To examine the prevalence of acute stress disorder (ASD) after a myocardial infarction (MI) and the factors associated with its development.
Of 1344 MI patients admitted to three Canadian hospitals, 474 patients did not meet the inclusion criteria and 393 declined participation in the study; 477 patients consented to participate in the study. A structured interview and questionnaires were administered to patients 48 hours to 14 days post MI (mean +/- standard deviation = 4 +/- 2.73 days).
Four percent were classified as having ASD using the Structured Clinical Interview for DSM-IV, ASD module. The presence of symptoms of depression (Beck Depression Inventory; odds ratio (OR) = 29.92) and the presence of perceived distress during the MI (measured using the question "How difficult/upsetting was the experience of your MI?"; OR = 3.42, R(2) = .35) were associated with the presence of symptoms of ASD on the Modified PTSD Symptom Scale. The intensity of the symptoms of depression was associated with the intensity of ASD symptoms (R = .65). The models for the detection and estimation of ASD symptoms were validated by applying the regression equations to 72 participants not included in the initial regressions. The results obtained in the validation sample did not differ from those obtained in the initial sample.
The symptoms of depression and the subjective distress during the MI could be used to improve the detection of ASD.
OBJECTIVE: To examine the differences in the health-related quality of life (HRQOL) of Finnish women with coronary artery disease (CAD) (n = 91) in comparison with Finnish men with CAD (n = 189). Healthy women (n = 990) served as a control group. DESIGN: Prospective, cross-sectional survey. SETTING: Surgical and medical clinics at the University of Oulu, Finland. PATIENTS: Twenty-one women underwent coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG), 40 women underwent percutaneous transluminal coronary angioplasty (PTCA), and 30 women received medication for treatment of CAD. The patients in the medication group were taking beta blockers (81%), long-acting nitrates (86%), calcium channel blockers (43%), aspirin (79%), and lipid-lowering drugs (18%). OUTCOME MEASURES: The Nottingham Health Profile (NHP), which consists of six dimensions: energy, sleep, pain, emotional reactions, social isolation, and physical mobility. Higher mean indexes signify lower HRQOL. INTERVENTION: The patients referred to CABG and PTCA procedures were interviewed and asked to fill in the questionnaire on the day before the operation. They were instructed to describe their HRQOL over the preceding 3 months. The patients in the medication group were mailed the NHP questionnaire. RESULTS: Women with CAD reported significantly poorer HRQOL than age-matched women in the healthy sample, as measured by the following dimensions of the NHP: energy, sleep, pain, emotional reactions, and physical mobility. This indicates the NHP dimensions affected by CAD among women. HRQOL for women with CAD was lower than that of men with CAD. The mean indexes of four of the six NHP dimensions, energy, sleep, emotional reactions, and physical mobility were higher for women with CAD than men with CAD in the two youngest age groups. Social isolation was most common in the youngest age group among both women and men with CAD. In women with CAD, emotional reactions and social isolation were most clearly related to demographic characteristics such as traumatic life experiences, depression, financial situation, and smoking. CONCLUSIONS: These findings suggest that the subjective HRQOL should be considered along with the clinical severity of the disease in the evaluation of CAD. The findings further shed light on the HRQOL of especially young women with CAD, the female and male patients' referral for treatment, and the use of the NHP instrument among patients with CAD.
BACKGROUND: The psychological effects of technological disasters have rarely been studied in children. This study assessed the aftermath of the 1986 Chornobyl disaster in children evacuated to Kyiv from the contaminated zone surrounding the nuclear power facility. METHODS: In 1997, we evaluated three hundred 10- to 12-year-old children in Kyiv who were in utero or infants at the time of the disaster and who had resided near Chornobyl (evacuees) and 300 sex-matched homeroom classmates who had never lived in a radiation-contaminated area. Response rates were 92% (evacuees) and 85% (classmates). Data were obtained from children, mothers, and teachers using standard measures of well-being and risk factors for childhood psychopathology. The children also received physical examinations and basic blood tests. RESULTS: The evacuees and classmates perceived their mental health similarly except for Chornobyl-related anxiety symptoms and perceived scholastic competence. No differences were found on the Iowa Conners' Teacher Rating Scale. Although the physical examination and blood test results were normal, the evacuee mothers rated their children's well-being as significantly worse, especially with respect to somatic symptoms on the Children's Somatization Inventory and Child Behavior Checklist. The most important risk factors for these ratings were maternal somatization and Chornobyl-related stress. CONCLUSIONS: Given the multiple stressful experiences to which evacuee families were exposed, the small differences in the children's self-reports suggest that there are protective factors in the lives of these children. The trauma experienced by the mothers was reflected in their perceptions of their children's well-being, particularly somatic symptoms, but was not transmitted to the children themselves.
