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1.
Int Rev Psychiatry ; 34(7-8): 797-808, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2187164

ABSTRACT

The potentially traumatic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic in subjects with pre-existing mental disorders is still unclear, especially regarding its long-term consequences. The aim of this study was to prospectively assess post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and post-traumatic stress symptoms (PTSS) in patients with mental disorders, during the 3rd wave of the infection (T0, March-April 2021) while strict containment measures were applied in Italy, and after 3 months (T1, June-July 2021), with reduced restrictive measures. A total sample of 527 subjects, with different DSM-5 diagnoses, was consecutively enrolled at nine Italian psychiatric outpatient services. Assessments at T0 included: the Trauma and Loss Spectrum-Self Report (TALS-SR), the Impact of Event Scale-Revised (IES-R) and the Work and Social Adjustment Scale (WSAS). These two latter were repeated at T1. Results showed that at T0, 43.6% of the sample reported symptoms of PTSD, with females (p = .004), younger subjects (p = .011), unemployed/students (p = .011), and living with their parental families (p = .017), resulting more affected. Differences in PTSD rates emerged across diagnostic groups ranging from 10% in patients with psychoses up to 59% in those with feeding and eating disorders. An improvement at T1 emerged in all diagnostic groups for the IES-R scores, while WSAS scores improved only in subjects with mood disorders. In conclusions, subjects with mental disorders presented relevant rates of PTSD and PTSS at 1-year into the pandemic. Further long-term studies are needed to follow-up the course of pandemic traumatic burden especially in patients with severe mental disorders.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Feeding and Eating Disorders , Stress Disorders, Post-Traumatic , Female , Humans , Stress Disorders, Post-Traumatic/psychology , COVID-19/epidemiology , Pandemics , Italy/epidemiology
2.
Ann Gen Psychiatry ; 21(1): 44, 2022 Nov 14.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2117506

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Use of social media (SM) has exponentially grown particularly among youths in the past two years, due to COVID-19-related changing lifestyles. Based on the Italian COvid Mental hEalth Trial (COMET), we investigated the association between SM use and depressive symptoms among Italian young adults (aged 18-24). METHODS: The COMET is a nationwide multi-center cross-sectional study that investigated socio-demographic data, social networking addiction (BSNAS), depression, anxiety, and stress (DASS-21), as well as impulsiveness (BIS-15) and aggressiveness (AQ) in a large sample of youngsters, in order to assess the association between BSNAS and DASS-21 indices. Mediation analyses were performed to evaluate the role of impulsiveness and aggressive personality traits in the association between SM use (SMU) and depression. RESULTS: 75.8% of the sample (n = 491) had a problematic SMU. SMU was reduced by high AQ and high DASS-21 scores (F = 42.338, p < 0.001, R2 = 0.207). Mediation analyses showed that SMU negatively predicted depressive symptomatology with the interaction mediated by AQ total (ß = - 0.1075), physical (ß = - 0.207) and anger (ß = - 0.0582), BIS-15 total (ß = - 0.0272) and attentional (ß = - 0.0302). High depressive levels were predicted by high AQ scores, low SMU levels, low verbal and physical AQ, and low attentional BIS-15 (F = 30.322, p < 0.001, R2 = 0.273). Depressive symptomatology negatively predicted SMU with their interaction mediated by AQ total (ß = - 0.1640), verbal (ß = 0.0436) and anger (ß = - 0.0807), BIS-15 total (ß = - 0.0448) and attentional (ß = - 0.0409). CONCLUSIONS: SMU during the early phases of the COVID-19 pandemic could have a beneficial role in buffering negative consequences linked to social isolation due to quarantine measures, despite this association being mediated by specific personality traits.

