Food Images in Obesity: A Meta-Analysis of fMRI Studies.

PLoS One. 2013; 8(4): e60393
Brooks SJ, Cedernaes J, Schiöth HB

Obesity is emerging as the most significant health concern of the twenty-first century. A wealth of neuroimaging data suggest that weight gain might be related to aberrant brain function, particularly in prefrontal cortical regions modulating mesolimbic addictive responses to food. Nevertheless, food addiction is currently a model hotly debated. Here, we conduct a meta-analysis of neuroimaging data, examining the most common functional differences between normal-weight and obese participants in response to food stimuli.We conducted a search using several journal databases and adhered to the ‘Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-analyses’ (PRISMA) method. To this aim, 10 studies were found with a total of 126 obese participants, 129 healthy controls, equaling 184 foci (146 increased, 38 decreased activation) using the Activation Likelihood Estimation (ALE) technique. Out of the 10 studies, 7 investigated neural responses to food versus non-food images.In response to food images, obese in comparison to healthy weight subjects had increased activation in the left dorsomedial prefrontal cortex, right parahippocampal gyrus, right precentral gyrus and right anterior cingulate cortex, and reduced activation in the left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex and left insular cortex.Prefrontal cortex areas linked to cognitive evaluation processes, such as evaluation of rewarding stimuli, as well as explicit memory regions, appear most consistently activated in response to images of food in those who are obese. Conversely, a reduced activation in brain regions associated with cognitive control and interoceptive awareness of sensations in the body might indicate a weakened control system, combined with hypo-sensitivity to satiety and discomfort signals after eating in those who are prone to overeat. HubMed – addiction


[“Behavioral addiction” : New challenges for psychiatrists and psychotherapists?]

Nervenarzt. 2013 Apr 18;
Mann K

HubMed – addiction



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