5,926 research outputs found

    Abnormal Perceptual Sensitivity in Body-Focused Repetitive Behaviors

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    Objective Several compulsive grooming habits such as hair pulling, skin picking, and nail biting are collectively known as body-focused repetitive behaviors (BFRBs). Although subclinical BFRBs are common and benign, more severe and damaging manifestations exist that are difficult to manage. Researchers have suggested that BFRBs are maintained by various cognitive, affective, and sensory contingencies. Although the involvement of cognitive and affective processes in BFRBs has been studied, there is a paucity of research on sensory processes. Methods The current study tested whether adults with subclinical or clinical BFRBs would report abnormal patterns of sensory processing as compared to a healthy control sample. Results Adults with clinical BFRBs (n = 26) reported increased sensory sensitivity as compared to persons with subclinical BFRBs (n = 48) and healthy individuals (n = 33). Elevations in sensation avoidance differentiated persons with clinical versus subclinical BFRBs. Sensation seeking patterns were not different between groups. Unexpectedly, BFRB severity was associated with lower registration of sensory stimuli, but this finding may be due to high psychiatric comorbidity rates in the BFRB groups. Conclusions These findings suggest that several sensory abnormalities may underlie BFRBs. Implications for the etiology and treatment of BFRBs are discussed

    Emotion Regulation Deficits in Persons with Body-Focused Repetitive Behavior Disorders

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    Background Conceptualizations of emotion dysregulation (ED) and body-focused repetitive behavior disorders (BFRBDs) imply that ED may be a central component of BFRBDs as well as a factor that distinguishes BFRBDs from non-impairing, subclinical body-focused repetitive behaviors (BFRBs). The current study empirically tested these observations. Methods One hundred thirty-eight undergraduates (of 1900 who completed a screening survey) completed self-report measures assessing four emotion regulation (ER) deficits hypothesized to underlie ED (alexithymia, maladaptive emotional reactivity, experiential avoidance, and response inhibition when distressed); 34 of these participants had BFRBDs, 64 had subclinical BFRBs, and 42 were unaffected by BFRBs. Results Results indicated that participants with BFRBDs reported higher levels of maladaptive emotional reactivity, experiential avoidance, and response inhibition when distressed than participants with subclinical BFRBs and participants unaffected by BFRBs. These results held even when controlling for comorbidity and total number of reported BFRBs. Participants did not differ on alexithymia. Limitations Limitations of the current study include the BFRB groups’ different distributions of BFRB types (e.g., hair pulling versus skin picking), the sample\u27s demographic uniformity, and the fact that negative affectivity was not controlled when exploring BFRB group differences on ER deficits. Future research should improve on these limitations. Conclusions The current results suggest that ED is a factor that differentiates BFRBDs from subclinical BFRBs. Such results may be useful for generating hypotheses regarding mechanisms responsible for BFRBs’ development into BFRBDs. Furthermore, these results may provide insight into factors that explain the efficacy of more contemporary behavioral treatments for BFRBDs

    Laser-assisted cataract surgery versus standard ultrasound phacoemulsification cataract surgery.

