Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Report reveals urgent need to improve physical health of people with Schizophrenia

27.04.2005


People with schizophrenia often die prematurely. However researchers from the University of Glasgow and NHS Greater Glasgow assert that much of the excess mortality of schizophrenia is preventable through lifestyle changes and the treatment of common diseases.

Schizophrenia, its treatment and the lifestyle of sufferers contribute to high rates of illness and mortality. Sufferers often have poorer diets, lower rates of physical activity and smoke more than the general population. Such lifestyle ’choices’ predispose them to poor physical health and diseases.

Schizophrenia is a disabling mental illness where disordered thinking disturbs an individual’s ability to function normally in society. It affects around one in 100 people across Europe. 10-13% of people with schizophrenia commit suicide but most of the excess mortality in schizophrenia is from natural causes.



Cardio-vascular risk factors in people with schizophrenia are a consequence of the illness itself, related behaviours, lifestyle and treatments. It is important that mental health and primary care services appreciate the risks they face and how the illness contributes to premature death.

Excessive body weight increases the risk of ill health, and is the biggest risk factor for type 2 diabetes caused by antipsychotics. Sufferers are also predisposed to hypertension, heart disease, stroke, osteoarthritis, respiratory problems and some cancers.

Research has shown that people with schizophrenia are more obese than the non-schizophrenic population. Weight loss interventions for people with schizophrenia should start with regular and frequent weight monitoring and address exercise, and lifestyle advice. Switching of antipsychotic medication to one with less-tendency for weight gain and the use of specific anti-obesity drugs could also help combat obesity in patients.

However, in Glasgow much work is already underway to tackle poor physical health amongst people with schizophrenia. The integrated schizophrenia care pathway provides a structured route to ensure that physical as well as mental health needs of patients are addressed; GPs and mental health staff are working together to improve physical health; and support is available from grassroots projects where people can have their mental and physical health needs assessed at local mental health resource centres across the city.

Dr Moira Connolly, report author and Consultant Psychiatrist, NHS Greater Glasgow, said: “It’s important that sufferers get the right type of support from medical and social services. The potential for improving the overall health of this group of people is only starting to be addressed. However in Glasgow there is already a lot of good work underway to tackle the problems of poor physical health - such as services which give advice on healthy lifestyles as well as mental health support and treatment; and much closer working between primary care and mental health professionals to identify physical health issues.

“Improving physical health is critical to improving the quality of life for people with schizophrenia. The challenge is to ensure that the physical health of patients with schizophrenia is given the priority it deserves, helping them to face their future with the lowest possible illness and mortality odds stacked against them.”

People with schizophrenia may fail to recognise the early signs of physical ill health or choose to avoid contact with health services. The traditional routes to obtaining health care may prove too complex for someone who is chronically distressed by symptoms or lacking in the motivation required to make and attend an appointment. Guidelines for clinicians and integrated working across mental health, primary care and social care services could help improve access to health care for people with schizophrenia.

The researchers also assert that the evaluation of new therapies should include assessments of long-term risk to physical health in addition to psychiatric effects.

Jenny Murray | alfa
Further information:
http://www.gla.ac.uk

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Millions through license revenues
27.04.2017 | Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität Bonn

nachricht New High-Performance Center Translational Medical Engineering
26.04.2017 | Fraunhofer ITEM

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Making lightweight construction suitable for series production

More and more automobile companies are focusing on body parts made of carbon fiber reinforced plastics (CFRP). However, manufacturing and repair costs must be further reduced in order to make CFRP more economical in use. Together with the Volkswagen AG and five other partners in the project HolQueSt 3D, the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) has developed laser processes for the automatic trimming, drilling and repair of three-dimensional components.

Automated manufacturing processes are the basis for ultimately establishing the series production of CFRP components. In the project HolQueSt 3D, the LZH has...

Im Focus: Wonder material? Novel nanotube structure strengthens thin films for flexible electronics

Reflecting the structure of composites found in nature and the ancient world, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have synthesized thin carbon nanotube (CNT) textiles that exhibit both high electrical conductivity and a level of toughness that is about fifty times higher than copper films, currently used in electronics.

"The structural robustness of thin metal films has significant importance for the reliable operation of smart skin and flexible electronics including...

Im Focus: Deep inside Galaxy M87

The nearby, giant radio galaxy M87 hosts a supermassive black hole (BH) and is well-known for its bright jet dominating the spectrum over ten orders of magnitude in frequency. Due to its proximity, jet prominence, and the large black hole mass, M87 is the best laboratory for investigating the formation, acceleration, and collimation of relativistic jets. A research team led by Silke Britzen from the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy in Bonn, Germany, has found strong indication for turbulent processes connecting the accretion disk and the jet of that galaxy providing insights into the longstanding problem of the origin of astrophysical jets.

Supermassive black holes form some of the most enigmatic phenomena in astrophysics. Their enormous energy output is supposed to be generated by the...

Im Focus: A Quantum Low Pass for Photons

Physicists in Garching observe novel quantum effect that limits the number of emitted photons.

The probability to find a certain number of photons inside a laser pulse usually corresponds to a classical distribution of independent events, the so-called...

Im Focus: Microprocessors based on a layer of just three atoms

Microprocessors based on atomically thin materials hold the promise of the evolution of traditional processors as well as new applications in the field of flexible electronics. Now, a TU Wien research team led by Thomas Müller has made a breakthrough in this field as part of an ongoing research project.

Two-dimensional materials, or 2D materials for short, are extremely versatile, although – or often more precisely because – they are made up of just one or a...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Fighting drug resistant tuberculosis – InfectoGnostics meets MYCO-NET² partners in Peru

28.04.2017 | Event News

Expert meeting “Health Business Connect” will connect international medical technology companies

20.04.2017 | Event News

Wenn der Computer das Gehirn austrickst

18.04.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Wireless power can drive tiny electronic devices in the GI tract

28.04.2017 | Medical Engineering

Ice cave in Transylvania yields window into region's past

28.04.2017 | Earth Sciences

Nose2Brain – Better Therapy for Multiple Sclerosis

28.04.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>