Lege Artis Medicinae

[Psychoendocrine aspects of chronic stress, depression and eating disorders]

MOLNÁR Ildikó, MOLNÁR Gábor

MAY 20, 2010

Lege Artis Medicinae - 2010;20(05)

[The brain is not only a central organ, but also a target of stress-related events. During chronic stress, many somatic and psychiatric disorders could be initiated by the decreased allostatic or adaptive abilities of the individual. The brain is involved in the regulation of stress-related events via hormones, neuropeptides, monoamines and cytokines. A number of endocrine diseases or hormonal changes are associated with behavioural, vegetative and emotional alterations, which occasionally lead to psychological disturbances, for example depression. The endocrine background is also reflected by the medical treatment of psychiatric patients, as demonstrated by the use of selective serotonin-reuptake inhibitors, and estrogen or levothyroxine substitution therapies. The psychiatric disorders presented here, such as the various forms of depression and eating disorders (anorexia and bulimia nervosa) are highlighted because of their frequencies and lifethreatening nature. By describing these disorders, we wish to aid their early diagnosis and treatment and to help incorporate them into everyday clinical practice.]

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[Haemophilia is the most well-known inherited bleeding disorder, which has an X-linked inheritance and affects men. Its severity is classified on the basis of the amount of circulating functional clotting factors: patients with values < 1% have severe disease, those with values of 1-5% have moderate disease, and those with values >5% are classified as having mild disease. Severe haemophilia is characterised by frequent, spontaneous bleeding episodes, whereas in those with moderate or mild haemophilia, bleeding is only caused by trauma or surgery. Although bleeding can occur almost anywhere, the most common clinical manifestation is haemarthrosis. Haemophilic arthrpathy that develops as a result of repeated episodes of joint haemorrhage is the most important factor of morbidity in those with haemophilia. Intravenous replacement of the missing clotting factor is used to treat and prevent bleeding episodes. Controlled therapy at home that provides immediate replacement is the optimal early approach. Prophylaxis includes administration of clotting factors at regular intervals to prevent bleeding, which must be the main goal of management until a cure becomes available. The development of inhibitors during treatment is the most significant complication of factor replacement, and management of bleeding in patients with such inhibitors is difficult.]

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[Policy makers and payers of health care services devote increasing attention to improve quality of services by incentivising health care providers. These - so called - pay for performance (P4P) programmes have so far been introduced in few countries only and evidence on their effectiveness is still scarce. Therefore we do not know yet which instruments of these programmes are most effective and efficient in improving quality. The P4P systems implemented so far in primary care and in integrated delivery systems use indicators for measurement of performance and the basis for rewards. These indicators are mostly process indicators, but there are some outcome indicators as well. The desired quality improvement effects are most likely to be achieved with programmes that provide seizable financial rewards and cover the extra cost of quality improvement efforts as well. Administration of the programme has to be fully transparent and clear to all involved. It has to be based on scientific evidence and supported with sufficient dedicated funding. Conducting pilot studies is a precondition for large scale implementation.]

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