3.
J Psychiatr Res ; 154: 293-299, 2022 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2061587

ABSTRACT

INTRODUCTION: Among patients with mental illness, those with obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) showed a significant clinical worsening by the COVID-19 pandemic. The effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on OCD have been shown to worsen symptoms severity, with serious clinical consequences. However, the persistence of COVID-19 pandemic in OCD patients has been poorly investigated. The purpose of the present study was to assess the impact of the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic in a sample of OCD patients and to compare the results with those obtained during the first wave on the same OCD sample. METHODS: 116 OCD outpatients attending three OCD tertiary clinics in Northern Italy and previously included in a report on the impact of COVID-19, were followed-up in order to investigate sociodemographic and clinical features. Appropriate statistical analyses for categorical and continuous variables were conducted. RESULTS: The 43 OCD patients with a clinical worsening (OW) reported a significant development of new obsessions/compulsions and the recurrence of past OC symptoms, higher rates of psychiatric comorbidities and sleep disturbances compared to patients without symptom worsening. Moreover, an increase in avoidance behaviors, suicidal ideation, Internet checking for reassurance, and job difficulties emerged in OW patients. Also, lower rates of pharmacological stability, and higher rates of therapy adjustment were observed. In terms of sex differences, males showed higher rates of past obsessions occurrence, while females showed a rise in Internet checking behaviors. When comparing OW patients between the first and the second wave, the latter showed significantly higher rates of past obsession occurrence and lower rates of pharmacological stability. Moreover, patients with OW showed a significantly older age during the second wave. CONCLUSION: The persistence of the COVID-19 pandemic showed a globally impaired clinical picture in the analyzed OCD sample. A further worsening between the two waves timepoints emerged, mainly involving older patients with OCD. The concordance between our results and those existing in literature highlights the importance of an accurate long-term monitoring of OCD patients in light of COVID-19 pandemic persistence.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder , COVID-19/epidemiology , Female , Humans , Italy/epidemiology , Male , Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder/psychology , Pandemics , Psychiatric Status Rating Scales
4.
Compr Psychiatry ; 118: 152334, 2022 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2015072

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Classification of hypochondriasis as an obsessive-compulsive and related disorder in the International Classification of Diseases 11th Revision (ICD-11) has generated new heuristics for treatment of this common, chronic and disabling disorder. Standard treatment involves cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT) or selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), but no meta-analysis has so far considered hypochondriasis as a structured diagnosis or assessed the role of medication. A clearer understanding of the relative effectiveness of these interventions and identification of clinically relevant factors moderating the treatment response is needed for clinical guideline development. METHODS: The current systematic review and meta-analysis of interventions for hypochondriasis was preregistered on PROSPERO (CRD42020185768) and follows PRISMA guidelines. We searched MEDLINE, PsycINFO, and Cochrane Library databases until July 2021 for randomized controlled trials (RCTs) of interventions for patients diagnosed with hypochondriasis (or historical diagnostic equivalents). We assessed aspects of study quality using: the CONSORT Checklist for evaluation of RCTs, the Cochrane Risk of Bias 2 tool, researcher allegiance and treatment fidelity. The primary outcome was improvement in hypochondriasis symptoms, comparing intervention and control groups at trial endpoint. Moderator variables were assessed using subgroup and meta-regression analyses. RESULTS: Searches identified 13 randomised controlled trials (RCTs) (N = 1405); 12 included CBT (N = 1212) and three included SSRI (N = 193) arms as the experimental intervention. Random effects meta-analysis yielded a moderate-to-large effect size for CBT versus all controls (g = -0.70 [95% CI -0.99 to -0.41], k = 18, I2 = 81.1%). Funnel plot asymmetry indicated possible publication bias and two potentially missing trials, reducing the effect size (g = -0.60 [95% CI -0.88 to -0.32]). Subgroup analysis showed that choice of control significantly moderated effect size, with those in CBT vs. wait-list (g = -1.32 [95% CI -1.75 to -0.90], k = 7, I2 = 0%) being double those of CBT vs. psychological or pharmacological placebo controls (g = -0.58 [95% CI -0.95 to -0.22], k = 7, I2 = 82%). Analysis of studies directly comparing CBT and SSRIs found a numerical, but not statistical advantage for SSRIs (g = 0.21 [95% CI -0.46 to 0.87], k = 2, I2 = 58.34%) and a modest effect size emerged for SSRIs vs. pill placebo (g = -0.29 [95% CI -0.57 to -0.01], k = 3, I2 = 0%). Most studies (11/13) were rated as high on potential researcher allegiance bias in favour of CBT. Meta-regressions revealed that effect sizes were larger in younger participants, and smaller in better quality and more recent RCTs and those with greater CBT fidelity. CONCLUSION: CBT and SSRIs are effective in the acute treatment of hypochondriasis, with some indication that intervention at a younger age produces better outcomes for CBT. In the case of CBT, effect sizes appear to have been significantly inflated by the use of wait list controls, and researcher allegiance bias. We recommend that a definitive, adequately controlled trial, designed with respect to the methodological issues raised in this meta-analysis, is needed to determine the magnitude effects for CBT and SSRIs with confidence and the long-term effect of treatments, to inform mental health service provision for this overlooked patient group.


