Screening and Counselling in the Primary Care Setting for Women Who Have Experienced Intimate Partner Violence (WEAVE): A Cluster Randomised Controlled Trial.

Screening and counselling in the primary care setting for women who have experienced intimate partner violence (WEAVE): a cluster randomised controlled trial.

Lancet. 2013 Apr 15;
Hegarty K, O’Doherty L, Taft A, Chondros P, Brown S, Valpied J, Astbury J, Taket A, Gold L, Feder G, Gunn J

BACKGROUND: Evidence for a benefit of interventions to help women who screen positive for intimate partner violence (IPV) in health-care settings is limited. We assessed whether brief counselling from family doctors trained to respond to women identified through IPV screening would increase women’s quality of life, safety planning and behaviour, and mental health. METHODS: In this cluster randomised controlled trial, we enrolled family doctors from clinics in Victoria, Australia, and their female patients (aged 16-50 years) who screened positive for fear of a partner in past 12 months in a health and lifestyle survey. The study intervention consisted of the following: training of doctors, notification to doctors of women screening positive for fear of a partner, and invitation to women for one-to-six sessions of counselling for relationship and emotional issues. We used a computer-generated randomisation sequence to allocate doctors to control (standard care) or intervention, stratified by location of each doctor’s practice (urban vs rural), with random permuted block sizes of two and four within each stratum. Data were collected by postal survey at baseline and at 6 months and 12 months post-invitation (2008-11). Researchers were masked to treatment allocation, but women and doctors enrolled into the trial were not. Primary outcomes were quality of life (WHO Quality of Life-BREF), safety planning and behaviour, mental health (SF-12) at 12 months. Secondary outcomes included depression and anxiety (Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale; cut-off ?8); women’s report of an inquiry from their doctor about the safety of them and their children; and comfort to discuss fear with their doctor (five-point Likert scale). Analyses were by intention to treat, accounting for missing data, and estimates reported were adjusted for doctor location and outcome scores at baseline. This trial is registered with the Australian New Zealand Clinical Trial Registry, number ACTRN12608000032358. FINDINGS: We randomly allocated 52 doctors (and 272 women who were eligible for inclusion and returned their baseline survey) to either intervention (25 doctors, 137 women) or control (27 doctors, 135 women). 96 (70%) of 137 women in the intervention group (seeing 23 doctors) and 100 (74%) of 135 women in the control group (seeing 26 doctors) completed 12 month follow-up. We detected no difference in quality of life, safety planning and behaviour, or mental health SF-12 at 12 months. For secondary outcomes, we detected no between-group difference in anxiety at 12 months or comfort to discuss fear at 6 months, but depressiveness caseness at 12 months was improved in the intervention group compared with the control group (odds ratio 0·3, 0·1-0·7; p=0·005), as was doctor enquiry at 6 months about women’s safety (5·1, 1·9-14·0; p=0·002) and children’s safety (5·5, 1·6-19·0; p=0·008). We recorded no adverse events. INTERPRETATION: Our findings can inform further research on brief counselling for women disclosing intimate partner violence in primary care settings, but do not lend support to the use of postal screening in the identification of those patients. However, we suggest that family doctors should be trained to ask about the safety of women and children, and to provide supportive counselling for women experiencing abuse, because our findings suggest that, although we detected no improvement in quality of life, counselling can reduce depressive symptoms. FUNDING: Australian National Health and Medical Research Council. HubMed – depression


Clinical relevance of comorbidity in obsessive compulsive disorder: The Netherlands OCD Association study.

J Affect Disord. 2013 Apr 15;
Klein Hofmeijer-Sevink M, van Oppen P, van Megen HJ, Batelaan NM, Cath DC, van der Wee NJ, van den Hout MA, van Balkom AJ

BACKGROUND: This study describes lifetime and current rates of comorbidity, its onset and its consequences in a large clinical sample of patients with obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD). A wide range of risk factors and clinical characteristics were also examined to determine whether pure OCD is different from OCD with current comorbidity. Finally, the temporal sequencing of the disorders was examined. METHOD: Data were obtained from the Netherlands Obsessive Compulsive Disorder Association (NOCDA) study. A sample of 382 participants with current OCD (during the past month) was evaluated. RESULTS: Current comorbidity occurred in 55% of patients with OCD, while 78% suffered from lifetime comorbidity. Comorbidity is associated with more severe OCD, anxiety and depressive symptoms and more negative consequences on daily life. Multiple comorbid disorders often precede OCD and influence both its course and severity. Childhood trauma and neuroticism are vulnerability factors for the development of multiple comorbid disorders in OCD. LIMITATIONS: It should be noted that causal inferences about the association between risk factors and OCD are precluded since our results were based on cross-sectional data. CONCLUSION: (Multiple) comorbidity in OCD is clinically relevant since it is associated with a specific pattern of vulnerability, with greater chronicity, with more severe OCD and more negative consequences on daily life. This indicates that the diagnosis and treatment of all comorbid disorders is clinically relevant, and clinicians should be especially aware of multiple disorders in cases of childhood trauma and high levels of neuroticism. Primary OCD has a different developmental and comorbidity pattern compared to secondary OCD. HubMed – depression