Editor-in-Chief: John A. Talbott, MD
ISSN: 0022-3018
Online ISSN: 1539-736X
Frequency: 12 issues / year
Ranking: Psychiatry 51/120
Impact Factor: 1.812
Article Summaries
December 2014 article summaries

 

1. HOW DO CLINICIANS ACTUALLY USE THE DSM IN CLINICAL PRACTICE AND WHY WE NEED TO KNOW MORE

Michael B. First, MD, Venkat Bhat, MBBS, David Adler, MD, Lisa Dixon, MD, MPH, Beth Goldman, MD, Steve Koh, MD, MPH, Bruce Levine, MD, David Oslin, MD, Sam Siris, MD.  

The clinical utility of the DSM is explicitly stated as a goal for both the DSM-IV and DSM-5 revisions. However, studies demonstrate significant discrepancies between clinical psychiatric diagnoses with those made using structured interviews, suggesting that clinicians do not systematically apply the diagnostic criteria. The limited information regarding how clinicians actually use the DSM raises important questions: 1) how can the clinical utility be improved without first having a baseline assessment? 2) how can potentially significant shifts in practice patterns based on wording changes be assessed without knowing the extent to which the criteria are used as written? Given the APA’s plans for interim revisions to the DSM-5, the value of a detailed exploration of its actual use in clinical practice is of significant concern and deserves further study including a number of survey and in vivo studies.

 

2. PHYSICAL ACTIVITY AND PSYCHIATRIC SYMPTOMS IN ADULTS WITH SCHIZOPHRENIA SPECTRUM DISORDERS

Gretchen A. Snethen, PhD, Bryan P. McCormick, PhD, Paul H. Lysaker, PhD.  

People diagnosed with schizophrenia spectrum disorders (SSDs) experience significant health disparity due to cardiovascular disease. One key to cardiovascular health is physical activity (PA). The current study sought to identify the relationship of psychiatric symptoms of SSD to measured PA and sedentary behavior. Findings indicated that less than half of the sample obtained the recommended minutes of moderate-to-vigorous PA (MVPA) per week. Subjects who were younger and had greater cognitive disorganization engaged in more minutes of MVPA. In contrast, sedentary behavior was only associated with aspects of metacognitive functioning, such that subjects who had greater ability for forming integrated representations of themselves and the related capacity to use knowledge of themselves spent less time in sedentary behaviors.

 

3. ANGER EXPRESSION STYLES IN SCHIZOPHRENIA SPECTRUM DISORDERS: ASSOCIATIONS WITH ANXIETY, PARANOIA, EMOTION RECOGNITION, AND TRAUMA HISTORY

Jamie M. Ringer, PsyD, Paul H. Lysaker, PhD.

This study gathered reports of anger expression style in 88 persons with schizophrenia or schizoaffective disorder, using the State-Trait Anger Expression Inventory-Second Edition. We additionally assessed anxiety, suspiciousness, emotion recognition, self-esteem, and cumulative trauma history. Correlations and multiple regression analyses showed that the suppression of anger was predicted by lower levels of suspiciousness, poorer emotion recognition and reduced anxiety. Participants who endorsed greater anxiety and had experienced more traumatic events reported a heightened tendency to express anger both inwardly and outwardly.

 

4. POSTTRAUMATIC GROWTH AFTER EARTHQUAKE TRAUMA IS PREDICTED BY EXECUTIVE FUNCTIONS: A PILOT STUDY

Emine Eren-Koçak, MD, PhD, and Cengiz Kılıç, MD, PhD.

Although positive personal change after adverse events (posttraumatic growth [PTG]) is repeatedly shown to occur after a range of traumatic or distressing events, there is still a debate on the validity of the concept. Using the objective measurement of cognitive functions, we attempted to show that PTG is a scientifically valid construct in a group of earthquake survivors. We found that growth was predicted by executive functions and not by memory or processing speed, showing that the correlation between cognitive functions and growth is a specific one. In addition, a specific form of PTG, namely personal growth, was related to cognitive functions, whereas relational growth was not. Our findings provide support for the validity of the PTG concept.