Subject(s)
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy , Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors , Cognitive Behavioral Therapy/methods , Humans , Hypochondriasis/diagnosis , Hypochondriasis/drug therapy , Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors/therapeutic use
5.
Compr Psychiatry ; 118: 152345, 2022 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1977160

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The COVID-19 pandemic has heavily impacted social, economic and health systems worldwide. Necessary confinement measures have, in turn, contributed to the occurrence of several stress-related conditions and deterioration of pre-existing mental conditions, including insomnia. OBJECTIVE: The present study sought to investigate the occurrence and severity of insomnia during the COVID-19 lockdown among psychiatric patients and in the general population in the largest Italian sample examined to date. Potential factors associated with a risk of developing insomnia in the global sample were examined as well. METHODS: A sample of 20,720 people (5.5% of them being psychiatric patients) was assessed through an online survey conducted during lockdown between March and May 2020. To investigate the occurrence and severity of sleep related issues, the Insomnia Severity Index (ISI) was used. In order to evaluate factors associated with the severity of insomnia in the global sample, multivariate linear regression models were performed. RESULTS: During the lockdown, patients with pre-existing mental disorders reported a mean higher score on the ISI scale (p < 0.001) compared to the general population. According to the multivariate regression models, the first three weeks of lockdown were significantly associated with a higher risk of insomnia, but the risk disappeared in the fourth week. Other associated factors included: the presence of a pre-existing mental disorder, ages 24 to 64 years old, and/or being female (p < 0.001). CONCLUSIONS: Although containment measures represent essential public health strategies to avoid the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic, sleep was one of the aspects affected during the early stages of the lockdown in both people with pre-existing mental disorders and general population. As an integral part of COVID-19 intervention, it is useful to raise awareness about these issues and to adopt both preventive and therapeutic interventions.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Sleep Initiation and Maintenance Disorders , Sleep Wake Disorders , Adult , COVID-19/epidemiology , Communicable Disease Control , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Pandemics/prevention & control , SARS-CoV-2 , Sleep Initiation and Maintenance Disorders/epidemiology , Young Adult
6.
J Psychiatr Res ; 152: 242-249, 2022 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1895260

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The mental health of the Italian population declined at the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. However, nationwide population prevalence estimates may not effectively reproduce the heterogeneity in distress responses to the pandemic. In particular, contextual determinants specific to COVID-19 pandemic need to be considered. We thus aimed to explore the association between local COVID-19 mortality rates and mental health response among the general population. METHODS: We capitalised on data (N = 17,628) from a large, cross-sectional, national survey, the COMET study, run between March and May 2020. While psychological distress was measured by General Health Questionnaire-12 (GHQ-12), the Depression, Anxiety and Stress Scale-21 Items (DASS-21) was used to assess relevant domains. In addition, a Covid-19 mortality ratio was built to compare single regional mortality rates to the national estimate and official statistics were used to control for other area-level determinants. RESULTS: Adjusted ordered regression analyses showed an association between mortality ratio and moderate (OR = 1.10, 95%CI 1.03-1.18) and severe (OR = 1.11, 95%CI 1.03-1.21) DASS-21 anxiety levels. No effects of mortality ratio on GHQ-12 scores and DASS-21 depression and stress levels, uniformly high across the country, were estimated. CONCLUSIONS: Although we could not find any association between regional COVID-19 mortality ratio and depression or psychological distress, anxiety levels were significantly increased among subjects from areas with the highest mortality rates. Local mortality rate seems a meaningful driver for anxiety among the general population. Considering the potentially long-lasting scenario, local public health authorities should provide neighbouring communities with preventive interventions reducing psychological isolation and anxiety levels.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Psychological Distress , Anxiety/epidemiology , Anxiety/psychology , Cross-Sectional Studies , Depression/epidemiology , Depression/psychology , Disease Outbreaks , Humans , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2 , Stress, Psychological/epidemiology , Stress, Psychological/psychology , Surveys and Questionnaires
7.
J Affect Disord ; 311: 78-83, 2022 08 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1821319

