South African Psychiatry Review - Volume 7, Issue 4, 2004
Volume 7, Issue 4, 2004
Author Christopher P. SzaboSource: South African Psychiatry Review 7, pp 1 –2 (2004)More Less
Extracted from text ... EDITORIAL S Afr Psychiatry Rev 2004;7:1-2 South African Psychiatry Review - November 2004 1 Weight and psychiatry whether we need BED or not, we are going to get it. Vested interests are seemingly playing a larger role in determining the diagnostic landscape than scientific merit. Beyond the physical aspects of weight, the psychological meaning sees the virtues of control, discipline and willpower adding allure to the attainment of a thinner body. The association of weight and health has further intensified the drive for leanness, with any hint of overweight being deemed unhealthy. In traditional and contemporary societies, size matters ..
Multiple affected Afrikaner families in a schizophrenia genetic study : environmental risk factors in interaction with genotypes : original articleSource: South African Psychiatry Review 7, pp 10 –14 (2004)More Less
The authors report on six multiple affected Afrikaner families suffering from schizophrenia or schizoaffective disorders. These families form part of an ongoing study on genetics of schizophrenia. Three or more first degree relatives were affected in these families. In each family, the following will be reported on: a family tree, sociodemographic data, diagnostic features, substance abuse, early insults, early deviant behaviour, and longitudinal course of illness. Environmental risk factors in interaction with genotypes are discussed and it is emphasised that diseases will tend to cluster in families not because of a direct genetic effect, but because relatives are more vulnerable to the risk-increasing effect of a prevalent environmental risk factor. Progress in the study of environmental factors that interact with genes needs to go hand in hand with developments in molecular genetics.
Author Maritha SnymanSource: South African Psychiatry Review 7, pp 15 –20 (2004)More Less
<I>Objective:</I> The printed medium is a popular method to disseminate health information to the South African public. Reader-focused research indicates, however, that most printed health messages do not transfer information successfully to target audiences. As the first phase of an ongoing investigation into the provision of information to schizophrenia patients and their caregivers in South Africa, the aim of this study is to provide a checklist, to apply it for the evaluation of printed brochures about schizophrenia, and to make recommendations for best practices when using the printed medium for the dissemination of information about schizophrenia in South Africa. <br><I>Method:</I> A text-focused evaluation method is applied, using the adapted version of the suitability assessment of material (SAM-test) to evaluate the effectiveness of brochures disseminating information about schizophrenia. A Fry readability test and a Cloze test for comprehension were also used to verify the results of the checklist. <br><I>Results:</I> The findings indicate to which degree brochures about schizophrenia do not conform to general accepted criteria for effective printed health messages. The readability level of the brochures indicated a target audience of at least university graduates which makes them unsuitable as information material for the general South African public. <br><I>Conclusion:</I> Providing that producers of printed health messages adhere to readily available guidelines, including consultation with the target audience and a sensitivity for South Africa' s diverse social reality, the printed medium can be applied successfully and cost effectively in the South African context.
A study of an intensive home-based treatment program and its impact on admissions in an aged-care setting : original articleSource: South African Psychiatry Review 7, pp 21 –25 (2004)More Less
<I>Objective:</I> This study aims to evaluate an Intensive Home Based Program (IHBP) in terms of effects on admissions and length of stay. <br><I>Method: </I> The Brief Psychiatric Rating Scale (BPRS) and Mongomery Asberg Depression Rating Scale (MADRS) were completed on two patient cohorts, IHBP (n=65) and in-patients (IPs) (n=29). Hospital admissions and length of stay were also measured. Diagnostic and treatment data for patients were collected. <br><I>Results:</I> The clinical outcomes of a sample of patients who were treated on the IHBP were compared to those treated as IPs, and the impact on hospital admissions was considered. Clinical improvement was greater in the more severely ill IPs, but those treated on the IHBP also showed significant improvement. Initially, rates of hospital admissions decreased but have since increased as have admissions to the IHBP. <br><I>Conclusion:</I> The program is in its third year, is well received and utilised, is considered useful in providing early intervention and may have a role in preventing hospital admissions.
Source: South African Psychiatry Review 7, pp 26 –29 (2004)More Less
<I>Objective:</I> A descriptive study in which the audience profile of patients suffering from schizophrenia, their families and caregivers was determined to establish whether information on schizophrenia is disseminated effectively. This is an ongoing project aimed at designing appropriate psychoeducational material on schizophrenia using the audience-based media production approach. <br><I>Method:</I> A Qualitative research method using screening interviews, focus groups discussions and participant observation. Undertaken at Weskoppies Hospital, Pretoria, Tshwane, South Africa. Using Sotho-speaking patients and their families from the greater Tshwane region. Three researchers from the Departments of Psychiatry and Information Science at the University of Pretoria facilitated four focus groups comprising of 18 participants. A schedule was used to guide the discussions and after each focus group, emergent themes were identified and analysed. Tape recordings and written notes were used to capture information. These were later transcribed and used for data analysis. The participants were asked to indicate how they understand schizophrenia and how living with this disorder influences their lives. <br><I>Results:</I> It seems that information about schizophrenia is not effectively disseminated to this group. Myths about the disorder prevail. The majority of the participants did not understand what schizophrenia is. The participants' perceptions regarding schizophrenia reflected the influence of their culture, religion and their experiences of stigmatization by the society in which they live. <br><I>Conclusion:</I> In the endeavor to effectively disseminate information about schizophrenia to patients and care givers, the prevalent top-down approach should be replaced by a more participatory approach where the target audience is consulted and involved in the process of psycho-education. <br><I>Declaration of interest:</I> None.
Author Ugash SubramaneySource: South African Psychiatry Review 7, pp 31 –32 (2004)More Less
Extracted from text ... LETTERS TO THE EDITOR S Afr Psychiatry Rev 2004;7:31-32 South African Psychiatry Review - November 2004 31 Certification Rates: a closed unit's experience The closed unit caters for the needs of uncontained psychiatric patients who might otherwise require certification. Aggressive psychotic and manic patients, as well as suicidal patients and those requiring behavioural programmes such as severe eating disorders or personality disorders have been successfully treated in the unit. This study revealed that young adults with a diagnosis of bipolar disorder, (manic phase) appear to be a group at risk for certification. Under the new MHC Act, Tara will ..
Author Edith Madela-MntlaSource: South African Psychiatry Review 7 (2004)More Less
Extracted from text ... The Vienna School of Clinical Research (VSCR) mined number of courses and workshops can lead to the acquisition of a VSCR diploma (basic and advanced level) for certification of special experience in clinical research. The School does have an admission criteria, a limit to the numbers admitted per module, selection criteria for scholarships, and accreditation processes. More information is available on the School's website: www.vscr.at. I have been fortunate to receive a scholarship from the School to do some courses in 2004/2005. I am following the Health Outcomes Research stream, and have so far done 2 of the 3 ..
Source: South African Psychiatry Review 7, pp 35 –36 (2004)More Less
Extracted from text ... South African Psychiatry Review - November 2004 35 Although Christmas is traditionally a time of fellowship and joy, for many the festive season represents a time of loneliness and misery, frustrated by painful memories. For people on their own, Christmas can be the loneliest time of the year and a period to be dreaded, especially if it is the first holiday after the death of a loved one. For others, Christmas may be a melancholic reminder of happier times that may have passed. According to Wendy Walters, a social worker at the University of Alabama's Hospice program, a loss is ..