We don’t know how to improve medicine adherence, says new Cochrane review

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Helge Hasselmann reports on a new Cochrane systematic review of interventions for enhancing medication adherence, which finds insufficient evidence to draw any conclusions. The full health benefits of medicines will not be realised until better interventions and better studies are conducted in this area.

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Psychotherapy for medically unexplained physical symptoms

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Ioana Cristea reviews a recent Cochrane systematic review on non-pharmacological interventions for medically unexplained physical symptoms (MUPS). The review finds that psychotherapies for MUPS led to reduced symptom severity, but were associated with a higher drop-out rate than usual care.

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Short-term psychodynamic psychotherapy for all common mental health disorders?

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For his ninth Mental Elf blog, Mark Smith reports on a Cochrane systematic review of the effectiveness of short term psychodynamic therapies on common mental health disorders.

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Cultural competence education for health professionals: does learning about culture make any difference to patients?

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John Baker summarises a recent Cochrane systematic review of cultural competence education for health professionals, which tentatively concludes that low quality evidence supports this approach.

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Tricyclic antidepressants for ADHD in children and adolescents: Cochrane review finds no evidence to support prescribing

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Helge Hasselman summarises a Cochrane review of tricyclic antidepressants for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in children and adolescents, which finds low quality evidence and no justification for prescribing these drugs in this group of patients.

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Efficacy of high vs. low-potency first-generation antipsychotics for schizophrenia

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Laurence Palfreyman summarises 3 recent Cochrane reviews, which investigate high-potency versus low-potency first-generation antipsychotic drugs for schizophrenia. The reviews find little difference in efficacy between the high-potency antipsychotics Trifluoperazine, Haloperidol, Fluphenazine, and low-potency typical antipsychotics.

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Motivational interviewing does not prevent alcohol misuse in young people

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This new Cochrane systematic review finds that motivational interviewing has no effect on reducing alcohol-related problems or risky behaviours such as drunk driving in young people.

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Face-to-face psychotherapy for chronic pain in children and adolescents: Cochrane review calls for better primary research

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Lisa Burscheidt summarises a recent Cochrane review of psychotherapy for chronic pain in children and adolescents, which concludes that psychological therapies should be considered as a treatment, but better primary studies are needed to help steer pain management decisions.

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Statins have no beneficial effect on cognition in dementia, but can cause serious side-effects

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This updated Cochrane review on statins for the treatment of dementia contains worrying adverse effects data, but Caroline Struthers has to do a significant amount of digging to root it all out.

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Kinship care may be a viable out-of-home placement option for maltreated children, but more research is needed

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Lisa Burscheidt reports on a recent Cochrane review that looks at the effects of kinship care versus traditional foster care for the safety, permanency and well-being of children removed from the home for maltreatment.

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