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The aim of this study was to explore the psychopathological burden related to COVID-19 together with coping strategies in healthcare workers, focusing on differences between frontline and second-line workers. METHODS: This is a cross-sectional study part of the COvid Mental hEalth Trial (COMET). Participants' socio-demographic and COVID-19-related information was collected through an online survey. Psychiatric symptoms and coping strategies were also investigated. Multivariate analyses, corrected for demographic characteristics, were adopted to assess differences between frontline and second-line workers. RESULTS: The sample consisted of 20,720 individuals. Healthcare workers (n = 2907) presented with significantly higher risk for mental health disturbances as compared to the rest of the sample (p < 0.001). Healthcare professionals working versus not working on the front line differed in living in severely impacted areas (p < 0.001), precautionary isolation by COVID-19 (p < 0.001), infection by COVID-19 (p < 0.001). Frontline workers also reported significantly increased insomnia (p < 0.001), depression (p = 0.007), anxiety (p < 0.001), obsessive-compulsive symptoms (p < 0.001), non-specific chronic and acute traumatic stress (p < 0.001; p < 0.001), as well as more adaptive coping strategies (p = 0.001). LIMITATIONS: The survey was conducted between March and June 2020, at the peak of the COVID-19 outbreak in Italy. Accordingly, the mental health impact of the COVID-19 pandemic might have changed over time. The survey design involved online invitation and it was not possible to assess the participation rate. CONCLUSIONS: To our knowledge, this is the largest study addressing the psychopathological burden of Italian healthcare professionals during the COVID-19 outbreak and associated coping strategies. Empowering supportive interventions is crucial for the whole healthcare workforce.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Sleep Initiation and Maintenance Disorders , Adaptation, Psychological , Anxiety/epidemiology , Cross-Sectional Studies , Depression/epidemiology , Health Personnel/psychology , Humans , Mental Health , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2 , Sleep Initiation and Maintenance Disorders/epidemiology
8.
Int J Environ Res Public Health ; 19(3)2022 Jan 29.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1667143

ABSTRACT

COVID-19 pandemic and its related containment measures have been associated with increased levels of stress, anxiety and depression in the general population. While the use of digital media has been greatly promoted by national governments and international authorities to maintain social contacts and healthy lifestyle behaviors, its increased access may also bear the risk of inappropriate or excessive use of internet-related resources. The present study, part of the COVID Mental hEalth Trial (COMET) study, aims at investigating the possible relationship between social isolation, the use of digital resources and the development of their problematic use. A cross sectional survey was carried out to explore the prevalence of internet addiction, excessive use of social media, problematic video gaming and binge watching, during Italian phase II (May-June 2020) and III (June-September 2020) of the pandemic in 1385 individuals (62.5% female, mean age 32.5 ± 12.9) mainly living in Central Italy (52.4%). Data were stratified according to phase II/III and three groups of Italian regions (northern, central and southern). Compared to the larger COMET study, most participants exhibited significant higher levels of severe-to-extremely-severe depressive symptoms (46.3% vs. 12.4%; p < 0.01) and extremely severe anxiety symptoms (77.8% vs. 7.5%; p < 0.01). We also observed a rise in problematic internet use and excessive gaming over time. Mediation analyses revealed that COVID-19-related general psychopathology, stress, anxiety, depression and social isolation play a significant role in the emergence of problematic internet use, social media addiction and problematic video gaming. Professional gamers and younger subjects emerged as sub-populations particularly at risk of developing digital addictions. If confirmed in larger and more homogenous samples, our findings may help in shedding light on possible preventive and treatment strategies for digital addictions.