 

5. MEASURING SECONDARY TRAUMATIC STRESS SYMPTOMS IN MILITARY SPOUSES WITH THE PTSD CHECKLIST MILITARY VERSION (PCL-M)

Andrea G. Bjornestad, PhD, Amy Schweinle, PhD, Jon D. Elhai, PhD.

This study investigated the presence and severity of posttraumatic stress symptoms in a sample of 227 Army National Guard veterans and secondary traumatic stress symptoms among their spouses. The veterans completed the PTSD Checklist Military Version (PCL-M) (Weathers et al., 1993) to determine the probable prevalence rate of posttraumatic stress symptoms. A modified version of the PCL-M was utilized to assess secondary traumatic stress symptoms in the spouses. A confirmatory factor analysis showed that the modified version of the PCL-M used to assess secondary traumatic stress symptoms in spouses fit using the same 4-factor PTSD structure as the PCL-M for veterans. This study provides initial evidence on the underlying symptom structure of secondary traumatic stress symptoms among spouses of traumatic event victims.

 

6. CHILDHOOD TRAUMA, PARENTAL DEATH, AND THEIR CO-OCCURRENCE IN RELATION TO CURRENT SUICIDALITY RISK IN ADULTS: A NATIONWIDE COMMUNITY SAMPLE OF KOREA

Hong Jin Jeon, MD, PhD, Christina Lee, BA, Maurizio Fava, MD, David Mischoulon, MD, PhD, Eun-Jung Shim, PhD, Jung-Yoon Heo, MD, Hong Choi, MD, PhD, Jae-Hyun Park, MD, PhD.

A total of 1,396 adults were recruited through nationwide multistage probability sampling in South Korea. Subjects were evaluated through face-to-face interviews using the Suicidality Module of the Mini-International Neuropsychiatric Interview (M.I.N.I.) and the Early Trauma Inventory Self Report-Short Form (ETISR-SF). Among 1,396 adults, the group that experienced both childhood trauma and parental death had the highest current suicidality risks and lifetime suicide attempt compared to the other groups. Mid to high current suicidality risk and lifetime suicide attempt were significantly associated with concurrent childhood trauma and parental death as well as with only childhood, after adjusting for age, gender, education, marital status, household monthly income, and living area.

 

7.  SUBJECTIVE APPRAISAL OF THREAT (CRITERION A2) AS A PREDICTOR OF DISTRESS IN CHILDBEARING WOMEN

Grant J. Devilly, MCP, PhD, Matthew J. Gullo, PhDClin, Kristie L. Alcorn, PhDClin, Analise O’Donovan, MCP, PhD.

DSM-5 has removed criterion A2 from the diagnosis of PTSD. The current study aimed to assess the claim that criterion A2 has low utility in predicting distress, while addressing the shortcomings of previous research looking at Criteria A1 and A2. Data from a longitudinal, prospective study was used, with 933 women having been assessed at four time points both pre- and post-birth. In our sample of women, model comparisons suggest criterion A2 should be reintroduced into the diagnostic criteria as it provides a better indicator of who goes on to have problems after giving birth than Criterion A1 on its own.

 

8. A COMPARISON OF SELF-ESTEEM AND PERFECTIONISM IN ANOREXIA NERVOSA AND BODY DYSMORPHIC DISORDER

Andrea S. Hartmann, PhD, Jennifer J. Thomas, PhD, Jennifer L. Greenberg, PsyD, Natalie L. Matheny, BA, Sabine Wilhelm, PhD

Previous studies have identified phenotypic similarities between anorexia nervosa (AN) and body dysmorphic disorder (BDD), which share the common feature of negative body image. Sixty-nine individuals completed diagnostic interviews and self-reports assessing self-esteem and perfectionism. Clinical groups showed greater perfectionism in almost all subdimensions, as well as poorer self-esteem compared to MHC, with no clinical group differences when controlling for level of depression. Depression was a mediator of the relationship between symptom severity and self-esteem in both clinical groups. Comparable low self-esteem and greater perfectionism in AN and BDD corroborated existing etiological models. Depression was a significant contributor to negative self-esteem in both disorders.

 

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Dr. Talbott and Lippincott Williams & Wilkins
wish to thank the
University of Maryland School of Medicine
Department of Psychiatry
for their support of
The Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease 

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