• Mental health: why it still matters in the midst of a pandemic Editorial

    da Silva, Antônio Geraldo; Miranda, Débora Marques; Diaz, Alexandre Paim; Teles, Ana Luiza Silva; Malloy-Diniz, Leandro Fernandes; Palha, Antônio Pacheco
  • “Pandemic fear” and COVID-19: mental health burden and strategies Editorial

    Ornell, Felipe; Schuch, Jaqueline B.; Sordi, Anne O.; Kessler, Felix Henrique Paim
  • Schizophrenia and COVID-19: risks and recommendations Editorial

    Fonseca, Lais; Diniz, Elton; Mendonça, Guilherme; Malinowski, Fernando; Mari, Jair; Gadelha, Ary
  • An infectious disease pandemic and increased suicide risk Editorial

    Sher, Leo
  • Does every psychopath have an antisocial personality disorder? Editorial

    Abdalla-Filho, Elias; Völlm, Birgit
  • The rise and fall and rise of benzodiazepines: a return of the stigmatized and repressed Editorial

    Balon, Richard; Starcevic, Vladan; Silberman, Edward; Cosci, Fiammetta; Dubovsky, Steven; Fava, Giovanni A.; Nardi, Antonio E.; Rickels, Karl; Salzman, Carl; Shader, Richard I.; Sonino, Nicoletta
  • Lifestyle behaviors among 4,343 Brazilian adults with severe mental illness and 55,859 general population controls: data from the Brazilian National Health Survey ORIGINAL ARTICLE

    Werneck, André O.; Vancampfort, Davy; Oyeyemi, Adewale L.; Szwarcwald, Célia L.; Stubbs, Brendon; Silva, Danilo R.

    Abstract in English:

    Objective: To analyze the association between severe mental illnesses and health behaviors among Brazilian adults. Methods: We used data from the Brazilian National Health Survey, a large nationally representative cross-sectional study conducted in 2013 among 60,202 adults (≥ 18 years). Clinical diagnoses (major depressive disorder, bipolar disorder and schizophrenia), lifestyle behaviors (leisure-time physical activity, TV viewing, tobacco use and the consumption of alcohol, sweets, and soft drinks) and potential confounders (chronological age, race, educational and employment status) were self-reported. Logistic regression models were used to examine the associations between severe mental illness and lifestyle behaviors, adjusting for confounders. Results: Schizophrenia (n=41) was associated with lower odds of physical activity (OR 0.08 [95%CI 0.01-0.58]). Major depressive disorder (n=4,014) was associated with higher odds of TV viewing (OR 1.34 [95%CI 1.12-1.61]), tobacco use (OR 1.37 (95%CI 1.18-1.58]), consumption of sweets (OR 1.34 (95%CI 1.15-1.55]) and consumption of soft drinks (OR 1.24 (95%CI 1.06-1.45]). There were no significant associations between bipolar disorder (n=47) and any lifestyle behaviors. Conclusions: Schizophrenia was associated with lower physical activity, while major depressive disorder was associated with increased TV viewing, tobacco use, and consumption of sweets and soft drinks. These findings reinforce the need for prevention and treatment interventions that focus on people with severe mental illness in Brazil.
  • Life satisfaction mediates the association between childhood maltreatment and depressive symptoms: a study in a sample of Brazilian adolescents ORIGINAL ARTICLE

    de Vasconcelos, Nina M.; Ribeiro, Monica; Reis, Daniela; Couto, Isabela; Sena, Claudia; Botelho, Ana C.; Bonavides, Dagoberto; Hemanny, Curt; Seixas, Camila; Zeni, Cristian P.; de Oliveira, Irismar R.