Subject(s)
Behavior, Addictive , COVID-19 , Video Games , Adult , Behavior, Addictive/epidemiology , Cross-Sectional Studies , Female , Humans , Internet , Male , Middle Aged , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2 , Social Isolation , Young Adult
9.
Front Psychiatry ; 12: 788139, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1597717

ABSTRACT

The COVID-19 pandemic has affected the mental and physical health of the general population at any age, but it is expected to have a protracted and severe consequences for younger populations. The pandemic has had several consequences on mental health including anger and irritability, depressive symptoms and somatic complaints, insomnia, lack of motivation, and loneliness. In particular, loneliness and its related negative feelings are thought to be particularly pronounced during young adulthood because of the many social changes that young people deal with during this period of life. Therefore, it is essential to evaluate the type of impact of the pandemic on the mental health of young people and their levels of loneliness experienced during the first phase of the lockdown. Based on the largest Italian study on the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on the mental health of general population, in this paper we aim to: (1) describe the levels of loneliness in a national sample of Italian young adults aged 18-34 years, during the first wave of lockdown in 2020; (2) evaluate the clinical and socio-demographic differences in young adults reporting low vs. high levels of loneliness; (3) assess the role of clinical symptomatology, coping strategies, levels of resilience, and duration of lockdown as possible predictors of loneliness. The final sample consists of 8,584 people, mainly female (72.6%), single, with a mean age of 26.4 (±4.4) years. The mean score at the UCLA was 47.5 (±13.6), with 27% (N = 2,311) of respondents exceeding the cut-off for high levels of loneliness. High levels of loneliness were predicted by the presence of avoidant coping strategies, such as self-distraction (Beta coefficient, B = 0.369, 95% Confidence Interval, CI = 0.328-0.411), venting (B = 0.245, 95% CI = 0.197-0.293), denial (B = 0.110, 95% CI = 0.061-0.159), and emotional disengagement (B = 0.133, 95% CI = 0.080-0.185). Weeks of exposure to the pandemic were significantly associated with worsening of loneliness (p < 0.000). There is currently considerable interest in trying to reduce loneliness, both within the context of COVID-19 and more generally. Our results highlight that young people are at a higher risk of developing loneliness and suggest that more interventions and practical guidelines are needed.

10.
Brain Sci ; 11(11)2021 Oct 26.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1488488

ABSTRACT

The COVID-19 pandemic represents an unprecedented public health emergency, with consequences at the political, social, and economic levels. Mental health services have been called to play a key role in facing the impact of the pandemic on the mental health of the general population. In the period March-May 2020, an online survey was implemented as part of the Covid Mental Health Trial (COMET), a multicentric collaborative study carried out in Italy, one of the Western countries most severely hit by the pandemic. The present study aims to investigate the use of mental health resources during the first wave of the pandemic. The final sample consisted of 20,712 participants, mainly females (N = 14,712, 71%) with a mean age of 40.4 ± 14.3 years. Access to mental health services was reported in 7.7% of cases. Among those referred to mental health services, in 93.9% of cases (N = 1503 subjects) a psychological assessment was requested and in 15.7% of cases (N = 252) a psychiatric consultation. People reporting higher levels of perceived loneliness (OR 1.079, 95% CI 1.056-1.101, p < 0.001), practicing smart-working (OR 1.122, 95% CI 0.980-1.285, p = 0.095), using avoidant (OR 1.586, 95% CI 1.458-1.725, p < 0.001) and approach (OR 1.215, 95% CI 1.138-1.299, p < 0.001) coping strategies more frequently accessed mental health services. On the other hand, having higher levels of perceived social support (OR 0.833, 95% CI 0.795-0.873, p < 0.001) was associated with a reduced probability to access mental health services. The COVID-19 pandemic represents a new threat to the mental health and well-being of the general population, therefore specific strategies should be implemented to promote access to mental healthcare during the pandemic and afterwards.

11.
Brain Sci ; 11(9)2021 Sep 17.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1430781

ABSTRACT

The effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on mental health are now well documented, however, few studies have been focused on the role of coping strategies and resilience in counterbalancing these detrimental effects. Data are derived from the COvid Mental hEalth Trial (COMET), a national multicentric trial carried out in the Italian general population. The final sample consisted of 20,720 participants, 53.1% (n = 11,000) of the sample reported low levels of resilience. Adaptive coping strategies and resilience levels did not have any significant protective impact on the levels of depressive, anxiety, and stress symptoms. Only self-distraction was a risk factor for poor mental health (Beta Coefficient, B = 0.1, 95% Confidence Interval, CI: 0.003 to 0.267 for stress symptoms; B = 0.2; 95% CI: 0.077 to 0.324 for anxiety symptoms and B = 0.2, 95% CI: 0.105 to 0.382 for depressive symptoms). High levels of resilience were predicted by adaptive coping strategies, such as acceptance (B = 1.8, CI 95% = 1.4-2.7). Exposure to the different weeks of lockdown, being infected by COVID-19, and being a healthcare professional did not influence the levels of resilience. Our findings should be carefully considered, since the low levels of resilience may represent the missing link between the pandemic and the current increase in mental health problems.

