The apples and oranges of social relationships: what are we measuring and how?

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Farhana Mann presents a helpful summary of a number of different tools that have been used in the study of social relationships, as they relate to health and social service use and cardiovascular outcomes.

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What impact are psychotropic drugs having on our physical health?

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John Baker summarises the findings of a recent review of people with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and depression. The study looks at the adverse effects on physical health of psychotropic drugs (antipsychotics, antidepressants and mood stabilisers).

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Occupational therapy for stroke survivors in UK care homes: findings of an RCT study

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Jill Manthorpe discusses a ‘gold standard’ RCT study on occupational therapy for stroke survivors in UK care homes and the implications of the findings.

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King’s Fund report highlights gaps in evidence on reconfiguration

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This new report from the King’s Fund summarises available evidence from major reconfiguration programmes. A timely publication given the emphasis on the need for transformation in current policy.

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Financial incentives don’t increase depression screening for patients with chronic illness

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The lines between physical health and mental health are blurred in lots of ways, and one example is the fact that people with chronic physical conditions are also more likely to suffer from depression. As well as adding to their burden of illness, there’s also some evidence that those patients with comorbid depression have worse [read the full story…]

All scales are not equal; which is the best for detecting depression after stroke?

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Roughly 33% of stroke sufferers also develop depression at some point. This may be an under-estimate of the problem, as depression is difficult to detect in people with poor physical health. If missed, depression can led to reduced quality of life, increased disability and a worsening of physical symptoms. There are a whole host of [read the full story…]

Anxiety is a common negative psychological outcome after stroke. How does this impact on the patient?

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Every year an estimated 152,000 people in the UK suffer a stroke (for more general information go to the Stroke Association website). Quality of life post stroke is not only influenced by physical impairment but also by psychological factors. Although anxiety disorders are the most common mental health problem globally, the study of anxiety post-stroke has [read the full story…]