    Abstract in English:

    Objective: To evaluate the interrelationships between childhood maltreatment, life satisfaction (LS), and depressive symptoms, and to investigate LS as a mediating factor in the association between childhood maltreatment and depressive symptoms. Methods: The sample consisted of 342 adolescents, aged 11 to 17 years (mean = 13.3, SD = 1.52 years), recruited from a public school in Salvador, Brazil. Participants filled out instruments for the collection of sociodemographic data and evaluation of childhood maltreatment, LS, and depressive symptoms. Structural equation modeling (SEM) was used to evaluate the mediating effect of LS. Results: We detected significant negative correlations between childhood maltreatment and LS and between LS and depressive symptoms. We observed a significant positive correlation between childhood maltreatment and depressive symptoms. LS partially mediated the association between childhood maltreatment and depressive symptoms, mitigating the impact of maltreatment. Conclusion: LS played an important mediating role in the association between childhood maltreatment and depressive symptoms. Longitudinal studies are recommended to fully elucidate these associations, reinforcing the need for attention and care of this vulnerable population.
  • Clinical evaluation of biological rhythm domains in patients with major depression ORIGINAL ARTICLE

    Ozcelik, Mine; Sahbaz, Cigdem

    Abstract in English:

    Objective: Sleep, physical activity, and social domains of biological rhythm disruptions may have specific effects on the symptom cluster and severity of depression. However, there is a lack of structured clinical evaluation to specify the domains of biological rhythms in patients with depression. Methods: Ninety drug-naïve subjects with depression and 91 matched healthy controls were recruited for the study. The severity of depression was examined with the Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression (HRSD), while biological rhythm was evaluated using the Biological Rhythms Interview of Assessment in Neuropsychiatry (BRIAN). Results: Patients with depression showed significantly greater biological rhythm disturbances than healthy controls in all domains of BRIAN (sleep, activity, social, and eating). BRIAN-Total correlated positively with HRSD-Total and HRSD-Total without sleep cluster. The sleep and activity domains correlated significantly with HRSD-Total score. Additionally, the sleep, activity, and social domains correlated significantly with HRSD-Total without the sleep cluster score. Regression analysis revealed the activity (β = 0.476, t = 5.07, p<0.001) and sleep (β = 0.209, t = 2.056, p = 0.043) domains may predict HRSD-Total score. Conclusion: Consideration of biological rhythm domains in clinical examination and focusing on the sleep and activity domains may hold promise for the management of depression.
  • Unhealthy weight control behaviors, disordered eating, and body image dissatisfaction in adolescents from São Paulo, Brazil ORIGINAL ARTICLE

    Leal, Greisse V. da S.; Philippi, Sonia T.; Alvarenga, Marle dos S.

    Abstract in English:

    Objective: To identify the frequency of disordered eating (DE) and unhealthy weight control behaviors (UWCB) among adolescents and associations with age, sex, actual weight status, perceived weight status, and body image dissatisfaction. Methods: Cross-sectional study of 1,156 adolescents. DE was assessed using a specific self-report questionnaire, UWCB by specific behaviors that were not typically recommended for weight management, and body dissatisfaction by Stunkard’s silhouettes. Results: The frequency of DE was 17.3%, and that of UWCB, 31.9%; 80.1% of participants were dissatisfied with body image. Perception of oneself as overweight was associated with 1.795-fold odds of DE. Those with UWCB had 7.389-fold odds of DE, while DE increased the odds of UWCB 7.280-fold. Girls, participants who perceived themselves as overweight, and those who reported body dissatisfaction were 2.266, 2.381, and 1.752 times more likely to have UWCB, respectively. Conclusion: A high prevalence of UWCB and a moderate prevalence of DE behaviors was found in adolescents from the city of São Paulo, Brazil. Those who perceived themselves as overweight had more DE and UWCB, and both behaviors were related. UWCB was more common in girls and among those dissatisfied with their bodies.
  • Exercise prescription for people with mental illness: an evaluation of mental health professionals’ knowledge, beliefs, barriers, and behaviors ORIGINAL ARTICLE

    Kleemann, Evelyn; Bracht, Claudia G.; Stanton, Robert; Schuch, Felipe B.

