Each week, we identify one top search term, speculate about what caused its popularity, and provide an infographic on a related condition. If you have thoughts about what’s trending and why, feel free to share them with us on Twitter or Facebook.
From a curious link between pet ownership and disease development to a newly approved treatment option, a wide variety of news helped make schizophrenia this week’s top trending clinical topic. Results of a new study showed that having a pet dog as a child may protect against the development of schizophrenia later in life. Researchers assessed 396 patients with schizophrenia, 381 patients with bipolar disorder, and 594 individuals who comprised the healthy control group. Findings suggested that having a pet dog in the house before the 13th birthday was significantly associated with a decreased risk of receiving a subsequent diagnosis of schizophrenia. This association was not explained by a range of demographic factors that may affect household pet exposure, including age, sex, race/ethnicity, parental education, and place of birth.
For adults currently diagnosed with schizophrenia, lumateperone was recently approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The drug is a first-in-class antipsychotic that acts synergistically through the serotonergic, dopaminergic, and glutamatergic systems. The medication is also being developed for use in patients with bipolar depression, behavioral disturbances associated with dementia, and other neuropsychiatric and neurologic disorders.
Each week, we identify one top search term, speculate as to what caused its popularity, and provide an infographic on a related condition. If you have thoughts about what’s trending and why, feel free to share them with us on Twitter or Facebook.
Some news from Denmark is potentially encouraging. Patients with major depressive disorder (MDD) at imminent risk for suicide were shown to have experienced rapid benefit from esketamine nasal spray. More than 450 patients with MDD at risk for suicide were included in two phase 3 trials of the medication, which was recently approved by the US Food and Drug Administration. Reduction in suicidal thoughts between the treatment group compared with the placebo group emerged as early as 4 hours after esketamine use and lasted for 25 days. Although these differences were not significant, researchers said that the results were generally encouraging, especially for future studies.
Although the increased incidence and challenges in providing care can be discouraging, a recent commentary served as a reminder that steps can be taken in healthcare settings to reduce suicide risk in patients. One of those steps is increasing awareness of important information related to suicide prevention, which makes the fact that it is this week’s top trending clinical topic all the more encouraging.