Coping styles may influence the perceived life stress experienced by an individual and, therefore, also be critical in the development of affective disorders. This study examined whether familial risk of affective disorder is associated with the use of maladaptive coping styles, in healthy individuals. One hundred twelve high-risk and 78 low-risk individuals were identified through nation-wide registers and invited to participate in an extensive psychiatric evaluation including the Coping Inventory for Stressful Situations. The high-risk individuals used more Emotion-oriented (p = 0.001) and Avoidance coping (p = 0.04) than individuals not at risk. Adjusted for gender, age, years of education, and recent stressful life events the high-risk individuals used more emotion-oriented coping (p = 0.03). In conclusion, maladaptive coping style may represent a trait marker for mood disorder improving maladaptive coping styles may be a target for selective prevention focusing on subgroups at high risk of developing an affective disorder.
French-Canadian adolescent boys (n = 272) and girls (n = 286) participated in a study of the relationship between anomie and selected personal variables. Results of a multivariate regression analysis indicate that adolescents who suffered from anomie tended to be younger boys and girls with low self-esteem who believed that they were subject to chance or fate and who had experienced a number of recent negative life events.
The National and the Stockholm County Centre for Suicide Research and Prevention of Mental Ill-Health (NASP), the Department of Public Health Sciences, Karolinska Institute (KI), Stockholm, Sweden. email@example.com
The risk of suicide, which causes about 1 million deaths each year, is considered to augment as the levels of stress increase. Dysregulation in the stress response of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenocortical (HPA) axis, involving the corticotrophin-releasing hormone (CRH) and its main receptor (CRHR1), is associated with depression, frequent among suicidal males. Here we have analyzed single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in these genes, in family trios with suicide attempter offspring (n = 542), by using the transmission disequilibrium test both in a two-staged screening/replication sample design and in detailed reanalysis in the entire sample. Stratification based on the levels of lifetime stress showed reproducible association and linkage of an SNP in the CRHR1 gene (rs4792887) to suicide attempters exposed to low levels of stress (P = 0.002), among whom most males were depressed (P = 0.001). The identified allele may represent a part of the genetic susceptibility for suicidality by increasing HPA axis activity upon exposure to low levels of stress.
Two groups of Swedish women--51 employed and 96 unemployed--were compared in terms of their scores on the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI). It was hypothesized that unemployed women would be more depressed than their employed counterparts and further that the distress of unemployment would be reflected in elevations in cortisol values among those who were out of work. It was found, even when controlling for social support, stressful life events and marital status, that depression as seen in the BDI scores, was greater in the unemployed group. However, no relationship was observed between either cortisol and employment status or cortisol and depression.
A slightly modified version of Norton's 1983 Quality Marriage Index was administered to 61 expectant mothers prior to giving birth and within 3 mo. after giving birth. Mothers' ages ranged from 19 to 43 years (M = 30, SD = 5.01) and their partners' ages ranged from 21 to 48 years (M = 32, SD = 6.02). Mothers were presented an opportunity to participate in this study during prenatal classes held at hospital and community health centers. The only requirement for participation was that the mother be residing with her child's father for the duration of the study. The six items of the modified index showed high internal consistency (alpha > .90) and substantial test-retest reliability with a Pearson zero-order correlation of .65 across the two administrations. Maximum likelihood factor analysis indicated moderate support for unidimensional factor structure for the modified index, but removing one item from the pre- and postnatal administration improved the factor structure. In the first administration, the last item (overall current satisfaction with partner) fit poorly with the factor structure, while at the second administration, the second item (our relationship is very stable) fit poorly. Possible implications of the results are discussed.
The current study examined the relationship between dispositional optimism and situation awareness. A sample of 77 Royal Norwegian Naval Academy and 57 Royal Norwegian Army Academy cadets were administered the Life Orientation Test prior to participating in a field-training exercise involving a series of challenging missions. Following an infantry mission component of the exercise, situation awareness was measured using the Mission Awareness Rating Scale (MARS), a self-assessment tool. The analysis indicated that dispositional optimism correlated negatively with situation awareness under these conditions. The role of intrapersonal variables in mediating situation awareness and decision-making in stressful situations is discussed.
The purpose of this study was to investigate the psychometric properties of the Swedish version of Adolescent Dissociative Experience Scale (A-DES), dissociative symptoms among Swedish adolescents, and dissociative symptoms connected to trauma and sexual and physical abuse. A normative group of 400 adolescents aged 12 to 19 years and a clinical group of 20 adolescents with known experienced trauma were given A-DES. A test-retest procedure was conducted with 90 subjects from the normative group. The results showed good reliability, internal consistency and test-retest. Factor analysis in the normative sample (N = 400) resulted in a one factor solution. Correlation between A-DES and other measures of dissociation was high (r = .86). Significant differences for the total sum of A-DES were found in the normative group between adolescents with and without self-reported trauma and between the normative group and the clinical group with known experienced trauma. The Swedish version of A-DES was shown to be a screening instrument with satisfactory psychometric qualities and the capability of capturing dissociative symptoms in adolescents with self-reported trauma as well as clinical cases with identified trauma.