    Abstract in English:

    Objective: The aim of this study was to understand the knowledge, beliefs, barriers, and behaviors of mental health professionals about physical activity and exercise for people with mental illness. Methods: The Portuguese version of The Exercise in Mental Illness Questionnaire was used to assess knowledge, beliefs, barriers, and behaviors about exercise prescription for people with mental illness in a sample of 73 mental health professionals (68.5% women, mean age = 37.0 years) from 10 Psychosocial Care Units (Centros de Atenção Psicossocial) in Porto Alegre and Canoas, state of Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil. Results: Most of respondents had received no formal training in exercise prescription. Exercise ranked fifth as the most important treatment, and most of the sample never or occasionally prescribed exercise. The most frequently reported barriers were lack of training in physical activity and exercise prescription and social stigma related to mental illness. Professionals who themselves met recommended physical activity levels found fewer barriers to prescribing physical activity and did so with greater frequency. Conclusion: Exercise is underrated and underused as a treatment. It is necessary to include physical activity and exercise training in mental health curricula. Physically active professionals are more likely to prescribe exercise and are less likely to encounter barriers to doing so. Interventions to increase physical activity levels among mental health professionals are necessary to decrease barriers to and increase the prescription of physical activity and exercise for mental health patients.
  • Belief patterns and drug use in a sample of Brazilian youth: an exploratory latent class analysis ORIGINAL ARTICLE

    Healy, Shannon; Martins, Silvia S.; Fidalgo, Thiago M.; Sanchez, Zila M.

    Abstract in English:

    Objective: Adolescent substance abuse is a public health concern worldwide, and its prevention is the subject of numerous programmatic efforts. Yet, little research exists on the structure of drug-related belief patterns in youth and their utility in preventive program planning. The aim of this study is to determine the structure of drug-related beliefs among 12-15-year-old students in Brazil using latent class analysis. Methods: De-identified survey data were obtained from the baseline sample (n=6,176) of a randomized controlled trial on the #Tamojunto drug use prevention program in Brazilian middle schools. Using 11 survey items assessing drug-related beliefs as indicators, four models were run and assessed for goodness-of-fit. For the best fitting model, demographic variables and substance use across latent classes were assessed. Results: Model fit statistics indicated that the best fit was a three-class solution, comprising a large Drug-Averse Beliefs class (80.9%), a smaller Permissive Beliefs class (12.7%), and an Inconsistent Beliefs class (6.4%). Respondents in the Permissive Beliefs and Inconsistent Beliefs classes reported greater past-year drug use, were slightly older and less likely to be female than those in the Drug-Averse Beliefs class. Conclusions: These results indicate that conceptualizing drug beliefs as a categorical latent variable may be useful for informing prevention. Longitudinal studies are needed to establish temporality and assess further applicability of this construct.
  • Brazilian version of the European Cross-Cultural Neuropsychological Test Battery (CNTB-BR): diagnostic accuracy across schooling levels ORIGINAL ARTICLE

    Araujo, Narahyana B.; Nielsen, Thomas R.; Barca, Maria L.; Engedal, Knut; Marinho, Valeska; Deslandes, Andrea C.; Coutinho, Evandro S.; Laks, Jerson

    Abstract in English:

    Objective: To translate, establish the diagnostic accuracy, and standardize the Brazilian Portuguese version of the European Cross-Cultural Neuropsychological Test Battery (CNTB) considering schooling level. Methods: We first completed an English-Brazilian Portuguese translation and back-translation of the CNTB. A total of 135 subjects aged over 60 years – 65 cognitively healthy (mean 72.83, SD = 7.71; mean education 9.42, SD = 7.69; illiterate = 25.8%) and 70 with Alzheimer’s disease (AD) (mean 78.87, SD = 7.09; mean education 7.62, SD = 5.13; illiterate = 10%) – completed an interview and were screened for depression. The receiver operating characteristic (ROC) analysis was used to verify the accuracy of each CNTB test to separate AD from healthy controls in participants with low levels of education (≤ 4 years of schooling) and high levels of education (≥ 8 years of schooling). The optimal cutoff score was determined for each test. Results: The Recall of Pictures Test (RPT)-delayed recall and the Enhanced Cued Recall (ECR) had the highest power to separate AD from controls. The tests with the least impact from schooling were the Rowland Universal Dementia Assessment Scale (RUDAS), supermarket fluency, RPT naming, delayed recall and recognition, and ECR. Conclusions: The Brazilian Portuguese version of the CNTB was well comprehended by the participants. The cognitive tests that best discriminated patients with AD from controls in lower and higher schooling participants were RPT delayed recall and ECR, both of which evaluate memory.
  • Melatonin decreases cocaine-induced locomotor activity in pinealectomized rats ORIGINAL ARTICLE

