Category Archives: Prospective

Association of Child Poverty, Brain Development, and Academic Achievement

“Our work suggests that specific brain structures tied to processes critical for learning and educational functioning (eg, sustained attention, planning, and cognitive flexibility) are vulnerable to the environmental circumstances of poverty, such as stress, limited stimulation, and nutrition.” Freely available….

JAMA Psychiatry | Long-term Antipsychotic Treatment and Brain Volumes

“Conclusions  Viewed together with data from animal studies, our study suggests that antipsychotics have a subtle but measurable influence on brain tissue loss over time, suggesting the importance of careful risk-benefit review of dosage and duration of treatment as well as their off-label use.”

JAMA Network | JAMA Psychiatry | Long-term Antipsychotic Treatment and Brain Volumes:  A Longitudinal Study of First-Episode Schizophrenia.

Long-term Antipsychotic Treatment and Brain Volumes… More medication means less white & gray matter

It’s official: Antipsychotics shrink the brain!

Ho, Andreasen and colleagues report that:

More antipsychotic treatment was associated with smaller gray matter volumes. Progressive decrement in white matter volume was most evident among patients who received more antipsychotic treatment. Illness severity had relatively modest correlations with tissue volume reduction, and alcohol/illicit drug misuse had no significant associations when effects of the other variables were adjusted

JAMA Network | JAMA Psychiatry | Long-term Antipsychotic Treatment and Brain Volumes:  A Longitudinal Study of First-Episode Schizophrenia.

Prenatal exposure to antidepressants and persistent pulmonary hypertension of the newborn: systematic review and meta-analysis | BMJ

Two articles relating to potential harms caused by SSRI antidepressants – this first, which is freely downloadable, to unborn children, the second to cardiac patients:

Prenatal exposure to antidepressants and persistent pulmonary hypertension of the newborn: systematic review and meta-analysis | BMJ.

JAMA Network | JAMA Internal Medicine | Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitor Use, Depression, and Long-Term Outcomes After an Acute Coronary Syndrome: A Prospective Cohort Study.

Cannabis use predicts psychosis vulnerability in adolescents and vice versa

An interesting prospective study from Holland has been published in the journal Addiction, which seems to show that the simple idea that cannabis causes psychosis (schizophrenia) is not supported by their results.

This prospective study (looking at adolescents who later develop psychosis) indicated that there are bi-directional actions at work, so that some cannabis use can be seen as attempts at self-medication.

As many people with psychosis have told me, they see cannabis as their medication of choice.

You can download this report here