12.
J Affect Disord ; 296: 59-66, 2022 01 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1415506

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Severe psychological and psychosocial consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic are expected, especially for people already vulnerable to biological or psychosocial stressors, including those with mental health problems. The study aimed to investigate factors associated with the loss of jobs and unemployment during the COVID-19 pandemic. In particular, we investigated whether mental illness was associated with a higher risk of losing one's job because of the COVID-19 pandemic. METHODS: Nineteen thousand four hundred ninety-six adults living in Italy were administered an online protocol including a sociodemographic checklist and questionnaires investigating suicide ideation and risk, mental health status and general distress (stress, anxiety, and depression), resilience, and perceived support. RESULTS: One thousand two hundred seventy-four reported having lost their job because of the COVID-19 pandemic, and 5.4% of the sample reported a mental illness (mostly a depressive disorder). Unemployment was independently associated with mental illness, poor mental health, and depression. Mental illness was associated with the risk of losing one's job because of the COVID-19 pandemic, but not at the multivariate analyses. Those who lost their job because of the COVID-19 pandemic (compared to others) reported worse mental health and depression. LIMITATIONS: The presence of mental illness was self-reported by respondents and the administered measures were self-reported questionnaires affected by social desirability and other response bias. CONCLUSIONS: The COVID-19 pandemic and social isolation measures and lockdown used to contain its spread among the Italian population were associated with occupational insecurity, especially among the more vulnerable social categories.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Mental Disorders , Adult , Anxiety , Communicable Disease Control , Depression , Humans , Italy/epidemiology , Mental Disorders/epidemiology , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2 , Unemployment
13.
Obes Surg ; 31(5): 1905-1911, 2021 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1092017

ABSTRACT

PURPOSE: On January 30, 2020, the World Health Organization declared COVID-19 as a "public health emergency of international concern." The primary aim of the study was to evaluate weight and food habit changes during COVID-19 outbreak. The secondary endpoint was to explore the psychological factors, arising during the pandemic, influencing weight and dietary variations. MATERIALS AND METHODS: A survey composed of four different items was conducted by telephone interview: (1) anthropometric data and type of procedure, (2) Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS), (3) maladaptive eating behaviors, and (4) personal feelings moved by the COVID-19 spread and lockdown. RESULTS: Fifty-six patients were enrolled. No significant changes in weight, BMI, and maladaptive eating habits were observed. A significant reduction in the anxiety index score was observed. In 17.8% of cases, a change in obesity class was reported, and among these patients, a substantial modification in bariatric procedures was planned (60%). CONCLUSION: This study showed no effect on weight and BMI nor on rates of maladaptive eating habits associated with quarantine/social isolation among severely obese individuals waiting for the bariatric surgery. At the end of lockdown, a considerable proportion of patients modified their initial obesity class, and in selected cases, it could represent a criteria for rearrangement of the planned bariatric procedure. In obese patients, the lockdown and social distancing generated a reduction of fear of confronting and being negatively judged by others. This psychological aspect was assessed with the reduction of the HADS score.


Subject(s)
Bariatric Surgery , COVID-19 , Obesity, Morbid , Anxiety/epidemiology , Communicable Disease Control , Depression/epidemiology , Feeding Behavior , Humans , Obesity, Morbid/surgery , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2 , Waiting Lists
14.
Eur Psychiatry ; 63(1): e87, 2020 09 28.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-801277