    Barbosa-Méndez, Susana; Salazar-Juárez, Alberto

    Abstract in English:

    Objective: Several studies have shown that the time of day regulates the reinforcing effects of cocaine. Additionally, melatonin and its MT1 and MT2 receptors have been found to participate in modulation of the reinforcing effects of such addictive drugs as cocaine. Loss of the diurnal variation in cocaine-induced locomotor sensitization and cocaine-induced place preference has been identified in pinealectomized mice. In addition, several studies in rodents have shown that administration of melatonin decreased the reinforcing effects of cocaine. The objective of this study was to evaluate the effect of melatonin on cocaine-induced locomotor activity in pinealectomized rats at different times of day (zeitgeber time [ZT]4, ZT10, ZT16, and ZT22). Methods: Naïve, pinealectomized Wistar rats received cocaine at different times of day. Melatonin was administered 30 min before cocaine; luzindole was administered 15 min prior to melatonin and 45 min before cocaine. After administration of each treatment, locomotor activity for each animal was recorded for a total of 30 min. Pinealectomy was confirmed at the end of the experiment through melatonin quantitation by ELISA. Results: Cocaine-induced locomotor activity varied according to the time of day. Continuous lighting and pinealectomy increased cocaine-induced locomotor activity. Melatonin administration decreased cocaine-induced locomotor activity in naïve and pinealectomized rats at different times of day. Luzindole blocked the melatonin-induced reduction in cocaine-induced locomotor activity in pinealectomized rats. Conclusion: Given its ability to mitigate various reinforcing effects of cocaine, melatonin could be a useful therapy for cocaine abuse.
  • Assessment of intraocular pressure, macular thickness, retinal nerve fiber layer, and ganglion cell layer thicknesses: ocular parameters and optical coherence tomography findings in attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder ORIGINAL ARTICLE

    Işik, Ümit; Kaygisiz, Mehmet

    Abstract in English:

    Objective: To compare intraocular pressure (IOP) and macular, retinal nerve fiber layer (RNFL), and ganglion cell layer (GCL) thicknesses in treatment-naive children with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), children with ADHD on regular methylphenidate (MPH) treatment for at least 3 months, and healthy controls. Methods: A total of 58 treatment-naive children with ADHD, 45 children with ADHD on regular MPH treatment, and 44 healthy controls were enrolled in this study. All participants underwent a comprehensive eye examination. Optical coherence tomography (OCT) was used to assess global RNFL thickness, central macular thickness, and GCL thickness in both eyes. Results: Separate univariate analysis of covariance (ANCOVA) on the outcome variables revealed a significant difference among the research groups with respect to IOP in the left eye. Post-hoc univariate analyses indicated that left IOP was significantly higher in children with ADHD under MPH treatment than among healthy controls. However, global RNFL thickness, central macular thickness, and GCL thickness of both eyes, as well as IOP in the right eye, were not significantly different across groups. Conclusion: Further longitudinal follow-up studies are needed to determine whether MPH treatment has any effect on IOP or OCT findings.
  • Lisdexamfetamine to improve excessive daytime sleepiness and weight management in narcolepsy: a case series BRIEF COMMUNICATION

    Aguilar, Ana C.; Frange, Cristina; Pimentel, Lucio H.; Reis, Maria J.; Tufik, Sergio; Coelho, Fernando M.S.