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    BACKGROUND: Cataract is the leading cause of blindness in the world, and cataract surgery is one of the most commonly performed operations in the Western world. Preferred surgical techniques have changed dramatically over the past half century with associated improvements in outcomes and safety. Femtosecond laser platforms that can accurately and reproducibly perform key steps in cataract surgery, including corneal incisions, capsulotomy and lens fragmentation, are now available. The potential advantages of laser-assisted surgery are broad, and include greater safety and better visual outcomes through greater precision and reproducibility. OBJECTIVES: To compare the effectiveness of laser-assisted cataract surgery with standard ultrasound phacoemulsification cataract surgery by gathering evidence on safety from randomised controlled trials (RCTs). SEARCH METHODS: We searched CENTRAL (which contains the Cochrane Eyes and Vision Trials Register) (2016, Issue 4), Ovid MEDLINE, Ovid MEDLINE In-Process and Other Non-Indexed Citations, Ovid MEDLINE Daily, Ovid OLDMEDLINE (January 1946 to May 2016), EMBASE (January 1980 to May 2016), Latin American and Caribbean Health Sciences Literature Database (LILACS) (January 1982 to May 2016), the ISRCTN registry (www.isrctn.com/editAdvancedSearch), ClinicalTrials.gov (www.clinicaltrials.gov), the World Health Organization (WHO) International Clinical Trials Registry Platform (ICTRP) (www.who.int/ictrp/search/en) and the U.S. Food and Drugs Administration (FDA) website (www.fda.gov). We did not use any date or language restrictions in the electronic searches for trials. We last searched the electronic databases on 10 May 2016. SELECTION CRITERIA: We included randomised controlled trials where laser-assisted cataract surgery was compared to standard ultrasound phacoemulsification cataract surgery. We graded the certainty of the evidence using GRADE. DATA COLLECTION AND ANALYSIS: Two review authors independently screened the search results, assessed risk of bias and extracted data using the standard methodological procedures expected by Cochrane. The primary outcome for this review was intraoperative complications in the operated eye, namely anterior capsule and posterior capsule tears. The secondary outcomes were visual acuity (corrected distance visual acuity (CDVA) and uncorrected distance visual acuity (UDVA)), refractive outcomes, quality of vision (as measured by any validated visual function score), postoperative complications and cost-effectiveness. MAIN RESULTS: We included 16 RCTs conducted in Germary, Hungary, Italy, India, China and Brazil that enrolled a total of 1638 eyes of 1245 adult participants. Overall, the studies were at unclear or high risk of bias. In 11 of the studies the authors reported financial links with the manufacturer of the laser platform evaluated in their studies. Five of the studies were within-person (paired-eye) studies with one eye allocated to one procedure and the other eye allocated to the other procedure. These studies were reported ignoring the paired nature of the data.The number of anterior capsule and posterior capsule tears reported in the included studies for both laser cataract surgery and manual phacoemulsification cataract surgery were low. There were four anterior capsule tears and one posterior capsule tear in 1076 eyes reported in 10 studies (2 anterior capsule tears in laser arms, 2 anterior capsule tears and 1 posterior capsule tear in standard phacoemulsification arms). We are very uncertain as to the effect of laser-assisted surgery compared to standard phacoemulsification surgery with respect to these two outcomes. For postoperative cystoid macular oedema and elevated postoperative intraocular pressures, again the evidence was inconclusive (odds ratio (OR) 0.58, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.20 to 1.68; 957 eyes, 9 studies, low certainty evidence; and OR 0.57, 95% CI 0.11 to 2.86; 903 eyes, 8 studies, low certainty evidence).We found little evidence of any important difference in postoperative visual acuity between laser-assisted and standard phacoemulsification arms. There was a small advantage for laser-assisted cataract surgery at six months in CDVA. However, the mean difference (MD) was -0.03 logMAR (95% CI -0.05 to -0.00; 224 eyes, 3 studies, low certainty evidence) which is equivalent to 1.5 logMAR letters and is therefore, clinically insignificant. No studies reported patient-reported outcome measures such as visual function.There were no data reported on costs or resource use but three studies reported the time taken to do the surgery. There was little evidence of any major difference between the two procedures in this respect (MD 0.1 minutes, 95% CI -0.02 to 0.21; 274 eyes, low certainty evidence). AUTHORS' CONCLUSIONS: The evidence from the 16 randomised controlled trials RCTs included in this review could not determine the equivalence or superiority of laser-assisted cataract surgery compared to standard manual phacoemulsification for our chosen outcomes due to the low to very low certainty of the evidence available from these studies. As complications occur rarely, large, adequately powered, well designed, independent RCTs comparing the safety and efficacy of laser-assisted cataract surgery with standard phacoemulsification cataract surgery are needed. Standardised reporting of complications and visual and refractive outcomes for cataract surgery would facilitate future synthesis. Data on patient-reported outcomes and cost-effectiveness are needed. Paired-eye studies should be analysed and reported appropriately

    Predispositions and the Political Behavior of American Economic Elites: Evidence from Technology Entrepreneurs

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    Economic elites regularly seek to exert political influence. But what policies do they support? Many accounts implicitly assume economic elites are homogeneous and that increases in their political power will increase inequality. We shed new light on heterogeneity in economic elites' political preferences, arguing that economic elites from an industry can share distinctive preferences due in part to sharing distinctive predispositions. Consequently, how increases in economic elites' influence affect inequality depends on which industry's elites are gaining influence and which policy issues are at stake. We demonstrate our argument with four original surveys, including the two largest political surveys of American economic elites to date: one of technology entrepreneurs—whose influence is burgeoning—and another of campaign donors. We show that technology entrepreneurs support liberal redistributive, social, and globalistic policies but conservative regulatory policies—a bundle of preferences rare among other economic elites. These differences appear to arise partly from their distinctive predispositions