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic is an unprecedented traumatic event influencing the healthcare, economic, and social welfare systems worldwide. In order to slow the infection rates, lockdown has been implemented almost everywhere. Italy, one of the countries most severely affected, entered the "lockdown" on March 8, 2020. METHODS: The COvid Mental hEalth Trial (COMET) network includes 10 Italian university sites and the National Institute of Health. The whole study has three different phases. The first phase includes an online survey conducted between March and May 2020 in the Italian population. Recruitment took place through email invitation letters, social media, mailing lists of universities, national medical associations, and associations of stakeholders (e.g., associations of users/carers). In order to evaluate the impact of lockdown on depressive, anxiety and stress symptoms, multivariate linear regression models were performed, weighted for the propensity score. RESULTS: The final sample consisted of 20,720 participants. Among them, 12.4% of respondents (N = 2,555) reported severe or extremely severe levels of depressive symptoms, 17.6% (N = 3,627) of anxiety symptoms and 41.6% (N = 8,619) reported to feel at least moderately stressed by the situation at the DASS-21.According to the multivariate regression models, the depressive, anxiety and stress symptoms significantly worsened from the week April 9-15 to the week April 30 to May 4 (p < 0.0001). Moreover, female respondents and people with pre-existing mental health problems were at higher risk of developing severe depression and anxiety symptoms (p < 0.0001). CONCLUSIONS: Although physical isolation and lockdown represent essential public health measures for containing the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic, they are a serious threat for mental health and well-being of the general population. As an integral part of COVID-19 response, mental health needs should be addressed.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Coronavirus Infections/psychology , Health Surveys , Mental Health/statistics & numerical data , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , Pneumonia, Viral/psychology , Adolescent , Adult , Aged , Anxiety/epidemiology , Betacoronavirus , COVID-19 , Female , Humans , Italy/epidemiology , Male , Middle Aged , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2 , Stress, Psychological/epidemiology , Universities , Young Adult
15.
Front Psychiatry ; 11: 720, 2020.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-714556

ABSTRACT

After the outbreak of Coronavirus disease was declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization, this resulted in extraordinary public health measures to control the infection, such as entire countries being placed under quarantine. The psychopathological consequences of the pandemic and quarantine were anticipated to be of particular relevance, especially in patients with psychiatric disorders such as Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD). Aim of the present report was to describe the impact of COVID-19 pandemics within a sample of Italian patients affected by OCD. Sociodemographic and clinical variables of a sample of 123 OCD outpatients, currently attending three OCD tertiary clinics in Northern Italy, were assessed through telephone and in-person interviews. Patients showing a clinical worsening of OCD represented more than one third of the sample and reported a significant emergence of new obsessions and compulsions phenotypes along with a significant exacerbation of past ones. Moreover, they were more frequently found to experience suicidal ideation, increased Internet checking, sleep disturbances, avoidance behaviors, and work difficulties. A significantly increased need of therapy adjustment and family accommodation was also observed. Further research is warranted to clarify the potential risk and related consequences of the current COVID-19 pandemic on OCD patients.

16.
Front Psychiatry ; 11: 533, 2020.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-615571

ABSTRACT

The COVID-19 pandemic and its related containment measures-mainly physical distancing and isolation-are having detrimental consequences on the mental health of the general population worldwide. In particular, frustration, loneliness, and worries about the future are common reactions and represent well-known risk factors for several mental disorders, including anxiety, affective, and post-traumatic stress disorders. The vast majority of available studies have been conducted in China, where the pandemic started. Italy has been severely hit by the pandemic, and the socio-cultural context is completely different from Eastern countries. Therefore, there is the need for methodologically rigorous studies aiming to evaluate the impact of COVID-19 and quarantine measures on the mental health of the Italian population. In fact, our results will help us to develop appropriate interventions for managing the psychosocial consequences of pandemic. The "COVID-IT-mental health trial" is a no-profit, not-funded, national, multicentric, cross-sectional population-based trial which has the following aims: a) to evaluate the impact of COVID-19 pandemic and its containment measures on mental health of the Italian population; b) to identify the main areas to be targeted by supportive long-term interventions for the different categories of people exposed to the pandemic. Data will be collected through a web-platform using validated assessment tools. Participants will be subdivided into four groups: a) Group 1-COVID-19 quarantine group. This group includes the general population which are quarantined but not isolated, i.e., those not directly exposed to contagion nor in contact with COVID-19+ individuals; b) Group 2-COVID-19+ group, which includes isolated people directly/indirectly exposed to the virus; c) Group 3-COVID-19 healthcare staff group, which includes first- and second-line healthcare professionals; d) Group 4-COVID-19 mental health, which includes users of mental health services and all those who had already been diagnosed with a mental disorder. Mental health services worldwide are not prepared yet to manage the short- and long-term consequences of the pandemic. It is necessary to have a clear picture of the impact that this new stressor will have on mental health and well-being in order to develop and disseminate appropriate interventions for the general population and for the other at-risk groups.

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