Targeted mindfulness-based relapse prevention may support long-term outcomes for substance use disorders

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Approximately 10.6% of individuals with Substance Use Disorders (SUD) in the US seek treatment, with 40-60% relapsing within a year (Dept of Health and Human Services, 2008; McLellan et al, 2000). This highlights a real need for substance abuse treatment that focuses on relapse prevention. This blog summarises a recent RCT from JAMA Psychiatry on [read the full story...]

Extended therapy with varenicline reduces rates of smoking relapse in people with serious mental health issues

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People with serious mental health issues such as schizophrenia have higher rates of cigarette smoking than the general population, with estimates suggesting more than 50% are current smokers. When people in this population do manage to quit during treatment we then see particularly high rates of relapse after treatment ends. A new randomised control trial (Evins [read the full story...]

Quitting smoking is the easy part, staying quit is hard

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During 2010/11 there were 1.53 million hospital admissions for illnesses directly attributable to smoking in the UK. These admissions, along with other smoking-related expenses, cost the NHS approximately £5 billion pounds per year. Fortunately, the NHS is spending £88.2 million per year on cessation treatments, many of which have been repeatedly demonstrated to be highly [read the full story...]

Cochrane review cannot support training to recognise early signs of recurrence in schizophrenia due to low quality evidence

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NICE Guidelines state that around three quarters of people with a diagnosis of schizophrenia experience a chronic illness: with recurrent episodes of remission and relapse.  One way that chronic physical health conditions, such as diabetes and heart disease, are managed is by using early warning signs (EWS) training and this prevention strategy is now often [read the full story...]

New QIPP case studies from NICE

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If you work in the NHS, public health or social care, you’ve probably heard of QIPP (Quality, Innovation, Productivity and Prevention), but have you heard of the QIPP collection? It’s a website run by NICE that contains: QIPP case studies – examples of how health and social care staff are improving quality and productivity across [read the full story...]

New BMJ RCT finds that preventing depression in adolescents, with classroom-based CBT, may do more harm than good

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The prevalence of depression goes up sharply in mid-adolescence and it’s estimated that by age 19 up to 20% of people will have suffered from at least one episode of clinical depression. So it makes sense that prevention programmes should be targeted at young people in schools, and indeed, published research has shown that classroom-based [read the full story...]

Should we be offering mindfulness-based cognitive therapy to all patients with residual depressive symptoms?

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Mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT) is a group training approach that aims to prevent relapse and recurrence of depression. It combines mindfulness techniques with cognitive therapy and research shows that it is effective at reducing depressive symptoms as well as preventing relapse. The NICE depression guideline recommends that MBCT is offered to people who have experienced [read the full story...]

Insufficient evidence for low-intensity interventions to prevent depression relapse or recurrence

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Anyone who has ever been depressed knows that there is always a chance that the condition may return. We know that the more episodes of depression an individual has, the more likely they are to have further episodes, so it’s vital that we do all that we can to prevent relapse after depression. This feeling was [read the full story...]

Antipsychotic drugs reduce the rate of relapse in patients with schizophrenia at 1 year, according to new systematic review

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There is an enormous body of research concerned with schizophrenia and the use of antipsychotic drugs. A quick search on PubMed for ‘schizophrenia, antipsychotics and randomised controlled trials’ brings back nearly 2,000 articles! The authors of a new systematic review and meta analysis published today in the Lancet, suggest that one area that has not [read the full story...]

First-generation versus second-generation antipsychotics for preventing relapse in schizophrenia

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This new systematic review compares how effective first-generation antipsychotics (FGAs) and second-generation antipsychotics (SGAs) are at preventing relapse in patients with schizophrenia. The authors carried out a meta-analysis of 23 randomised controlled trials that lasted for ≥6 months and compared FGAs with SGAs in schizophrenia. The outcomes they studied were: Study defined relapse Relapse at 3, [read the full story...]