    Factor Analysis of the Milwaukee Inventory for Subtypes of Trichotillomania-Adult Version

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    The Milwaukee Inventory for Subtypes of Trichotillomania-Adult Version (MIST-A; Flessner et al., 2008) measures the degree to which hair pulling in Trichotillomania (TTM) can be described as “automatic” (i.e., done without awareness and unrelated to affective states) and/or “focused” (i.e., done with awareness and to regulate affective states). Despite preliminary evidence in support of the psychometric properties of the MIST-A, emerging research suggests the original factor structure may not optimally capture TTM phenomenology. Using data from a treatment-seeking TTM sample, the current study examined the factor structure of the MIST-A via exploratory factor analysis. The resulting two factor solution suggested the MIST-A consists of a 5-item “awareness of pulling” factor that measures the degree to which pulling is done with awareness and an 8-item “internal-regulated pulling” factor that measures the degree to which pulling is done to regulate internal stimuli (e.g., emotions, cognitions, and urges). Correlational analyses provided preliminary evidence for the validity of these derived factors. Findings from this study challenge the notions of “automatic” and “focused” pulling styles and suggest that researchers should continue to explore TTM subtypes

    Clarifying the Relationship Between Trichotillomania and Anxiety

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    Although research has consistently linked unidimensional anxiety with Trichotillomania (TTM) severity, the relationships between TTM severity and anxiety dimensions (e.g., cognitive and somatic anxiety) are unknown. This knowledge gap limits current TTM conceptualization and treatment. The present study examined these relationships with data collected from ninety-one adults who participated in a randomized clinical trial for TTM treatment. Based on prior research, it was hypothesized that TTM severity would be related to the cognitive anxiety dimension and that psychological inflexibility would mediate the association. Hypotheses were not made regarding the relationship between TTM severity and somatic anxiety. Regression analyses indicated that only cognitive dimensions of anxiety predicted TTM severity and that psychological inflexibility mediated this relationship. Implications for the conceptualization and treatment of TTM are discussed

    Behavioral and neurochemical studies of inherited manganese-induced dystonia-parkinsonism in Slc39a14-knockout mice

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    Inherited autosomal recessive mutations of the manganese (Mn) transporter gene SLC39A14 in humans, results in elevated blood and brain Mn concentrations and childhood-onset dystonia-parkinsonism. The pathophysiology of this disease is unknown, but the nigrostriatal dopaminergic system of the basal ganglia has been implicated. Here, we describe pathophysiological studies in Slc39a14-knockout (KO) mice as a preclinical model of dystonia-parkinsonism in SLC39A14 mutation carriers. Blood and brain metal concentrations in Slc39a14-KO mice exhibited a pattern similar to the human disease with highly elevated Mn concentrations. We observed an early-onset backward-walking behavior at postnatal day (PN) 21 which was also noted in PN60 Slc39a14-KO mice as well as dystonia-like movements. Locomotor activity and motor coordination were also impaired in Slc39a14-KO relative to wildtype (WT) mice. From a neurochemical perspective, striatal dopamine (DA) and metabolite concentrations and their ratio in Slc39a14-KO mice did not differ from WT. Striatal tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) immunohistochemistry did not change in Slc39a14-KO mice relative to WT. Unbiased stereological cell quantification of TH-positive and Nissl-stained estimated neuron number, neuron density, and soma volume in the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNc) was the same in Slc39a14-KO mice as in WT. However, we measured a marked inhibition (85–90%) of potassium-stimulated DA release in the striatum of Slc39a14-KO mice relative to WT. Our findings indicate that the dystonia-parkinsonism observed in this genetic animal model of the human disease is associated with a dysfunctional but structurally intact nigrostriatal dopaminergic system. The presynaptic deficit in DA release is unlikely to explain the totality of the behavioral phenotype and points to the involvement of other neuronal systems and brain regions in the pathophysiology of the disease
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