ABSTRACT: To explore the role of social integration and support in the longitudinal course of suicidal ideation (SI) in a rural population.
Baseline and 12-month data were obtained from participants within the Australian Rural Mental Health Study, a longitudinal study of community residents within rural and remote New South Wales, Australia. SI was assessed using the Patient Health Questionnaire. Individual psychological factors, family and community characteristics were examined alongside personal social networks (Berkman Syme Social Network Index), availability of social support (Interview Schedule for Social Interaction) and perception of local community (Sense of Community Index).
Thirteen hundred and fifty-six participants were included in the analysis (39% male, mean age 56.5 years). Sixty-one participants reported recent SI at baseline, while 57 reported SI at follow-up. Baseline SI was a strong predictor of SI at 12 months [odds ratio (OR) 19.0, 95% confidence interval (CI) 8.6-42.3); significant effects were also observed for baseline values of psychological distress (OR 1.4, 95% CI 1.0-1.9) and availability of social support (OR 0.76, 95% 0.58-1.0) on 12-month SI. The emergence of SI at 12-month follow-up was predicted by higher psychological distress (OR 1.8, 95% CI 1.3-2.4); there was a marginal effect of lower availability of support (OR 0.74, 95% CI 0.55-1.0); neither of these variables predicted SI resolution.
This study investigated factors associated with SI over a 12-month period in a rural cohort. After controlling for known risk factors for SI, low availability of social support at baseline was associated with greater likelihood of SI at 12-month follow-up.
Social Psychiatry 10/2011; 47(8):1281-90. · 2.05 Impact Factor
ABSTRACT: Upper gastrointestinal hemorrhage remains a problem in spite of improved diagnosis and management. There is sparse knowledge of recent epidemiology and outcomes. We wanted to evaluate the characteristics and outcomes of patients with upper gastrointestinal hemorrhage over a 4-year period in a tertiary referral hospital.
We prospectively collected data on patients admitted with upper gastrointestinal hemorrhage to John Hunter Hospital between August 2004 and December 2008. Variables of interest included age, gender, co-morbidities, and time to endoscopy. Main outcomes included etiology, treatment, and survival. Variceal and non-variceal bleeds were analyzed separately.
There were 792 admissions from 734 unique patients (61% male) with a mean age of 66 years. The most frequent causes of non-variceal bleeds (88%) included ulcers 265 (33%); Mallory Weiss tear 91 (11%); esophagitis 60 (8%), and malignancy 29 (4%). Most patients had one or more co-morbidity (74%). Transfusion was not employed in 41%. Overall mortality was 4.0% (5.4% in the variceal and 3.9% in the non-variceal group). Only 1.9% of patients had surgery.
Patients presenting with upper gastrointestinal hemorrhage are overall elderly with significant co-morbidities. Our overall mortality and surgery rates are lower than in previously published international data.
Digestive Diseases and Sciences 12/2010; 55(12):3430-5. · 2.12 Impact Factor
ABSTRACT: Peptic ulcer disease risk factors have changed, as has the impact of treatment on morbidity and mortality. Recent data on clinical presentation and outcome are sparse in Australia.
To determine the characteristics and outcome of patients presenting with a bleeding peptic ulcer to a tertiary referral centre.
We evaluated patients diagnosed with peptic ulcer bleeding between 2004 and 2008 at a tertiary referral hospital. Variables assessed included demographic data, comorbidities, medication use and Rockall score. Outcomes of interest were the time to endoscopy, peptic ulcer treatment, transfusion requirements, urgent surgery and survival.
Peptic ulcers were confirmed in 265 patients (55% male), of which 145 were gastric and 119 duodenal. The mean age was 71 years. On admission 38% of patients had haemodynamic instability and 92% had one or more comorbidity. Consumption of ulcerogenic medications at the time of admission was frequent (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) 22%, aspirin 41%, clopidogrel or warfarin 10%) and proton pump inhibitors infrequent (15%). A gastroenterologist managed all patients according to their usual practice. Only a minority of patients received over three units of packed red cells. Few patients were referred for surgery (3%) or died (3%), but both events were significantly higher for the duodenal ulcer group.
The characteristics and outcomes in patients with peptic ulcer bleeding have changed. Peptic ulcer disease remains a public health problem with modifiable risk factors, such as Helicobacter pylori infection and NSAIDs, which should be targeted to reduce the burden of illness.
Internal Medicine Journal 10/2010; 41(8):605-9. · 1.54 Impact Factor