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 Why might reading make myopic?
18.07.2018 | Universitätsklinikum Tübingen

nachricht Unique brain 'fingerprint' can predict drug effectiveness
11.07.2018 | McGill University

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: First evidence on the source of extragalactic particles

For the first time ever, scientists have determined the cosmic origin of highest-energy neutrinos. A research group led by IceCube scientist Elisa Resconi, spokesperson of the Collaborative Research Center SFB1258 at the Technical University of Munich (TUM), provides an important piece of evidence that the particles detected by the IceCube neutrino telescope at the South Pole originate from a galaxy four billion light-years away from Earth.

To rule out other origins with certainty, the team led by neutrino physicist Elisa Resconi from the Technical University of Munich and multi-wavelength...

Im Focus: Magnetic vortices: Two independent magnetic skyrmion phases discovered in a single material

For the first time a team of researchers have discovered two different phases of magnetic skyrmions in a single material. Physicists of the Technical Universities of Munich and Dresden and the University of Cologne can now better study and understand the properties of these magnetic structures, which are important for both basic research and applications.

Whirlpools are an everyday experience in a bath tub: When the water is drained a circular vortex is formed. Typically, such whirls are rather stable. Similar...

Im Focus: Breaking the bond: To take part or not?

Physicists working with Roland Wester at the University of Innsbruck have investigated if and how chemical reactions can be influenced by targeted vibrational excitation of the reactants. They were able to demonstrate that excitation with a laser beam does not affect the efficiency of a chemical exchange reaction and that the excited molecular group acts only as a spectator in the reaction.

A frequently used reaction in organic chemistry is nucleophilic substitution. It plays, for example, an important role in in the synthesis of new chemical...

Im Focus: New 2D Spectroscopy Methods

Optical spectroscopy allows investigating the energy structure and dynamic properties of complex quantum systems. Researchers from the University of Würzburg present two new approaches of coherent two-dimensional spectroscopy.

"Put an excitation into the system and observe how it evolves." According to physicist Professor Tobias Brixner, this is the credo of optical spectroscopy....

Im Focus: Chemical reactions in the light of ultrashort X-ray pulses from free-electron lasers

Ultra-short, high-intensity X-ray flashes open the door to the foundations of chemical reactions. Free-electron lasers generate these kinds of pulses, but there is a catch: the pulses vary in duration and energy. An international research team has now presented a solution: Using a ring of 16 detectors and a circularly polarized laser beam, they can determine both factors with attosecond accuracy.

Free-electron lasers (FELs) generate extremely short and intense X-ray flashes. Researchers can use these flashes to resolve structures with diameters on the...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Leading experts in Diabetes, Metabolism and Biomedical Engineering discuss Precision Medicine

13.07.2018 | Event News

Conference on Laser Polishing – LaP: Fine Tuning for Surfaces

12.07.2018 | Event News

11th European Wood-based Panel Symposium 2018: Meeting point for the wood-based materials industry

03.07.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

NYSCF researchers develop novel bioengineering technique for personalized bone grafts

18.07.2018 | Life Sciences

Machine-learning predicted a superhard and high-energy-density tungsten nitride

18.07.2018 | Materials Sciences

Why might reading make myopic?

18.07.2018 | Health and Medicine

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>