    Abstract in English:

    Objective: To report the successful use of lisdexamfetamine in the management of narcolepsy. Methods: Five narcoleptic patients received lisdexamfetamine, at different dosages and for different periods, for management of excessive daytime sleepiness and weight control. Results: All patients experienced improvement of excessive daytime sleepiness and lost weight without side effects. Conclusion: Lisdexamfetamine appears promising for the treatment of two of the most common symptoms of narcolepsy: excessive daytime sleepiness and weight gain.
  • Adjunctive vortioxetine for SSRI-resistant major depressive disorder: a “real-world” chart review study BRIEF COMMUNICATION

    De Berardis, Domenico; Fornaro, Michele; Anastasia, Annalisa; Vellante, Federica; Olivieri, Luigi; Rapini, Gabriella; Serroni, Nicola; Orsolini, Laura; Valchera, Alessandro; Carano, Alessandro; Tomasetti, Carmine; Ventriglio, Antonio; Bustini, Massimiliano; Pompili, Maurizio; Serafini, Gianluca; Perna, Giampaolo; Iasevoli, Felice; Martinotti, Giovanni; Di Giannantonio, Massimo

    Abstract in English:

    Objective: Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) are the cornerstone of treatment of major depressive disorder (MDD). However, non-response is common, often necessitating combination strategies. The present study assessed the efficacy of vortioxetine as an add-on therapy in patients with SSRI-resistant MDD. Methods: The charts of 36 adult outpatients with DSM-IV-TR MDD who had not achieved a response after at least 8 weeks of treatment with an SSRI were reviewed retrospectively. Subjects were treated with vortioxetine (5-20 mg/day) for 8 weeks added to the current SSRI. The main outcome measures were change from baseline in total Hamilton Scale for Depression (HAM-D) score and the rate of response (a 50% or greater reduction in HAM-D score and a Clinical Global Impression ‐ Improvement module [CGI-I] score of 1 or 2 at endpoint). HAM-D scores ≤ 7 were considered as remission. Additional outcome measures included the Snaith-Hamilton Pleasure Scale (SHAPS) and the Scale for Suicide Ideation (SSI). Results: 32 patients completed the 8 weeks of treatment. At 8 weeks, a significant reduction in HAM-D score was observed (p ≤ 0.001), with response obtained by 41.7% and remission by 33.3% of patients. Significant reductions in SHAPS and SSI were also observed (p ≤ 0.001 for both scales). Conclusions: Adjunctive vortioxetine may be useful and well-tolerated in stage I treatment-resistant depression. However, the limitations of this study (such as small sample size, absence of randomization and control group, retrospective design, etc.) must be considered.
  • Effectiveness of an internet-based self-guided program to treat depression in a sample of Brazilian users: a study protocol SPECIAL ARTICLE

    Lopes, Rodrigo T.; Meyer, Björn; Berger, Thomas; Svacina, Maria A.

    Abstract in English:

    Although psychological treatments for depressive disorders are available, they are often expensive or inaccessible for many. Web-based interventions that require minimal or no contact with therapists have been shown effective. To the best of our knowledge, no study using this treatment format has been conducted in Brazil. The Deprexis program was designed using empirically established principles of cognitive-behavioral therapy to reduce depressive symptoms. The objective of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of Deprexis in Brazil. This randomized controlled trial will include 128 Brazilians with clinically significant depression symptoms or who have been diagnosed with depressive disorder (major depressive disorder or dysthymia), recruited over the internet (Brazilian forums, social networks, or e-mail lists). Individuals with other psychiatric diagnoses that require significant attention (e.g., bipolar disorder, psychosis) will not be included in the trial. Participants will be randomly assigned to 1) treatment as usual plus immediate access to Deprexis or 2) treatment as usual plus delayed access to Deprexis (after 8 weeks). Participants will be able to obtain other treatment types in addition to the online intervention. If found effective, this web-based intervention would increase the evidence-based care options for depression treatment in Brazil. Clinical trial registration: RBR-6kk3bx, UTN U1111-1212-8998
  • Reflections about the impact of the SARS-COV-2/COVID-19 pandemic on mental health Letters to the Editors

    Santos, Cátia Fernandes
  • An updated systematic review on the coronavirus pandemic: lessons for psychiatry Letters to the Editors

    Shiozawa, Pedro; Uchida, Ricardo R.
  • Benzodiazepine consumption in Brazil: considerations regarding a population-specific scenario Letters to the Editors

    Dokkedal-Silva, Vinícius; Galduróz, José C.F.; Tufik, Sergio; Andersen, Monica L.
  • Corrigendum Corrigendum

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